Midreshet Lindenbaum‘s Cheryl Burnat leads students from the Maria and Joel Finkle Overseas Program on a tour of Har Herzl, Israel’s national cemetery and memorial site, in advance of Yom HaZikaron.
Burnat expounded upon Israeli President Ezer Weizman’s 1996 speech at the Bundestag. “Weizman famously said that ‘memory shortens distances.’ In effect, we are time-traveling Jews who, as Weizman said, explore our own collective memory, with the ‘cloak of memory’ around our shoulders, and a ‘staff of hope’ in our hands.
“History is an English word; Judaism refers to zikaron, or memory,” Burnat explained. “That collective memory and collective experience is a fundamental part of being a Jew. We bring our students here before Yom HaZikaron to learn about Israel’s past because we are all a part of that past, and that past is a part of us all.”