New President Shimon Peres vowed in his inaugural address Sunday to 'devote myself to unifying' the nation. ...The president, he said, "must encourage peace processes. Within the house. With our neighbors. In the whole region ... The president must call on the religious and secular public to find that which is common between them ... [Israel] must be a good and warm home for Jews who are not Israelis, as well as for Israelis who are not Jews. And it must create equal opportunities for all segments of the population without differentiating between religion, nationality, community or sex."
In addition, he said, "I see the need to encourage the young generation to enter political life and the hierarchies of leadership in order to begin again. Its enthusiasm is essential for our future."...
"My years place me at an observation point from which the scene of our life as a reviving nation is seen, spread out in all its glory," he concluded. "It is true that in the picture, stains also appear. It is true that we have [been] flawed and have erred. But please believe me there is no room for melancholy. The outstanding achievements of
Israel in its 60 years, together with the courage, wisdom and creativity of our young generation, give birth to one clear conclusion: Israel has the strength to reach great prosperity and to become an exemplary state as commanded us by our prophets."
I began this blog precisely four months ago. This is my 1200th posting. I conclude with this hope: may Israel become an exemplary state, in the tradition of the Biblical prophets. May Shimon Peres be successful in finding the paths to unity, and to peace.