Sunday, December 13, 2009

A Shabbat/USMC Story: Moses and the FAO

I enjoy the friendship of people from a wide variety of backgrounds. Recently, I got an invitation to attend a bar mitzvah of the son of a classmate of mine. We met in London and she new lives near Miami, Florida. I am also friends with a number of retired career United States Marines. I am happy to report that I know one story that both will enjoy. The story of Moses and the Forward Air Observer.

Once upon a time, an elderly Jewish gentleman asked his grandson what he learned in Shabbat. To which the youngster replied, “Grandfather, the rabbi told us the story of Moses and the Forward Air Observer.”

Moses had just sprung the Israelites from bondage in Egypt. When they got to the Red Sea, things looked pretty bleak because Pharaoh’s army was in hot pursuit. Moses asked the FAO to have his buddies, the engineers, build a pontoon bridge across the Red Sea and the Israelites beat feet across the bridge to get to Sinai. They had just made it to the other side when Pharaoh’s army started coming across the bridge after them. Things were looking really bad, but Moses got on the horn to the FAO, called in a precision air strike, which blew that pontoon bridge and Pharaoh’s army to Kingdom Come.

After hearing this, the old gentleman was silent for a while, then asked his grandson, “Are you sure that’s really what the rabbi told you?”

There was a long silence. Finally, the little boy said, “No, grandfather. But if I told you what the rabbi told me, I don’t think you’d believe it.”

p.s. I’m a little bit early, but let me wish a Happy Hanukkah to all of my Jewish friends.

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