A friend whom I met while shopping in the supermarket shared a sad story with me. He had recently learned that a long-time neighbor, a man in his late 70s, was packing his suitcases, moving his furniture, putting his apartment on the real estate market for sale, and was making plans to leave Israel, the place of his birth, forever, to move to Argentina, where his daughter lives with her family.
His reason: “I can no longer live in a crazy country where one day we have a government and the next day we don’t. It has become a place where the situation pits friend against friend, even among family members. It is no longer a good place to live in my old age.”
And thus begins a second exodus. He believes that close friends in Kfar Saba are also planning to leave the country and travel as immigrants to Canada.
Our first exodus was from Egypt TO our promised land under the leadership of Moses.
A second exodus is FROM the promised land to only God knows where and it is leaderless.
It is a heartache to hear these stories. They are the sad feelings of a tiny number in our population but nevertheless it is painful for me personally to hear stories like the one told to me.
We cannot know the fate of our nation in the next two days. It does not look promising and a third election (which will probably produce similar results as the first and second elections) is a costly disgrace.
The attorney general’s decision in the Netanyahu criminal cases will be announced shortly. I do not think that the decisions will change the face of our government, already prepared for an indictment.
The needed change must be added to our Basic Laws. Political parties must be reduced to reasonable numbers. Twenty-nine political partiers is ludicrous. Four are manageable— right-wing, left-wing, religious, and Arab Joint List. There is no need for additional minority or splinter political parties.
Accusations are flying wildly. Death threats have been made. Are more political assassinations possible?
Do we need another Yigal Amir or Baruch Goldstein to bring shame, disgrace and condemnation to our country? Are we not sufficiently shamed for our circus-like government by the more mature nations?
We cannot resurrect the dead. We cannot revive the souls of David Ben-Gurion and Menachem Begin. They were our sincere and honest giants.
They were true and genuine leaders whose heart, soul and might was solely for the welfare of the Israeli state and not for personal glory such as we now experience.
I asked my friend if he could not possibly convince his neighbor to cancel his plans for leaving. He shrugged his shoulders. “He has fought in all of our wars. He is tired of the corruption and wants to spend his remaining years happily and quietly with his daughter and grandchildren in Argentina”.
The brief meeting in the supermarket upset me and I began to think about myself. I do not like our present state of affairs. But what would I do? Would I join an exodus? Would I surrender myself to the hands of deception and corruption?
All of us have an un-sworn but heartfelt conviction to demand tzedek (righteousness) and mishpat (justice). And it cannot be found outside of the borders of the small State of Israel.
Ashrei yoshvei baitecha… happy are those who dwell in their homes… who live on the land of Israel, in the State of Israel, in the land of God’s promise, and work together to strengthen it and to make it a happier land in which to live.
A man can divorce a wife but he can never divorce his mother. Israel is our mother! She cannot be divorced nor abandoned. Am Yisrael Chai.
The nation and the people of Israel must live!