Ada Aharoni ...free of vindictiveness
Both suffered personal tragedy, yet neither wanted revenge. In fact, they wanted to use the untimely loss of a loved one for 'tikkun olam' - 'repairing the world'. This is the message Professor Shmuel Moreh attempts to convey in the online Arabic magazine Elaph. His article of 11 May 2011 - summarised below - draws a comparison between Egyptian-born poet and professor Ada Aharoni, whose father died suddenly after the family's flight and dispossession, and Ruth and Judea Pearl, whose son Daniel was cruelly beheaded in Pakistan.
Born in Egypt in 1933, the poet, writer, researcher and translator Professor Ada Aharoni in her youth belonged to a Zionist youth group. She wrote many books describing her longing for Egypt. Yet she is remarkably free of vindictiveness: her father who had French citizenship, was deported by the Egyptian authorities (1949) to France after arbitrary laws were enacted against Jewish rights in Egypt in 1948. When he reached France, he realized that the family's savings deposited in a Swiss bank in Cairo has been confiscated by the Egyptian authorities. As a result, he suffered a stroke that led to his death.
His daughter Ada had no choice but to immigrate to Israel. She harbours no desire for revenge. Joining her husband in 1950 as a member of left-wing Kibbutz Ein Shemer, she left with 20 other Jews from Egypt because, she says, they were determined to maintain friendly relations with Arabs. In 1999 she founded the Association of peace between Palestinian Arabs and Jews in Arab countries : both sides had suffered enough and were the victims of a long and bloody struggle. The Israel - Egypt Friendship Association, headed by Levana Zamir, born in Cairo in 1938, also strives for these goals. It is hoped that their literary and cultural activities will resume in the wake of the revolution driven by Egyptian youth.
The noble behaviour of Prof. Ada Aharoni, who refused to avenge her father's death, is similar to the behavior the parents of the Jewish-American journalist Daniel Pearl. His mother Ruth was born in Baghdad, and his father Judea Pearl was born in Tel Aviv. Daniel's parents did not ask to take revenge on the Taliban in Pakistan when they beheaded their son with a despicable and treacherous blow, because he admitted frankly and with pride:" I'm Jewish, my mother was Jewish, and my father was Jewish. " His mother would have had lullabies sung to her in Baghdad in the Arabic language. Did these criminals think they were serving Islam and the Muslim nation when they offered a live human sacrifice on the altar of hatred, shouting "Allah Akbar" (Allah is great! ) - contrary to all laws, religions and customs.
But his parents did not ask the American government to avenge the brutal murder of their son. They believed in tikkun olam: 'the Jew must work to repair the world and be an example to others'. They declared a memorial day on the anniversary of his execution, and preserve his memory with a global musical celebration to spread the idea of brotherhood and peace among religions and peoples.