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Continuing the festivities connected to Europe Day, the Embassy of Romania to the State of Israeland the Romanian Cultural Institute in Tel Aviv are proud to invite you to the events celebratingEurope Day, organized by the Haifa Center for German and European Studies (HCGES) and the Student Union of Haifa University on May 15, 2014. Romania will be present at the events with a national stand within the European Market, open to the public between 11:00-18:00 at the Café Deshe area at Haifa University campus (please see invitation attached).

The Embassy of Romania in Israel will offer general information brochures and leaflets, and will bring to the attention of the Israeli students the various educational opportunities available in Romania, as well as the curriculum of the Romanian language Department at the Tel Aviv University.

Also, at the stand, RCI Tel Aviv will present its programs, Romanian language courses and events for the current year, will distribute informative materials and will accept subscriptions to its data base and newsletter.

Europe Day will be celebrated through the European Market, during which every state participating at the events will be represented by a national stand, as well as through a round table (“The EU Greatest Challenges Today”) and an international conference (“Social Issues in Contemporary Europe: Cosmopolitanism, Gender, and Urban Spaces”) attended by the ambassadors of the European Union member states (please see the poster attached). 

Looking forward to see you there!

Embassy of Romania to the State of Israel

The President of the State of Israel, President Shimon Peres, sang a special duet with the singer Rita

President Peres to the 120 Outstanding Soldiers:

"On behalf of the citizens of Israel, I salute you"

"You are the guarantors of our safety. A deterrent to our enemies. The promise of our peace. A bridge to peace and security."

The President of the State of Israel, President Shimon Peres, hosted the central Independence Day celebrations at his residence in Jerusalem this morning. The celebrations included the ceremony honoring the 120 outstanding soldiers and the "Singing Independence with the President" event which has become an Independence Day tradition. The event was attended by Prime Minister Netanyahu, Minister of Defense Yaalon and Chief of Staff Gantz who each sang a song they had selected along with Israeli artists.

 

The ceremony began with an IAF fly-over as a salute to the 120 outstanding soldiers who were chosen by their commanders for making an exceptional contribution to the IDF and who represent the cross-spectrum of the IDF. Following the fly-over President Peres and Chief of Staff Gantz inspected the soldiers.

 

During his remarks to the soldiers President Peres said, "I look upon your glowing faces and your shining eyes and I'm as excited as you are. I'm excited and I'm proud of you. You are the sons and daughters of an ancient people, who was granted redemption in a land that is small in size but great in its moral call. You are the new generation of the IDF, an army that was attacked seven times, which fought and maintained its values. An army that built a wall of security to deter our enemies, to grant security to its people. From the day our country was born until this day we have faced a stark choice: To cease or to win." President Peres continued and said, "The bravery of the soldiers of the IDF is worth more than any other resource. Israel is not a passing shadow but a reality as strong as stone. There is nothing like Israel. She overcome accepted standards and created thrilling exceptions. You are the proof that even without quantity, we can reach quality through excellence. And you are the sons and daughters of a nation who only decades ago experienced the Holocaust, and since then has known wars. You are the children of a nation that was exiled to the four corners of the earth and came to together again to be as one. In the Middle East many nations have collapsed and languages have disappeared, and you still speak the language of your prophets. Israel is a leap more than a move. Israel is a constant surprise that broke routines but maintained its heritage. From her first day Israel is a democracy. A thriving democracy but not a destructive one. Israel created a pluralistic society where the scaffolding remains. While she is filled with self-criticism, Israel also discovers that volunteerism flows through the nation to repair, to improve, to complete. Our existence here is guaranteed by the heroism of our soldiers, by the dedication of our pioneers and our concern for those that will come after us."

 

President Peres concluded his remarks and said, "You are role models for your peers. Every generation surpasses the one before it and every generation is carried upon the shoulders of those that came before it. There are new expanses in which to learn, the secrets of which carry great potential. I knew all the generations that came before you. Every generation made its contribution as necessary to stand in the face of the winds that blew at the time. Your generation will need to stand against more demanding winds blowing from distant horizons more than immediate borders. Your generation is better prepared, is better equipped, is faster, is more accurate, is more varied, is more updated. A generation whose feet are planted on the ground but who mind is already in the future. The IDF and the security forces are respected as the greatest force in the fight against terror and an organization that can produce enormous power. You are the guarantors of our safety. A deterrent to our enemies. The promise of our peace. A bridge to peace and security. The IDF instilled important values in you. Patriotism, camaraderie, mutual responsibility and the search for peace.  On behalf of the citizens of Israel, I salute you and your commanders. You are the best. From the President's Residence in Jerusalem, in Israel I congratulate your parents and all the people of Israel. Happy Independence Day"

 

Prime Minister Netanyahu also congratulated the soldiers and said, "I am always proud to be the Prime Minister of Israel but especially so today. The outstanding soldiers operate in the air, in the water and on land to ensure the security of the state. I know that we have who to rely upon when we send you on operations. I want to thank your parents who raised and educated you to contribute to the state, thank you on behalf of the citizens of Israel."

 

 

 

 

Defense Minister Yaalon said, "This is a day of pride for the State of Israel. To meet these soldiers, who together with their peers, show initiative and ensure the security of Israel, it lifts my soul. The State of Israel can be proud of its soldiers and officers."

 

Following the remarks by President Peres, the Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gantz spoke to the soldiers and said, "The outstanding soldiers standing here today represent our officers and soldiers who are always on guard, including right now. On land, in the air and in the water, along all our borders, on the front lines and the home front our forces operate with unparalleled dedication and courage. It is because of those soldiers that we can celebrate Independence Day – and thanks to them we will continue to celebrate our freedom."

 

The celebrations at the President's Residence were broadcast live on Israeli television, websites across the world and on President Peres' Facebook page.

 

 

Photos by Silvia G Golan

 

 

 

 

 

B'nai B'rith World Center and Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael Held a unique Holocaust Day Ceremony Marking the Heroism of Jewish Rescuers

Ceremony was dedicated to commemorating the efforts of rescuer Jonas Eckstein who operated in Slovakia

Jerusalem (April 28, 2014): Today, B'nai B'rith World Center and KKL-JNF held a unique joint commemoration ceremony in a Martyr's Forest "Scroll of Fire" Plaza - the only one in Israel and worldwide that is dedicated to commemorating the activity and heroism of Jews who rescued fellow Jews during the years of torment in Europe.

 


The central theme of this year's event was glorification of the actions and heroism of thousands of Jews who, under impossible conditions, rescued other Jews during the Holocaust, in various ways such as concealment, smuggling, subterfuge and falsification. Bravely and courageously, they were able to disrupt the Nazi extermination machine and ensure the survival of their siblings. They acted throughout Germany, Hungary, the Axis powers, and all other occupied states.

 


This year, the ceremony focused on the figure of Jonah (Jonas) Eckstein (1902-1971) who worked to save thousands of Jews in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia during the Holocaust. The daughter of Yona Eckstein, Tova Teitelbaum and his grandson, a reporter of Kol Israel, Beni Teitelbaum, received in his name the title of a Jew lifeguard from Alan Schneider, Director of the B'nai B'rith World Center. Yona Eckstein was an active member of the Jewish community and a successful wrestler in "Hakoach" Jewish sport club. His sporting activities allowed Eckstein to befriend city officials and police which later facilitated his rescue activities. These connections helped him years later in the rescue operations.


His diverse activity touched thousands of people over a period of two and half years and encompassed food distribution to Jewish prisoners with government authorization which he utilized to clandestinely deliver food to hidden Jews along with information vital for their survival; hosting orphans from Poland and facilitating their conveyance to pre-state Israel via Hungary; hosting Jews who fled to Slovakia from Auschwitz; hosting and conveying Polish Jews to the relative safety of Hungary; and hiding Jews in bunkers – including one he dug under his own basement. Eckstein was imprisoned and tortured by the Gestapo and pressured by the Jewish leaders to hand over hidden Jews


The ceremony was held in presence of MK Amram Mitzna, Chair of the Knesset Education, Culture and Sports Committee, Slovak ambassador Hon. Radovan Javorcik, KKL-JNF World Chairman Efi Stenzler and B'nai B'rith World Center Chairman Dr. Haim V. Katz.

 

Photo Caption: Tova Eckstein (in the center with cane) and the Teitelbaum family with MK Amram Mitzna, Chair of the Knesset Education, Culture and Sports Committee, Slovak ambassador Hon. Radovan Javorcik, KKL-JNF World Chairman Efi Stenzler and B'nai B'rith World Center Chairman Dr. Haim V. Katz.
Photo Credit: Rafi Kotz

 

 

 

 

 

President Peres to the Diplomatic Corps:

"You have to say to the authorities in Gaza; decide if you want peace and prosperity? You must say no-one will finance your missiles, your tunnels or your ideology."

 

"We are not against unity if they accept the conditions necessary to be united (the conditions of the Quartet)."

 

The President of the State of Israel, Shimon Peres, hosted a reception this afternoon at his residence in Jerusalem for the Diplomatic Corps in Israel and addressed the current state of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. President Peres called upon the Ambassadors to pressure Hamas to accept the conditions set out by the Quartet and said, "Ambassadors, our friends, and I know you care about peace as much as I do. Gaza is today the greatest obstacle to an agreement. Why do they need 10,000 missiles? You have to say to the authorities in Gaza, decide if you want peace and prosperity or not. You must say no-one will finance your missiles, your tunnels or your ideology. We are not against unity if they accept the conditions necessary to be united (the conditions of the Quartet). I believe that diplomacy in an uncertain time can prepare a road that will make the process easier and the future more promising."

 

President Peres continued and said that Israel continues to search for peace, "We shouldn't lose hope, we should continue negotiations. I believe that while there is an interruption in the negotiations it is not a stop. We have to renew the negotiations and I believe they will be renewed, none of us has a better alternative. None of us can make peace without the other party. It's normal that when you make peace you have differences and that the opening positions are not the same as the final ones."

 

Addressing the diplomats Foreign Minister Lieberman said, "We expect the international community to stand by its commitments and demand that Hamas abide by the three conditions laid out by the Quartet. The renunciation of violence, Recognizing the State of Israel, Accept previously signed agreement. Two additional issues that cannot be compromised on are a Palestinian recognition of Israel as the homeland of the Jewish People and the abandonment of the so-called Palestinian "right of return". Any attempt to advance an agreement without an explicit recognition of the State of Israel as the homeland of the Jewish People by the Palestinians will be a non-starter. The meeting yesterday in Qatar between Abbas and Khaled Meshaal and the recent developments in Judea and Samaria demonstrate with certainty that Hamas is on its way to controlling the whole Palestinian Authority. Regardless of when elections will take place, it is clear that Hamas will win convincingly. This will be the result of the recent agreement signed with Hamas by Mahmoud Abbas. Abbas brought Hamas to power in Gaza and he is now bringing them to power in Judea and Samaria. However, we are determined to prevent Judea and Samaria from becoming the new Gaza. Israel seeks peace, Israel wants an agreement, but we will not be fools."

 

 

 

 

Photo  : President with the Ambassadors  Kobi Gidon

Photo President Peres   : Silvia G Golan

 

 

 

The Israel Electric Corporation (IEC) and "Yad Vashem" in collaboration of a documentation project:
Commemoration of IEC retirees who are Holocaust survivors

Collecting testimonies of Holocaust survivors, writing 'pages of testimonies' and gathering survivors' items from the Holocaust as part of the national project "Collecting the Pieces"

IEC Chairman Maj. Gen. (res.) Yiftah Ron-Tal: "The Story of IEC is entwined with the history of the Jewish people and the State of Israel."

 

IEC CEO Eli Glickman: "The IEC made a personal approach to retirees of the company who are Holocaust survivors to take part in this important project, to share their personal stories that have not yet been told, in order to document their immense contribution to the establishment of Israel and the IEC for future generations."

"Yad Vashem" Chairman Avner Shalev: "It is not obvious that following their great loss and destruction, holocaust survivors continued to live their life as usual, instead of drowning in paralyzing grief. On the contrary, survivors continued to work and contribute to all sectors of the Israeli economy. They chose to build a life and were full partners in the construction of the Israeli industry and the National infrastructures."

 

The Israel Electric Corporation (IEC) and "Yad Vashem" are launching a national flag project of commemoration and documentation of holocaust survivors who are retirees of the IEC.

The joint project will operate in three channels and will include the testimony collections of Holocaust survivors and documentation through stills and video photography, registration of 'pages of testimony' and items collections, as part of the national campaign "collecting the pieces."
The joint project is designed to document and preserve the heritage of the Holocaust survivors who built the State of Israel, as well as part of the national heritage and the Jewish commitment to memorialize Holocaust for future generations.

 

"Yad Vashem" has been collecting materials and documentation of personal testimonies of survivors for years around the world. "Yad Vashem" archives currently contain the largest collection of Holocaust documentation. The documentation which is found at "Yad Vashem" is an important treasure of the Jewish people. It is the basis for research on the Holocaust, constitutes exhibitions and museums, acts of commemoration and education of future generations. Thus, collecting documentation, names of victims and survivors' testimonies is crucial for preserving Jewish memory for future generations.

Recent years have been showing a worrying phenomenon of Holocaust denial and trivialization. Testimonies of Holocaust survivors and archetypes collection are eternal proof of the horrors of the Holocaust and the international commemoration. Photographic testimony is important for researchers and future generations in Israel and throughout the world, through which one can learn the individual stories that comprise the broader picture.

 

IEC Chairman Maj. Gen. (res.) Yiftah Ron-Tal: "The Story of IEC is entwined with the history of the Jewish people and the State of Israel. Hundreds of IEC retirees, who survived the horrors of the Holocaust, took part in establishing the utility and infrastructure development of the state of Israel. As a national company, it is a moral obligation to act with all the means at our disposal to strengthen the memory of the Holocaust and collective memory, which unites us as a society."

IEC CEO Eli Glickman: "The IEC made a personal approach to retirees of the company who are Holocaust survivors to take part in this important project. To share their personal stories have not yet been told, in order to document their immense contribution to the establishment of Israel and the IEC for future generations. This year as well, the company will hold memorial services at company sites throughout the country, in cooperation with survivors who are retirees and employees of a company that took part in the "March of the Living", which has become an important pillar in preservation of the heritage of our society."


Collection of testimonies: Many IEC retirees, whom survived the Holocaust, immigrated to Israel after World War II and found jobs in the IEC, constituting as an essential part of the electricity sector in Israel. Most of the survivors, now retired, still did not provide testimony of their survival story. In cooperation with "Yad Vashem", the IEC workers will help "Yad Vashem" to locate the survivors that have not provided testimonies. The professional staff of "Yad Vashem" will reach out to each of these survivors at their home and will film their testimonies.

 

Writing testimony pages in commemoration of Holocaust victims who were murdered: "Yad Vashem" with the help of the survivors, relatives and friends of the victims around the world, worked tirelessly since the fifties in order to collect and perpetuate the names of the Holocaust victims who were murdered in the Holocaust through the collection of 'Pages of Testimony'. 'Pages of Testimony' are forms listing the names of victims, their biographical details and photographs (if there are any) – all in order to return each and every one of their personal identity that the Nazis tried to erase. Over four million names of Holocaust victims were gathered to date and documented in the database of "Yad Vashem". While many names have been reported, many more are missing due to survivors' emotional difficulty to testify. As part of the framework of this project with IEC, Yad Vashem volunteers will assist all in need to help fulfill the mission of commemoration.

 

Project "Collecting the pieces"
"Yad Vashem" has been working in the project "collecting the pieces" – National Rescue Operation for the collection and preservation of personal items from the homes of IEC employees and retirees, survivors and second generations These Holocaust findings of survivors include photographs, artifacts, films and more.

IEC in cooperation with "Yad Vashem" will work towards collection of such items and as well as documentation of the each of the story the items.