Wednesday, December 11, 1996

The Eighth Candle
December 11, 1996
Hanukka, 5757

To The Honorable Prime Minister
Mr. Benyamin Netanyahu
Jerusalem, Israel

Dear Mr. Prime Minister,
 Tonight I was driving home with my parents and  my sisters, to 
light Hanukka candles. Candle-lighting in Beit El is a very special experience.  
Tonight, the seventh night of Hanukka, we were looking forward to the special 
event. Hanukka is such a special holiday, a celebration of light, of hope, of 
purity, of heroism - a true holiday of the People of Israel.
 However, suddenly the lights of my family were extinguished. All at once, my world 
was dark.  But only for a little while.  Soon I found myself together with my 
mother, in a world of light, a world of good.
 But Mr. Prime Minister, from where we are, my mother and I, we could see back 
into your world.  We saw so many people standing around our car, full of 
bullet holes.  I saw people that I knew cradling me in their arms and crying. I 
saw soldiers, and doctors, and I could even see my father and sisters, in the 
hospital.  They all looked so scared and so sad.  And I felt so bad for them. 
 But you know, from where I am now, I can see so much, and it is all so clear. 
I see what looks like a huge cloud hanging over the world.  It is black, 
oblique, frightening.  But all the way below the cloud I can see a spark of 
light - it is a small light, but it is so bright - it is so visible through the 
cloud - it is so brilliant that it illuminates everything.  But it is so small - 
only a spark. 
 And when I looked very closely, I could see that that spark is Israel - it is 
us - Am Yisrael.  Such a small spark, giving off such a great 
light.  And when I looked even more closely, I could see that the spark 
emanates from Eretz Yisrael and, yes, I could even see the different places in 
Eretz Yisrael.  And they were all aglow. You know, I thought how strange it 
was, the spark seemed to be one, yet it also, at the same time, seemed to be 
divided into seven parts.  Maybe because tonight is the seventh night of 
Hanukka? But, when I looked even closer, I could see that where I lived, in 
Beit El, the spark seemed to be ebbing - just a little - it wasn't quite as 
strong a light as in the other places - like a little bit was missing from it. 
 Mr. Prime Minister, looking at you from where I am, - yes, I can see you - but 
not just your body - I can see into your soul - and it is so big - I can see 
your potential- I can see what you want and what you think.  And it is all so 
good, so positive, so impressive.  But I also see a shadow, fighting you, 
fighting your soul, trying to pull at it, trying to replace it.  Yes, the 
shadow wants to replace the light of your soul.
 Mr. Prime Minister, you must not let this happen - you have no idea what can be 
- or what will be - but, but, I can't talk about that - they won't let me, it 
is forbidden - but, listen to me please,
 Am Yisrael is so full of light, so full of energy, so full of goodness - you 
must not let the shadow be victorious - and believe me, you have the power to 
stop it - you must be yourself and do as you know you should - and I can see 
that you know what you must do.  Do it!
 Mr. Prime Minister, in this world there is no sadness, no sorrow, no tears. 
It is a world only of light - of good, of happiness.  But I can see, in your 
world, there is so much sadness, so much despair, so much turmoil.  You can do 
something about it, if you want.  You can make it better, if you want. 
 I don't want anyone to be sad because of me, or because of my mother. We did 
what we had to do.  But now it is your turn - you must do what you have to do. 
 Mr. Prime Minister, if you want to, you, leading Israel, can change that spark 
into a flame and really illuminate the entire world.  You can disperse the cloud.
 Please, Mr. Prime Minister - don't try to comfort my father or my family with 
words - for words won't help them.  But if you comfort them with deeds, I know, 
because I can see it from here, I know, that that really will comfort them, and 
with them, all the others who tonight are so sad. 
 Mr. Prime Minister, I didn't light Hanukka candles tonight.  I am asking you 
to do it for me - tomorrow you must light the eighth candle for me and for my mother, 
and for all the people of Israel - the candle of the miracle - the light which 
must never be extinguished - the light of Israel - the light of our G-d.

Mr. Prime Minister, Happy Hanukka.

Sincerely yours,

Epraim Tzu
Age 12
Formerly of Beit El, Israel

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