The Legacy

WE TAKE THIS OATH!

WE TAKE THIS OATH!  We take it in the shadow of flames whose tongues scar the soul of our people.  We vow in the name of dead parents and children; we vow, with our sadness hidden, our faith renewed; we vow, we shall never let the sacred memory of our perished Six Million be scorned or erased.

WE SAW THEM hungry and in fear. We saw them rush to battle.  We saw them in the loneliness of night – true to their faith.  At the threshold of death, we saw them.  We received their silence in silence and merged their tears with ours.

Deportations, executions, mass-graves, death camps; mute prayers, cries of revolt, desperation, torn scrolls; cities and towns, villages and hamlets; the young, the old, the rich, the poor; ghetto fighters and partisans, scholars and messianic dreamers, ravaged faces, fists raised.  Like clouds of fire, all have vanished.

WE TAKE THIS OATH!  Vision becomes word, to be handed down from father to son, from mother to daughter, from generation to generation.

REMEMBER what the German killers and their accomplices did to our people.  Remember them with rage and contempt.  Remember what an indifferent world did to us and to itself.  Remember the victims with pride and with sorrow.  Remember also the deeds of the Righteous Gentiles.

WE SHALL ALSO REMEMBER the miracle of the Jewish rebirth in the land of our ancestors, in the independent State of Israel.  Here, pioneers and fighters returned to our people the dignity and majesty of nationhood.  From the ruins of our lives, orphans and widows built homes and old-new fortresses on our redeemed land.  To the end of our days we shall remember all those who realized and raised their dream – our dream – of redemption to the loftiest heights.

WE TAKE THIS OATH here in Jerusalem, our eternal spiritual sanctuary.  Let our legacy endure as a stone of the Temple Wall.  For here, prayers and memories burn.  They burn and burn and will not be consumed.

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