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    A land of holiness

    The Torah portion informs us that God chose Eretz Yisra’el as His people’s dwelling place.

    Even separated from the land for lengthy periods, Israel the people and Israel the land remained bound together in spite of countless historical challenges and changes.

    These days people often say that the other nations, especially the Arabs, do not understand.

    Amos Oz said in an article written for the 25th anniversary of the State of Israel that the problem is not that other peoples do not understand but that they understand all too well.

    I once had a Talmud teacher who used to say to one of my fellow students, “Mr. C…., I think you deliberately misunderstand the Gemara”. I cannot judge whether my teacher was right about Mr. C., but it sounds as though Amos Oz borrowed the teacher’s terminology when he said that the rival claims to the Holy Land are not based on accidental misunderstanding.

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