On the 4th day of Adar, on the front page of Haaretz, there appeared a most curious story. Its headline read: “Israel Railways planning to build 475-kilometer rail network in West Bank.”
The horrifying images on Israel's Channel 10 were probably the most graphic I had ever seen on television. A suicide bomber, a Muslim religious teacher from Hebron -- himself the father of young children, had blown up a Jerusalem bus filled with ultra-Orthodox men, women and children on their way home from worship at the Western Wall. Twenty-one innocent people were murdered, scores were wounded and maimed, many of them -- so many of them -- children. The following morning, the mass-circulation Yediot newspaper ran front-page photos of some of the victims, a heart-breaking picture of a 5-month-old baby girl in intensive care and the opening paragraphs of four Op-Ed pieces, including one by Israel's most famous author, Amos Oz.
How do you feel about what's going on here in Israel? How do you think you're supposed to feel?
"Is America a great country or what? (APPLAUSE)
Yes it is. God bless America, land that we love."
- Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, Los Angeles, Aug. 16, 2000
Like most American Jews, I'm a Democrat by tradition and temperament. Still, I understand why some Jews might not vote for Joe Lieberman. Nowhere is it written that you should vote for someone just because he's a Jew. For some American Jews, Lieberman is too liberal. For others, too conservative. Another reason why I like him: He doesn't quite fit in any box.
It's not easy being 52, especially when you're a country. Israel and I are the same age, and I get the feeling it's harder on her than on me. The other night my high school classmates living in Israel got together for a 35th reunion. There were 116 graduates of our modern-Orthodox day school that June long ago, and today 12 of us live in Israel, four men and eight women. Half the women are grandmothers by now; one has a granddaughter the same age as my daughter. Jeepers, how time flies.
"A Dream No More," an ambitious documentary on Israel's first 50 years, intended originally as a highlight of the nation's anniversary jubilee, is, indeed, a dream no more. Nearly completed, the film has been permanently shelved by the producing Simon Wiesenthal Center, to the considerable dismay of the documentary's chief creators.