Come home Gilad

In the midst of all the media coverage of the deal to release Gilad Shalit, I saw this piece on the CIF Watch site, and thought it worthy of highlighting:

I live little more than 1 km away from the Gilad Shalit tent on Azza (Gaza) Street in Jerusalem, and routinely walk by Gilad’s father, Noam, on my way to work.

As the tent is open and Noam is often there and open to visitors, I’ve often considered introducing myself and expressing my support.

However, there was something about it which didn’t quite seem right. Who was I, I’ve thought, as a new Oleh (immigrant), to intrude?

How could I, as an American-Israeli, possibly understand his pain?

As a new Israeli, I sincerely try to avoid the hubris of imagining that I could possibly understand the sacrifices of native-born Israelis – those without the privilege of escaping to another nation in times of trouble.

For five years, Noam and his family have been robbed of the joy of celebrating Shabbat, Jewish holidays and festivals, and the ineffable beauty of everyday life, with their son, Gilad.

Unlike the terrorists being held in Israeli jails, Gilad, at the time of his abduction by Hamas, had not committed, nor was contemplating, any actual crime.

Gilad’s five years of captivity in Gaza was, however, a consequence of the moral – and immutable – crime of being an Israeli Jew.

I share the writer’s – Adam Levick – sentiments. I just hope Gilad will, indeed, be home soon.

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