12

My grandfather, Menachem, whom I was called after, has died 53 years ago, today. I was born exactly ten years after that day. He came to the land of Israel with my grandmother one moment before psycho World War II began, as my grandmother left him no choice.

When the British army started recruiting Jewish people from the land of Israel, he joined the forces and served as an army truck driver till the end of the war. Then he drove trucks to the besieged Jerusalem during Israel’s independence war and after the war he owned the first truck in the city of Rehovot, Israel. He was a talented sportsman in many fields and trained some of Israel’s most successful swimmers ever.

When his only daughter, my mother, reached Bat-Mitzva (12), he wrote her this humble greeting, saved with me until today. It was wrote in Hebrew letters with Hungarian accent: “My Rachel. You need to be a good daughter. Till 120. Many kisses from dad and mom for your 12th birthday. Dad”.

Two years after he passed away.

מנחם קראוס - בת 12

[Chami Zemach November 17, 2013]


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Recommendation By Offer Issarov of The Jewish Agency

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June 5, 2013

The “Israeli Family” project is a unique and exceptional program.

Oksana and Chami Zemach are entrepreneurs in the field of cultural- educational workshops. They are the parents to four daughters: Yulia (24) Gali (15), Tamar (13) and Michal (6), and live in Kadesh Barnea in the south of Israel. In August 2011 the Zemach family embarked on their first “Israeli Family” journey. They traveled for seven months, in eleven European countries and twenty different states in the U.S.. During their fascinating journey, the Zemach family made inspiring programs with many Jewish Communities and Jewish Agency emissaries from around the world.

The project was a success, and it appears that the family was successful in influencing the people and communities that they met throughout their journey.

In a world full of conflicts and cynicism, the Zemach family has been able to stay focused on important and relevant issues such as: children’s education in Israel, the importance of developing the land of Israel, daily economic dilemmas, Israeli local food, Israeli music, and so on. The members of the Zemach family are strong English speakers, and they offer experiential programs such as cooking workshops, lectures in different subjects and musical performances. All of these programs are adaptable to different age groups (adults, youth, elementary school, high school, kindergarten, college, retirement homes, etc), as well as non- Jewish groups.

The Zemach family is well followed by Israeli media and local press throughout their entire journey and activities.

In order to express the deep level of impact of the Zemach family, I would like to quote one of our shlichim who brought the family to his community in Ohio:” The uniqueness and variety of this project provides versatile activities in different subjects and for various audiences – children, students, adults, Jews, non –Jews, and businessmen and women. This project is fitting for every community – big, small, rich, and poor. This project is authentic and has huge potential for success because it is relevant for everybody. This project symbolizes family values, it is a voluntary project and therefore audiences can easily relate to and be inspired by its universal message. Their message comes through the “back door” and straight into our hearts. Attraction for Local Media: Properly managing this project will create vast exposure of this unique family’s story, and thus information about life in Israel. Its connection to the Jewish Agency symbolizes change and invigoration wherein local communities can find a new and refreshing way to strengthen their connection to Israel and the activities of the Jewish Agency. I highly recommend this experience” – Or Bass.

From my experience with the Zemach family and their unique project, I highly recommend bringing them to your communities and taking part in their variable workshops.

I have no doubt that the Zemach’s family project represents our beloved Israel and therefore has the ability to strengthen connection to Israel and the essential bridge between Jewish people around the world and Israel and its people. I am certain that this is an experience that you will not soon forget.

Offer Isseroff

Director, Shlichim & Israel Fellows

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9/11 – The dark side of my sleep

WORLD TRADE CENTER

Twelve years ago was one of those rare days when I was so tired I dared to sleep at noon.

At 5pm [Israel time], Oksana woke me up aggressively, saying: “look what happened while you were sleeping”….. On the TV screen in front of my bed were the two WTC buildings in the middle of heavy smoke, threatening the New York skyline with grey clouds of horror.

On the dark side of my sleep I found a new world, a world that looks like it came out of a nightmare I just didn’t wake up from. For the first time of my life I actually pinched myself, trying to understand if this is really happening.

I switched from CNN to FOX. The reporters spoke to me not believing they are saying what they actually are. I bet their arms were pinched much more than mind. Over their shoulders I was amazed to watch the first building collapses and then was the other one, in sights that were like taken from an extreme horror movie, but actually a reality been broadcast live!

The world was never again the same after I woke up that day.

[Chami Zemach, The Israeli Family, 9/11 2013]

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Chami’s CNN inreview about the Syrian crisis, Sept. 1, 2013

 

CNN_INTERNATIONAL

On Spetember 1, I was interviewed by CNN journalist Kelly Murray, about my opinions regarding the Syrian crisis. I was sent the questions and e-mailed my answers back.

I figured, if the journalist knows my opinions, you – my friends – deserve to know them too.

So, if you could spend 2 minutes of your time, you may have a look at my opinions about Syria, Assad, Chemical weapon and President Obama.

Q: What are your thoughts on the US intervening in Syria? Do you think it is a good decision or not? Can you explain?

The Syrian people are suffering badly from the war inside Syria. Me, as well as every Israeli and hopefully everyone in the world, are wishing them only peace good life.

I believe that this crisis will be over only when the Syrian people and their leaders on both (or more) sides will decide that it has to be over, that they have much more to lose when continuing the clashes than when putting an end to it.

I don’t see a bad side a good side. No one of the many sides in this chaos seeks peace.

Everyone involved in this internal Syrian war are only after power and control. The ones who suffer most are – as always – the simple people, the innocents, their families and of course their kids.

I don’t know what the US government’s decision will eventually be but if there was an instant way to put an end to this situation, I believe it would have already been taken.

This is the Middle East. It is a very complicated area and no one really understands all the interests and the many powers that are active in this area.

I believe a short focused strike in Syria will show the Syrian regime that the world cannot stand aside for long and will give the Syrian leaders the understanding that they must put an end to this too painful war.

Q: Did you see President Obama’s address today on Syria, what are your thoughts on it? What do you think about him waiting on Congress?

President Obama gave a brilliant speech. He cleverly used the Syrian situation and the withdrawal from attacking name-less Syrian targets, to make his administration stronger.

No congress will be able to decide any other decision either then the decision he would ask for, under these circumstances.

This will also give America and Britain (on one side) and Syria and Russia (on the other side) the time for silent diplomacy that maybe will promote the solution in this situation.

It is obvious that Assad would do everything he can now to put an end to the crisis. The point is that if the other side(s) will believe that they will benefit from keeping the fights on – then they will not try to stop it.

Q: Are chemical weapons a red line for you, why or why not?

I believe the red line was a long time ago. The killing of innocents is a thick red line we could not avoid for such a long time.

The question is exactly what are “we” (the Americans / the Western world / the free world) can do that will put an end to this.

What will be really effective and will stop the killings.

The question is not about the aesthetics of the dead bodies and the causes for their death. The killings and of course the mass killings are the red line.

Q: What do you think would happen if the US went into Syria?

The Middle East is a very fragile area.

Going into Syria will probably inflame the area, will lead to bigger chaos in the short term and to the exchange of the Syrian regime on the long term.

Q: What are your biggest concerns going into Syria?

The situation described on the last answer is not among the interests of America, the western world and even the Syrian people.

“Our” interests are that Syria will be cooperative with the west and will not cooperate with Iran and its allies.

I believe that if president Obama and his people will be determined enough and clever enough, they will find a way to get better from the Syrian crisis as well as they succeeded in doing it with the president’s speech.

They then will offer Assad a combination that will include:

1 – That the world will let him stay on his chair.

2- That he will find a quick non-violent solution to the internal Syrian war.

3- That he will stop cooperating with Hezbollah and Iran immediately.

This will bring a better future for the Syrian people, for Israel, for Lebanon, for the Middle East and for the rest of the world.

This can happen just now, as Assad will do anything if he can stay on his chair.

Q: Seeing that the UK does not what to get involved with Syria, do you think other nations have an obligation to intervene with Syria, why or why not?

The UK voted so because they really do not think that bombing Assad’s interests will lead to a better future.

The UK understands the Middle East much more than any other country. They have been involved in the Middle east for decades and they have a good perspective on the area.

I believe they are very much obliged to helping the Syrian innocent civilians, but they also ask themselves what would be the right way to act.

I am sure that they will join the right action when they will believe that the right action is been taken.

And again:

President Obama actually took a short ‘time out’ now that will give America and Britain (on one side) and Syria and Russia (on the other side) the time for silent diplomacy that maybe will promote the solution in this situation.

We all hope for a better future in Syria and in the Middle East.

[Chami Zemach, Founder, The Israeli Family]

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Between Syria and Egypt / Posted on the CNN August 31, 2013

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-1029661

Between Syria and Egypt there is a very small gap, called Israel. This beautiful piece of land sometimes looks like an island amidst the raging ocean of the Middle East.

We live in Israel, and only few hundred meters from the border between Israel and Egypt. We hear the endless shootings from the other side of the border every night. Who is shooting who?

On the north of Israel other people live near the border between Israel and Syria. They here the bombs and see the smoke over the Syrian villages every day. Everyone are shooting everyone. No one knows who is ‘the good guy’ and who is ‘the bad’ one.

When I take a walk with my youngest daughter Michal, near the border, few hundred meters from our house on Saturday afternoon, she asks me why we cannot go and visit the Egyptian soldiers that watch us from the other side of the fence and wave us hello with their hands.

“We’re on an island” I tell her, “and there is the ocean. Maybe someday things are going to be different. Meanwhile, let’s be thankful that the island is here. I am not a water person”.

I look at her beautiful eyes and I am so thankful.

On November-December this year, our family will go on a special tour around the US’ states, to tell The Israeli Story to as many people as we can. The tour is called “The Israeli Family winter tour” and you are all welcome to contact us and invite us to your communities and to support our North American special tour.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter (The Israeli Family)

Join us on Pinterest (Chami Zemach)

E-mail us on: isrfamily@gmail.com

[ Chami Zemach, Kadesh Barnea village / Nitzanei Sinai, Negev, Israel ]

MICHALֹ_NEAR_THE_BORDER

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Welcom to Kadesh Barnea Mr. Mitchell Simon

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This photo was taken at Debbie Seid’s house in San Diego with Debbie and Shayna Seid, Mitchell Simon and others.

We are very proud and happy to have the opportunity to host our dear friend from San Diego, Mr. Mitchell Simon and two of his sons, Zachary and Jacob, who just had his Bar Mitzva in Jerusalem.

Mitch was the man who organized our rich vibrant program in the beautiful city of San Diego on January 2012.


We believe in people.

People can change the world and people can make it much better, if they take the responsibility.

Mitch is one of the people who sure makes this world a better place.

Thank you Mitch and welcome to Kadesh Barnea and to our house.

 


Oksana, Chami and the girls

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With the Jewish Agency Emissaries in Jerusalem

שליחים

Next week we will have the honor of talking to hundreds of new Emissaries of The Jewish Agency for Israel in Jerusalem, just couple of weeks before they go on their missions all over the world. The emissaries are the ambassadors of the Israeli society and they carry the Israeli spirit. They are doing a great job in hundred Jewish Communities around the world. We were lucky to be able to work with them on our journey on 2011-2012 and we hope to keep on the good work together.

Oksana and Chami Zemach, The Israeli Family

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Letter to my dear friend Baroness Catherine Ashton

EU-COMMISSION/

July 19, 2013

Dear Catherine,
Since you entered the office of the EU’s first High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, it gets harder for me to catch you on phone, so I will post here hoping you will open your Facebook before Shabbat.
I would kindly like to ask you, for the purpose of a more ethical world, to please bring this bill for a vote at the parliament of the European Union in Brussels. Please call this law: “The March of Folly”. This is how it goes:
“Governments, their citizens and their armies that took part or will take part in the Destruction, Killing, Murdering, Raping, Wounding, Burning their homes, Burying in mass graves, Gas poisoning, Drowning in Rivers and Seas, Imprisonment and Punishing to Death, Starving, Deporting, Bombing, Persecuting, Pounding their Towns and Villages, Putting under Siege, Positioning in front of Firing Squads, Sorting by Race, Attacking with Nuclear Weapon, Sacrificing and Exterminating, of more than One Hundred Million People; Will not have the right to criticize other countries that they believe don’t act so nicely, even if their leaders and representatives to the EU really really believe they are just right”.
I am sure that you and your distinguished colleagues understand the need for this law that will constantly remind you that European Education is not considered as the moral base for judging other societies.
Sincerely yours,
Chami Zemach, המשפחה הישראלית The Israeli Family

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Welcome to The Israeli Family 2nd World Tour

Dear Friends of The Israeli Family

We proudly launch Today

The “2013 Winter Tour” Campaign !

 

Please take less than 5 minutes to watch the trailer at this link on YouTube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lkkiaLPvJHw

family_in_holland

Please contact us in order to have more info or to register and become part of the great adventure !

 

Many thanks, Oksana and Chami Zemach

Founders, The Israeli Family Project

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Recommendation made by director of Shlichim and Israeli Fellows, Mr. Offer Issarov of The Jewish Agency for Israel

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June 5, 2013

The “Israeli Family” project is a unique and exceptional program.

Oksana and Chami Zemach are entrepreneurs in the field of cultural- educational workshops. They are the parents to four daughters: Yulia (24) Gali (15), Tamar (13) and Michal (6), and live in Kadesh Barnea in the south of Israel. In August 2011 the Zemach family embarked on their first “Israeli Family” journey. They traveled for seven months, in eleven European countries and twenty different states in the U.S.. During their fascinating journey, the Zemach family made inspiring programs with many Jewish Communities and Jewish Agency emissaries from around the world.

The project was a success, and it appears that the family was successful in influencing the people and communities that they met throughout their journey.

In a world full of conflicts and cynicism, the Zemach family has been able to stay focused on important and relevant issues such as: children’s education in Israel, the importance of developing the land of Israel, daily economic dilemmas, Israeli local food, Israeli music, and so on. The members of the Zemach family are strong English speakers, and they offer experiential programs such as cooking workshops, lectures in different subjects and musical performances. All of these programs are adaptable to different age groups (adults, youth, elementary school, high school, kindergarten, college, retirement homes, etc), as well as non- Jewish groups.

The Zemach family is well followed by Israeli media and local press throughout their entire journey and activities.

In order to express the deep level of impact of the Zemach family, I would like to quote one of our shlichim who brought the family to his community in Ohio:” The uniqueness and variety of this project provides versatile activities in different subjects and for various audiences – children, students, adults, Jews, non –Jews, and businessmen and women. This project is fitting for every community – big, small, rich, and poor. This project is authentic and has huge potential for success because it is relevant for everybody. This project symbolizes family values, it is a voluntary project and therefore audiences can easily relate to and be inspired by its universal message. Their message comes through the “back door” and straight into our hearts. Attraction for Local Media: Properly managing this project will create vast exposure of this unique family’s story, and thus information about life in Israel. Its connection to the Jewish Agency symbolizes change and invigoration wherein local communities can find a new and refreshing way to strengthen their connection to Israel and the activities of the Jewish Agency. I highly recommend this experience” – Or Bass.

From my experience with the Zemach family and their unique project, I highly recommend bringing them to your communities and taking part in their variable workshops.

I have no doubt that the Zemach’s family project represents our beloved Israel and therefore has the ability to strengthen connection to Israel and the essential bridge between Jewish people around the world and Israel and its people. I am certain that this is an experience that you will not soon forget.

Offer Isseroff

Director, Shlichim & Israel Fellows

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