Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The State and Holocaust Survivors

In the past few weeks there has been a recent reports on how well or poorly Israel treats its Holocaust survivors. This is a recent JPost article on the matter. Its been reported that the government will give each survivor 85NIS per month. I've never been able to figure out how they came up with that figure coming to about $20/month. It's a ridiculously low number.

It seems to me that Israel has an obligation to provide for these people. The Nazi's brought them to the lowest of the low, a government dehumanized them; here in Israel, the Jewish state, we should re-humanize them. We should pay them whatever it should take just to survive. If it's 1500NIS/month then they should get it without any qualifications.

It occurred to me that we should also ask them to help Yad Vashem - tell their stories, whatever they can do to keep the historical account up to date and accurate. Write letters to convince others to tell their stories or speak to tourists. Do this and we'll give you another 500NIS/month. It's not a job, its a right that they get just for being who they are.

Anything less than giving them full support is tantamount to do what the Nazis did, dehumanized them.

Monday, August 06, 2007

So I've been in Israel for a Week

Now that I'm posting from Israel I guess that makes me an Israeli blogger - but since I'm not an Oleh, oh well, maybe not.

Anyway, the past week has been full of crazy adventures. Somethings don't sound so crazy, but with out lack of comfort with Hebrew they turn out to be. We bought an oven from this guy in Mea Shearim and had it delivered to Efrat. We bought some furniture from a couple leaving the Kollel, however, it was so heavy four Kollel guys couldn't move the lightest piece. We hired two Arab workers to move the three pieces for 100 shekels total. Insane.

My wife had interviews - for this year and next - at Midreshet Rachel and Pardes. I was impressed with both places but for very different reasons. I hope it all goes well for her there.

Israel's been really great, the adjustments are sometimes hard. We had no furniture in our apartment when we arrived and our lift is still tw0-weeks out so we've had to buy things one at a time. Dealing with Bezeq setting up DSL and then finding an internet provider. Next thing is to find bookshelves and start reading blogs again and then in two weeks class starts.

It's stress, but good stress. And I love the breeze here in Efrat.