Mailbag: What One Store Owner Did L’Kovid Shabbos for the Soldiers in Gaza


ywnlnThe father of a Chayal (soldier) who is now in Gaza told how his son was informed on Friday that his unit will not be going home for Shabbos, which was a problem because they did not have any provisions for Shabbos. The father ran to the supermarket to buy some things, as much dips and salads as he could, then he stopped at the schwarma place in Petach Tikva.

He asked for a portion to be put into an aluminum tray and explained that it was for his son who is in Gaza without food for Shabbos. The owner said to him “what do you mean for your son? How many soldiers are in his group?”

The father answered “70” The Schwarma place owner called all of his workers. They prepared all the schwarma they had, brought out all of their meat, fried schnitzels, prepared Moroccan salads and chips and within an hour he and all of his workers had emptied the entire restaurant and given it over to the father. The father, a religious guy who has seen Chesed in his life, just stood there crying and thanking him.

(Letter received via email)


  1. Ein mishpacha. That’s it, & the true Achdut & Ahavat Yisrael shown by complete strangers to one another will end this war & bring Moshiach. Thank you for posting this.

  2. Nice story, but….

    Why was the IDF not providing food (meaning kosher food, presented in a Shabbos-dik manner). It should be noted that almost all Jewish Israelis, even if secular, have fancy meals on Shabbos. Even in secular “normal” units, (not hareidi nor affiliated with Bnei Akiva and the Religious Zionist movement) the army is supposed to be able to provide kosher food on Shabbos. If they could not do so, then it suggests a major breakdown in the army supply chain. Indeed, the inability of an army to get food to the front is usually a sign of serious and often disasterous problems.

    P.S. An ancient rule, meaning it appears to have been applied to all armies throughout history, is that any food a soldier receives from home is expected to be shared (something the father didn’t know, but the storekeeper did).

  3. Akuperma, Don’t spoil this amazing story. They are fighting a war. You can’t expect people to provide fancy food on the battlefield.

  4. #2– think before you judge. i am sure the idf usually provides nice kosher food. however, it said that the son told his father that they were not expecting to be in gaza over shabbos. that was why they did not have provisions.
    mi k’amcha yisrael…thank you for sharing this beautiful story. it is stories like this that keep us going through the tough times.

  5. Phenomenal! Can we get a name and address of the store. I and i’m sure many others would love to send money to be mishtatef.

  6. #4 – The story is nice. If entirely true, it is very troubling since it implies Israel may lack the means to supply its army – usually the first of an army facing defeat. However I just saw an article that the IDF is asking people to stop sending gifts to the soldiers (mentioning food in particular) since it gets in the way, which suggests this is not the case.

  7. A beautiful story.

    As to those that question the need – Having food (military rations) on a battlefield is not the same as having a seudas Shabbos. The IDF is not expected to provide what these Yidden did, nor are the soldiers required to have a formal seudah in an Oneis situation. But where there is a will there is a way.

    That was the meaning of the Ness of Chanuka – they were Pottur from lighting the Menorah with Tahor Oil, since Tumah hutrah B’Tzibbur, and furthermore they were Oinsim since they had no other oil. But they desired to do better, and Hashem delivered, just like these Sheluchim of Hashem.

  8. #2 akuperma – Is there anything Israel does that you can not criticize? The army is a large organization, and there are always things that don’t happen exactly as they should – in wartime in particular. I’m sure the army does what it can, but in case you’ve not noticed, they’re in a war now, and their main focus now is to defeat Hamas as quickly as possible, not to provide gourmet Se’udot Shabbos under battlefield conditions. This story is about someone – or a group – that went above and beyond for those holy individuals who are being literally Moser Nefesh on behalf of the Am Hashem Hayoshev b’Tzion. Appreciate it for what it is – your knee-jerk anti-Israel reactions are not called for here.

    an Israeli Yid