Photo by Suhyeon Choi via Unsplash
Right now, in light of Hamas’s horrific massacre, a lot of us Jews are having a hard time. We’re reeling from the largest loss of Jewish life on a single day since the Holocaust, and all too often we’re feeling alone and wondering why the rest of the world isn’t more outraged and devastated.
If you’re a non-Jew with Jewish friends, family, or colleagues, your support right now would mean so much to the Jews in your life. I know it can be hard to know what to say or do at times like this, and so I’ve put together a list of some ways can help.
This is an incredibly hard and scary time for us as Jews, and checking in to see how we’re holding up is so appreciated.
So many of us have family and friends living in Israel – and even if not, in a sense all Jews are really one big family. A quick text is all it takes. Just let us know you’re thinking of us, or ask how we’re doing.
Use Your Voice
From silence to Israel-bashing, by and large the responses we’re from non-Jews seeing online and on social platforms are making us feel isolated, vulnerable, and afraid.
If you feel able to speak up for Israel to those in your circle, either on social media or offline, that would be so, so appreciated. It can be as simple as sharing a couple posts on your Instagram feed.
As much as I hate having to mention this, I also want to make it clear that supporting Israel’s right to exist, and its people’s right to life, doesn’t mean you back the current government – and it also doesn’t mean you don’t care about innocent Palestinian lives being lost right now.
Educate Yourself about the Conflict
If you don’t feel you fully understand what’s going on in Israel right now – or the long and tragic history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict – take some time to educate yourself.
A great place to start is Noa Tishby’s book Israel: A Simple Guide to the Most Misunderstood Country on Earth. You can also follow her on Instagram at @noatishby for clear, accurate information broken down into accessible segments, updated in real time.
Here are a few other online resources I recommend for learning about the long-term history of the conflict – these don’t necessarily address what’s going on right now but are valuable for understanding the history and context:
I’ve also got a timeline of the conflict plus even more information about additional resources.
Donate to Support Israel
From displaced families to orphaned children to soldiers in need of protective gear, there are so many people in Israel who need financial support right now.
If you’re in a position to do so, one of the biggest ways you can make an impact is by donating to an Israeli charity like Magen David Adom, Israel’s national medical emergency, disaster, ambulance and blood service, or Latet, Israel’s largest NGO targeting food insecurity, who are currently sending food and hygiene supplies to regular and reserve soldiers, evacuees from the Gaza border, and families forced to stay in shelters and protected spaces.
You can find a list containing lots more reputable charities helping in Israel right now here.
If you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading – and caring. However you decide to offer your support, I know it will be so, so valued.