Michael Dickson
Executive Director, StandWithUs - Israel

Dear Alyssa Milano

Alyssa Milano is an actress who most recently rose to prominence as being one of the voices of the #MeToo movement. She tweeted in response to the massive pro-Israel rally in Washington D.C.

Here is the text of her tweet – and following that, my response.

Alyssa’s tweet:

I have to say something…

It’s going to offend some people. I’m okay with that. Let’s all get uncomfortable. And then let’s grow.

If you’re still reading—good. Please read to the end. I need you.

I know many people who attended the Isreal Solidarity march today. They all spoke of beautiful community, pride and feeling safe and seen. This made me so happy because many friends have been terrified by the rise in antisemitism. (And I see you always. It is terrifying and I am constantly learning.)

And then I saw video from the march—and I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. When one of the speakers spoke of peace, people chanted in unison, “No ceasefire. No ceasefire.”


It made me so sad.

“No ceasefire! No ceasefire!”

What have we become if we are chanting against peace when a child is dying every 10 minutes? In the time it took me to write this—2 children were murdered.

Also, it’s very easy to chant “no ceasefire” from here when you are not actually in the war zone.

Imagine the smell of burning flesh, the dust coating your lungs, the taste of blood in the back of your throat, hearing the screams and feeling the vibration of bombs dropping. Sleep deprivation. Anxiety. Trauma. You can’t even imagine, right? And thank god. We are all so blessed and privileged to not be able to imagine what war actually is.

“No ceasefire. No ceasefire!”

We need a radical peace movement. What part will you play? What will you model for your children? What kind of world do we want? Please be responsible with your words and actions and what you post on social media. I beg of you.

For the children. Be peace. Be light. Be love.

#CeasefireNOW #RadicalPeaceNow


The opening of actress Alysaa Milano’s tweet

My response:

Alyssa – I hope that you have misunderstood and that your tweet isn’t willful. The people you heard want peace.

Those who chanted “No Ceasefire” would happily accept a ceasefire if Hamas surrenders and releases all of the 240 hostages they are keeping underground.

Here is what they won’t accept:

– A ceasefire that leaves Hamas in power in Gaza.

– A ceasefire that allows Hamas to carry out another act of mass-rape against Israeli women.

– A ceasefire that leaves our babies – some less than a year old – in terrorist captivity.

– A ceasefire that condemns the elderly to languish further without their medicine, wheelchairs or hearing-aids.

– A ceasefire that means Hamas can once again slay a pregnant mother, cutting a baby from its womb while lopping off the breast of another.

– A ceasefire that gives Hamas a chance to again rape a teenage girl over and over while forcing her 94-year-old Holocaust survivor grandmother to watch.

– A ceasefire that creates another opportunity for Hamas to slay hundreds of young people partying at a peace festival with rockets and RPGs.

– A ceasefire that could envision Hamas returning to family homes again, tying up the kids and the parents separately, setting them on fire, their dying thoughts of the loved ones opposite them burning alive.

You see, Alyssa, the people in that crowd care about humanity. And not just about the humans from multiple countries who are held captive by Hamas, or even ‘just’ about the Israeli victims of the barbaric October 7th massacre.

They also care about Palestinians. Yes. I live in Israel. We teach our kids to cherish peace and then when they go off to serve in the army (without which we would cease to exist), the first thing they are taught is the ‘Purity of Arms’ – the ethics of war – how to cherish life even when you must fight. The IDF do everything in their power to avoid harming civilians, even while Hamas deliberately places them in harms way by hiding under them.

We do not want war, neither us Israelis nor the hundreds of thousands of Americans that you witnessed yesterday. Far from it. But when faced with the barbaric men of Hamas – who, like ISIS, detest everything all people of goodwill stand for: peace, freedom, minorities and the womens rights you cherish – we must fight.

The fire will cease in one of two ways: Hamas will be vanquished. Or they can surrender and release the innocents they have stolen. But until that happens – a ceasefire would be a betrayal of all we – and I believe you – hold dear.

About the Author
Michael Dickson is Executive Director of StandWithUs - Israel and the author of ISResilience: What Israelis Can Teach the World. Michael is a Senior Fellow at the Center for International Communication of Bar Ilan University and he was named as the 14th most influential Jew on Twitter by JTA. He is a recipient of the Bonei Zion prize, recognizing the achievements of outstanding Anglo immigrants and their contribution to the State of Israel. Views expressed are personal. Follow on Twitter:
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