December 25, 2013, Maaleh Adumim, Israel
My friend Athos, a student, a wonderful Italian man just sent me an e mail with a video of HaTikva, the Hope, the Jewish/Israeli national anthem. He accompanied this gift with the the following words
Ti mando via mail l'inno del tuo popolo con i sottotitoli in
Italiano in tuo onore ed in onore del popolo di Israele.
(I send to you via mail the anthem of your people with subtitles in Italian in your honor and in the honor of the people of Israel, Buon Natale)
As I opened the link and heard our national anthem playing I of course stood up and remained in what we called Amidat Dom, a straight military stance, until the anthem was completed.
It was moving and exciting to hear our anthem, and see the Italian subtitles.
Many emotions passed through my heart and mind as I listened. Yes, this is what it is all about, our Krav Maga, it is our struggle to be "a free nation in our homeland, the land of Zion and Jerusalem". Yes, this is why we train so hard, this is why we are so innovative.
Two thousand years ago we lost our independence, defeated by Rome, the greatest power of its time. And today, not only are we free, and we welcome all our brethren to come home and join us, but a friend who might be descended from those very Romans sends me this wonderful gift. Not only are we free but we are friends with our former adversaries.
What bitter wars were fought! Three long and bloody wars that took the lives of many Jews and Romans. Entire Roman legions were devastated, their remains are still here in Israel; their swords, helmets and even a paycheck. And how many Jewish towns and villages were destroyed. And today we are free, the hope we never gave up on. The dream we never compromised on; to be a free people in our own homeland, the land of Zion and Jerusalem.
We are back. And we are now great friends with Rome and Italy. Friendships are formed on the basis of equality. Friendship and peace can only be achieved through strength. Peace can only be made by the strong.
Our peace came with a great price; the blood of the young and the old. Even this very week we have been attacked from all sides; rockets, gunshots and stabbings But we do not give up. We believe in the Hope and the dream.
To be a free people in our own land, for me it can be no other way. From our strength, from our sacrifice, we can form friendships, and former adversaries become our allies once again. Together we raise the banner of freedom!
I thank you my friend for this thoughtful gift and I extend my hand in peace to the world. Peace based on strength and confidence. And I invite the world to come to Israel.
Stand with me on Masada and look down on the remains of the Roman camps, relive the battle of Masada. Walk with me through the trenches of Ammunition Hill, relive the battle of 1967. Walk with me through Yad Va Shem and relive our struggle for survival.
To be a free people in our own land. Yes, this is what it is all about. HaTikva, the Hope.
Moshe and Athos in Israel.
Moshe explaining the history of Masada and the first Jewish Roman War (66 - 74 C.E.), Tour and Train June 2013. The flag of Israel waves in the background, we are now a free people in our own land.
Tour and Train Israel Experience combines intensive Krav Maga training which is suitable for all levels. Regardless of your former training, or lack thereof, and your current physical condition we will make this work for you. Young and old are welcome. Each participants progresses at his or her own pace.
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