I started this piece numerous times and when all was said and done I decided to just sit back and write it entirely from the heart. After just listening to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress I am so overcome by emotion that I want to hold on to this moment, even if only for myself.
Part of what makes us who we are is our history. Having just finished listening to the speech I can’t help but think of my family’s history. It was 60 years ago when the reign of Hitler’s Nazi party ended. 60 million people died in WWII and 6 million Jewish souls were lost. Among those murdered by the Nazis was an estimated 104,000 Dutch Jews, 75% of Holland’s Jewish population in 1940. Included in that number were 3 of my 4 grandparents, an aunt and uncle, and numerous other relatives I would never know. My parents went through life with pain I can’t even imagine having lived through one of the darkest times in the world’s history.
As far back as I can remember I have heard the words “Never Again”. Today I watched Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel who suffered in the concentration camps of Auschwitz and Buchenwald, receive a standing ovation in the United States Congress. Today the leader of the Jewish state of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, stood up in front of the nation and the entire world and basically said NEVER AGAIN with the words “The days in which the Jewish people stay passive in the face of genocidal enemies; those days are over”.
This is only about politics to those making it about politics. What this is ultimately about is the survival of not only the Jewish people but the survival of our modern-day civilization. Today a Jewish leader stood up in front of the world and told the world that the Jewish people will never again be led to slaughter. For that reason, as the son of Holocaust survivors, as a Jew, and as an American, I found myself moved to tears and say thank you to the State of Israel and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
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