Tonight is the first night of Passover. As is written in the Passover Haggadah:

For not just one alone has risen against us to destroy us, but in every generation they rise against us to destroy us; and the Holy One, blessed be He, saves us from their hand!

As if you needed any reminding that nothing has changed, witness today’s Hamas-organized attempt to storm the Gaza border, with women and children pushed to the front lines as human shields. The military leader of Hamas was blunt about the objective:

Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar joined mass protests along the Gaza border Friday, warning Israel that it should take heed of the tens of thousands of Palestinians demonstrating for the right to “return” to Israel.

In a fiery message, Sinwar called on those “besieging” the Gaza Strip to “recalculate” their position and absorb the message emanating from the protest.

If they are hungry, the people of the Gaza Strip will “eat the livers of those besieging” the coastal enclave, Sinwar warned, using an Arabic idiom that means to take revenge on someone….

The “March of Return,” Sinwar added, ” affirms that our people can’t give up one inch of the land of Palestine. The protests will continue until the Palestinians return to the lands they were expelled from 70 years ago.”

Our Passover posts have taken on some traditions. Each year I publish an excerpt from my 2009 post, Passover Is No Time To Wish For The End Of Christian America:

Nothing has changed in thousands of years. They still rise up in every generation to destroy us, but this time the names are not Haman or Adolf, but Mahmoud and Osama. And on this earth, it will be Christian Americans almost alone who will stand with us.

I’m reminded of the bumper sticker from the 1960′s: “If you hate cops, next time you are in trouble call a hippie. ” Jews, of all people, should not wish too hard for The End of Christian America. There is no one else to call.

So particularly at this Passover time, we should not wish too hard for the End of Christian America. We might just get it.

We also remember the victims of the 2002 Passover suicide bombing at the Park Hotel in Nethanya, Israel, during a Passover seder. 29 people died in the explosion, and 64 were injured. Hamas claimed responsibility for the attack:

The suicide bomber, Abd El-Basset Oudeh (resident of Tulkarm, born in 1977), arrived at the hotel disguised as a woman after shaving off his beard and moustache, putting on makeup, and wearing a straight hair wig. He wore women’s shoes, blue feminine-cut jeans, a brown shirt, and a brown leather jacket with a leopard-print collar. A fake Israeli ID card in a woman’s name completed the disguise.

The explosive belt worn by the suicide bomber was designed as a vest with pockets that hid approximately 10kg of explosives.

On a lighter note, another tradition here is the short all-purpose “Jewish History in One Sentence“:

“Quick synopsis of every Jewish holiday: They tried to kill us; we won; let’s eat.”

For those of you not totally familiar with the Passover story, this video is one of my favorites:

Here’s a more modern telling of the story:

On a personal note, and to update the many readers whose comments and emails were appreciated, Cleveland didn’t work out as hoped. It was frustrating, exhausting and demoralizing. We left early to seek treatments elsewhere. Things are “relatively” stable here, and we continue to search for solutions.

During Passover, we say “Next Year in Jerusalem.” Organizing a Legal Insurrection trip to Israel has been something I’ve talked about for years after each of my trips there (2013, 2015, 2016), but circumstances have not permitted. Perhaps things will improve, and it will become a reality. Do you believe in miracles?

[Featured Image: Israel’s Escape from Egypt, illustration from a Bible card published 1907 by the Providence Lithograph Company]

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