Natan Sharansky donates $1 million Genesis Prize money to aid coronavirus victims, the Passover Letter of Elephantine is 400 years older than the Dead Sea Scrolls, Yatar Israel, a highly trained counter terrorism unit of the Israel Security Forces, makes Israel a safer place, and much more!
By Michael Ordman
THE JEWISH STATE
Sharansky donates Genesis Prize money
Natan Sharansky has donated his $1 million Genesis Prize to aid those affected by coronavirus. The Israeli former Soviet prisoner urged people to “think about our great journey together and about new challenges which we face together, and that we will win together.”
Pesach in Jerusalem 2,400 years ago
The Passover Letter of Elephantine is the oldest known ex-biblical account of Passover laws. Sent by Hananiah, a high official in Jerusalem, to his “brother” Yadaniyah and the Judean soldiers on Egypt’s Elephantine island, the papyri are 400 years older than the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Making Israel safer together
Yatar Israel is a highly trained counter terrorism unit of the Israel Security Forces that shields vulnerable citizens. Its volunteers are either ex-elite IDF officers or have extensive defense background, who take orders from and support Israeli Border Police and National Israeli Police.
Some 1,000 Israeli soldiers are helping at 200 assisted living facilities around the country, providing the help they need during this period, when they are unable to leave their homes. A commander and four soldiers have been assigned to each facility,
Israel sends matza to Egypt
The Israeli government has sent matzahs and other essential Passover items to the tiny Jewish community in Egypt. Israel’s Embassy in Cairo and Jewish organizations managed to get boxes of kosher for Passover food to the 20 Jews in Cairo and Alexandria – a tiny remnant of the 80,000 in the 1940’s.
The Unapologetic Zionist’s Haggadah Anthology
The American Zionist organization Herut published “The Unapologetic Zionist’s Haggadah” for Passover. It included hard-to-find essays by the founding fathers of Zionism. The 20-page PDF booklet provided a welcome respite from coronavirus worries.
Co-existence in an Israeli hospital
In an Israeli hospital, an Arab nurse reads the Four Questions, a Jewish Prayer, to elderly patients who are unable to be with their children and grandchildren on Passover due to the coronavirus.
Passover seder in prison
This year, Israeli prisons didn’t conduct the usual communal Seder for inmates. Instead each cell held its own individual Seder. Over 2,000 Sedarim took place, with guidance beforehand.
A different night
At the Passover Seder, hundreds of thousands of Israelis went onto their balconies to sing ‘Ma Nishtana’ – the 4 questions, “Why is this night different from all other nights?” and other Seder songs. (The first video in the Ynetnews article shows the phenomena at some 10 Israeli cities)
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