January 26, 2010

In the righteous spirit


Sir, – The rescue efforts displayed by Israel in Haiti is a clear example of ahavat chinam (unconditional love). Such a tiny country as Israel has sent to quake-stricken Haiti an impressive contingent of 220 highly trained medical and IDF personnel, setting up a state-of-the-art hospital in less than 24 hours, giving hope to thousands of Haitians. This is a humanitarian gesture that has nothing to do with political considerations or cynical calculations. After all, even before the earthquake, Haiti was the most impoverished country in the Western hemisphere. So what could Haiti possibly offer Israel in return?A parallel can be drawn between Israel’s help to Haiti and the heroic legacies of the saviors of Holocaust victims. The latter stood up against a huge, evil human-made monster. The former reached out to millions of people battered by the forces of nature. The saviors of the Holocaust are referred to as The Righteous among the Nations. Israel is a Righteous Nation.

The International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation