IDF (Zahal) Spokesperson
IDF (Zahal) Website will be lighting a candle with a different unit each night of Hanukkah, kicking off the week with the IDF (Zahal) Rabbinate
Date: 21/12/2011, 2:17 PM Author: Rotem Pesso
Every night of Hannukah, the IDF (Zahal) website will be lighting a candle with a different unit in the field. Tonight we join the IDF (Zahal)’s head rabbi, Brig. Gen. Rabbi Rafi Peretz.
Hanukkah is always a good reason to celebrate, especially in an army of the nation, founded on morality and tradition. The IDF (Zahal) Rabbinate opened the holiday with the lighting of the first candle, remembering this heroic holiday, filled with miracles and wonders.
The Heroes: The soldiers in the office of the head rabbi and Brig. Gen. Rafi Peretz.
The Holy Temple: Rabin’s Camp within the Kirya, Office of the head rabbi.
The Bright Spot: Matan Saadetti, the class-clown.
How We Celebrate: To operate like normal, but in the light of the Hannukiah.
The Best Part: “My favorite part of the holiday is the feeling of unity,” said rabbi Peretz. “Everyone is coming together- in towns and army uses. Also the menorah is a wonderful thing. It’s not one light, but nine that make it complete. There is a place for every candle, and this is the philosophy of the IDF (Zahal). The IDF (Zahal) is the nation’s army- here we learn together, we are educated together within a love for this nation. Every opinion and thought can be expressed, and they come together in the revival of the nation of Israel.”
The Worst Part: The Calories
The Miracle: A new project by the bereaved families of the military rabbinate, which is progressing well and receiving a lot of positive responses.
Holiday Traditions: The lighting of the first candle and a private lesson with the head rabbi.
In conclusion: “An excellent holiday as always, lots of lights and lots of fun.”
“It’s not by force, or tanks, or planes that we win, but spirit”
The story of Hanukkah is one that is close to the heart of IDF (Zahal). The story of Mattityahu and his five sons rising up against the Greeks to liberate the land of Israel has an obvious resonance.
The candle lighting ceremony was full of lessons on morality and the holiday spirit. “Standing here- in the nerve center of the IDF (Zahal)- it’s exciting. 2200 years ago in the days of Judah Maccabe, there was no beautiful menorah here, no flag of Israel,” said the head rabbi. He later spoke on the moral essence of the holiday and it’s meaning for the IDF (Zahal). “The heart of the holiday is also the core of IDF (Zahal) values. It’s not by force, or tanks, or planes that we win, but spirit,” said the head rabbi. “We feel a very strong connection to this holiday. The light that is central to this holiday will not only light our hearts or our nation, but the whole world. “