For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
Over the weekend I was a victim of a hoax. An internet scenario played out a scene in which Barack Obama tells a visiting Israeli delegation to the White House, headed by Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, that he believes the cause of peace would be advanced if the words “Next Year in Jerusalem” were excised from the Passover Haggadah.
The prime minister, squirming uncomfortably in his seat, looks from aide to aide before finally offering to remove the words from the Yom Kippur service but not the Haggadah. Not satisfied with the response, Obama stands up to excuse himself for dinner, indicating that he will be back later. ” I’ll give you some time to think about it and will return to have you sign the new edict.”
I believed it for a moment because, like all parody, it possesses an inkling of truth. Given this administration’s impatience with the Netanyahu government’s obduracy in attaching itself to a united Jerusalem, one would think that there is indeed some substance to the idea that the Obama administration not only wants to sever East Jerusalem from West, but the Jewish people’s attachment to the city in general.
Maybe that is why an unconfirmed rumor circulating the Internet, that the Obama White House seder will not conclude with the traditional words ” Next Year in Jerusalem” for fear of offending Palestinian sensibilities, has gained such currency.
It may all be nonsense but still it leaves many with the sense that things seem to have gone very wrong. During his electoral campaign, Obama’s own platform called for a united Jerusalem and the U.S. Congress itself has been behind that very notion since at least 1995 when it passed The Jerusalem Embassy Relocation Act.
I visited Hevron in November 2000 after the outbreak of the Rosh Hashanah War to see what could be done to assist in the face of the growing daily attacks on the community. After returning to work for the community in the summer of 2001, a bond and a love was forged that grows to this day. My wife Melody and I merited to be married at Ma'arat HaMachpela and now host visitors from throughout the world every Shabbat as well as during the week. Our goal, "Time to come Home!"