Sunday, April 23, 2006


Anita Tucker, post-Passover letter

Dear friends,
I need to pour my heart out to you, so I hope you have the patience to hear me .

The optimism that comes with the upcoming Pesach holiday atmosphere has passed .
we are now in semi mourning because of the Sefirah period -in addition we have Yom Hashoa,Holocaust Day and Yom Hazikaron,Memorial Day coming up.
Then there is yom Ha'Atzmaut that will be a bit of a confusing holiday ,especially for our Gush Katif youth. They are confused as to their relationship to the IDF and to the official State of Israel.
How can the present government represent the spring signs of our national redemption when it has acted and plans to act so immorally and so far from Torah?

No wonder everyone of my friends I meet here in our Netzer Hazani's temporary exile in Ein Tzurim -today seem a bit struck down with post -Pesach syndrome.

Yes ,in spite of the threatening letter we had received from the Sela commision and the Prime ministers office that not one of the "disengaged "would be left in a hotel or guesthouse after Shabbat Hagadol - the caravillas, the temporary cardboard houses were not ready in time --and having no real choice -we were told we would be staying here longer. No letter this time .Now they are working on them at a snails pace.

One of the advantages of being in Galut-Exile Ein Tzurim is that all that my husband Stuart and I had to clean for Pesach was our little 3x3.5 meter room.

I was busy talking to groups and taking around guests from Jerusalem and from USA that wanted to visit with the people of Gush Katif and personally give their caring and support before the Pesach holiday.

Yes , there are many caring people out there who acted on their caring.
A group of people made sure that every family received a carton of grape juice and chocolates for the holiday .

Someone else who realized that we in Netzer Hazani would not yet have access to our containers and therefore would not have Haggadot -distributed them to us.
Others made sure we had shmurah matzot for the chag.
Yet others made sure that every family received a cash gift that would enable them buy what is needed for the holiday and perhaps even splurge a bit -like in the good old days.
Others graciously volunteered to subsidize the pre -pesach tiyul-trip for those youth for those whose cash flow was a problem.

So many people care--- and yet so many don't ...

Nothing to clean left me much more time for thinking.

Last year the week before Erev Pesach ,and many years before, I worked really hard .No ,not cleaning my big home .
The week before Pesach was the height of the celery marketing season to fill the needs for ''Karpas ''for the Jewish market in Israel ,USA and europe.
I loved that green color of the celery- the color of renewel of spring and I saw it touched and smelled it all day every day the weeks before Pesach .
The harder I worked the more renewed and refreshed I felt. We picked sorted wrapped, planted non stop.

This year this feeling of spring was not there for me in the same intensity. There was not a feeling of renewal ,of refreshness .
It will yet be again!

My husband, as every year ,bought the Ashkenazi white root for maror which I grated in my daughters home in Talmon where we were for the seder.
As the bitterness caused my eyes to tear I knew that I definitely did not need this sign to remind me of bitter times in Egypt.
I had shed those tears and felt first hand my share of bitter times this year.

The Matzah didn't have it's usual meaning this year as leaving in a hurry didn't speak to me .
For a few from GK it perhaps did .
There were a few who when they realized that the Sharon gov't was really going to destroy our homes and businessess, did all possible to rush to take out what they could before the area was closed off and left in a big hurry. They didn't have the energy nor the time for their bread to leaven either.

I , felt that I needed to linger as long as possible. I felt that my job was to provide God with a little exra time time -to show my faith ,so that if God wanted to save this piece of Eretz Yisrael -at least I did all I could to enable this.

We had seen our share of miracles .

There wasn't much need for our grandchildren to ask why this night was different than any other night . Because it was obvious to them that this Leil Haseder was different than previous ones.

On most other Leil Haseders all our children and grandchildren were our guests for the seder.
This time only half of us were together , the others in various other places , and this time we were guests and not hosts. The hosts were great ,of course .

There was one only part of the seder that this year was still very special for me .
All my varied wild experiences of this year have not given me this completely.
Yes we did leave en masse and went up to Jerusalem to pray near the remnants of the destroyed Beit Hamikdash.
Enoying the Pesach and chagiga sacrifices and the feeling of all Am Yisrael in unity we have not yet experienced at all .
I thought ,please dear God help us reach that point soon because what happened to us in Gush Katif must never happen to any one else ever again.

Just as we recall "we were enslaved in Egypt and now we are the sons of the free"--we all know that as hard as we try we can't possibly feel that enslavement the Jews in Egypt felt.
I see the temporary caravillas nearby and I know that we will in the future build new homes and a new community in the new area we are planning --but sometimes ... I suddenly recall my lifetime home in GK and recall the bulldozers destroying it ,my greenhouses and the lush vegetables growing in them- yes I feel sad --I feel like singing sadly " we were free and now we are enslaved "--
as much as so many care ,no one who has not experienced it can really feel that feeling of the 25 communities being destroyed -
At that very most very "down" moment I B"H feel that I get my strength and optimism back!
Yes ! We are enslaved now !, We are enslaved in our inability to care enough, in not having enough courage , in not finding ways to unite with all those who believe in God and the Torah.

We must and will become free enough to have the self confidence and courage to stand up straight and all say loudly and clearly -What was and is being done to the people of Gush Katif and to our dear land of Israel is IMMORAL !
It must never be done to anyone else in Eretz Yisrael. Not in Talmon,not in Tekoah ,not in Tel Aviv!

Certainly then, we will have proven that we are ready to be part of our true renewal as a nation ,with unity and with faith in He who lead us to these better times .
Then, hopefully, we will understand the good in all that we are experiencing now .

There is no doubt that our being here in Eretz Yisrael is what makes all the difference to me in the experiences of this last year --our exile from our homes is within Eretz Yisrael .
Our bitter -maror experience is within Eretz Yisrael.

It feels as if Hakadosh Baruch Hu is helping us to yearn more for every tiny spot in Eretz Yisrarel -like a refining process.

Perhaps this awful yearning I now feel for each and every small piece of Netzer Hazani, Katif ,Ganei tal ,Neve Dekalim ,etc etc. is the real "Tzipiah Lageula" , the yearning for the Redemption.

Anyone who visited Chomesh and Sanur surely now yearns for them .
From those two locations we saw all of our history and future as on the palm of the hand.

The frightening and cruel threats of tearing Tekoah, Shiloh ,Talmonim and so many towns from us - must immediatey make us yearn enough for these places.

Perhaps if we all really yearn enough for them now they won't be taken from us?

Hopefully Netzer Hazani will settle in a new town we will build near Yesodot, in Nahal Soreq , but certainly sometime in the future our grandchildren will realize our yearning and will rebuild new towns in Nahal Gerar, atop the ruins of of the past .
We all yearn so much for the Geulah !

Best wishes for a good summer,

I don't understand how the anger you all feel can be dissipated and replaced with a feeling of 'optimism' for the future. What was done to the people of Gush Katif was a travesty beyond words, all the more so because the 'quiet' that was promised turned out to be a hoax. I look at the people rioting in Nepal; at the Muslims rioting over a cartoon. I don't know how to express it exactly; but if those on the right had had even one percent of that anger, many things would have turned out differently. But I do know that in the future if - G-d forbid - plans are made for further expulsions, they will have to be stopped - even if it means confronting soldiers. The public will have to be told that further expulsions will cost them millions of shekels and they will be getting more terrorism in return - which Bibi tried so hard to communicate.
It's called Emotional Intelligence, since the anger is self-destructive.
if you live in a nice comfy home and have a job . If you do than I think you can and should definately afford to be angry and make demonstrations and riots against all that you think is immoral. I and my friends cannot afford to waste our energy on being angry as we need our energy for surviving ,for keeping our families together and recuperating ,and building our homes and businesses anew. The public is all of us ." anita
What is your E mail Anita. i need to contact you.
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