Posted on December 22, 2011 by Andrea Wiese
When I made aliyah a year ago, I knew that I was doing so on the grounds that it would be challenging, not only financially or emotionally, but because Israel is difficult. There is nothing easy about Israel, and maybe that is where her true beauty comes from.
This visit to Hebron was different, we started with a tour of Tel Hebron (the excavations of the biblical city) followed by a tour of the Tomb of the Patriarchs, (which I loved!), we listened to a representative from Breaking the Silence, an organization designed to change the way that soldiers interact with residences in Hebron. Afterwards we listened to two different settlers living in Hebron about their reasons for living there and their hopes for the future. At the end of the day we talked to a Palestinian human rights activist who grew up and is now living in Hebron. Did you just ask yourself, “How long were these students in Hebron?” Well, you’re right, it was a long intense day. But I found myself very grateful for the number of views that were presented to me.
My struggle with Israel was not lessened after my second visit to Hebron, but I did find myself thinking that I made the right decision to live in a country that I love. In a country that I know will be here for me and my children in the future, a country that is always changing and evolving and learning to live peacefully. I know that there are things in Israel that I am not proud of, but there are things in the US that I am not proud of either. And despite these things, I am a proud citizen and know that I have to be here to help make the country better and even more beautiful than when I arrived.