The Times of Israel reported that two Arab citizens waived their fees when they found out that their 95-year-old client, an Israeli Jew, was a survivor of the Holocaust.
Simon and Salim Matari are two Arab plumbers that reside in Israel. They were asked to service the home of and elderly jewish woman named Rosa Meir in Haifa because it had a major leak.
One of the brothers told the newspaper: “Her life story touched my heart … I decided I won’t take a cent from her.”
While Simon was fixing the leak, Salim started talking to the homeowner about her life and it was then that he found out she is a Holocaust survivor.
“When we got there, we saw there was a large blast of water and we started fixing it. At some stage, while working, my brother Salim started to talk to Rosa about her life. She told us she’s 95, a Holocaust survivor, and that she has a daughter. Her life story touched my heart. At that moment, I decided I won’t take a cent from her,” Simon said.
The service the brothers rendered amounted to roughly $285 USD, but the Mataris could not charge her.
When Simon got his notepad to write the total costs, he wrote this instead:
“Holocaust survivor, may you have health until 120 [years old], from Matari Simon and Matari Salim,” adding that the service cost amounted to “0 shekels.”
According to Israeli Channel 12 News, Rosa was so thankful that she was brought to tears by this wonderful and selfless deed. “The brothers really surprised me … It was so moving and uplifting, and I thanked them a lot,” said Rosa.
Simon replied to her comment saying that this gesture was purely “from their hearts.” He also promised Rosa that if she ever needed any other services in the future, they would happily go back and help her with all plumbing problems, and of course, it will be free of charge.
Usually, problems that occur in the “Holy Land” are between two peoples with distinct cultures and nationalities – the Jews and the Arabs. These problems were thought to be rooted ever since the Biblical times.
This, however is not entirely true, because the problem is the fact that the Arab population of Palestine had lost their ancestral lands and homes after World War II in 1948 when the European Jews were relocated there to what is now known as Israel.
Many of these European Jews who fled the Holocaust – where they were getting murdered by the millions – drove the indigenous Arabs from their homes and villages which is known to the Palestinians as the nakba (catastrophe).
Ever since this grave incident that rocked the country and its people, relations between the two nationalities – Israeli Jews and the Palestinian Arabs – whether they carry an Israeli citizenship or not, has been filled with conflict and tension. The Arab citizens face discrimination and racism in their everyday lives because of the unequal treatment and abuse of basic human rights that the Israeli government is giving them.
Palestinians have tried to resist all these injustices and fought, both amicably and violently in order to regain their rights in their ancestral land.
Despite all the conflict these two peoples have had in the last 70 years, this story shows that more often than not, empathy and kindness will always win over political and historical disagreements. No matter the situation, human kindness will always triumph over conflict.
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True Activist / Report a typo