David Ben-Gurion famously once said, “In Israel, in order to be a realist you
must believe in miracles.”
How appropriate that during the holiday of
Passover, when we celebrate the miracle of the Exodus from ancient Egypt and the
birth of a Jewish nation, we reflect on the modern day miracle called
One hundred years ago, the idea of a state for the Jewish people
still revolved around its establishment in such unlikely places as Argentina and
Uganda. Ultimately it would dawn on most Jews that the only true location for a
Jewish state could be in the land with a deep historical connection to the
And thus continued the miracles, visible to the naked eye,
there for all those who wanted to see. The 1948 victory over five Arab armies
was nothing short of a miracle, as were the victories over Arab enemies in 1956,
1967 and 1973.
As a result of these defensive wars, citizens will find
tragedy everywhere but miracles abound in far greater number.
that so many fighters returned home from war was a miracle. That so many people
have lived to talk about a terrorist attack they witnessed is also a
Israel’s ability to flourish in an unforgiving desert amidst
unsympathetic neighbors deserves attention. No other nation faces existential
threats the way Israel does and yet the country continues to grow and
Nations around the globe turn to this tiny country for advice in
agriculture, medicine, science, defense, education and technology.
hosts an incredible and varied array of Torah institutions that cater to Jews
from all types of affiliations.
Not too long ago, in Europe, when it was
extremely difficult, if not impossible, to live as a Jew, few could have
predicted that such an opportunity to freely study Torah and live openly as a
Jew, as Israelis do today, would come to fruition so soon.
something for every type of Jew here.
REGARDLESS OF daily miracles, Jews
must continue to fight against the real and present dangers that threaten the
nation as a people. Intermarriage, for one, clearly plays a central role in the
reason so many Jewish youth are leaving the fold.
widespread and poses a great threat to future Jewish generations.
some, or many, Jewish pride has worn off and the desire to immerse in the woes
of others while directing blame at the Jewish state is misguided.
“Liberal-minded” Jews seem to feel the need to apologize to the world for their
very existence and for the presence of Jews in Israel.
often use their Jewish status as a springboard for their misguided ideas, and
their voices pose a threat since they lend support to anti-Semites
Their unrealistic worldview offers little advantage to a
Jewish nation still struggling for survival against nations who refuse to
recognize its legitimacy.
In contrast, so many people have reawakened
their Jewish spark, further identifying with the concept of what it is to be
Jewish. Is it not miraculous that 3,000 years after the Jewish people received
the Torah, its laws and commandments are still observed? So many other great
nations have risen and fallen throughout the course of history, but the Jewish
Today, the Jewish people are living a modern miracle in
a state incomprehensibly conceived under trying conditions.
Israel face an onslaught of anti-Semitism, especially from Europe, where
Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaigns aim to strangle Jewish
Israel absorbs a constant barrage of missiles from Gaza yet
receives a thick wall of silence from the international
Europeans, and even the US today, attempt to pressure Israel
diplomatically and politically.
With its military, diplomatic, political
and economic fronts constantly under attack, it is incredible that Israel
continues to be a global leader in the arts, medicine and technology. It is
equally astonishing that Jews continue to discover their roots and come here to
further their Jewish education.
This small nation has made and continues
to make a tremendous difference, and it is nothing short of
It is true: to be a realist, you must believe in miracles.