Stop the Sirens No. 3 - July 24, 2014


Dear Friends: 

Over the last few weeks, as sirens have filled our collective heads - no matter where we live - and passion, compassion, grief, sorrow, fear and vitriol consumed our Facebook feeds, there has been one tune that has been playing over and over again in my head.

After the Yom Kippur War in 1973, the popular Sephardi singer Yehoram Gaon wrote a song,  "The Last War", with this haunting chorus: "I promise you, my little girl, that this will be the last war.

Hamilchama Ha'achrona - Yehoram Gaon

Hamilchama Ha'achrona - Yehoram Gaon


It is a song which has always brought me to tears for its hopefulness and for the many times that Israeli soldiers - fathers and mothers - have sung these words to their newborns.  I promise you, this will be the last war.

In the last days, three lone soldiers have been buried in Israel. They serve without having any family in the country.  At each of the burials, there has been an outpouring of support from Israelis who never knew these courageous young men. Thousands and thousands came and said kaddish as they were laid in the ground.  They came as family for men they never met.

For we are family.  "All Jews are responsible for one another", says the Talmud.  We stand as one when Israel is endangered. We stand as one while more than 2000 rockets pound Israel. We stand as one when more than 48 tunnels, some deep into Israeli territory, are found and destroyed.

I feel this way not because my eldest grandson has recently been inducted into the IDF but as much because, b"h, I have a grandson who will be born in a few days here in New Haven.  How does Operation Protective Edge, thousands of miles away in a tiny nation, affect a newborn here?   What happens in Israel affects Jews everywhere:  in Sderot, in Paris, in San Francisco, in Rio de Janeiro, in Manchester, England.

Wherever there is a crisis in the Jewish world, we put into action our responsibility to one another.

I am asking for your help; I am asking for you to support our Stop the Sirens campaign.

Rockets continue to barrage Israel. Terror from above. Forty-eight tunnels for moving rockets from Sinai into Gaza but also for infiltrating into the Israel. Terror from below.

The tunnels penetrate deep into Israel and are designed to provide a new equation in the balance of power between Gaza and Israel.

We hope you will step up now and stand with Israel. When the planes from the U.S. and from Europe stopped flying into Ben Gurion airport, I realized not just how vulnerable Israel's economy was but especially how isolated Israel is.  We need to stand with her.

Now is the time to give to the emergency campaign. 100% of your gift will go directly and immediately to Israel.

Hopefully, there will soon be a ceasefire. Children, families, the handicapped, the elderly and the mentally challenged will need ongoing support for trauma and to help rebuild their lives.

Perhaps this time it will be the last war, the very last war. Perhaps fathers and mothers in both Israel and in Gaza will be able to put their children to bed at night with kisses and songs of peace.


syd sig




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