Blogs > HNN > HATIKVA (THE HOPE) FROM BERGEN BELSEN TO ISRAEL AT 58

May 3, 2006 10:57 am


HATIKVA (THE HOPE) FROM BERGEN BELSEN TO ISRAEL AT 58



Israel is celebrating its 58th birthday tonight. A few days ago Michael Totten was struck by graffiti he saw everywhere in Tel Aviv. It read "Know Hope."

I am not sure he knows that"The Hope" is the name of Israel's anthem and it was the Zionist anthem before statehood.

To fully appreciate the Jewish refusal to abandon"The Hope" or in Hebrew"Hatikva," You must listen to this Recently discovered recording of Jewish prisoners in Bergen Belsen singing Hatkiva on the first Shabbat after hearing of liberation, April 20, 1945. The introduction is by the BBC. The Lyrics are:

As long as deep in the heart,
The soul of a Jew yearns,
And forward to the East
To Zion, an eye looks

Our hope will not be lost,
The hope of two thousand years,
To be a free nation in our land,
The land of Zion and Jerusalem.

With the aid of this wonderful new techology you can also listen to David Ben Gurion establish the state of Israel. Yehuda Avner recalls the day (via My Obiter Dicta and Soccer Dad). Here is the English translation"

ERETZ-ISRAEL [(Hebrew) - the Land of Israel, Palestine] was the birthplace of the Jewish people. Here their spiritual, religious and political identity was shaped. Here they first attained to statehood, created cultural values of national and universal significance and gave to the world the eternal Book of Books.

After being forcibly exiled from their land, the people kept faith with it throughout their Dispersion and never ceased to pray and hope for their return to it and for the restoration in it of their political freedom.

Impelled by this historic and traditional attachment, Jews strove in every successive generation to re-establish themselves in their ancient homeland. In recent decades they returned in their masses. Pioneers, ma'pilim [(Hebrew) - immigrants coming to Eretz-Israel in defiance of restrictive legislation] and defenders, they made deserts bloom, revived the Hebrew language, built villages and towns, and created a thriving community controlling its own economy and culture, loving peace but knowing how to defend itself, bringing the blessings of progress to all the country's inhabitants, and aspiring towards independent nationhood.

In the year 5657 (1897), at the summons of the spiritual father of the Jewish State, Theodore Herzl, the First Zionist Congress convened and proclaimed the right of the Jewish people to national rebirth in its own country.

This right was recognized in the Balfour Declaration of the 2nd November, 1917, and re-affirmed in the Mandate of the League of Nations which, in particular, gave international sanction to the historic connection between the Jewish people and Eretz-Israel and to the right of the Jewish people to rebuild its National Home.

The catastrophe which recently befell the Jewish people - the massacre of millions of Jews in Europe - was another clear demonstration of the urgency of solving the problem of its homelessness by re-establishing in Eretz-Israel the Jewish State, which would open the gates of the homeland wide to every Jew and confer upon the Jewish people the status of a fully privileged member of the comity of nations.

Survivors of the Nazi holocaust in Europe, as well as Jews from other parts of the world, continued to migrate to Eretz-Israel, undaunted by difficulties, restrictions and dangers, and never ceased to assert their right to a life of dignity, freedom and honest toil in their national homeland.

In the Second World War, the Jewish community of this country contributed its full share to the struggle of the freedom- and peace-loving nations against the forces of Nazi wickedness and, by the blood of its soldiers and its war effort, gained the right to be reckoned among the peoples who founded the United Nations.

On the 29th November, 1947, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution calling for the establishment of a Jewish State in Eretz-Israel; the General Assembly required the inhabitants of Eretz-Israel to take such steps as were necessary on their part for the implementation of that resolution. This recognition by the United Nations of the right of the Jewish people to establish their State is irrevocable.

This right is the natural right of the Jewish people to be masters of their own fate, like all other nations, in their own sovereign State.

ACCORDINGLY WE, MEMBERS OF THE PEOPLE'S COUNCIL, REPRESENTATIVES OF THE JEWISH COMMUNITY OF ERETZ-ISRAEL AND OF THE ZIONIST MOVEMENT, ARE HERE ASSEMBLED ON THE DAY OF THE TERMINATION OF THE BRITISH MANDATE OVER ERETZ-ISRAEL AND, BY VIRTUE OF OUR NATURAL AND HISTORIC RIGHT AND ON THE STRENGTH OF THE RESOLUTION OF THE UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY, HEREBY DECLARE THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A JEWISH STATE IN ERETZ-ISRAEL, TO BE KNOWN AS THE STATE OF ISRAEL.

WE DECLARE that, with effect from the moment of the termination of the Mandate being tonight, the eve of Sabbath, the 6th Iyar, 5708 (15th May, 1948), until the establishment of the elected, regular authorities of the State in accordance with the Constitution which shall be adopted by the Elected Constituent Assembly not later than the 1st October 1948, the People's Council shall act as a Provisional Council of State, and its executive organ, the People's Administration, shall be the Provisional Government of the Jewish State, to be called"Israel".

THE STATE OF ISRAEL will be open for Jewish immigration and for the Ingathering of the Exiles; it will foster the development of the country for the benefit of all its inhabitants; it will be based on freedom, justice and peace as envisaged by the prophets of Israel; it will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race or sex; it will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture; it will safeguard the Holy Places of all religions; and it will be faithful to the principles of the Charter of the United Nations.

THE STATE OF ISRAEL is prepared to cooperate with the agencies and representatives of the United Nations in implementing the resolution of the General Assembly of the 29th November, 1947, and will take steps to bring about the economic union of the whole of Eretz-Israel.

WE APPEAL to the United Nations to assist the Jewish people in the building-up of its State and to receive the State of Israel into the comity of nations.

WE APPEAL - in the very midst of the onslaught launched against us now for months - to the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel to preserve peace and participate in the upbuilding of the State on the basis of full and equal citizenship and due representation in all its provisional and permanent institutions.

WE EXTEND our hand to all neighbouring states and their peoples in an offer of peace and good neighbourliness, and appeal to them to establish bonds of cooperation and mutual help with the sovereign Jewish people settled in its own land. The State of Israel is prepared to do its share in a common effort for the advancement of the entire Middle East.

WE APPEAL to the Jewish people throughout the Diaspora to rally round the Jews of Eretz-Israel in the tasks of immigration and upbuilding and to stand by them in the great struggle for the realization of the age-old dream - the redemption of Israel.

PLACING OUR TRUST IN THE"ROCK OF ISRAEL", WE AFFIX OUR SIGNATURES TO THIS PROCLAMATION AT THIS SESSION OF THE PROVISIONAL COUNCIL OF STATE, ON THE SOIL OF THE HOMELAND, IN THE CITY OF TEL-AVIV, ON THIS SABBATH EVE, THE 5TH DAY OF IYAR, 5708 (14TH MAY,1948).




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Fern Sidman - 5/3/2006

THE TRUE MEANING OF INDEPENDENCE DAY

BY: FERN SIDMAN

As we prepare to celebrate the 58th anniversary of the State of Israel, we ask ourselves what the true and genuine meaning of Israeli independence really is. We know that 58 years ago, in May of 1948 the United Nations declared the creation of the State of Israel. Each year we celebrate the birth of the modern State of Israel with great fanfare and jubilation. We also remember those who have fallen in the line of duty to protect the State of Israel. We remember thousands of members of the Israel Defense Forces, whose lives were snuffed out in the many wars that the State of Israel has been forced to endure.

And we ask ourselves who bestowed this independence of statehood upon us. Yes, the Un declared the creation of the state, yet we know that our indepedence was granted to us by a higher authority. We know that Hashem orchestrates everything that occurs, both on a personal and communal level. As Rabbi Binyamin Ze'ev Kahane, ZTK"L said in 1995:
"What is independence of the Jewish Nation? It is that we OURSELVES, ALONE, do not rely on any other nation. This is the deeper meaning of the concept, "a nation that dwells alone". And how do we arrive at a situation where we become a nation that dwells alone? Only when we put our trust in God, and not in the gentile.

Certainly it is scary when one is surrounded by hundreds of millions of Arabs who want to wipe us out, and on each and every action we make, the entire world condemns! But it is only scary for one who is lacking faith; it is only frightening for those who deep in their souls are still slaves and not capable of being independent!

And so, how embarassing it is to hear from our "leaders" year after year on Holocaust Day, the same tired, empty phrases. Like a dog returning to his own vomit, they repeat, "that if the State of Israel and the I.D.F. had been around ten years earlier, it could have prevented a Holocaust". Really? Then why doesn't the same State and army of Israel dare return fire in a war against an enemy who sits within her, and who slaughters its citizens daily? They would have dared act against the Nazis? Why, that might harm "diplomatic relations"...

"And so we celebrate Independence Day and Yom Yerushalayim, saying "Hallel". Not only for the quantitative aspect of the miracles of 1948 and 1967 which were greater than the miracles that occurred in the time of the Hashmonim, but we also thank G-d for the qualitative aspect of the miracles, which were a sanctification of G-d's Name, a redemption of the People and it's land - that is, a forging ahead. Whose heart cannot grow warm from the memory of the Israeli soldiers marching forward in the Sinai Desert, the Golan Heights, Yehuda, Shomron; when the names Shchem, Hebron, Jericho, the Temple Mount became real again! The Messiah was knocking on the door, and a spirit of purity passed through the entire nation...

Yes, we know that those last three dots we wrote above are not something to be happy about, for everything started going downhill from there. Since then, the grand spirit that had been injected into the people has been forcibly smothered out by the evil Jewish governments. In a short period of time, we saw the obscene spitting on the miracle, and an abandonment of the lands we captured. But G-d is not at fault for this, and so we can not quit giving Him praise for the miracles He granted. On the contrary, we must recall these great miracles, gather strength, and vomit out of power those betrayers of G-d's miracles, thereby taking the reigns and going in the direction of those gates which Hashem opened for us, in order that we may bring the complete redemption!"

Yes, Israeli Independence day is a day to give praise to the Almighty who intervened on our behalf and saw to it that the creation of a Jewish State would become a reality. And yet, instead of hearing prayers and supplications to Hashem on this day, our leaders speak of "never giving up the hope of peace" with our enemies. These words were spoken by Shimon Peres and are echoed by others of his ilk. He and the other myopic and spiritually bankrupt leaders of the "independent" State of Israel speak of further territorial compromises with the Arab enemy who vows to destroy the "independent" State of Israel by any means possible.

Our leaders speak of more Jewish evacuations and demolitions of even more Jewish settlements in the liberated lands of Judea and Samaria, all the while paying lip service and babbling about the bravery and courage of Israeli soldiers who gave their lives to defend the "independent" State of Israel. Their callousness is appalling and truly loathsome. While family members and friends of soldiers who have perished defending the State of Israel mark a national day of mourning and remembrance of their loved ones, the leaders of the "independent" State of Israel make a mockery of their memory by calling for the land that they fought so valiantly for, to be handed over to the same enemy that was responsible for their deaths.

Let us understand the true meaning of independence and from whom it actually emanates. Let us recognize the omniscious, omnipotent power behind our indepedence. Let us recognize the G-d of Israel, and even further, let us fear and serve only Hashem, the One and Only Creator of the Universe and Giver of independence. Let us remind those in power in the government of the "independent" State of Israel that they cannot banish the presence of G-d. They cannot, in their arrogance declare indepedence and sovereignty until they recognize the source of that independence. Let us remind the powers that be in Israel, that we cannot and do not have the ability to give up G-d given land to our enemies and we cannot expel more Jews from their homes. Let us remember the lesson of indepedence on this day by refusing to bow to the will of mere mortals and let us turn our faith over to the Almighty.