Julian Sorsby

Yitzhak Yifat. A moment that could have changed the world.

I never knew Yitzhak Yifat but I mourn his death. To those of us who lived through the era of the closing of the Straits of Tiran, the bombing of the Arab air bases, the charge through the Mitla Pass and the hand to hand fighting on Ammunition Hill, the photo of Yitzhak at the Kotel was iconic. He became a symbol to Jews all over the world. He represented the idealism of our youthful country, the Maccabean spirit of survival just a quarter of a century after the liberation of the concentration camps, and more than everything else, he became the hope of a nation for peace, the desire to befriend our enemies and to beat our swords into ploughshares.

I mourn the death of Yitzhak and wish long life to his friends and family. I apologize to them that a lifetime after the photo was taken we are still fighting our enemies, our and their brothers and sisters are still dying in conflict, so many Jews have forgotten what it means to be Jewish and that the badge of honor of Orthodox leaders and of their political allies is racism of the most vile type. I wish it was different. I wish Yitzhak could have seen a land rebuilt in peace and I despair of those who prevent it.

About the Author
Julian Sorsby was born in London three months before the rebirth of the State of Israel. He is a lifelong Zionist, a student of Jewish history and an advocate of human rights.
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