September 11th Memory

Ben Packer,

לבן ריק
לבן ריק
צילום: ערוץ 7
Ben Packer
Originally from Petersburg, Virginia, Ben Packer moved to Israel in 1999, where he served in the IDF's Givati Brigade in the Gaza Strip. Ben served as a Rabbi on campus at Univ. of North Carolina and at Duke Univ. Ben now serves as Director of the Jerusalem Heritage House (www.heritagehouse.org.il) and Co-Director of Young Jewish Conservatives (www.youngjewishconservatives.org). He lives in the Old City of Jerusalem with his wife and 6 children....
A lot of folks were posting their personal and other reactions (the arabs') to Sept. 11, 2001, so I thought I would share my personal experience:

I was in the midst of advanced infantry training in the Negev desert on Sept. 11, 2001. There were no such thing as "smart phones" and we didn't have access to any television. Our only source of news was one radio on base. People would take turns monitoring the radio for updates after first word came in about the attacks. At one point, the facts became clear about the terrible tragedy. At that very moment, the ENTIRE base - religious, not religious, Jewish and not halachically Jewish - ALL gathered in and around the tent that served as the Synagogue of the base. We ALL fervently recited tehillim (psalms) for America and the American people. No one ordered this, there were no cameras - it was pure friendship. I wish the American People could have seen that - it was truly beautiful and I will never forget it.

Shabbat Shalom,

Ben Packer

Old City, Jerusalem