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Rabbi's Week in Review - 11/6/2023

11/06/2023 04:01:12 PM

Nov6

I have been inundated (or maybe I have continued to be inundated) with requests to sign on to statements and/or letters to elected officials advocating with certainty to a particular position regarding the present horrific conflict between Israel and Palestine. The only thing about which I have certainty right now is my uncertainty. At this point, I have merely tried to maintain, above all, a sense of compassion and humanity for those who suffer due to the conflict.

This onslaught of lobbying and even ongoing email chain discussions parsing the finer points of the issues surrounding this war have left me emotionally exhausted (still and yet), and finding a need to be afforded some space to try and sort out what kind of productive role I can play going forward. While I have been one on the side of seeking a cease-fire, I still am in conflict with others seeking a cease-fire, as we disagree on the terms.

Former President Obama may have summed it up best this week. We have to make room for multiple and conflicting truths, and acknowledge that no one involved in this conflict has clean hands. In this regard, I would point to (and maybe reiterate — I have trouble recalling all I have argued at this point) the failure of leadership on all sides: the brutal and sadistic attack by Hamas, Netanyahu’s failure of security and his allowance for gross violation of Palestinian rights in the West Bank, and the many past failures at a real and lasting peace.

If, like me, you struggle to find the best response, then I believe your response is understandable and even healthy. As we continue to struggle to do what is compassionate and right, let us always lead with compassion for all who suffer.

Mon, December 11 2023 28 Kislev 5784