Colors: Green Color

I have been in Israel for close to two weeks now. It was, baruch Hashem, quiet here – until yesterday. We are now just receiving word that three Israeli soldiers were killed by an Egyptian police officer at the Egyptian border. It has all the hallmarks of a terror attack, but Egypt is trying to put a different spin on it. In either case, the deaths of these Jewish soldiers, two men and a woman, is beyond awful.

I am currently writing from Israel, where we spent Shavuos and will be remaining for another week as we celebrate our grandson Gavriel Zahler’s bar mitzvah.

I will need to be very brief, as I am on a borrowed computer, facing a busy day ahead. The celebration with family and friends in the Old City was beautiful, as you may imagine. I will add that we walked to the Kosel on Shavuos morning to take part in the “chavayah,” or experience of davening with thousands of other Jews at sunrise. I highly recommend the experience… at least for one time.

In a few weeks’ time, we will be reading Parshas Korach, which of course relates the story of the rebellion of Korach and his followers against the leadership of Moshe Rabbeinu. Remarkably, Korach opens his salvo of accusations with “For the entire assembly – all of them – are holy and Hashem is among them; why do you exalt yourselves over the congregation of Hashem?” (BaMidbar 16:3)

The Mishnah in N’darim (9:10) records Rabbi Yishmael as declaring, “All daughters of Israel are beautiful. Unfortunately, however, sometimes poverty robs them of their beauty.” That mishnah ends by noting that when Rabbi Yishmael died, the daughters of Israel held a special eulogy for him.