Ron Arad's family releases journal entries from 1986

To commemorate 25 years since his capture, family unveils journal entries from Arad's first weeks in captivity in Lebanon.

Ron Arad jounral_311 (photo credit: Mako)
Ron Arad jounral_311
(photo credit: Mako)
To commemorate 25 years since his capture, Israel Air Force navigator Ron Arad’s family will release previously unseen pages of a journal that he kept during his first weeks in captivity in Lebanon, Channel 2 news reported on Saturday.
Arad wrote the collection of letters, most of which were intended for his wife Tami and daughter Yuval, shortly after his capture by the Shi’ite Amal group in Lebanon on October 16, 1986. In the handwritten entries, Arad describes his longing to be reunited with his family, and promises to return home.
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In a letter dated November 1, 1986, Arad wrote: “And now for those most dear to me, Tami and Yuval, I am trying to forget you; every memory of you only grabs me by the throat. But know this, I love you, and it seems you are the only reason that prevents me from imagining the worst.
“I promise you at least this: A. I will return. One year? Two? B. Never again will I leave you, even if I will have to give up flying. C. We will have a warm home, loving and good as we once had.”
The kidnapped soldier, whose fate is still unknown, also attempted to pass hints of his whereabouts through his various notes, which he jotted down on the backs of pages ripped from inside a book.
Arad’s family received the letters as part of a deal between Israel and Hezbollah that also saw the return of the bodies of Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser. Arad’s family had held on to the journal privately, and decided to release excerpts to commemorate the 25 years since his capture.
One other entry, undated, was also addressed to Arad’s wife.
“Once again, to Tami. Last night I dreamt of you and it was magnificent. Just the two of us meeting after a long day on the grass, talking like we always do, and suddenly I was back with you. Waking up from this was very difficult, believe me. But this [dream] at least gave me a few minutes of happiness.”