Holocaust Remembrance Day
© April 2003 by Asher Intrater
Today (May 1, 2003) in Israel marked the yearly Holocaust Remembrance Day. Here are some notes on this day's activities, which give a certain "snapshot" of the strange life here in the "holy land":
I. Survivors Rescued by Christian Families
He did not know his real parents and considered the "adopting" Christian family as his own. He went to church and thought he was a Christian until the war ended and he found out the truth. After the war he immigrated to Israel. It is surprising to find out how many leaders in Israel today, who were Holocaust survivors, passed those years as a secret part of a Christian family.
II. Abu Mazen
III. Terrorist Attack
IV. The "Messiah" Arrested
The ultra-Orthodox viewpoint is that women's hair is a temptation to lust of the eyes. Women are required to cover their hair with a head covering. In the Sephardic view, that covering must be with a cloth. In the Ashkenazic view, that covering can be either with a cloth or with a wig.
The Sephardic hold that the wigs of the Ashkenazi are just as visually sensual as natural hair, and that therefore cannot be considered as a head covering. The sin of wearing a sensuous wig is considered by some so serious that it causes lust in the eyes and hearts of the men of the city, and thus PREVENTS THE COMING OF THE MESSIAH.
Therefore, Mr. Ben Arush, who considers himself to be the Messiah, felt it his duty to burn down these wig stores in order to purify the city for his appearance. Burning down the Ashkenazic synagogues was an attempt to persuade the Ashkenazic rabbis to pass a "halachic" law forbidding their members from wearing the wigs.
Mr Ben Arush did not resist his arrest, saying that he would be like Joseph in Egypt going to jail, and that he would soon be released and show himself to be the Messiah. However, he said that before his appearance as the Messiah, he would have to raise from the dead Ophra Haza, a beautiful Israeli pop music singer who died of AIDS a couple of years ago, as well as Zohar Argov, a popular male singer who recently died in a drug overdose that may have been a suicide.
In the synagogues that were set on fire, a few Torah scrolls that had survived the Nazis and were brought to Israel, were destroyed.
V. General Strike
The strike represents what may be the last great battle between two economic ideologies. The first is the labor oriented, somewhat socialist background of the Histadrut (Israeli labor union) headed by Amir Perez. The second is the more free market capitalist approach, headed by Benjamin Netanyahu, currently serving as the head of the treasury department.
The two sides have been accusing one another for the disastrous state of the Israeli economy, although the main problem is that two and a half years of Intifada has cut off all tourism and foreign investment in Israel, causing a chain effect of bankruptcies, unemployment, tax deficit, etc.
In a positive scenario, the strike could spell the downfall of the socialist labor economists, opening up the country to real free enterprise, right at a time where the Intifada will be ended, and a new period of investment and economic growth will begin.
In a negative scenario, the strike could push the Israeli economy over the brink and cause a collapse of the banking system, the government and the stock market, before any cease fire or economic growth can have a chance to get started.