ICJW Newsletter: Many Voices

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Introduction by Publisher Lilian Bosboom, Chair of ICJW’s Communications Committee:

On October 7th, we were shocked to see the evil and dark side of the use of social media. On social media, we witnessed terrorists committing horrific and vile acts against a civilian population in Israel. This content was distributed with the help of bots and went viral in the Arab/Palestinian world, claiming victory against Israel’s unbeatable sovereignty. The aim of the attack was to abduct and kill as many Israelis as possible.

Gazans shared their ‘heroism’ by killing women, children, the elderly, and entire families with automatic weapons and grenades through social media postings. Those who live in a civilized world were in no doubt that this was a terrorist attack.

Soon afterwards, Israel, having become a victim in the eyes of many, became through virulent social media an aggressor after she initiated a defensive war against Hamas. The crimes perpetrated against
Jewish women garner no compassion from the world. The silence is devastating. Those kidnapped are forgotten. Antisemitism is growing exponentially. Israel has become the villain of the world.

We took a decision, after 7 October, to place on record our vision of the tragedy. We have done this by selecting an exceptional group of public figures and guest writers. In this special edition we have women and men, Jewish and non-Jewish, who have supported us by creating content enabling us to better understand the situation in Israel and the diaspora.

Rabbi Angela Buchdahl of Central Synagogue of New York opens with an inspired text “Israel at War: In the Beginning there was the Word.” Rabbi Buchdahl speaks in the text about the power of words and how
lacking they can enable evil, and chaos. She is on social media, during the Shabbat service, showing the face and story of each hostage with the plea to #bringthemhome.

Fleur Hassan, Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem, is a powerful voice in the international media. She explains
how words that once had meaning, such as “genocide” and “apartheid”, have been subverted; and she explains the hate-filled education given to the Palestinians.

Pillar Rahola, a non-Jewish Spanish writer and journalist, who has traveled the world with her lectures in favor of Israel and against antisemitism, poses the question “How will feminism dare to raise its voice for
women after 10/7, if they failed in the most extreme and massive moment of gender violence?“

Silvia Cherem, journalist and writer, is the winner of the 2005 National Journalism Award, former president of the International Women’s Forum in Mexico and recipient of the 2022 Woman of the Year award. She discusses how journalism today glorifies Evil; and since the attack she has become the most recognized voice in the fight against terrorism.

Contributing to this edition, Bev Goldman, president of the South Africa Affiliate, wrote the
unmissable text “Where are the Women’s Voices?”

Sheila Katz, CEO of NCJW is doing a brilliant job of raising awareness of the abandonment of Jewish women after October 7th. Finally, Gladi Lifshitz, director of Aluma, Israel Family Counselling Association,
gives a psychological reflection on the ground in Israel during these difficult times after October 7th.

Thank you to all the participants who helped us compile this publication at a very tumultuous time and in a context where everything changes very quickly. We are undoubtedly living in difficult times, but Israel has many voices and friends.

Am Yisrael Chai!