The magazine, Merle, is absolutely fantastic, and I hear so many positive comments from people about the editing, contents and quality of production. I am sure you have been told many times before, but I so appreciate the professionalism not only of the magazine but of the organization you worked so hard to create and develop and continue to encourage others to follow suit.
Stand up tall and proud
In ESRAmagazine 180 there was a letter saying: "We cannot mobilize people to defend our cause if we do not first change our own concept regarding our ongoing conflict with the Palestinian people." The treatment of minorities, meaning Arabs, is something to be admired considering how many Arab Muslims have committed crimes against the Jewish people over the past few years.
Everyone sees what he wants to see. If your letter writer wants to change the conflict, then perhaps ISIS is the future. There is no doubt that our democracy has less discrimination than the European countries or even America, a country I know well.
Our own self-image depends upon you, if you read Haaretz or Israel Today or the JPost, I suggest we stand up tall and be proud of a great democracy and the only one in the Middle East.
Murray S. Greenfield
Thank you very much for your donation of NIS 1000 which will be of great help to us.
Editor’s note: Tova is a single mother with two children who both have spinal problems, one of whom has already undergone 20 operations.
A donation in honor of Professor Ruth Berman
Our cousins, Gillian and Edmund Cress from Cape Town, South Africa have sent a contribution to ESRA for the Sderot Sewing Center in honor of my sister Professor Ruth Berman's 80th birthday. Her birthday was celebrated by the Israel National Academy of Sciences, of which she is a member, with lectures by her colleagues from abroad and here in her field "Acquisition of Language by Children”. The seminar was followed by a dinner for her family, colleagues and friends. Her daughter was one of those who gave a moving birthday greeting.
There was an interview with Ruth in ESRAmagazine 170.
Prof Berman being feted by the Israel National Academy of Sciences
Dear ESRA Scholarship Committee,
I was so happy to receive your generous scholarship. Thank you very much for your kindness. This financial assistance is greatly appreciated and will help me with my school expenses as a graduate student at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Due to my financial situation, this support will enable me to achieve my educational goals. It is so nice to know that your wonderful organization really cares about assisting students in need.
Many thanks for the latest issue of the magazine (no. 180) which, as always, is a marvelous read. As a veteran "catwoman" I was delighted to read about Anna Finkelstein's devotion to the animals in the National Park of Ramat Gan. As a fellow Ramat Gan resident and "catwoman", I would like to add an important fact concerning the cats: the Ramat Gan municipality offers FREE spaying and neutering services for these animals via their veterinary department. Whenever I see a new regular cat I send a request by mail to the vet's office and within a reasonable amount of time they phone and then collect the specific animal for the operation. He/she is then returned within a day. I don't know if every Israeli municipality offers this vital service which ensures these animals a much safer and easier life, but it is important that "catwomen" everywhere utilize these services if available.
Food for thought
A story I read in a New York newspaper some months ago got me all fired up. It was to the effect that more than one-third of the food in the world is regularly thrown away.
Anyone who has attended a wedding or other ceremony, or has walked past restaurants (as I often do in Ibn Gvirol Street in Tel Aviv) can well believe this. The amount of leftover food every day is unbelievable.
And then we get into the statistics of people starving in this world. I prefer to concentrate on the children, those most helpless and innocent of all citizens. The figure for hungry and starving kids runs into tens of millions and I would make a good guess that most of them live in the cities of the world - yes, even in Tel Aviv.
So I wrote a letter to the Tel Aviv municipality about introducing school feeding, collecting all this leftover food every night, making up sandwiches and packages on a voluntary basis, and delivering it to the schools.
Meanwhile, no reply.
Since then I've had another, simpler idea. Why don't city parks grow some fruit trees - especially in those poorer areas. Signs would be installed stating that the fruit, once ripe, would be for the children in the area. (I think Rishon-le-Zion did this once in the early days).
Imagine if all the cities of the world did this in their poor areas.
I'm still filled with anger. Children should never have to starve or go hungry. Especially as the food is there, and is thrown away instead. All it would take is the organizing, something I'm no good at.
I write letters instead.
Mike Porter (still boiling)
A book of statistics on the Kindertransport
My late father, Rabbi Newman, wrote a book of statistics and findings regarding the Kindertransport. He was the chaplain in London at the time of the war and was in charge of finding homes and food, if possible, for all these hundreds of orphaned kids. About 30% of the book also relates emotional personal stories about the children.
We have about 150 copies of this well-written book left, and are looking to pass it on for free to be dispersed among English speakers.
If you are interested in a copy of this book please contact me.
phone: 054 472 4708
When Irish eyes smiled on the country’s ‘secret Jews’
Interesting article in ESRAmagazine # 170. I'm Irish and recently had a DNA test done, from which I discovered that I have Jewish ancestry on both sides - I was quite surprised! We wondered from where we had got the dark hair, sallow skin and dark eyes and I had had people ask me before if I was Jewish. A lot of the family can't tolerate pork also, so maybe that explains it! It seems it could be a hundred or more years back, so it's amazing how genetic features can prevail. Interestingly, the Stone of Scone / Stone of Destiny (which British Monarchs use for Coronations) was brought to Scotland by the Irish. Testing has revealed that they believe it was brought to Ireland from the Dead Sea region, so there have been Israelis and Jews migrating to Ireland for millennia.