Sunday, January 9, 2011

Jewish Congresswoman in critical condition after shooting

Jewish Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, 41, is alive and in critical condition in surgery, after being shot in the head in a shooting attack that killed a judge, one of her aides, and four others, and wounded at least 10, outside a grocery store where she was holding a meeting with voters. Her surgeon is optimistic about her chances for recovery.

YNet brings to light Giffords' Jewish heritage and identity, including legislation:

Giffords is the granddaughter of Akiba Hornstein, the son of a Lithuanian rabbi who in the 1940s moved from New York to Tucson. He later changed his name to Giff Giffords in an effort to avoid anti-Semitism.
Gabrielle Giffords first visited Israel in 2001 as an Arizona senator, later saying that she felt very committed to Judaism and that the visit provided her with a basis to better understand who she is and where she came from.
Upon returning to Arizona, she introduced legislation that helped Holocaust survivors.

Giffords was in Israel again last month and also visited a synagogue. She was planning to return to Israel in the summer.
In a recent visit at the Temple Emanuel synagogue she told the congregation that the US must remain committed to Israel, the Middle East's only democracy. Last week, she wrote in Arizona's Jewish newspaper that there would be no peace in the region before the Palestinian leadership and other organizations accept Israel's right to exist.

Let's pray for Gavriela's recovery.

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