Esor Ben-Sorek

The Times of Israel – The Pride of Israel

I have taken an author’s liberty to changing (for the sake of this article) the name given to this daily newspaper, The Times of Israel. It is deserving of an additional name… The Pride of Israel.

Its first printed edition began in 2012 as a daily online newspaper specializing in the news in Israel, all the Middle East countries, and information from the Jewish world.

In that year, its distinguished founding editor, David Horovitz, announced the paper’s policy when he stated clearly “We are independent; we’re not attached or affiliated with any political party”.

That declaration was historical since all printed newspapers in Israel were affiliated with some political parties, ergo, in supporting their party its press could not be independent.

David Horovitz broke that longtime trend by publishing Israel’s first and only independent daily newspaper. And since 2012 The Times of Israel has been The Pride of Israel.

It began its publication in English and since then has added daily editions in Hebrew, Arabic, French and most recently, Persian.

Last year The Times of Israel had more than five million users every month with more than twenty million page views each month.

Two readers in New Delhi,India (Swaroop Patel and Lal Chadha) and also one in Bangkok, Thailand (Rochana Visatbakhti) have responded to comments on some of my articles which they had read. It suggests that there are millions of readers in far-away lands.

The three of them wrote to me that they were deeply interested to learn about Israel. It surprised me that they were able to locate me at my personal e-mail address, and I replied to them with thanks for their interest.

Some indicate that it can be read in twenty countries. In addition, it hosts a complete section comprised of more than nine thousand bloggers, managed by the esteemed op-ed (opinion-editor) Miriam Herschlag. No other Israeli newspaper has such a large number of creative bloggers.

I am very proud to be one of them since my first article was published in 2015 with 1,095 articles published since then.

The Times of Israel does not engage in censorship. All opinions are welcome if they follow the policy of the editors. If an article is not approved as sent to the editor’s desk there is a given opportunity for the author to correct, change, eliminate improper statements and/or incorrect information. The editor then offers the author the chance to re-write and to re-send the corrected article for consideration.

The editorial staff is devoted to maintaining friendly relationships with its thousands of bloggers world-wide.

At one time, prior to my wife’s death in 2016, I wanted to retire and to cease from writing. My mind, my heart and my soul were completely concerned with only one thing…. the too few weeks and months before my wife’s life had come to its end.

She made only two requests of me. One, to stay close to our three adult children and adult grandchildren, and Two, to continue writing as much as I can for The Times of Israel because she knew too well that it would be the best therapy for me to take my mind away from the personal tragedies in life.

She was correct only in a partial truth— that continued writing would be good therapy for me. She was, however, totally incorrect in thinking that anything in the world could take away from my mind the personal tragedies in life.

Not one day passes without me mentioning Rahel in my daily prayers. Not one day passes without me holding her framed photo next to my heart. Four bitter years have passed and I am still in mourning.

She would have strongly disapproved of it as do my children. I often have to hide my tears to avoid being chastised by one of them, especially on Friday nights and Saturday noons at the Shabbat meals.

“Abba, asur l’cha livkot b’Shabbat. Shabbat oneg. Ima hayta mitragezet alecha. Maspik d’maot”.
Dad, it is forbidden to cry on the Sabbath. The Sabbath is a day of delight. Mother would be angry with you. Enough with the tears.

It pains me that they are unable to understand me. Rahel was their adored mother for 52 – 55 years and she was my sainted wife for 56 years. The love has never faded nor diminished. It never can and will never be.

But I am proud to say that I have continued to follow my wife’s request, a promise she required from me to continue my writing as often as possible for the daily Times of Israel… The Pride of Israel.

It may be good therapy for me but I must apologize to my two very devoted and dedicated editors, Miriam Herschlag and Anne Gordon.

And after putting up with me these past five years, it would not surprise me if they needed therapy because of me. I am their biggest “meshugganeh”.

I will atone and will seek their forgiveness in my prayers on Rosh HaShanah and on Yom Kippur !

And keeping a promise made, I continue to write in The Times of Israel— The Pride of Israel.

About the Author
Esor Ben-Sorek is a retired professor of Hebrew, Biblical literature & history of Israel. Conversant in 8 languages: Hebrew, Yiddish, English, French, German, Spanish, Polish & Dutch. Very proud of being an Israeli citizen. A follower of Trumpeldor & Jabotinsky & Begin.
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