Japanese locals who were treated by members of the IDF medical aid delegation sent to disaster-struck Japan last March arrive in Israel to say thank you
A special delegation from Japan visited Israel last week and thanked the IDF Home Front Command aid delegation that assisted and saved lives when an earthquake struck the country last March. The Japanese visitors presented art at a fair in Jerusalem and held a ceremony with representatives from the IDF that were sent to Japan, the Mayor of Jerusalem and Japanese officials.
"It was wonderful to hear that most of the Japanese who participated in the event live in the area damaged by the earthquake," said a regional commander of the Home Front Command, Col. (res.) Roni Tadhar who speaks Japanese. "I met three of them while rescuing and assisting in Japan, and they testify that even though it isn’t easy things are beginning to improve. People still live in temporary homes though are slowly returning to sane, normal lives."
During the visit, Col. Tadhar heard of more tragedies from the disaster site. "One of the girls shared her personal experience. She said she saw her housed destroyed by the current and arrived at the rescue site after hearing the alarms. It was a touching story," he explained.
"Members of the delegation came to thank those who aided them," said Col. Tadhar. "This is customary in Japanese culture. For them it was an honor to arrive in Israel and take the opportunity to express their gratitude." Another commander from the Home Front Command added that "it felt like two nations coming together. Two ancient cultures created a special connection."
"The fact that Israel helped during a crisis was appreciated both individuals and by Japan as a country. The government and the people know about the Israeli delegation that came to provide medical assistance to the hurt population, and that is definitely heartwarming," said Col. Tadhar.