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The nation of Israel is very much alive

שבת בפולין

* Translation by Yehoshua Siskin ([email protected])

Shavua tov from Warsaw, Poland. I was certain that the Shabbat program we had planned for the Jewish community here would be canceled because of the war. “But why would it be canceled?” I was challenged by Rabbi Shalom and Dina Stambler, Chabad emissaries to this city.

“On the contrary, there were never more people who registered for such an event, if only to be together with other Jews.”

They were right. People who never came to a Jewish event suddenly arrived here and spent the entire Shabbat with us. Jews from Lodz, Bialystok, Katowice, Krakow and, of course, Warsaw itself. Something deep inside has awakened as Jews everywhere want to be a part of our common cause and serve as ambassadors for Israel. They are fighting for the nation of Israel and for Judaism, and against Hamas and anti-Semitism.

Someone told me about contributions that have been made to the IDF, another about studying Hebrew for the first time. Someone mentioned organizing a large demonstration for Israel, and someone else talked about a personal demonstration of faith in affixing a mezuzah to his doorpost.

On Shabbat I heard about two local businessmen who were bitter rivals and never spoke. But just this week they both suddenly appeared at the rabbi’s house and asked him what they could do together to help Israel.

A local Jewish physician summarized the meaning of all this as follows: “If Hamas thought they could diminish our unity, our desire to identify with Israel, or our wish to live as Jews, they need to know that all of these have only increased since October 7th.”

שבת בפולין


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