With international feeling increasingly marginalizing and demonizing Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East, one organization in Melbourne has shown it support and admiration for our brethren in Israel.
On Friday night, February 26, Chabad on Carlisle hosted a Shabbat dinner at Kimberley Gardens Hotel, in honor of the IDF and the heroism and sacrifice of all Israeli soldiers. Guest of honor was Major Ophir Anidjar and his wife Shay and famed entrepreneur Ruslan Kogan.
An over capacity crowd of 150 enjoyed Kiddush and a delicious Shabbat dinner whilst listening to Kogan express his admiration for Israel and recount his astronomic rise from young immigrant from the former Soviet Union to CEO of Kogan.com.
The evening was chaired by Chabad on Carlisle’s Rabbi Yisroel Sufrin and marvelous chazanut by Mordechai Levin held the crowd entertained before the keynote speech of Ophir.
Ophir described his work in Operation Protective Edge and his terrible injuries and subsequent travails before being helped to recovery by Beit Halochem, the institution for which he and his wife are ambassadors. Shay, Ophir’s wife, spoke of her anxieties and terrors when she farewelled her husband to what she knew to be very dangerous work, locating and destroying the tunnels dug by terrorists from Gaza into Israel itself. She also detailed hearing of Ophir’s injuries and the long months tending to him in his painful recovery.
The Israeli Ambassador, His Excellency Shmuel Ben-Shmuel, was planning to attend the evening, but was unavoidably called away and sent a letter of support.