Sunday, April 07, 2013

7-Apr-13: Remembering the destruction

It's a warm spring night, the start of Israel's annual commemoration of Holocaust Memorial Day.

Many restaurants, cafes and entertainment centres are closed. Television programming is geared to the sombre character of the day, and there are memorial services of many different kinds; we just got back from a memorial gathering of friends here in the neighbourhood.

A siren will bring the country to a brief thoughtful halt at 10 tomorrow morning. (The scene will repeat itself in a week when Israel stops for Yom Hazikaron, the Day of Remembrance for Israeli Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terrorism, often termed Israel's official Memorial Day.)

The near-total destruction of European Jewish life is receding into history even as the last survivors pass on. What is not disappearing is the hatred without which the murder of masses of people because of their creed, their language or their will to national self-determination becomes possible.

There are few Israelis who will react with more than a slightly raised eyebrow this evening at the report of three Palestinian Arab missiles dispatched from the Gaza Strip into Israel earlier this evening, seeking - but thankfully not finding - Jewish or Israeli lives. Times of Israel writes that
Several explosions were heard in the Western Negev region and the remains of a rocket were found in the open area in the Shaar Hanegev region. No injuries or damage were reported... The missiles fell as [US Secretary of State John] Kerry was in Ramallah holding talks with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. 

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