A Tankist’s Life Saved by an Apparition - Jewish Outlook

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A Tankist’s Life Saved by an Apparition


Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach told us this story in his own words.


“I would like to share with you a story about a holy soldier in Israel.


In 1966, a ‘sweet little Yiddele’ (a simple Jew) from Tel Aviv came to visit me and said:

“Please, could you get through to my son, he is a high officer in the army. He just hates, really hates Yiddishkeit. But now he has a new kind of craziness. In my house, in my dining room there is a big picture of my grandfather, a Yid (a Jew) with a long beard and a shtreimel. My son said that unless I take down that picture he refuses to come to my house. He said it is nauseating to him to think he is the grandson of such an idiot! What should I do with him?”


I was trying to get through to this officer. He was a very cute person, sweet like sugar. But I don’t know… He had some kind of block against religion. What could I do?




In 1967, after the 6-day war, one day the door opens. The yid from Tel Aviv walks in, with his son, the officer who was now wearing a little beard, side curls and tsitsit. He looked like a new person. I said: “What happened to you?” And this is what he said:


“I mentioned to you I am a tankist. During the 6- day war I was driving a tank in Sinai. Suddenly I see an Egyptian tank is on my tail followed by others, and I have to get as close to the other Israeli tanks as possible because I cannot fight Egyptian tanks all by myself. The closest to the other Israeli tanks is a straight line. I am driving as fast as I can. Suddenly in the middle of the road, I see a Jew, wearing a tallis and teffilin, praying! And you know what I think about religious people, they are crazy! I knew they are crazy, but that crazy, in the middle of a war? And here in the desert, standing there, PRAYING?!!


My first reaction was: “I should really run him over. But how can you run over another Jew? So I made a detour. The Egyptian tank didn’t make the detour and then drove right over the place where the Jew had been standing. It was blown up by a mine.


When I came back to my father’s house, I looked up at the picture of my grandfather. I recognized the face, it was him, my holy grandfather…who had come down from Heaven to protect me!


What an honor to have such a grandfather! “


From the book: Masters and Miracles – By Liliane Ritchie




Daily Torah Quote

Joke of the day

Once there was an old man who was on his deathbed. He turned to his five children and said, “Please, before I die, run to Mama and bring me one last piece of her delicious cake.”

The five children ran desperately to fulfill their dying father’s last wish. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity to him, they returned with the news: “Sorry, Dad, but Mama said she’s saving the cake for after the funeral.”