Yom Hazikaron. And that buzz that touches your soul

Schermata 2016-05-11 alle 15.05.42This is our nation.

A nation of people who stop their crazy run, their fast cars, their surfing the net, their thoughts, in the middle of the highway, in the middle of the day. And think. About those who gave up to their lives in order to allow us to breath and walk and live freely on our land.

This is the Jewish nation.

Women, men and children who fight for a carriage in the supermarket and who usually run to get the first place in the row. They, who argue over every tiny detail. Yet it is they who are able to be one. Letting their thoughts overcome differences in a common and shared sorrow and pain.

These are the Jews.

Businessmen, teachers, professors, artists, workers, engineers, doctors and dreamers. Who, in the middle of a new project, during a coffee in a bar, while withdrawing money from the bank are able to shift their minds from their routine and concentrate on deeper things.

These are our soldiers.

Young men who have just started understanding what life is, what they can be when they grow up and end up in a battle field with only one aim in their head: to defend and protect their nation from any evil and harm.

This is the sound of the soul.

This long buzz that enters through our ears during Yom Hazikaron, that strikes the core of our hearts and teaches us that a real hero is not the person who jumps from a plane or climbs a dangerous mountain. But a person, maybe not so physically strong, who can walk besides you on the sidewalk and sit on the same bus and then suddenly, when you and others are in danger, can jump and climb to guarantee you a future life.

During this day, in which the world just goes on, a whole country and nation stops to think and thank those young angels who turned off their own dreams to let mine and yours become true.

During this day in which memory is not an intellectual box, but a life credo and system. Where those who are not here anymore become a pulsating image in our lives.

During these moments I raise my eyes above and thank G-d for the privilege of being part of this unique Jewish world.

Gheula Canarutto Nemni



Where was G-d during Purim (and the Holocaust)?

THE TIMES OF ISRAEL | http://www.timesofisrael.comshoah jews

Where was G-d during Purim (and the Holocaust)?


There has been no generation without its Haman. Without an individual eager to put an end to the Jewish nation.

Many have dreamt and still are dreaming to see Jews become an archeological find, a memory, a history lesson.

Every generation has seen its Haman rising and trying to eradicate any Jewish trace from our earth.

Even during those years in which it was hard to tell between Jews and others.

Even during those decades in which Judaism was relegated to some hours a year, to rare transmitted rites and liturgies.Even during those moments in which Jews were trying their best to become a king’s best friends, because that way, they were convinced, was the only way to go on with their destiny.

G-d is not mentioned in the Megillah, in Ester’s scroll, not even once.

You need to look for Him between the rows, in the acronyms of words, in allusions and expressions.

His name is not there, it has vanished into nowhere. As happened in the lives of Jews during that historical period.

G-d is pushed to the sidelines of the Megillah, as Jews have pushed Him to the sidelines of their own lives.

Then Haman arrives and everything drastically changes.

As Jews come to know his plot to exterminate them, they start sending delegations to the king, they start using all their diplomatic means, Queen Esther herself puts her own life at risk.

But at the same time she tells her brothers and sisters, look inside yourselves.

Why does the world consider us different, though we have tried again and again to meld with the surrounding society and make it forget our original identity?

And Jews reunited and prayed. They tore their clothes and fasted for three days. They reminded their own children who they really were, in that precise moment in wich they were threatened as never before.

When the Haman of the generation gets up and declares ‘let’s cleanse the world of this annoyingly different nation’ Jewish people, those people who a few minutes before were trying to hide who they were, find and affirm their identity, precisely then.

Where was G-d during Purim? Where was He during the tragedies that hit His nation again and again?

G-d is in the awakened faith of those who thought not to have any at all, He is in that Jew who suddenly feels like caring about his identity again.

G-d is in those Jews who risked their own lives to put on tefilin in Auschwitz, while in the comfort of their homes, they never put them on

G-d is in those last recommendations to sons before the train for a safe haven left, ‘Son, celebrate your bar mitzvah, do not forget’.

G-d is the son’s answer, made through the window of that train, ‘but father what does a bar mitzvah mean?’

G-d is the secret meetings to celebrate the seder, at risk of being sent to a gulag for the next fifty years.

G-d is in Daniel Pearls’ words ‘I am a Jew’ when the sword is already coming down on his head.

G-d is always with us though we hardly see Him. He is there, in the Jewish soul that shakes itself from the dust just in those periods in which it should try to hide itself even more.

When Haman rises more and more, when he becomes so important as to to sit unpunished in the U.N, when he can speak loudly and the world claps its hands to his anti-Semitic plans, when being Jewish is the most inconvenient and uncomfortable thing that can happen to you, there you can find G-d.

G-d is there, in the joy, in the proudness of belonging and declaring, despite all odds, ‘I am a Jew’.

Gheula Canarutto Nemni


Open letter to Mark Zuckerberg about his standing for Muslims

Dear Mark Zuckerberg,

I just read your status in which you welcome Muslims in Facebook Community.

‘As a Jew, my parents taught me that we must stand up against attacks on all communities. Even if an attack isn’t against you today, in time attacks on freedom for anyone will hurt everyone’ you say.

Dear Mark, Jews have been standing in first line for thousands of years, defending, protecting and teaching human rights.

We were standing in front of Mount Sinai more than 3,300 years ago, hearing G-d teaching us about slaves rights, their right to get food and a comfortable bed. And where there is not enough food and only one bed, the landlord has to sleep on the floor and give up eating. Because his slave has the priority. And after seven years that slave must be freed.

And this message was given when slavery was the basis and richness of the other societies.

G-d taught us to love strangers, to respect them, paying attention not to remind them where they are coming from. And this happened in a period when nations were conquering others’ lands, killing all those who were living there.

As a Jew you are not allowed even to harm animals and you have to respect and protect nature.

G-d wants us to respect and help every creature in the world.

This is Torah.

But Torah teaches us also even something else.

It teaches us ‘aniei irecha kodmim’, the poor people of your town must be helped and fed before everybody else.

If you encounter somebody who is need, who does not belong to your community and in the same time there is somebody who belongs to your community, and he is in need, the latter one has the absolute precedence.

In every battle you, as a Jew, engage, remember first you are part of a family. And your moral duty is to defend and protect your family first.

Our sages teach us that the trial for us is not standing only for others.

Our trial is standing for our brothers and sisters, for our own nation.

In the past years and especially in the past months, antisemitism has reached peaks that it was not touching since World War II.

Social media offer free lessons on how to stab Jews, how to recognize them while they are walking in the middle of the street.

On Facebook you can find hundreds of thousands of groups that instigate to the death of Jews, to Israel annihilation.

When I open Facebook, I am afraid. As a Jew I am scared.

I reported hundreds of times these violent and antisemitic inciting profiles and groups.

Everytime I get the same answer. It does not violate our standards.

It does violate a standard. My moral standard.

Dear Mark, since your baby Max was born, you are understanding a new whole range of feelings that you have never known before.

G-d tells us that when we want really to learn what it means standing for something, we should start standing for our homes,

If you really are standing for peace and love, please take care of those pages inciting against me, make me feel safe as I declare my Jewish identity.

Make me fell you are striving for my freedom too, for my freedom of walking through Facebook pages without the fear of meeting two years old children filmed by their parents while branding a knife and singing the song ‘death to the Jews’.

This is what I have been taught. If you really want to be in the first line for a cause, firtsable stand for the causes that belong to you.

Hoping that Max and my children too, will live in a world where colors, religion and belief, will be only an identity and life style sign. And not a target for hatred.

A Facebook user

Gheula Canarutto Nemni


Schermata 2015-12-11 alle 15.07.02


When I sit in darkness G-d will be my light

hanukkah nazismWhy do we light these candles every year? you ask me, my son.

Why do we go on repeating this ritual every year and every day of this festival we insist that a new flame shall dance in our homes?

My child, Hanukkah is not only a beautiful story.

When the Maccabees defetaed the enemy they did not go around the streets with their swords, as all other nations used to do. They had more important things in their mind.

They ran to the Beth Hamikdash, the sanctuary in Jerusalem, with one main goal. To rekindle the menorah, the seven branched candelabra. They did not organize parties or massive celebrations, but they dedicated all their time looking for a sealed, still pure, oil flask. All they wanted was to bring back to life with the outmost pureness, the light that for years had been lighting from Jerusalem, the whole world.

They found a sealed flask, but it was only one.

And this little flask resisted with its own strenghts against winds, oxygen and the laws of nature and it went on dancing and lighting for eight uninterrupted days.


We Jews are used to walk in the dark. Every step we undertake there is an obstacle, a challenge, an enemy, to wait for us.


And yet nothing could make us ever think ‘this is the end. I will surrender’.

My little child, we did not come to this world for observing in a passive way what is going on.

Our soul was not detached from the Divine throne to suffer events without shouting back.

G-d cared to blow inside us His deep essence for only one reason. Because we can.

Everyone of us is that flask, everyone has inside himself that strenght to resist, the power to change.

We are all able to overwhelm ourselves and the world that surrounds us with positivity and absolute light.

My son, Hanukkah is Jewish history that repeats itself, again and again.

It’s the story of a girl who just lost a few weeks ago her father and brother in a terror attack and did not want to surrender to our enemies and their plans.

We, Jews, do not give evil a break.

And from the last, weakest ray of light, from the last drop of faith that survives in every human soul, we kindle a new fire, bigger and stronger than before.

‘Do not joy my enemy, because I fell down but I got up’, Micha the prophet said and the Israeli girl, who was ready to get married when two days before the wedding she had to bury her father and brother, this girl wanted this sentence printed on her new postponed wedding invitation.

Remember my son.


We, Jewish nation, blind darkness with endless light.


Hanukkah sameach

Gheula Canarutto Nemni

Dear Pope Francis, desperation has never been a justification for Jews

We have been brought through Rome’s streets in chains while our Sanctuary in Jerusalem was burning in flames. We have been thrown in amphitheaters where hungry lions and spectators were waiting for our blood.
We have been burnt in autodafé, we have been called marranos, our candle lighting and prayers in our ancestors’ language were banned.

We have been sent away from Spain. We have been wandering around through countries looking for a new home.

We have been massacred in pogroms, our synagogues destroyed, our children enlisted in armies from which they never came back.

We have been deprived of our right to work, to own, to vote, to speak. We have been robbed of that dignity which every human being should enjoy by right when he was born. Our golden teeth were torn from our mouths and our arms were branded as if we were animals in the slaughterhouse.

We have been told for centuries ‘go back to your homeland’ and now that we are home they tell us ‘get away from there’.

We, Jews, are an indissoluble part of the historical fabric of our world.

The Jewish presence is the common denominator in most of the atlas.

In every place on the earth where we had arrived, we generated poets, matematicians, physicists, writers, polticians, scientists, doctors, inventors.

Even when we have been closed in ghettos we have never stopped writing, thinking, discussing, producing good.

We have never put our lives in standby, not even for a little while.

We did not cover our heads with ashes for thousands of years.

We have been sent away, we have been robbed, we have been deprived, massacred and killed.

We loaded up our destiny on our shoulders and our ancestors’ heritage in our hearts and we went to search for a new place where we could start breathing again.

There is neither time nor will to cry for yourself, if you have been taught that every instant on this earth is the biggest richness you own, and that life is the most precious gift you received when you were born.

And there is no space for resentment.

We went back without our parents, our brothers, our children and wives to Germany, Italy and France. We stood under the windows of our homes looking at strangers living in places which belonged to us before the war.

We rolled up our sleeves, uncovering numbers stamped with fire on our arms, and we started everything again from scratch.

Countries interested in migration waves should study the Jewish history and our integration model.

Every new place where we arrived we had our golden rule.

Never slide on your tears.

We have not waited for compassion from the countries that opened their borders for us. Since the first instant we tried to integrate ourselves in the social fabric of the place which was hosting us. And while thanking them, we donated our talents to development and advancement. Ours and theirs.

There are those who use desperation as a justification for murdering innocents.

And there are those who put aside desperation, closing it in the memory drawer, and try to climb back to the top, concentrating on the new opportunities.

Dear Pope Francis, Hillary Clinton, John Kerry and hundreds of world influencers who are seeking for a reason, for a motif, behind the transformation of individuals into lethal splinters.

Even if you found out the personal, tragic life of these killers (though in most cases they have a life at a standard perfectly alligned to the society where they live), even if it was really like this, nothing, NOTHING, can justify a blind violence against another human being. Nothing, nothing, can give the right to an individual to deprive another of his tomorrow.

Looking for justifications means only one thing: Preparing the soil for the next brutal act, G-d forbids.

There has never been a nation mistreated by history more than the Jewish one.

But everywhere the hate wind has transported us, we integrated, we learned the local language, repeating by heart Whitman, Eliot and Dickinson, we invented the parve cheesecake. Integration is something you have to want and work on every single day. We have never asked the place which hosted us to adapt itself to our rules.

“Dina demalchuta dina, the law of the place must become your law too,” says the Talmud.

The real integration, even for the most desperate people, can be realized. But it depends on the first instance, on values transmitted by religion, families and teachers of those who have just arrived.

And it depends on the will to become part of the society in a constructive and positive way.

Gheula Canarutto Nemni

An open letter to the Jewish nation (and its writers)


It’s 1 a.m.

Men are gathering in synagogues for Hoshana Rabah night. This is the last call for asking G-d for a good year. During the next twenty five hours G-d will put on our yearly destiny, a seal.

I am trying to pray but my thoughts constatly run in another way. The two young parents killed just in front of their kids and now two more men. All of them, only because they were Jews.

I look at myself in the mirror. I have two eyes, a not so perfect nose, I have two hands and I use my legs to walk.

What makes me different from the rest of the world? When members of my nation are brutally killed in front of their children, or in the streets of their holy city, while trying to reach the western wall, the world is silent. This is a fact.

For the world my blood has a lower price compared to others, my humanity has a lower specific weight.

Strong of my ancient experience,  I don’t expect anything new from there.

This is an olam hasheker, as our rabbis define it. In it, lies, do reign.

In it countries that raise their children in terrorism are chosen to defend human rights.

My expectations are going in another direction.

To the direction of those who stood up, just a few minutes after an innocent Palestinian child was shot by somebody whose identity has not been discovered yet, ready to make a strong J’accuse against the observant world.

My expectations are directed towards those who open their computers everytime a Jew is suspected for a negative act and shout ‘we cannot stay silent in front of this’.


I was taught by my rabbis we are made of body and soul.

While we can see the other’s external manifestation, we are not able to see its untangible one.

At our shabat table Jews of every color and observance degree sit. I respect everyone of them, for what he/she is.

We Jews are a whole body, when a part hurts all the body suffers.

When something happens in my nation, I do not need to analyze the religious background of a Jew to feel empaty with him.

It cannot be that a kipah, and zizit, a hunkerchief covering a woman’s head, make a difference for those who are always in first line to defend human rights. It cannot be that a victim is defined ‘ultra-orthodox’, in an Israeli newspaper.

My love for my nation is too deep to dare thinking my suspects can be right.

I hope  with all my heart to be wrong. I hope to see in a few hours all the israeli newspapers flooded by condemantion words.

I hope to see all those famous Jewish writers and journalists, who asked rabbis, teachers, politicians, to condemn acts before waiting to see what really happened. I hope to hear from them these words.

‘Our hearts are full of sorrow, we cannot be silent anymore. We will not stop asking the condemnation of these barbarian terrorist acts by all the arab world’.

When I see these words, I will now peace has really a chance.

Because in order to be able to get peace with your neighbors, you need firstable to be able to live in peace inside your own nation.

Shalom comes from the root shalem, whole. You cannot get real peace if you are not whole inside yourself.

May G-d seal our year with real shalom

Gheula Canarutto Nemni

What Haaretz pages become abroad

To the attention of Haaretz,

the following rows you are hopefully going to read, are written in a place where Hebrew is not the official language, where IDF is not the national army, where on Yom Kippur there are cars on the streets as in any other day of the year.

I am writing you from Italy, but it could be from Paris, Antwerp, London, Marseilles. It could be from any other town in the world.

But Israel.

The place you write from.

The place where you look at reality and decide to describe it, in your peculiar way, to readers who live abroad.

To people who, after having read your rows, will decide. If to like us or hate us with all their hearts.

Here, outside from Israel, life is not easy for us.

We deal everyday with international news web sites that dedicate cubital headlines to Israel, calling it with words they don’t dedicate even to the worst, unrespectful of human rights, countries of the world.

We read everyday newspapers that dedicate pages and pages to humanitarian problems in Gaza and a rare few rows to the constant threaten, the terroristic menace that Israel is facing since years.

We face schemes that show the number of victims from both sides. As we were in a competition where the part with more casualties, wins.

Here, Israeli reality is manipulated through mediatic strategies. News about Jews are not treated in the same way as news about Darfour. They are not as news about Nigeria or Mosul.

Here, reality becomes different when it is colored with white and blue.

I know history quite well. These, who are reporting the news about Israel around the world hoping that more and more people will condemn it, will be against it and, at the end, will hate me for being a Jew, these people are the children of the children of those who prepared in Spain the autodafes for my ancestors, they are the offsprings of those who ran with their horses and swords to cut the beard and the head of my forefathers, they are part of a culture which took Jewish children, women, elderly and men, and melted their bodies in crematoria in order to get forever rid of all Jews .

When all these things are delivered in my life through a non Jewish channel, I turn the page, I digit another website name, I turn off. And I engage my own little campaign.

I try to go around and tell the truth. I want people to know the real Jewish ideals that walk with an Israeli soldier, that make him offer food and shelter to children, though he knows he is at risk of being blown up by an infant adapted explosive belt.

I describe to Europeans, to professors, to other Italian mothers and friends, the moral principles that hold back an Israeli soldier’s hand from protecting himself, only beacuse he has just seen his worst enemy hiding behind a woman with a baby, a terrorist protecting himself with a human shield.

But often, when I try to show our real face, to bring truth to surface, to cut the legs to the millions of lies the world is reading and telling, most times I get the same answer.

I get a link to your website, an article of yours.

And from there, the step is too short.

From your message to the next stage.

Where your shouted words against Israel become weapons in the hands of our enemies.

Where your pages become part of 2014 antisemitic libels, where Jews have always that ugly nose.

Where your rows become part of the stones thrown to Synagogues and Jewish shops at the sound of ‘death to the Jews’-

Where you become the Jewish justification for the beatings of French Jews, for hating and cursing every man who goes around with a distinctive Jewish symbol, for killing two Israelis in a Belgian museum.

This is the way your news are internationally used.

Antisemitism can be cherished by a Jewish point of view.

Why am I addressing you?

Because you and me, we all descend from one common soul.

We share a common root, a piece of Heaven engraved in out hearts, with all Jews scattered around the world,

We share thousands of years of persecution and hatred.

We share songs. We share food and ideals.

We share life as a the highest goal.

We share history and past.

And hopefully, with G-d’s help, a better future, for all of us.


Dear journalist of Haaretz,

the world fears one thing most.

It fears our unity, our capacity to be one, despite different visions, despite different ways of living our religion and identity, despite different languages spoken at home. Because they know.

That when we stay together, when we close our eyes and forget the colors of the flags that are hanging in our homes, when in 40,000 we answer ‘amen’ to the kadish of a chayal boded’s father because we don’t want him to feel alone, these are moments that make us stronger and stronger. Stronger than the world.

Stronger than the ancient dream of our enemies.

To see us, one day, G-d forbids, disappear.

This is not an opinion matter. Not anymore.

This is a life matter. Mine and of all the millions of Jews who live abroad.

Please, before writing and publishing, before spreading around news, before adding fuel to the antisemitic fire, take in consideration the collateral effect of every word of yours, think if it will make stronger the seventy wolfs, that surround the Jewish lamb.

Before pushing ‘send’ for an article, dedicate a last thought to us, your brothers and sisters, whose hearts are always praying for our nation, for our land. NewspapersAnd for you too.

Gheula Canarutto Nemni












I am writing you from Italy. I am writing you from Europe. I am writing you from a place where people come in touch with the Israeli reality, through news, through mass media, through your articles and words too.



You are sitting there, safely and protected, you are among your nation. Maybe people who don’t think like you will stop you during an inteview, will react with comments to your written rows. You are there, among Jews.


We are not. People here don’t know who we are, most of them ignore what being a Jew does mean. They don’t mind where we come from, waht are our life missions. They often ignore on purpose our signals, our will to let ourseves known. They prefer to imagine, to guess, and, when it comes to inform themselves,



Your words are attached to the stones that are thrown towards Jews in French towns. The way you tell the world the Israeli reality, cutting and pasting some parts according to your vision of the world, is a weapon in the hands of antisemites.

You have a responsibility.

When I discuss with somebody, trying to bring back impartiality in the environment, I am always answered with an article of yours.

Your articles are the proof, for our enemies, that they are true. That they have the right to harm us, to put our lives in danger,

Zionism and ultra orthodoxy

Yom Haazmaut and observance do not run on parallel binaries. Yom Haazmaut and orthodoxy (just to satisfy those who love branding people and separating them into groups) can, surprising those who do hope the opposite, walk together. And go on in a shared path of ideals and vision. I am talking about a kind of Yom Haazmaut that lasts for a whole year, and not just for twentyfive hours a year.

Yom Haazmaut is the day during which Jews from Israel and the diaspora, remind themselves and the world how strong is their attachment to their homeland, This link to our land is generally called zionism. But zionism can and has to assume endless colors. The color that most of the people know, is the one of barbecues, grilled hot dogs and not fit for old people, high volume music, that pervade all available parks around Israel. I have many friends who enjoy in this way and most part of my family does it too.

Some of these people, once the party is ended, go back to their routine, which consists in sitting at negotiate table with our enemies, thinking sometimes more about their personal glory and geopolitic strategies, than about the present and future survival of our nation. They hand whole pieces of our land to hypotetical peace partners who are not ashamed to declare openly their real dreams: The distruction of the Jewish nation.

I am grand daughter to a woman who, as she became head of Italian Jewish Women Association, reminded in her first speech that aliah means to rise, to grow and advance. Because Israel is the land where a Jew goes to improve himself, where following Torah and and its laws is much easier than in any other place in the world. Her position lasted less than twentyfour hours. Her zionism was quite different than her electors’.

I chose as a teacher a man who, addressing his students used to say: The defence of our land is in your hands. When you study Torah you provide the land with a spiritual shield. But if you are not in the mood of studying for ten hours a day Talmud or Shulchan Aruch, wear an uniform and go and fight. Your blood is not more precious than everybody else.

A man who, addessing to Tzahal soldiers who fought and were wounded, said he did not agree on the term used to define them, nechei Tzahal, the handicapped of Tzahal. They were not handicapped but privileged. They should have been called mezuianei tzhaal, the best among all soldiers. Because, he said, if an individual has been deprived of an organ or a limb, this means G-d gave him other special strenghts to face and overcome these physical limitations.

A man who approached every single soldier whispering ‘thank you’ with a look they rarely have seen directed to them. A look of respect and not full of pity.

A man who, when politicians were speaking about giving land for peace, was losing his voice shouting to the world the danger they were putting every single Jew acting in this way. The land of Israel is holy and sacred, as holy and sacred is the blood shed by our soldiers for putting in Jewish hands these pieces of land.

If being a zionist means only going out to the parks with a big barbecue and dressing yourselves in white and blue, this is not what I was taught.

If being a zionist goes much beyond and means to give all yourself, spiritually and materially, for defending and making only grow up our forfathers land, I, Alba Soliani Rabello’s grand daughter and Lubavitcher Rebbe’s student, I will never permit to anybody to deprive me , with the excuse of affiliations, of this ideal of mine.


Gheula Canarutto Nemni

Schermata 2014-05-06 alle 00.04.22Schermata 2014-05-06 alle 00.04.22

May your soul, Eden Attias, rest in peace


Good bye little boy whose life was robbed in a middle of a dream.

With that sweet snack in the pocket that mum has given you when you were already out of the door.

With the phone ringing because she wanted to know how far you were from the military base where that coffin on wheels was supposed to take you.

Good bye to your dreams, to the family you will never build.

To your room, to your music, to all the things and people you loved.

You have now millions of brothers and sisters praying for your soul.

Feeling the pain of your mum and dad like a knife in the heart.

Tonight, in front of our renewed shabat candles a special prayer will be whispered for you.

That your future life will be like the name you were given at eight days. Eden. Only that. Only paradise and good.

And from above, where we are sure, angels are embracing you welcoming you like a king, ask G-d to protect all his children. On buses, on their way home, in synagogues, schools and battlefields.

Dear Eden Attias, may your departure from earth be not in vain, making the world understand that peace is possible only with somebody who is taught from childhood that life and not death is the most precious and desirable gift.

May your soul be tied for ever and ever with the bond of life.
We all love you
Am Israel

Gheula Canarutto Nemni