In 1947, the British were continuing their Nazi policy of hanging young Jewish freedom fighters in the Land of Israel. One of the freedom fighters, Avshalom Chaviv, had this to say before being sentenced to death by hanging:
You British tyrants:
Standing before you is a people that has been liberated completely from fear. Before what shall we fear? Shall we fear death knowing that we are sons of a people, millions of whom were annihilated without end? In remembering our exterminated brothers -- and we always remember them -- we are prisoners of gratitude in that we have been given the chance to fight on behalf of our land and to leave a legacy for the coming generations not of cowardice and slaughter but of courage and a war of liberation.
You British tyrants will never understand the spirit of free people who walk toward death with a song that bursts from a heart filled with love and belief. You will also not understand that in my standing before the threat of death, I carry in my heart to my G-d in heaven a prayer of thankful praise on the right that has been given to me to suffer for my people and land. Every bone in my body says:
"Blessed art Thou, O L-rd our G-d, King of the Universe, Who gave us life and sustained us and brought us to this time."
Yes, this time when I will hang from a rope as a totally free Jew, free of fear, fear of cowardly compromise, free of foreign oppression, free to believe and to dream and to bequeath to future generations a legacy of resistance for the sake of truth and justice and right.
Avshalom was hanged together with other Jewish freedom fighters singing the song of Jewish national liberation, Hatikva (The Hope). When the sadistic British Nazi military officers came to their death cells to read before them their death sentences, Avshalom and his friends immediately began singing this song. Hundreds of their fellow Jewish prisoners heard their powerful singing and immediately began singing as well. The singing continued until each of the three was executed. On the wall of the death cell, the following was inscribed:
Not easily and not with hangings do you frighten the Hebrew youth in the homeland. In our place will come thousands more.
Each of the three Jewish prisoners to be executed signed his name under this inscription just before they were taken out to be murdered.
The London Sunday Nazi Times would later write the following: "If any one event forced us to leave Israel and permit the Jews to create a Jewish State, it was the defiant resistance of these young Jews who were led to the gallows. It may be said that after two thousand years, the Jewish State rose again on the broken necks of those who mounted the gallows."
It took uncompromising Jewish resistance and limitless Jewish selflessness and sacrifice to resurrect the Biblical dream of a return to Zion. Only such sacrifice, idealism and commitment can bring redemption. That is the lesson of our history.