Seattle Jewish group mourns loss of life from rocket attackson November 16, 2012 @ 12:47 pm (Updated: 3:29 pm - 11/16/12 )
Three civilians were killed Thursday morning in Kiryat Malachi, what Jewish Federation Executive Vice President David Chivo calls a partner community where his organization has worked on health services, youth programs and job training for more than a decade.
Also, for the first time, Friday, Palestinian militants targeted Jerusalem and air raid sirens were heard throughout the city and smoke was seen rising from a Jerusalem suburb. Jerusalem is about 50 miles from the Gaza border.
Chivo defends the Israeli rocket strikes saying Israel's goals are to remove terror cells and knock out militant rocket launch sites. "And a third goal is to deter future attacks on the state of Israel so that both sides can return to the peace table, which is what everybody else in the middle east yearns for," he said.
Cindy Corrie of Olympia, whose daughter Rachel was killed by an Israeli bulldozer during a demonstration in Gaza nine years ago, says she deplores the rocket attacks and considers them human rights violations. But she adds the people of Gaza are far more vulnerable to the attacks and are overmatched by the Israeli military. "Gazans really have no place to go," said Corrie. "My understanding is that the bombing, the missiles are continuing pretty non-stop there and people are off the street but they have no protection."
Corrie is just back from a visit to Israel and Gaza with a Washington D.C.-based peace organization, Interfaith Peace Builders and insists she's not taking sides over the latest exchange of rocket attacks. "We have many friends in Israel who, like us, are eager to see constructive resolution of this whole situation, which has gone on far too long."
But Corrie criticized the Israeli government for its decision to "ignore the truce that was developing." She also questioned what she considers the U.S.'s one-sided support of Israel.
The Jewish Federations of North America announced in a news release that its groups are setting up a relief fund, with details expected soon.
The United Nation's top human rights official, in Geneva, has denounced the three days of clashes between Israeli forces and Gaza militants, calling for both sides to pull back.
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