I know this Passover will be different from all others. Many of us can’t physically be with our families and the plagues feel all too real.But one thing hasn’t changed: Passover is still the holiday of liberation.
Nearly six years ago, I was a soldier in the IDF fighting in Gaza. I saw bombed out medical clinics, patient charts strewn across the floor, completely deserted towns. These were the remains of people who had fled for their life, even as they were hospitalized.
I joined the IDF thinking that I would be fighting for my people’s liberation. But when I finished my service, I understood that I was responsible for the oppression of the Palestinian people.
Every year we open the seder by reading “All who are hungry, come and eat. All who are in need, come share Passover with us.” Our tradition teaches us that celebrating our own liberation means fighting for those who have not yet tasted freedom, for we were once slaves in Egypt too. This year, in the tradition of Passover, I’m joining IfNotNow in donating part of what I would have spent on travel towards medical supplies that Palestinians in Gaza desperately need in this moment.
Will you fight for liberation alongside us by donating part of your travel budget towards Medical Aid for Palestinians? The Jewish tradition, as seen in the Haggadah, urges us to actually share our liberation feast with others, particularly those who currently face oppression.
How can we eat while others are hungry? How can we celebrate our own freedom without actively fighting for freedom for all?
The Palestinians in Gaza face the COVID-19 crisis with a health infrastructure battered by 13 years of blockades and wars and 52 years of occupation. There are only 40 available ICU beds and fewer than 20 available ventilators in Gaza right now.
But where are the Jewish political and communal leaders speaking out for the people of Gaza on the very holiday that commands us to fight for the liberation of others? Silent. Making the responsibility of the grassroots to lead even more urgent.
That same summer I served in Gaza, in 2014, young American Jews an ocean away came together to form IfNotNow in response to the Jewish community’s silence as thousands of Palestinians in Gaza were killed. Once again, as Gaza faces coronavirus with few resources and a health system battered by a 13-year blockade, our community is silent.
The difference today is that we are ready to be the leaders we are looking for. While our communal leaders are silent, I’m proud to join others in IfNotNow by donating part of my Passover travel budget towards essential medical supplies for Palestinians.
Will you join me and other American Jews fighting for freedom and dignity for all Israelis and Palestinians by donating what you would’ve spent on Passover travel to Medical Aid for Palestinians, a nonprofit that provides medical supplies to Gaza?Thank you for hearing my story.
Next year, may we all be free and healthy.Wishing you a happy and healthy Passover,
Donate to IfNotNow ttps://tinyurl.com/uyrhjkc