Monday, April 22, 2002

TODAY WE BURIED GEDALYA: Pearl Pearlson-Skolnik remembers her nephew, St.-Sgt. Gedalya Malik, 21, of Jerusalem who was was killed in Jenin when an explosive charge was thrown at an IDF patrol on April 9:
Gedalya was fighting in Ramallah, went into Arafat's office after finding the keys, and when his soldiers wanted to destroy the computers, he said "Wait, let me work."  He went in by himself, locked the door, and started checking the computers.  When he saw what damning material was in there, he took a screwdriver and removed all the hard disks, which he then handed over to Army Intelligence.  He also found a million and a half shekels, as well as U.S. dollars -- all counterfeit.
Gedalya was born and raised in Kiryat Arba, and he always prevented others from mistreating Arabs, even as a child.  When asked to describe himself he said "I am a humane fighter" (loheim humani).  Gedalya was that and much more: he was a poet, a composer, a musician -- he played piano beautifully, even though he began to play very late in his young life.  And, of course, he was a master at the computers.  At 17 he even set up his own computer business, which he closed down when he went into the army.  Every unit wanted him in the army.  He could have had any job he wanted.  Instead, he hid the fact from the army that he suffered from severe asthma, and he somehow got into a fighting unit.  His soldiers said that they knew that whatever Gedalya did was the best it could be done.  Gedalya was blessed with original thinking. He only gave, but never took.  He always was calm and collected, and radiated inner strength.  Always a smile, always optimistic, always curious, doing his job 110%.  Perfection.  Blue-eyed perfection.
Israel is at a crossroads.  If we do not put an end to terror then terror will put an end to us.  There has never been a more just war.  What we need now is the support of every right-thinking person on this earth, so that the job can be completed.  Gedalya died defending this country so that there would be a home for all Jews.  Would that his death not be in vain. May we be worthy of this sacrifice.


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