Israeli Veterans visit PV

Students listen to experiences about the Middle East

Rachel Cohen, Staff Editor

Veterans from Haifa, Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, and other areas of Israel visited Pascack Valley world history students to talk about their experiences on Thursday, June 6. The Veterans are a part of Zahal Shalom, an organization of families in Bergen County that houses those who are injured, physically or psychologically.

“Soldiers who fought to defend Israel come to the United States for two weeks and visit Washington, New York, and stay with families in Bergen County to heal and connect and bond with people in America,” former history teacher Karen Kosch said.

In the world history curriculum, students study the aftermath of World War I on the Middle East, the start of the Mandate of Palestine, the creation of Israel in 1948, and the Arab and Israeli conflicts. PV history teacher Pamela Schwartz decided to continue the program on behalf of Kosch who had Israeli Veterans visit PV for 27 years.

“I think it was important for everyone to respect what service men and women do for their country to understand fully the sacrifices that are made especially today, the anniversary of D-Day,” Schwartz said.

Schwartz said that it is important for students to see “what other parts of the world contend with.”

“It was always a meaningful example of ‘living history’ – hearing stories from the people who are living and have lived the experience to better understand our unit of study,” Kosch said.