Chanukah 5765 - Neve Dekalim
Rachel Saperstein's book "Eviction" provides the following description of a memorable Chanukah in Neve Dekalim a year before the residents were expelled by the Israeli government:
"The eight glass vials were filled to the brim with olive oil. In each a wick stood proudly waiting to be lit. It is the eighth night of Chanukah, our Festival of Lights and our holiday of miracles. Hundreds of residents of Neve Dekalim and surrounding communities gathered in the parking area of the enclave known affectionately as 'mortar neighborhood'. Each vial of oil was placed in the tail of a mortar shell that had fallen in that fifty square meter radius of homes and gardens.
Shells that were meant to injure and kill were used instead to fashion the Jewish symbol of life and dedication to the Almighty, the menorah.
The shells had been collected and soldered together with an enormous chain , a chain signifying the Jewish people. A Magen David, our Jewish star with the word chai, life, was carved into its centered. The Hebrew month and year, Kislev 5765, was engraved into its base."