Justice, Politics

Please lend your support to refugees on both sides of the conflict

Dear Friends,
In this time of crisis in the Middle East, many compassionate individuals are at a loss for an effective way to help those whose lives have been disrupted by the conflict affecting Israel and Lebanon. Thousands, on both sides of the border, have been driven from their homes, or worse yet, have had their homes destroyed by airstrikes and rocketfire, leaving them with nowhere to return once calm is restored. Regardless of where one stands politically on this issue, it is incumbent upon each of us to have compassion for those who have suffered in this war, and to alleviate their suffering in whatever way possible.
With that in mind, I, along with my friends Amy Kaplan (a student a Yeshivat Simchat Shlomo) and Stuart Siegel (a student at Yeshivat Bat Ayin), are organizing a benefit concert to raise funds to support those who have been displaced by this conflict, in both Israel and Lebanon.
Our mission is two-fold: 1. To collect funds that will be evenly distributed and used to provide direct aid to Israeli and Lebanese refugees; and 2. To create awareness that we, as Jewish people, are moved to compassion for all those whose lives have been ill affected by war.
The event will take place at The Yellow Submarine in Jerusalem on Monday, August 28, and feature Jewish and Arab musicians including Coolooloosh, Eden MiQedem, Sagol 59 and Saz, among others. Proceeds will be given to reputable Israeli and Lebanese relief funds, which have had their efficacy verified by those receiving aid.
Though we have received a reduced-rate booking from the venue and are pursuing support from local foundations, in addition to welcoming your donations, we are in direct need of your support to insure the costs of the event are themselves are covered. We are thus specifically seeking support from our friends and relatives abroad to help cover our overhead so that we can channel the maximum amount from the event itself towards direct aid.
We expect the event to be well-covered in the media, and is thus an excellent opportunity to show that the people of Jerusalem, and the Jewish community itself, are concerned with the suffering of individuals on both sides of the conflict, even while in the midst of our own trying times.
Please lend your support.
Send a check marked ‘REFUGEE FUND’ to:
Matzat
472 Henley Ave.
New Milford, NJ 07646
Or donate via PayPal:

Matzat is currently filing for non-profit status and can retroactively apply tax-deductions for all contributions above $100. If this is of interest to you, please contact me separately.
Thank you.
Daniel ‘Mobius’ Sieradski
director, Matzat
editor-in-chief, Jewschool.com

13 thoughts on “Please lend your support to refugees on both sides of the conflict

  1. Sounds to me like you’re supporting terrorism if you give a single shekel to anyone on the other side of the border. Relief agencies whose efficacy has been verified by recipients? ARAB recipients? Have you ever heard of CAIR? How do you know Hezbollah gunmen aren’t waiting to hijack any shipment of aid or supplies?
    Sheez.
    The message you’re sending Lebanese arabs is, “Not only can you attack Israel, but bleeding-heart Jews will send money to get you back on your feet. With apologies for the aggressive tactics employed by the Zionist entity.”
    Daniel, you’re making a mistake. Those who are kind when circumstances demand cruelty will end up being cruel when circumstances demand kindness.

  2. I hope Amit is donating, not just giving you a hard time, Dan. It’s amazing that even when you try, someone wants to tweak your every move with politics. Yashar Koach, Dan, for getting involved with this!

  3. What mechanism will be used to make sure the money does not go to Hezbollah footsoldiers posing as “innocent” civilians, or to rebuild “houses” that were previous used as bunkers and weapons depots?
    Or do you – like New Israeli Fund – care more about being properly PC than you do about supporting our killers?

  4. Although I agree with the sentiments behind your efforts, I have to wonder: Where are the Muslim voices asking for donations for the rebuilding of northern Israel and for help for those who suffered losses of life and property? Not that I think we should only do as others do; I’m proud that Jews reach out beyond our own community. But I have to admit that it gives me pause when I see Jews making these gestures, while from the Muslim side there is only accusation, anger, and increased support for terrorism. When will I hear Muslims asking their brethren (and sistren) to donate to Magen David Adom?

  5. fuckin-a, Dan– can I tell you that everyone’s hatred and paranoia are so much more intense than their desire to help and to send a message of compassion? What if the homeless guy i give a buck to uses the money on heroin or buys a knife and stabs someone? therefore, help no one. because, as these paranoid commenters know, EVERY Arab is a Hezbollah supporters, and EVERY Arab house is a terror safehouse. Fuck it. let’s kill all these filthy Arabs and finally be able to rest easy. Oh no– because then we’ll have to worry about the black and arab Jews in Israel– what if we try to help them, and they use the money on offensive-smelling haircream, or immodest clothes?
    Since this whole thing was my idea (well, i guess not the helping arabs part 🙂 ), we should make mention that i’m a West Bank Settler, and am thoroughly in favor of killing the bad guys, with extreme prejudice, and i even understand how the death of civilians is a necessary part of war. But I also think it’s not only human, but Jewish to extend the hand of compassion and brotherhood after the fight. If you wanna get biblical– these are Ishmael, our cousins.. Isaac and Ishmael buried Abraham together. There’s a tradition of coming together, at the very least on a level of tolerance, after a tragedy.
    And a side note– all you hipster frothers bitching at Dan wouldn’t have no laptap or iPod if the US hasn’t rebuilt Japan after bombing it. blahblahblahblahblahblahblah………………….

  6. These folks do good work. Please support:
    http://www.natal.org.il/
    NATAL
    Israeli Trauma Center for Victims of Terror and War
    NATAL is a non-profit, non-affiliated and an a-political association. Its goals are:
    To provide emotional and social support to people who suffer from the Israeli-Arab conflict
    To enhance public awareness to the subject of national trauma in general, and awareness of those at high-risk in particular
    To enhance awareness to the subject among psychological health care professionals
    To prevent post-traumatic reactions through education and preventive training
    To encourage research about the prevention and treatment of trauma
    To document, collect and archive personal stories

  7. Yes, Mr. Goat, they really are. I visited their facility in Tel Aviv a couple of years ago as part of a “Social Justice in Israel” project through the Edward M. Bronfman Center for Jewish Student Life (Hillel) at NYU.
    Here is the website in English:
    http://www.natal.org.il/eng/eindex.aspx
    Take it easy.

  8. Hey WanderingStu –
    Israel is a democracy that extends rights – and aid – to all its citizens, including the many “Ishmaelites” among our citizenry who were hit by Hezbullah missiles.
    Most concerned Jews have been working overtime the past few weeks to explain to the world the difficulty of Israel’s situation when Hezbollah and others blur the distinction between combatants and civilians.
    The notion that we now have to do a 180-degree about-face and suddenly treat all these folks as if they are all innocent civilians – nope, that is about PC posturing, not Jewish morality or mercy.
    Israel got to the sorry position it is in largely through such misplaced mercy – if, like me, you live in Israel, you remember very well the selective, carefully-cropped frame of discourse in which “Palestinian grievance” was highlighted, while the victims of Pali terror were ignored.
    This is more of the same.
    Sorry – I don’t have to prove how nice I am – not to Hezbollah, and not to the Lebanese who have largely accommodated them these past 6 years.
    I express my Jewish spirit of respect for all people by extending even-handed assistance to all citizens of Israel.

  9. Ben-David:
    how come the Arabs in Nazareth don’t have bomb shelters?
    and i never called anyone innocent– if i am guilty, it is for wanting to help people who hate me. but not PC posturing. i can say lots of unpleasant thing about Arabs, and the way Islam manifests these days, and the seething hatred of the Jews that plagues the world as it always has. I am not Dan. I can even tell a great Mexican joke. Call me a fool for wanting to help the enemy, just don’t call me PC- yuk

  10. I just read about your upcoming gig in Ha’aretz (English edition, I’m not that clever with Ivrit… yet…)
    I can’t stand hip-hop or I’d be there on Monday – I stuck something in via PayPal instead, and hope you can make good use of it. Some of the Lebanese bloggers stayed friendly throughout the war, even when ‘we’ were bombing Beirut. Most non-refugees on both sides of the conflict found out exactly how many people we could fit into our floorspace (and exactly where our tolerance levels lie). Refugees on both sides of the conflict were unable to earn anything for over four weeks and had to drop their pride along with any control over what happened to them next. Thousands on both sides of the conflict couldn’t leave their homes at all; along with IDF and Hezbollah guys, many ended up dead or with missing limbs or other permanent physical or mental damage. War isn’t fun, for anybody, and the sooner we have something even vaguely looking like peace with Lebanon the happier I’ll be.
    Kol HaKavod!

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