Wednesday, November 02, 2005


Join the AFSI Trip to Israel

1623 Third Avenue, Suite 205, New York, NY 10128
Tel: 212-828-2424; Fax: 212-828-1717;;
Contact: Helen Freedman, Executive Director; Nov. 1, 2005



AFSI’s itinerary on this November mission includes visits to the refugees wherever they may be scattered. At this point it is still nebulous since the Sharon government, which conducted a brilliant military action against its own people, neglected to use that same efficiency and organizational skills to arrange for the aftermath of the expulsion – the basic humanitarian needs of the evacuees. They have not yet received the promised compensation, and indeed, are still compelled to pay the mortgages on their destroyed homes. Employment, homes, schools, synagogues, graveyards, yeshivot, farms, greenhouses, hothouses and more, have all been taken away from them.

At this writing, many of the communities are in the western Negev in tent cities or temporary caravans. Some of the refugees now being housed in hotels in Jerusalem may be moving to caravans in the Negev. Others may be in hotels in Ashkelon. Still others may be in existing Shomron or Gush Etzion communities. Our guides will lead us to meet with the people in their temporary homes, and we will learn from them about what actions we can take to hasten the day when the Sharon government will assume its responsibilities to its forcibly expelled citizens, as promised.

In addition to concentrating on the refugees, we will visit our friends in Judea and Samaria, explore Jewish east Jerusalem, visit the Temple Mount, go home to Mother Rachel, and spend the Shabbat in Hebron celebrating Chaye Sarah, the reading of the portion of the Bible where Abraham buys the burial plot for his wife, Sarah.

Our flexible itinerary is as follows:

Sunday, Nov. 20 – Depart Newark airport on El Al flight LY028 from Newark airport at 1: 30 PM. Everyone should plan on being at the airport by 11 AM when tickets will be distributed. Please pack your belongings in one bag, so that the two bag allowance will permit you to bring along warm clothing and toys for those we’ll be visiting.

Monday, Nov. 21 & Tuesday, Nov. 22 – We are scheduled to arrive in Israel at 7 AM., meet our guides and good friends, Dror Vanunu and Izzy Danziger, and depart immediately for the Negev to visit the refugee communities. We will stay over Monday and Tuesday nights at a hotel near BeerSheva. Udi Zinar, spokesman for Netzarim, will guide us on Tuesday. Evening events will include prominent speakers. The mountains of the Negev highlands reach high altitudes, creating a special kind of desert habitat of stark desert landscapes, canyons, hidden springs and oases. We hope to explore some of these beautiful natural attractions.

Wednesday– Nov.23 – Drive north east towards Sussya, where we hope to lunch with Dalia Har Sinai in her unique cave restaurant. Continue on through Maon, Carmel and visit the Gush Etzion area on our way to Jerusalem where we will check into the Kings Hotel. An important guest speaker will address us in the evening.

Thursday–Nov. 24 –Drive north for visits to threatened hilltop and Shomron communities. Visit Bet-El, Ofra, Shilo, Kfar Tapuach, and Yitzhar. Meet with the residents and hear their stories. In Shilo we will meet with Chaya and Moshe Belogorodsky and representatives of Honenu, the organization that provides legal services to soldiers and civilians arrested because they are “ideological criminals.”

Friday–Nov. 25 –Leave for Hebron, stopping in Bethlehem at Kever Rachel. Arrive in Kiryat Arba/Hebron early enough to participate in the distribution of toys with Alan Hirsch. We will be housed in Yeshivat Nir where Rav Waldman, recently expelled from Sanur, is Rosh Yeshiva. Inspirational Kabalat Shabbat Services at the Maarat HaMachpela will be followed by dinner at the Yeshiva.

Shabbat – Nov. 26 – Chaye Sarah services at Maarat HaMachpela with thousands of participants from all over Israel and the world. Tour of Hebron during the afternoon with our friend, David Wilder. All Shabbat meals at the Yeshiva. Return to Jerusalem and the Kings hotel at the conclusion of Shabbat. Evening free for shopping and personal plans.

Sunday, Nov. 27 – Full day in Jerusalem. Optional ascent to the Temple Mount in the early morning. Tour Jewish east Jerusalem and the Old City with Chaim Silberstein of Uvneh Yerushalayim and Dan Luria of Ateret Cohanim. Gala farewell dinner and departure for the airport at 8:30 PM for midnight flight to Newark, arriving early Monday morning, Nov. 28. Those wishing to arrive at JFK must notify us.

This is a very popular mission, unique in its travels to the disputed areas of Israel. As in the past, Rabbi Bruce Rudolph is overseeing the travel arrangements, and Helen Freedman is the tour coordinator. The cost of the trip is $2000 plus airport taxes of $77, and additional $100 costs for non-AFSI members, single occupancy, and other personal travel changess. (AFSI membership is only $50 per year, so there is a $50 saving for joining the organization.) Air, bus travel, guides, hotels, all breakfasts and dinners and most lunches are all included. Those wishing to make their own flight arrangements may do so. AFSI will charge $1000 for land only. It DOES NOT include tips for hotel chambermaids, waiters, bus drivers and guides. Please plan accordingly. We encourage those who wish to rent cell phones to do so in the U.S. Arutz Sheva, Amigo, and Travel Cell all supply phones at competitive prices. Those wishing travel insurance information should contact AFSI.

Full payment is due immediately. All reservations will close on Nov. 10. You may make your check out to AFSI or call in with your charge card information. Please consult the website for detailed reports and photos of previous Chizuk missions. Contact AFSI at 212-828-2424; We look forward to welcoming you to the AFSI traveling family.

A tremendous Yasher Koach to Helen Freedman and AFSI. She has been there for Gush Katif and thank G-d is going strong bli ayin hara. I hope and pray that she is successful to bring Chizuk to the people of Gush Katif and get chizuk back in return. As the Lubavitch Rebbe always said when handing out the dollars "BRACHA VEHATZLACHA!"
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