War and Antisemitism

It is with heavy hearts that we acknowledge the horrific suffering of the Israel-Hamas war. We are deeply concerned by the brutality of the October 7 attack on Israel, the fate of the hostages, the staggering number of civilian casualties, destruction of infrastructure and looming famine in Gaza, and the turmoil in the West Bank.  For decades Temple Beth El has provided opportunities for our members and the public to study the issues in depth and work for peace. With awareness of the complex history and current geopolitical realities driving the conflict, we encourage diversity of opinion in our membership while advocating for vigorous diplomacy and non-violent action.

In this time of crisis we are deeply troubled to hear legitimate criticism of the Israeli government spilling over into expressions of antisemitism, some of it due to naivete or ignorance, but some of it reflecting deeply held anti-Jewish prejudices. To protect our members and guests, we are constantly strengthening our security measures.  We ask the public to help us: if you see or hear something that endangers the Jewish community, please report it to law enforcement and fill out our Antisemitism Incident Report Form. [click for form]

If you are a teacher or other community leader in need of resources on antisemitism, we recommend this excellent short film: Antisemitism in Our Midst: Past and Present (11 minutes) and these Questions for Deeper Discussion.

Rabbi Naomi Steinberg has been following many sources to give us news and opinion articles about the conflict.  If you would like to receive Rabbi Steinberg's updates, contact the temple office at templebetheleurekaca@gmail.com.

Nearly two thousand years ago rabbis of the Talmud wrote, "The sword came into the world because of justice delayed and justice denied." (Pirkey Avot 5:8)

  חֶרֶב בָּאָה לָעוֹלָם עַל עִנּוּי הַדִּין, וְעַל עִוּוּת הַדִּין
We will continue to learn, teach and act so that future generations may see a world of justice and peace.