By Ted Belman

ted-4.jpgTonight, Toronto Jews and Christian Zionists rallied for Sderot and what a rally it was. Over 2000 people were in attendance including many high school and university students. They filled to capacity a huge hotel room.

For many of us, Sderot represents a news story about the daily rocket attacks and the question of when and how is Israel going to stop them.

No longer, at least for those in attendance. We were hooked up with the Community Hall in Sderot. Though it was three in the morning there, many residents of all ages with emphases on the youth, were in attendance and we all participated in a two way hook up.

A video was shown depicting the attempts of the residents including children, to live a normal life under the reality of the constant threat of incoming rockets. Apparently they receive about 15 seconds warning and have to immediate run to the nearest shelter. As a result everyone, children included, know where every shelter is located and how many seconds it will take to get to the nearest. Today fifteen rockets landed in Sderot and one boy was severely injured. Over 200 rockets landed this year, over 1000 last year and over 7000 in the last seven years. Can you imagine trying to live a normal life under these conditions. Yet the people of Sderot do and for the most part won’t leave. In fact some idealistic families move there to make a statement. “If not me, who?” one woman with six children, said.

Canada’s National Post ran a major article on the people of Sderot under the title‘We are going to stay forever’. They interviewed Alon Davidi, the head of Committee for a Secure Sderot, who is featured in this VIDEO. In the next few weeks he will be travelling to many cities to deliver his message.

There were a number of 16 year olds interviewed who had lived half their lives under this barrage and they all talked about what it takes to live a normal life. They are there to stay. It is their lot in life, just as it was the lot of the early settlers in the settlements pre ’48 to hold the line against the attacking Arabs, and the lot of the soldiers at the Bar Lev line in Sinai to hold back the Egyptian attack in the Yom Kippur War, and the lot of citizens in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Netanya to suffer suicide bombers, and the lot of the soldiers to attack the fortified positions of Hezbollah in the Second Lebanon War. And it is our lot to support them financially, politically and in every public forum.

Israelis understand that they must hold the line and never retreat. The country depends on each and everyone one to do its part, to hold the line.

Alan Dershowitz was the keynote speaker and he delivered an emotional address in which he voiced our duty to them and voiced his criticism of the international community including all the Human Rights Organizations and the UN for criticizing Israel’s legitimate self defense.

He particularly excoriated Canada’s own Louise Arbour for her criticism of Israel.

Dershowitz honoured the Toronto community for always showing the way to Jewish communities throughout the world by coming to the aid of Israel in such exemplary fashion. He said he was going to rally all the cities of America to follow Toronto’s example.

Sderot Media Center has videos and articles about what is going on and I urge you to visit.

February 26, 2008 | 7 Comments »

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  1. I am also resentful that the residents of Sderot are made to look and behave like schnoorers. They are the responsibility if the Israeli government who have billions of excess dollars in reserve and the people of Israel. No one from the outside should be involved in lieu of the government of Israel! We are living in 2008 not 1948. We have poverty but we are not a pauper state. Proper allocation of resources could alleviate a lot of the poverty, but that another story!

  2. As a neighbor of Sderot \I feel a little pissed off at the residents of Sderot, They voted in past elections for Labor and then Kadima. Amir Peretz was even DM for a year who still lives in Sderot with his family. In spite of all this and after 7 years they are still taking it but only either running away which is good sensible thing to do or complaining. Now I ask all who may read this What is wrong with what I have just said? I will tell you most are still there taking and living (if you can call it that ) with Kasams every day.

    They showed little or no solidarity with residents of Gush Katif and even supported Sharon in his plan for evacuation or ETHNIC CLEANSING OF JEWS FROM GAZA! First they were Jealous of the prosperity of those in Gush Katiof and secondly they wanted their kids out (servig in IDF) before Sharon Liquidated, Jewish Gaza Communities it was primarily the settlements that received 95% of fire from Gaza. as much as 5000 plus. Those residents while not happy didn’t complain or at least if they did it was low key. Besides Kassam and mortar fire on Katif they had personal attacks on Buses, Cars and even suicide bombers. Still complaints were muted as all accepted to a degree that there was a price to be paid by them for their idealism and belief that they were the countries reps in our atempt at nation building in all of the Land of Israel.

    The communities of Sderot and others along the border knew that the dikes holding back the Sea of enemy Arabs was the IDF. Sometimes the dikes Break and the sea breaks through. The residents of Sderot were warned all of them so they have no moral excuse that with the removal of Jews and IDF from Gaza, the Barbarians would concentrate on them. It all fell on death ears. They still refused solidarity with those unfortunates from Katif. The other problem with the people of Sederot is sort of like a microcosm of the rest of the country. They have no real leadership to unite them, tell them what and how to do things for themselves like forcing the Israeli government to do what they don’t want to do by raising the political price to the national leadership/ One way as I suggested above was to get most of the residents to demand replacement housing/compensation . Let them get out. under the circumstance they can’t sell their property as no one would buy under such conditions so they are stuck at least half of the population who by the way are the poorest , the elderly and those who have no where else to go nor the means to get there if the had.

  3. Nice to hear that Toronto was able to organize the rally you describe. Would that my city of Ottawa (the national capital, no less) were able to match this endeavour.

    That said, the following point should not be ignored. The Jihadists and their liberal huggers are CONSTANTLY organizing, rallying, etc. It is the sustained PR effort that works in their favour, while the anti-Jihadists and Israel supporters are only able to organize an occasional event. For example, it has been six years or more since Ottawa saw the last pro-Israel rally and demonstration on Parliament Hill.

    Let us remember Ovid’s Latin maxim: Gutta cavat lapidem non vi sed saepe cadendo – it is not the force of water that eroded the stone, but its persistence.

  4. I received this email.

    I read your article on Sderot Matters today. I spent 3 weeks volunteering with the Sderot welfare department. Here are two links:,7340,L-3437984,00.html

    Very nice article. In it you stated “Apparently they receive about 15 seconds warning and have to immediately run to the nearest shelter.” That is the maximum time people have to get to a shelter. Weather, fog in particular, can wreak havoc with the alarm system. I was having Shabbat dinner when a kassam went off nearby. Then the alarm sounded. Then another kassam. So sometimes there is no warning. Think about having small children in your apartment, gathering them up and trying to get to a safe place. Takes far longer then 15 seconds. What if one of your children was disabled? How long to get to safety then? How long to go down three flights of stairs to a shelter? If there is a shelter and it isn’t padlocked. Yes, until recently shelters were padlocked. Yes, many places do not have a shelter nor a safe room. How long to unlock the shelter? Sderot was abandoned. The people, the children were abandoned.

    Keep up the good work!

    George Iversen

  5. According to the promotional material there were 100 organizations involved. I didn’t even know they even existed. The Jewish establishment was behind it all. My friend Donna Holbrook who runs the ICEJ was there and they supported it.

  6. Few can argue that the primary function and duty of any established national Government is the defense and protection of its citizenry. The obvious conclusion after almost eight years of bombardment of Israels Southern Negev and specifically the town of Sderot. It is also obvious the Governments sitting in Jerusalem do not care to defend the Southern Negev from external attack or cannot. Either way the residents of these Communities are essentially defenseless and after almost 8 years its time to say enough.

    My suggestion is this: Since it is obvious that All the failed Central Governments will not/cannot protect her citizenry, my suggestion is for all of the residents of the Southern Negev about 120,000 people, should demand to be removed ASAP with full compensation similar to what Gush Katif received. The compensation Law already exists, any modifications necessary would be simple procedure. If the Government refuses; then take the Government to court to force them to either or protect or compensate. Failure in the Israeli courts, keep going through International courts. Nobody really cares about a small town largely populated by past immigrants from N. Africa and former Soviet Union. The question always arises that if a small fraction of the rockets and missiles were to be shot at the TelAviv area the Reaction by any sitting Israeli Government would have been much different. Racism? discrimination? Bias? Pick your term, these are the raw facts.

    The only language this and other Israeli Government is How much will it cost us or me? Apparently the bottom line with them re: Israeli, Jewish populations along our borders is that it is not cost effective to protect them.. IN ISRAELS DEMOCRACY SOME PIGS (pardon the PUN) ARE MORE EQUAL THAN OTHER PIGS!