Hi, my name is Aryeh. I’m currently 17 years old, and I plan on making Aliyah within the next year. Ever since September 2008 when I first visited Israel, I’ve dreamed of going back, moving to Israel, becoming a citizen and joining the Israeli Defense Force. From then on, armed with this goal and the support of my parents, I started looking for the right way to make my dream a reality.
People sometimes think I’m crazy simply because they can’t see what my reasons for wanting to do this could possibly be. For all those people who want to know my reasons, here they are in black and white: I am a Zionist. I believe in what the State of Israel stands for. I feel that I should be doing my part. I want to do just what my brothers in the Holy Land are conscripted to do. I want to defend my land, my people, my heritage, and most importantly – my beliefs.
However, there is one difference between myself and my brethren in Israel. This is my choice. I am volunteering to move to and defend my homeland, simply because that is what I feel is right. Because for a Jew, Israel is more than just a country. It’s somewhere where you can figure out who you are. A place where you see what you truly are. A place where it all began, and only with the will of God does it keep on going. For a Jew never travels to Israel. A Jew simply returns home.
This is my story.