Jewish and Muslim communities to break fast for peace
By Keldy Ortiz (New Haven Register)
NEW HAVEN >> The violent actions on display between Israelis and Palestinians is a sight Rabbi Herbert Brockman doesn’t like viewing or listening to.
But instead of hearing about casualties, Brockman, spiritual leader of Congregation Mishkan Israel of Hamden, doesn’t want to stand by.
At sundown Tuesday, Brockman and other members of the Jewish community will head to The Islamic Association of Greater Hartford in Berlin for a date with Muslims, where they will break fast together. Tuesday is Shivah Asar B’Tammuz, a fast day for Jews, while Muslims are fasting during the month of Ramadan, Mongi Dhaouadi, executive director of the Council on American Islamic Relations in Connecticut, praised the event. CAIR’s focus is to empower the Muslim community through activism.
“It was well received from both sides,” Dhaouadi of New London said. “It’s a very small gesture. I don’t think sitting on the sideline doing nothing is acceptable either.”
While Brockman doesn’t believe uniting Tuesday night will settle differences happening overseas long term, both communities want to set an example, showing violence leads to endless battles. Instead, both parties want to show unity is possible.
“I don’t know if I’m going to change anybody, but I don’t want them (people fighting) to change me,” Brockman said. “Some people would say this is not a time to do this. I’m saying just the opposite. It’s especially important when we’re facing this humanity crisis.”
As of Sunday, more than 1,300 air strikes were launched since an Israeli offensive started, said military spokesman Lt. Col. Peter Lerner. Palestinian militants have launched 800 rockets, including 130 on Sunday, the Associated Press reported.
“We don’t want to be on one side crying for victims and on the other side cheering,” Dhaouadi said. “Even though we have our differences, we share a lot in common. The situation of what we’re seeing now, nobody is happy with this.”