A letter from Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv is a vibrant city and for someone who is looking for a good life and a good time… It has everything one wants. When I was young I had lived in New York City for a while, so I can compare… and I think I know what I’m talking about… I don’t know what people think about Israel in Sweden, but I have to explain that people who live here have no less fun (If they have the means to do it of course) than anywhere else in the world. Please believe me that one can live here for a long time without even thinking for a moment about politics or for example about the Arab-Israeli conflict!…

We’re going a lot to the theater and cinemas. Last weekend for example was a fun weekend. We went in midday to see ”West Side Story” which was performed in English by an American group at the Israeli Opera House in Tel Aviv. It was a great show with wonderful dancers and singers… After the show we went to a nice lunch at a restaurant not far from our apartment… The next day, on Saturday, we went again, this time to the theater to see a play. We saw ”Little man, what now?” At the Cameri Theater in Tel Aviv. The play is an adaptation based on the book of the German author Hans Fallada.

Read the rest of this letter here.

Jerusalem Light Rail, Revisited

Once again, my family and I are visiting Israel from the northwest corner of the U.S., in Seattle, Washington, where I manage an Israel resource center (www.BroaderView.org).  And once again, we are spending our summer in my hometown of Rehovot.  While the kids are at day camp—“kaytana” in Hebrew—I roam the country by bus and train and car to see friends and acquaintances, old and new.  Once again, my travels bring me to Jerusalem for a day of meetings.  I wrote last year about my adventures on Jerusalem’s “CitiPass” light rail, and got some very positive reactions, so I thought I would post an update.

The air is cooler in Jerusalem, drier, crisper, breezier than on the inland plains.  It feels different not only physically, but also spiritually—literally, uplifting, where my step is lighter.

The security checkpoint at the entrance to the Central Bus Station in Jerusalem is closed.  It is not abandoned; the x-ray machine and metal-detector gate are still there, but pushed aside, unused.  Two security guards stand around, more engaged in talking to each other than observing the passersby.  Ironically, I feel more secure, not less, with the lax security.  Obviously, Israelis are no longer anxious about suicide bombers, and it’s easier to come and go.

Walking along Jaffa Road, I note that it is back to the bustling commercial area it once was, before it was torn up for years to build the light-rail lines.  There are fewer cars now and more pedestrians, and the Mahane Yehuda market is as busy as ever.  Hair salons and clothes shops, hardware stores and cafes, a youth hostel and a hat seller, old buildings and new line my route, along with quite a few construction sites in progress.  The economy is obviously booming.

Read the rest of this letter here.

”You only know what your media wants you to know”

Sometimes a ‘comment’ becomes a ‘letter’.
Enjoy.

@DannyBoy

The answers to your claims, lays in your own comment:
1. B’Tselem בצלם & rememberthesechildren
2. ”Berlin Wall”
3. ”The world doesn’t care what you think”
4. ”What your nation is doing towards the Palestinians”
__________________________

1. B’Tselem is a radical left-wing, civil organization, who is known for its inaccurate, sometime false or fictional information and manipulative facts. Btselem people have even ADMIT that their sample is not reliable, doesn’t reflect the specific death cases and therefor not valid. Btselem has admitted that several times in the past!

Here’s a simple one – Just the comparison between IDF and Gaza deaths is ridiculous and very wrong. Gaza has a few terror organizations. The most known ones are Hamas and Fatah, which are in a conflict between themselves and there are many mutal killings between these 2 groups. You must have seen the dead body, being dragged by a motorbike in the streets of Gaza – that’s a Fatah activists… His killing has nothing to do with the IDF.

Read the rest of this letter here.

Lena’s letter

In light of the awful terror attack in London I decided to take time to share with you some knowledge. It is not about Israel, it’s about the huge danger in your concentration in the wrong things.

It’s about Europe.

It’s about the whole world.

I will start with the subject of religion. Islam differs from Judaism in many aspects. One of them is Islamic endless attempt to force its religion on peoples of the world. Judaism, on the contrary, is very ”closed”. Some Islamic people dream about and pray for Islam in the whole world. But others take it too far and do it violently.

There is a group of Islamic extremists all around Europe (and other parts of the world), who enlarge their group by brainwashing other people. They violently and strategically plan to destroy democracy in the whole Europe and the rest of the world (because ”People can’t decide about rules, only Allah can”). They pray outside, in front of you in order to provoke you. They organize noisy demonstrations against your government and from time to time kill people in the name of their God while behind closed doors plan bigger and dangerous operations and train their Shahids.

Read the rest of this letter here.

A letter of appreciation

Hi everyone,

The first introduction with Kim’s blog was in the Israeli independence day of 2012 in an article I read. I was amazed to see the dedication of Kim of convincing the Swedish media that israelis are actually trying to live their life like everyone else.

There are many obstacles on the way to a stable agreement with the Palestinians. Israelis are suspicious because of the terrorist groups. But we still believe that conditions will change over time.

Read the rest of this letter here.

A Story

When I travel out of Israel, I see local people traveling, going to work, meet for coffee – the routines of life. In my heart I feel hope that one day I can walk in my home without fear, that within my home I will be safe, that no one would claim that my home is not mine.
Is my hope strange to you? We have no other country to live in.
Wherever you go in Israel, you can find a piece of Jewish history: coins, scrolls, houses, synagogues…
A small region that has always been inhabited by the Jewish nation.
Although many argue otherwise, it is a proven fact.

Everywhere else in the world we will always be strangers, not belong.
It’s sad to hear people discuss the situation in my country, and always choose one side..I’ll tell you a story, a true story:

Many years ago, in a faraway land, there was a Jewish man, a father of seven sons. He had a croft – a small farm, but he was not a farmer.
He was a Dayan – a Jewish Judge, who travelled from village to village.
He was very important to the Jewish community. He would rule according to Jewish law in all sorts of topics: money, inheritance, and he also gave certificates for weddings, divorce.
Most of the time he was on the road, and his family saw him only five times a year.

Read the rest of this letter here.

”What I ask for is not support, I ask for understanding”

My name is Michael, I’m 22, I love life and I love my country.
I know Israel is far from perfect, but is there a country that is? Every country has its problems. As I have read in ”The girl with the dragon tattoo” by Stieg Larsen, it seems Sweden has its share of women’s rights problems.
But that doesn’t give me the right as an outsider to criticize and to call for boycotts on Sweden does it? Not at least until I have actually been there and read enough on the local history and the problems in order to understand it.

I am part of what the world media calls ”the settlers”.
What I’m about to say might shock you:
I don’t hate arabs. I don’t believe in segregation either. All I want to do is work hard, succeed, have a family of my own one day. And I know that like me, so many arabs want the same. So what is the problem? Why can’t we do that?
Go to this link: http://www.jihadwatch.org/2012/12/500-muslim-youths-riot-in-gothenburg-sweden-to-protect-honour-against-sexual-rumours.html

See? Even at your own home. So why is this happening? We can find excuses, we can blame ourselves but that won’t get us anywhere. It won’t help to solve the problem.

Read the rest of this letter here.

”Dear Swede… I really don’t care.”

Dear Swede,

I’m sure you are a nice and wonderful person, but I have to be honest. I don’t care what you or the world thinks anymore. I’ve become tired of hearing distorted truths about my home. I’ve become tired of thinking about my national identity as a battle. I’m going to keep living my life, and I’m going to keep supporting my government to make sure that I can keep living my life.

I really don’t care if you think my neighbors are out to destroy my country or not. (They are by the way.) I don’t care if you think we are trying to remove non-Jews from Israel. (We aren’t by the way.) I really don’t care. Instead, I care about getting other Jews to feel proud of our home and our nation. I care about working 6 days a week, and bringing food to my family, and helping the company I work for become a better company.

I care about my friends and the people near me, and about making life worth living. If I have to do that with your accusing eye constantly looking for bad things to say about Israel, my home, then so be it.

Read the rest of this letter here.

”We can walk hand in hand, be who we want to be, who we are”

Hi Kim, first, I would like to thank you for your support for Israel, so it is a thank you from me and from others that still don’t know you.

My name is Itay, 27 years old, former Extreme Ultra-Orthodox Jew and gay.
Where should I start? There are so many things that pop up in my mind now.
Israel, a small country maybe of the size of a county in the USA, Israel, a place where all Jews around the world feel safe, Israel, the only DEMOCRATIC country in the Middle East, Israel, the ONLY country in the Middle East where the LGBT community can actually live.

We are not perfect, far far away from it, but we do our best in the endless war for life and peace.
So many things people think about Israel, so many and we, we are so few against the world.

Read the rest of this letter here.