I’m sitting next to a terrorist

A few days ago, a Palestinian terrorist boarded a bus in Jerusalem and set off a bomb. This man was trying to kill innocent people on their way to work, home, or the store. By the grace of g-d, no one was killed, but 21 people were injured in the attack.

So why am I blogging about this attack?

Jerusalem Bus Bombing

Firefighters look on as two buses burn in Jerusalem. Police launched an investigation into the incident, April 18, 2016. (Israel Police)

Well, I’m currently in a hospital ICU with one of my group participants. Two rooms down from his, is the terrorist the bombed the bus on Monday and two more rooms away is another terrorist. The second guy is the one that stabbed an off duty soldier in Rami Levi grocery store about a month ago. I have a strange feeling inside that I can’t exactly explain…I’ve seen their faces, I’m just feet away from two very dangerous terrorists that tried to kill innocent Israelis. There are soldiers, border patrol, and cops around so I feel safe, but I still have a very strange feeling.

I do know what I think about the whole situation though. What I see is amazing and probably very surprising for most people. There are Jewish Israeli doctors and nurses treating them both, the same doctors and nurses treating my participant. One of them almost died this morning, the staff rushed in and revived him. Yes, they treated him like any other patient. This is the most upclose proof that I live and belong to one of the most moral countries in the world. What is happening in this hospital happens all the time. Why? Because at the end of the day, we are all the same, human beings. Yes, I hope that these terrorists never see the light of day and that they are fully punished for what they have done. And I know that will happen, because I life in a democracy.

Israel is the Jewish State, but it is also a democracy. We have separation of powers, rights for all, and a just legal system. If these terrorists live, then they will have their day in court. To all the people that believe that Israel is an apartheid state or something other than a democracy, I say come to an Israeli Hospital. Jews, Christians, Muslims, Israelis, Palestinians, Tourists, and Terrorists are being treated. The doctors are  Jewish and Arab, all working together to save lives. How beautiful? How crazy?

I don’t know how I feel, but I do know how I think. I know that we as Jews and Israelis, care about life.

Am Yisroel Chai! Love live the Jewish State and People!

7:00pm Update: The terrorist has died. 

As soon as he died and was taken out. The room felt as something dark and heavy left. No words… Sad that this guy was only 19 years old, the same as my participant in the next room over. Not sad that he died, but that he has been manipulated to hate. Read More… The world needs to stand up against Hamas.

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Mayanot Peeps! Come back to Israel!

Hey everyone that I had the pleasure to cross paths with this summer. I hope your all having an amazing time back at home remembering all the crazy things and places from Mayanot Birthright-Israel.

I told you all that I would try my hardest to help you find programs and opportinues to come back or just support Israel. So here are just a few out of many.

I talked alot about recruiting for Mayanot, so here is the link MAYANOT RECRUITING, 10 days for Free

and Mayanot’s Institute of Jewish Learning, many different programs.

Also I talked about the post birthright program that I did, IsraeLinks. 3 Weeks for $499

Here is a whole list of things from Israel on Campus Coalition, Israel Study/Travel. Various Prices and Durations

This is one of the biggest databases of Israel programs, MASA, Costs money but many scholoarships avivable.

A cool program I just heard about to Volenteer in Isarel, Otzma. Also like I did with Jewish National Fund, Alt Winter/Spring Break

 

There are many other programs and trips, here is some ways to pay for them…

  • Your local Jewish Federation sponsorsparticipants in Israel Programs, it should be noted that there are often additional funding sources through the Federation.
  • Your local synagogue: Many synagogues provide funding for Jewish youth to visit Israel. Even if there isn’t a specific fund, many synagogues have a “Rabbi’s Discretionary Fund” where your Rabbi may choose to spend a portion of his/her donated funds. Even if you have not been an active member of the synagogue, it is a good idea to speak with your Rabbi.
  • Hillel: Asking your local campus Hillel is another option when it comes to finding money to get to Israel. On most campuses, Hillel is a place where Jewish students are able to express and develop their Jewish identity. Inquiring through the Hillel Director, Program Director, or JCSC Fellow may help you.
  • The Bureau of Jewish Education: If it is an educational program or Jewish learning experience,  the BJE may be willing to fund your participation on the program.  Most cities have a local BJE.
  • Jewish organizations and agencies in your hometown: Hadassah, B’nai B’rith lodges, Jewish Women International (formally B’nai B’rith Women), Temple/Synagogue men’s clubs/sisterhoods — all of them care about the Jewish community! They are often able and willing to cover a portion of your costs! Take advantage of their hospitality. Especially look towards agencies where your family or family friends belong. If no one you know belongs, they may still want to help — that’s the beauty of the community.
  • Your Fraternity/Sorority: If you are involved in the Greek system and your Fraternity/Sorority happens to be traditionally Jewish on a national scale, your national offices may be interested in sponsoring you on your trip to Israel.
  • University Study Abroad Office: Study Abroad offices often have information on scholarships that are available through a wide variety of agencies, academic departments, and businesses. It would be in your best interest to set up a meeting with a counselor in the Study Abroad Office to find out what scholarships are available to students traveling to Israel.
  • University Academic Departments: It doesn’t hurt to ask specific academic departments on campus (i.e. Judaic studies, political science, history, religion, business) about potential scholarships for experiential learning programs in Israel. While it depends on the university, many academic departments have money set aside for faculty or students to attend programs.
  • Hebrew Free Loan Society: For interest free loans. You must apply in person while in the U.S. but can often receive significant funds which can be paid back free of interest.
  • Also you all met Jeff Sidel that gave you the free Torah Books and Sidders. Chech out his scoloarship site.