My own regret is that the languages of the state are not Arabic and Yiddish. The European Jews lost not only a language but also a rich sense of humor, and Jews from Arab countries would have retained their native tongue, as well as their self-respect. We would be conversing freely with our Arab neighbors, much as my Yavneel pioneer relative did before the establishment of the state. The Arabs and Jews from Arab countries might have been our respected language teachers, rather than our denigrated and feared ?other.? Language is an important door to rapport and cross-cultural understanding; lack thereof a sad barrier. Since the last intifada I have been progressing in spoken Arabic, have gained many friendships and discovered humor and warmth among my Arab neighbors. (Needless to say, I do not speak my grandparents? Yiddish. http://groups.msn.com/WaldorfS/mazan.msnw) Today, ?The Abraham Fund? is introducing a new spoken Arabic program into Israeli schools. Better late than never
from the article: On one thing they agree: 'Allahu akhbar'