On Shabbat Shuvah (Saturday, September 11), Dr. Nathan Szajnberg, a Rochesterian and author of Reluctant Warrior will be speaking from the bimah and afterwards at Kiddush, about the complexities facing Israeli soldiers. Dr. Szajnberg is an eminent psychoanalyst and held the Freud Chair at Hebrew University before recently returning to New York.
Dr. Nathan Szajnberg, formerly Freud Professor at the Hebrew University, speaks about Reluctant Warriors, which describes elite citizen-soldiers in action. These soldiers speak of their inner lives, how they became such a select group of fighters, what it is like to face an enemy, including the ambivalence, hesitance, as well as certitude about protecting their families, most of whom live within kilometers of the battlefield that is Israel. All these men chose to leave active military service, but continued as officers in the reserves. The author, a psychoanalyst, interviewed these soldiers over the years of the Second Intifada and Lebanese War. Each one had some family member or friend killed. They speak and want to be heard. These Jewish soldiers are the Macabees of today, but they tell of the tension between being a fine soldier versus being humane. The real action for these men is their inner reactions: fears and hopes and memories that will not rest.
Dr. Szajnberg will present the portrait of several of these elite citizen-soldiers and will then bring the audience, through questions and answers, into the middle of the emotional stories of these soldiers who paint a picture of both war and peace. “Remember these stories” these soldiers told Dr. Szajnberg over and over again when he interviewed them over a 6 year period. After an evening with Dr. Szajnberg, members of your congregation will remember these stories for years to come.