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Thursday, 14 December 2017

Statement by Shevah Weiss at the ceremony of Kindling Hanukkah Lights

Statement by Shevah Weiss at the ceremony of Kindling Hanukkah Lights

The Ceremony of Kindling Hanukkah Lights with Participation of the Presidential Couple, statement by Shevah Weiss


Mr President,

Madam Kornhauser-Duda, Our First Lady,

Entire Incredible Team of the President – All of you Together and Each of You Individually,

My Dear Madam Ambassador, – yesterday we had a beautiful ceremony at the Embassy, on the second day of Hanukkah

Rabbi Michael Schudrich,

Rabbi Stambler from Chabad-Lubavitch,

I have so many friends here, I am so happy to spend this time with you,

Brothers, Sisters – as simple as that!


Hanukkah is a specific celebration because it carries universal values. If it pertained to contemporary times, I would say: it refers to human rights, such as the 1948 UN Declaration which was drawn up by 4 persons -  two of whom were Jews from Poland.


The President stressed that we have something in common: during our fight for freedom we found support in our religious traditions. That was a fight between Judaism and Hellenism – it was about monotheism. The history, not only that of Europe, but of the whole Christian, and perhaps even Muslim world is unimaginable without the victory of monotheistic values.


And now briefly about freedom. It happened at the start of the war for Israel`s independence, on Friday, May 14, 1948, before Saturday started, so as not to commit a sin, and on top of that, on the first day of the existence of the State of Israel. So the news was broken only on May, 16. The Israeli Forces had almost 40,000 soldiers in their ranks. The total Jewish population was 600,000 -700,000. Whereas at the end of war, in March 1949, the Forces numbered almost 150,000. How did it happen?  


After the barbaric times in Europe, after the dreadful tragedy on Polish lands, after the hell of German making, of Nazi making, the rest of the Saved, mostly young people, almost on their way to….., organized a fast migration, an Aliyah to Israel. Aliyah means mounting a rostrum in the synagogue. And if it was not for those soldiers, about 2,000 from that group perished, those with no families left, the State of Israel would not have been established. So speaking about freedom and about things we have in common – we have a lot in common.


Thank you for inviting me. I am not representing my Nation or Jews from Poland here – my words come from heart and go to heart, spontaneously. On this day, this place, with you as hosts, becomes a shrine of remembrance, a small temple of reconciliation based on hope. Because when asked if Jews and Poles are able to start from scratch, I answer: it is obligatory, it is possible and this is the goal we are trying to achieve together every day.


Thank you so much

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