I was invited to Rome, for the first time, to teach a Krav Maga seminar.
For me this would not only be an opportunity to try and spread IKI style Krav Maga but also to see some of the historic sites in the city that has always been our nemesis; Rome and Jerusalem, a conflict of cultures for over 2,000 years. Now we have peace.
Remains of ancient Rome, a city that once terrorized and controlled a good portion of the world. The very term "Rome" symbolized Power, Tyranny, the futility of resistance to the world leader. Rome crushed all who resisted her. No one could stand up the power that was Rome!
Today, a quaint tourist attraction, a symbol that "All things shall pass".
A symbol of ancient Rome. To some this symbolized all that was noble, to others it represented a power to be feared.
So I was invited to Rome.
As a Jew I was raised to see all things through my Jewish eyes and heart. So I found it somewhat ironic, and satisfying, that the power that was Rome invited me, a Jew from the land of Israel, to teach them how to fight.
Krav Maga is very popular in all of Italy. Very few of the organizations are actually affiliated with Israel but they all seek and crave Israeli Krav Maga instruction.
Over a period of three days I had the opportunity to train more than fifty students from all over Italy, including many instructors. I met many wonderful people and many excellent Krav Maga students.
Moshe teaching defense vs common knife threats, Rome, 2012
Moshe teaching ground knife defense.
One of our Krav Maga groups; instructors and students from all over Italy.
With my host Roberte Pirone, who made all the arrangements for the seminars, including regular coffee for me, not espresso.
Speaking with Italian students about the history of Krav Maga. Many Krav Maga students do not know the full story. See Krav Maga History. I found these students to be open minded.
Typical Romans, not much has changed in 2000 years, or maybe they are dressed up?
Classic Italian style buildings.
Old Roman street.
The Colosseum is one of the major attractions of Rome. Construction began under the emperor Vespasian in the year 70 C.E. and was completed in 80 C.E. under his successor and heir Titus. Vespasian and Titus are also known as the great enemies of the Jewish people, the destroyers of Jerusalem and the Holy Temple in the year 70 and the cause of untold suffering for our people.
The Colosseum seated 50,000 spectators and was a major part of Roman life. Here were the notorious inhumane gladiatorial contests in which prisoners of war were forced to fight each other to the death. Often the Romans would put fellow soldiers, comrades in arms, against each other. Here, too, animals of many kinds were brought from Africa and for the entertainment of the Roman citizens were pitted against each other until they tore each other apart limb by limb. Humans too were forced to fight animals, all for the pleasure of the Roman spectators.
The Colosseum was also used for public spectacles such as mock sea battles, animal hunts, executions (always a crowd pleaser), and re-enactments of famous battles. In some of the plays slaves were used for murder scenes and were actually killed during a "live" performance.
In the year 70 C.E. (common era) the Roman army under the leadership of General Titus attacked Jerusalem and destroyed the Temple. The Temple of Jerusalem was never rebuilt. This event is one of the most traumatic events in all of Jewish history and has been mourned on a daily basis since that tragic day.
While the hope of rebuilding the Temple, and the restoration of the Jews to our ancestral homeland, is part of our daily prayers, one day per year is devoted to mourning the loss of the Jerusalem Temple, Beth HaMiqdash. That is the 9th day of the month of Av.
In the year 82 C.E. Roman emperor Domitian constructed this arch to commemorate the victories of his older brother Titus, who had just passed away.
The arch depicts the Romans sacking the Temple and stealing the holy utensil and Menorah from the Temple. These items were never recovered.
This arch has become a symbol for the Jewish people. For close to two thousand years it symbolized the downfall of the Jewish people, the loss of independence and the bitter persecution at the hands of the Church. Today, with the restoration of Jewish independence and the in-gathering of the exiles to the land of Israel, the Arch has taken on new meaning. Many Jews come here to stand at the arch and say, "We are now free".
The ceiling of the arch.
The names Tito (Titus) and Vespasianos are clearly visible, the general and emperor who made war on Jerusalem.
(Senatus Populusque Romanus divo Tito divi Vespasiani filio Vespasiano Augusto)
which means "The Roman Senate and People (dedicate this) to the divine Titus Vespasianus Augustus, son of the divine Vespasian."
Moshe Katz is available to teach Krav Maga seminars anywhere in the free world. For details contact IKI at firstname.lastname@example.org
or at email@example.com
For more information Krav Maga Seminars with Moshe Katz
Come to Israel to really see a change in your Krav Maga ability. Explore the deep roots of Krav Maga in our tradition and culture. You will return home a different Krav Maga practitioner or instructor.
Krav Maga Tour and Train Israel. The IKI way.