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When will we understand?

השלט בטבריה

Translation by Yehoshua Siskin

Today, a day before Israel's Memorial day for fallen soldiers and victims of terror, I was giving a lecture at a Jewish school in New York. I showed a picture of a street rally in Tiberias where someone was holdng up a sign that read: "When will we understand that all of us here are brothers?" I explained that these words were written by Ma'ayan Asor, who had lived in Tiberias and was killed together with his sister Sahar in a flash flood in the Negev.
Ma'ayan wrote these words after the murders of three sets of sibilings: the Paley brothers, the Yaniv brothers, and the Dee sisters. He wrote them in a post before he and his sister themselves were killed.
And then a teacher at the school said that in this week's Torah portion it is written: "And you shall love your fellow as yourself." One of the students said that American and Israeli Jews are brothers, but this is never talked about. And then another student said that, in her opinion, God is also asking us: "When will you understand that you are brothers?"
I once thought that "And you shall love your fellow as yourself" was just a cliche. But now these words sound transformative, even revolutionary. May we appreciate their meaning here and now.


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