Members of the Jewish and Palestinian community speak out on Mideast violence

Palestinians walk past the ruins of the Al-Tawfeeq mosque after it was hit by an Israeli missile strike in the Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip, Saturday, July 12, 2014. Palestinian officials said Israeli airstrikes targeting Hamas in Gaza hit a mosque and a center for the disabled where two women were killed Saturday, raising the Palestinian death toll from the offensive to more than 120, that showed no signs of slowing down. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Organizations from both sides of the Mideast conflict are now speaking out against the violence in Gaza.

Attacks on innocent civilians prompted a pro-Palestine rally in Northampton Friday night. They’re not choosing sides. They oppose the attacks that have killed hundreds of Palestinians.

“To have a real campaign in the United states to end U.S. support for Israel and begin moving toward some sort of more just solution,” said Terry Buck of the Massachusetts Coalition for Palestine.

Friday night also marks the holy night of Sabbath, where Springfield’s Jewish Community Center will make their solution clear.

“Nobody wants more harm, we simply want peace,” said Scott Kaplan, the Endowment Director of the Jewish Endowment Foundation.

But Jewish Community Center members returning from Israel know just how hard it will be to achieve peace. Haunted by the sounds that sent them running for shelter, sounds that became too familiar. 

“We heard the sirens and you know only one time for us and we ducked for cover but really got a feeling for what it’s like to live there under a seas of rockets being fired,” said Susan Weiss Firestone the President of Springfield’s Jewish Community Center. 

Right now, their priority is to help the people of Israel, while maintaining their wish for peace both at home and abroad.

“I’m very sad for the pain the Palestinian people are suffering and I’m really sad for the pain the Israeli’s are suffering,” said Rabbi Amy Walk Katz of Temple Beth of Springfield.

With no clear solution, both sides are forced to watch from home, hoping for the best. Neither side could say when the violence would end or if they’d be able to find a solution anytime soon.




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