Terror in Mumbai; the Aftermath

Two excellent articles following the murderous siege of Mumbai. From David Abitbol of Jewlicious,

Today, we are all Chabadniks

As soon as Shabbat was over in Jerusalem, I rushed to my computer to see what the updates were from Mumbai. It didn’t take long for me to realize that my prayers over Shabbat had not been answered and that Rabbi Holtzberg and his wife Rivka were already dead. I didn’t know them personally but I’ve known others like them – in Montreal and Park Slope, in Toronto, Thailand, New Orleans, Los Angeles – pretty much anywhere I have ever traveled, there was a Chabad Shaliach, doors open, friendly and hospitable, never asking or anything in return and representing the very best of what Judaism is all about. Sure, we’ve all poked fun at these guys. I mean they are Hassidic Jews after all, with their funny hats and beards, and their odd ideas about the Messiah. We’d take advantage of their hospitality and kindness while always asserting “I am not a Chabadnik.”

and a poignant on-the-scene report from Haaretz’s Anshel Pfeffer:

Only after Shabbat was Rivka Holtzberg’s family told of Chabad house deaths

Yehudit and Shimon Rosenberg arrived in Mumbai on Friday morning on a special flight arranged by the ZAKA organization several hours after learning that the terrorists rampaging through Mumbai had also struck Chabad House. Their daughter, Rivka, established the center in the city along with her husband, Gavriel Holtzberg, a Chabad emissary, five years ago.

On arrival, they were reunited with their grandson, Moshe, who was delivered safely from the attack in the arms of his caretaker, Sandra Samuel. After arriving, the couple was housed in the apartment of a staff member of the Israeli consulate in the city, and did not leave the residence all Friday and Saturday.