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Photo Friday Friday, 10/20/2023

Support for Israel

We are living in terrible times. The brutal massacre of over 1300 Israelis by Hamas and the taking of an estimated 150 Israeli, American and other foreign nationals’ hostage have shown the world that we must stand with Israel and root out the Hamas terrorist organization.  Below are photos from the conflict area and from our own archives showing our communities’ past support for Israel. The JHSNJ stands with Israel in its fight against Hamas and abhors the barbarism demonstrated against the Jewish people. We pray for and with our family and friends in Israel and hope for real peace!

October 7, Gaza, Ronen Wilk
Nir Yitzhak – Kibbutzniks working the fields of Nir Yitzhak in 1977. This kibbutz was overrun by Hamas terrorists on October 7 with at least 2 of its members murdered and a dozen abducted. The rear fields of the kibbutz practically back up onto the Gaza Strip. Ronen Wilk grew up on the kibbutz and now lives in Radburn.
Nir Oz Kibbutz, Gaza
Nir Oz – In the top image “Manny,” a Swiss volunteer, climbs atop the signpost at Nir Oz, another of the kibbutzim that suffered the invasion of the Hamas terrorists on October 7th. The second photo is of the foreign nationals (Dutch, Scottish, British, German, Australian, Danish, Swiss) who volunteered at the kibbutz in 1980 in a photo taken outside the common dining area. They include Ellyn, Manny, Paula, Henri, Claire, Alma, Rafi, Peter, Hansy, Susanne and Debby. 2 Fair Lawn residents were working at the neighborhood regional school and living on the kibbutz at that time. Israeli media is reporting over 100 Nir Oz kibbutzniks were murdered and over a dozen taken as hostages into Gaza, some of them Americans with dual citizenship. Their fate is unknown. The terrorists burned down most of the kibbutz. Here too, the fields of the kibbutz abut the Gaza Strip.
In 1976 Yamit was an Israeli planned community that was first populated by Russian and American contingents as well as some career military personnel who were stationed at the new air force base nearby. It was located along the coast just south of the Gaza Strip but was evacuated in 1982 and demolished soon after that in the wake of the peace treaty with Egypt following the Camp David Accords. The Yamit town center.
A typical Yamit neighborhood. The former location of the town is very close to where the borders of Egypt, Israel and the Gaza Strip now meet, in proximity to the Rafah Crossing, which has been in the news this past week due to its strategic location. It is one of the two official corridors in and out of Gaza. 2 Fair Lawn residents were among the American contingent who founded the town of Yamit.
Sherut La'am, Micah Hermon, Iris Amsalam, Miriam Marzuk, Tirzah Amaram, Miriam Monshari, Rachel Sosanah
Ofakim is a development town settled in the mid-1950’s by Mizrahi Jews mainly from Morocco, Tunisia and Iran. It is about 25 kilometers from the Gaza border. The images above were taken in 1970 by 2 Patersonians while on a volunteer year with the “Sherut La’am" program. In the top left image is a 7th grade class. From right to left are Micah Hermon, Iris Amsalam, Miriam Marzuk, Tirzah Amaram, Miriam Monshari and Rachel Sosanah. The top image on the right is of the junior high school which was new at the time.
Gaza, October 7
During the Hamas invasion that began on October 7, Rachel and David Edry, an Ofakim couple in their 60’s, were held hostage for 20 hours in their home by 5 Hamas terrorists. The couple used their wits to survive by plying their captors with food, coffee and cookies. They were thus able to stall the terrorists long enough until a SWAT arrived to kill the invaders and rescue the couple unharmed. Rachel got a hug from President Biden (See photo immediately below this text) when he visited Israel on Wednesday. Some 30 other residents of Ofakim were not as lucky as the Edry family.
Israel Day Parade 1958
Students from the Paramus Frisch School march in NYC’s Israel Day Parade.
Israel Day Parade, 1958
Students from Beth Shalom Religious School of Clifton march in NYC’s 50th Israel Day Parade, 1958.
Israel Day Parade, 1957
Students from Yavneh Academy in Paramus march in NYC Israel Day Parade.
Israel Day Parade, 1957
Students and congregants from Temple Beth Shalom of Fair Lawn march in NYC’s Israel Day Parade, 1957.