Today is exactly one year since I started It's Almost Supernatural. Blogging has been an illuminating experience and has opened my eyes to perspectives that a year ago I wouldn't have considered. This was always supposed to be a short term experiment for me - I'm not sure how much longer I will continue, but to everyone who has taken the time to read some of what I have had to say, Thank You.
I have posted 424 entries since June 07 2004 (with 453 total comments). There have been a total of 36 494 total hits. Since the beginning of this year the blog has averaged 170 pageviews and 125 unique visitors per day.
I didn't notice this last year but June 07 is also the day when Israeli troops battled for, and won, Jerusalem. (June 06 is commemorated as Yom Yerushalayim.)
Here's an excerpt from Michael B. Oren's bestseller 6 days of war.
|After a skirmish with Jordanian riflemen, Gur radioed the word that would resonate for decades afterwards "Har ha-Bayit be-Yadenu" - "The Temple Mount is in our hands."
Gur received a delegation of Arab nobles who proffered him the city's surrender, along with the arms that had been stored in the mosques. To their surprise, the general released them and allowed them to return to their homes. But neither he nor any of his men knew how to get to the Western wall, and were forced to ask an old Arab man for directions. He guided Gur through the Mughrabi gate, exiting just south of the wall. A retaining structure of giant ashlars erected by King Herod, the wall was the only remnant of the Second Temple destroyed by the Romans in the year 70. Jews had not had access to the shrine, their holiest, for 19 years.
As Gur descended, men from both the Jerusalem Brigade and the 71st paratroopers converged on the wall, ecstatic and all but oblivious to the persistent sniper fire. Rabbi Goren broke free of the soldiers Gur had designated to restrain him, and ran headlong to the wall. He said Kaddish - the mourner's prayer - blew his shofar, and proclaimed, "I general Shlomo Goren, chief Rabbi of Israeli Defense Forces, have come to this place never to leave it again."
Crammed into the narrow space between the stones and the ramshackle dwellings of the Mughrabi quarter, the soldiers broke into spontaneous songs and prayer. Above them the Star of David was hoisted.
Eshkol (Israeli PM) wasted no time in placing the Holy Places under the jurisdiction of the relevant clergy-rabbis, Muslim clerics, the Catholic Church.
Rabin listened to Dayan's words and watched with awe the scene of hundreds of soldiers joined by Ultra-Orthodox Jews, dancing. "This was the peak of my life," he recalled. "For years I had secretly harbored the dream that I might play a role...in restoring the Western Wall to the Jewish people...Now that dream had come true, and suddenly I wondered why I, of all men, should be so privileged." His words at the wall sounded less like a soldier's than a prophet's:
The sacrifices of our comrades have not been in vain...The countless generations of Jews murdered, martyred, and massacred for the sake of Jerusalem I say to you, 'Comfort yet, our people; console the mothers and the fathers whose sacrifices have brought about redemption.
Listen to one of the most historically defining moments in the Middle East history. It's all in Hebrew so you may not understand what is being said, but it's still worth listening to. All through the recording you hear sounds of Jordanian gunfire. The recording takes you to the events of that watershed day - the soldiers march into the city where Jews had once been forbidden, Rabbi Goren sounds the shofar, the soldiers recite the Shehechiyanu prayer, and sing Yerushalayim Shel Zahav and Ha-Tikvah. The moment that has the biggest impact on me is when you hear the blows of the triumphant Shofar replacing the sorrow filled weeping of the Israeli soldiers.