Hanukkah—famous for the miraculous oil in the Temple’s candelabra that stayed lit for eight days—is starting later this month, but Israel’s good deeds are shining brightly already. Last week, a delegation from Israel traveled to Honduras to provide emergency assistance to the South American nation in the aftermath of hurricanes Eta and Iota. A press statement posted to the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) website said the Israeli team is “providing emergency response to the populations in the affected areas, hand in hand with local volunteers, while following the regulations put in place to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in comments on the aid mission released by his office on Sunday, said that Honduras President Juan Orlando Hernandez had asked for Israel’s help. Netanyahu called the IDF Home Front Command, which sent a team to Honduras, “the best ambassadors that the State of Israel has.”
Said Netanyahu, “Hanukkah is also the festival of lights. Today everyone knows that Israel is also a light unto many nations.”
Tal Itzhakov, Ministry of Foreign Affairs representative, was quoted on the MFA website noting that the Israeli delegation has been “concentrating its efforts to assist residents of the area to return to their daily routine,” in addition to training the Honduran emergency troops in how to handle disasters.
The MFA press release said that Honduras wanted the Israeli assistance given the Jewish State’s experience in dealing with emergencies, especially the Home Front Command. The Commanding Officer of the National Rescue Unit, Col. (res.) Golan Vach, said in the MFA press statement, “The members of the delegation are reservists, experts in their fields with experience from similar situations that they have dealt with around the world over the past few years. Therefore, they perform their activities while equipped with technological gear in order to give their best response in their aid mission.”
The team that traveled to Honduras is comprised of both the IDF and members of the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, but the overall effort involves a variety of people who didn’t make the trip. Said Netanyahu, “I want to thank the Defense Ministry, the IDF, the Foreign Ministry and—of course—the National Security Council in my ministry, for the excellent cooperation that speaks so well for Israel among the nations of the world.”
It is that light—symbolized by the Menorah candelabra that once stood in the Temple—that Israel seeks to share with the rest of the globe, especially in emergencies. Said Vach in the press release, “The State of Israel and the Home Front Command will continue to assist in the aftermath of any disaster around the world that requires its experience and capabilities.”
(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, December 6, 2020)