Ruth Lieberman

Note: Israelis don’t need to read this

Can we still wave the flag in safety?

But you do, so keep reading, because none of us should sleep at night.

Living here in Israel, we just don’t need any more reminders of what is happening. We are at war. We were attacked and now we are fighting to return our safety, our hostages, our people; to return to our homes in the north and south of our country without threat of ongoing rocket fire.

Seems pretty simple. But the world refuses to hold onto the truth of Israel as victim and Arab Palestinians as terrorists. Israelis don’t need this reminder, but you — our friends around the world who protect Israel — do. Israel’s detractors would try to belittle, even dismiss, the truth of our claim. Did October 7th really happen? Are innocent people, young and old, still held in captivity in Gaza, with no one there answering the call to give them back, even for reward money? Not one Gazan has stepped forward in the simple humane act of releasing captive young women. Most countries don’t even consider this a basic request on behalf of humans suffering the worst imaginable. I am sickened by this world, one in which Israel is boo’ed and called out at the Eurovision while rockets literally fly overhead and we can’t read the points on the scoreboard because of warnings to take cover. Excuse us, we’ll be right back after this commercial break when we can emerge from our safe rooms.

Anti-Israel sentiment overrides the truth, it seems. Campuses worldwide are guilty of pure antisemitism, hatred of Jews and of Israel wrapped in political chants. Flags have become weapons and Jewish students fear for their very safety on campus. Shame on all those in power who can shut down these voices but choose to look away.

Safe to wave the flag proudly?

How can we remind you who the bad guys are? We don’t need to feel right. We need this to be over. Our people are hostage. Our children and husbands are fighting for months on end on the front lines, to save our people, to save the little humanity that Gazans perhaps have left, to create a better life for everyone in this region.

Free Gaza? Yes, free Gaza! From Hamas. Free Gazans from Hamas. Free Jewish captives in Gaza. Help us replace the terrorists who are reponsible for their own people’s suffering, with effective humanitarian aid that reaches those who need it. Help us call for a real ceasefire that puts an end to the threat that thousands of Israelis face, unable to return home and still living in temporary conditions because their towns are under rocket fire.

Do not sleep at night. Do not get used to the images of girls raped and worse, held captive in Gaza, just miles from their homes in Israel, by palestinian monsters. Do not make your peace with our boys having to don their military uniforms and put their lives on the line, simply to protect our people and to ensure no invasion like October 7th can ever happen again, to anyone.

I fear we are too human. Too western to believe the situation as it is. Our minds try to explain, to see the best, but this is still the worst nightmare and it is not over. Israel marks its Remembrance Day tonight – with a few THOUSAND new families joining the circle of immediate loss for loved ones. Parents, children, babies, spouses. It is not a day of shopping sales here. It is a very real day of sorrow and unbearable pain, felt by those directly affected each and every day. We light a candle in remembrance, or two or ten, for those we have loved and lost. Join us and watch as the flames dance to remind us to remain vigilant and active in putting an end to this nightmarish war and the unrest it has brought upon us.

Wear leopard print for Romi, pray for the immediate release of all our dear hostages and the safety of our precious soldiers. Pray for tomorrow to bring real peace and understanding, to celebrate Israel’s Independence Day just one day later.

Any other option is unbearable.

About the Author
Ruth Lieberman is an Israeli-based political consultant and licensed tour guide, combining her love of Israel with political acumen to better Israel's standing both at home and in the eyes of the world. She has consulted for political leaders in Jerusalem and in Washington, from work on election campaigns to public advocacy and events. Her tours in Israel connect Biblical history to modern realities, to highlight Israel's achievements and promote its policies. She's also added 'archaeologist' to her title, working on an advanced degree in the field.