- Written by Axel Angeles
Hanukkah is an 8-day Jewish festival celebrated to remember the "miracle of light" and the triumph of the Maccabees in reclaiming the Second Temple.
The story begins in 175 B.C.E when the Jewish people lived in Israel and the Second Temple was standing in Jerusalem. At the time, Syrian Greeks ruled under King Antiochus IV.
Antiochus IV wanted to reign over the Jewish people; therefore, he forbade the practice of Judaism and forced the Jewish people to believe in the pagan Greek gods. Many Jews resisted while other Jews accepted the beliefs and were known as Hellenists.
Amongst the resistance, one Jewish priest, known as Mattityahu motivated the Jews to challenge and revolt against the injustice set forth by the king. Led by the youngest of his 5 sons, Judah Maccabee lead all of those who had not become Hellenists in revolting against the Syrian king. They fought against the Syrian Greeks and forced them out of Jerusalem, and thus, the Maccabees regained control of the Second Temple despite finding the holy altar dedicated to the Greek gods. The Maccabees had the Temple restored and purified, then dedicated a new altar to the service of G-d.
An important component of the holy Temple required the daily lighting of a seven- candelabra Menorah. However, the Maccabees were faced with a huge dilemma as they only had enough oil to last for one day. The oil ended up lasting for eight days, and because of this, was seen as a miracle of G-d. In reference to Hanukkah, people always refer to the 'miracle of lights'
How to celebrate Hanukkah?
Over centuries, the Jewish people have commemorated this event by lighting a Hanukia, also referred to as a Menorah. The Hanukia has nine candleholders; of which the first eight are in remembrance of the days the oil lasted, as where the ninth candle is used to light the rest. At sundown, the family gathers and says a prayer to light the menorah. Every night one candle is lit.
What to eat on this holiday?
Sufganiot, also known as a Jelly Donuts are very popular during the holiday as well as Latkes, also known as Fried Potato Pancakes. The foods during this holiday contain a lot of oil in remembrance to the miracle.
Events in Tel Aviv?
Bialik House: Hanukkah activities for children December 3 - 9, 10:00 - 14:00
Tours in Jaffa "The Three Monotheistic Religions"
More Events at:
by Axel Angeles
- Written by Diplomacy
Ambassador of Spain to Israel, Mr. Alvaro Iranzo hosted the welcoming event to the arrival of the world reputation fashion designer Javier Simorra from Spain.
Mr. Simorra himself arrived from Spain to attend the event and it seemed that he was especially excited to meet Israeli businessmen and fashion icons.
Ambassador Mr. Iranzo congratulated Mr. Simorra and wished him success in Israel.
Ambassador Iranzo added that the brand Javier Simorra and Mr. Simorra himself are a source of pride to Spain and he is delighted to welcome him to Israel.
Fashion Designer Mr. Simorra himself Spoke of his excitement to arrive to Israel, a country his respect and cherish, and added that the excitement is intensified due to the opening of the new franchise in Israel.
Mr. Simorra thanked ambassador Iranzo for his hospitality and said that the head of the diplomatic mission to Israel from Spain is also a source of pride to the country.
Among the respected guests were Israeli fashion models, agents, businessmen, and politicians.
(Photos: Eliran Avital and Yoni Tobeli)
- Written by President’s Spokesperson
From the foothills of Mt. Sinai to the edges of Rabin Square, one commandment has stood firm
throughout the generations: Thoushalt not kill. Do not kill a person. Do not kill an idea. Murder is a crime that may never be forgiven or forgotten.
(Communicated by the President's Spokesperson)
This evening, the President of the State of Israel commenced the remembrance events marking 15 years since the assassinationof Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabinz”l with a candle lighting ceremony in the President’s Residence. The President made a speech and lit a “Yitzhak remembrance candle” in the slain Prime Minister’s memory.
In his speech, the President described the days and the evening preceding the murder, and addressed reports that today’s youth does not remember who Yitzhak Rabin was: “A ‘Yitzhak remembrance candle’ was lit this evening on the 15th anniversary of his murder. This is a candle of the commitment to peace. He vowed that its flame will never be extinguished. From the foothills of Mt. Sinai to the edges of Rabin Square, one commandment has stood firm throughout the generations: Thou shalt not kill. Do not kill a person. Do not kill an idea. Murder is a crime that may never be forgiven or forgotten. Neither the flow of time nor attenuation nor euphoria nor fatigue can avert us from this commandment. We observe a day of remembrance because we must fight against forgetfulness. Such forgetfulness is the enemy of humankind, and also endangers democracy.”
The President described the character of Rabin’s leadership: “Yitzhak knew that a leader does not rest on yesterday’s laurels. He led according to a vision. He knew that in today’s volatile reality, he who tarries is in danger. He who dares, reaches far-flung, powerful realms. Yitzhak did not fear what may come because he knew that there is no escaping it, and that it must be faced head-on. You make what you must out of it, in order to see the morrow come, even if at a higher price than today’s rates. Yitzhak was determined to move forwards towards peace, although he was aware of the difficulties from without and from within. The difficulties were not merely theoretical. He felt a tailwind at home and stood against a raging wind from the outside. He did not try to sugarcoat tough situations or evade dealing with them. He let neither himself nor others harbor false hopes. He knew that confronting the new reality would involve heavy risks, but that thereby, and sometimes only thereby, lay the greatest chances.”
At the end of his speech the President said, “The tears have not dried up. The candles have not expired. Nor has the evening. We shall return to the oath secreted in our hearts – we shall not forget his image. We shall not digress from his path. Peace is his last will and testament.”
Participating in the ceremony were the Rabin family, officials from the highest echelon of the Israeli government, members of the youth movements, and schoolchildren from the Rabin school in Shoham. Family representative Yuval Rabin also gave a speech in memory of Prime Minister Rabin.
- Written by MFA Spokesman's Bureau)
The Foreign Ministry's Emergency & Crisis Management Center will receive an official citation for their dedication over the years in helping Israelis in distress.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will hold a special conference on Wednesday, 27 October, to mark World Development Information Day. This day was declared by the United Nations in order to focus international attention on global development challenges in the 21st century. This is the first time a conference of this sort is being held in Israel.
Deputy Foreign Minister Daniel Ayalon will address the opening session of the conference. At a later session, staff of the Foreign Ministry's Emergency & Crisis Management Center ("Situation Room") will receive an official citation from civil aid organizations for their dedication over the years in extending help to Israelis in distress.
The event is being organized by MASHAV – Israel's Agency for International Development Cooperation, Ministry of Foreign Affairs – in cooperation with civil aid organizations in Israel. Dozens of representatives of civil society, government ministries, the business sector, academia and the media will participate.
The conference will comprise six sessions on topics relating to aid and sustainable development. The final session will examine the role of the Israeli media in the global and Israeli development assistance agenda.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs hopes that the conference will raise public awareness in Israel of the importance of development issues, and strengthen the cooperation between civil society and various government ministries in their development efforts. In addition, this day serves as a reminder of Israel's commitment to participate in international efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goals adopted by the UN in 2000.
- Written by Diplomacy
In the middle of the hot Israeli summer the telephone rings at Silvia Golan's Office. She has been requested to produce the cultural segment of the annual event of president's house Shimon Peres.
Without second thought she agreed and started to prepare the South American style event.
The idea was to include Latin music and dancing. Silvia Golan loves president Peres and she assumed, based on knowing president Peres fond of Argentinean dancing and music, that this kind of show will entertain him.
Organizing the event had to be in complete secrecy and besides the participants nobody had to know about the event.
The event took place at August 4th 2010 at Har-Zion hotel's pool in the beautiful hills of Jerusalem. The place was decorated tastefully and the catering was Latin style include the traditional South American chorizos.
The schedule contained speeches and honor decorations, and after the formal part of the evening was finished, the show began.
The first segment was Tango dancing participating 4 top dancers (Dvora Gutman- Tango instructor from Germany, Luis Canaan- Tango instructor from Argentina, Danny Greenberg- Tango instructor from Israel and Silvia Golan).
The continued with Latin rhythm as Dori Skalt and Dvir Ohana conducted a magnificent Salsa dance. Afterwards the guests enjoyed Waltz dancing by Benny Sharvit and Danielle Kovrigaro.
The rhythm kept going up with Brazilian Dance by Ana Celia Da Silva and Moran Mai -Golder which concluded the show.
After the show president Shimon Peres asked Silvia Golan to introduce to him all the dancers and requested details on each and every one of them. The dancers gladly discussed and took photos with president Peres.
After the full meal it was time for free dancing. President Peres made sure he won't miss one dance, despite many requests that he will rest.
President Peres commented that it was a memorable event that he won't forget soon.
Photo Silvia Golan