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Sharon to Diaspora Jews: ‘we Need You More Than Ever’

April 2, 2002
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is calling for Jewish unity in Israel’s struggle against terror.

In a conference call with Diaspora leaders on Monday, Sharon said the “unity of the Jewish people” is Israel’s “primary strategic asset.”

“Each and every Jew” is “now required to make a supreme effort to contradict the claims made by those who question our right to the land of Israel,” he said.

“In these times, we need you more than ever. We need you to express your public support for Israel,” he said.

“Join us here, demonstrate your love and support,” he told those on the call, which was sponsored by the United Jewish Communities, the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, the Jewish Agency for Israel and Keren Hayesod.

Sharon began his briefing by recounting the latest terror incidents over the Passover holiday.

Israel made a “real effort” to achieve a cease-fire, he said, including rescinding his demand of seven days of quiet before negotiations and a withdrawal of forces from Palestinian cities.

But this, he said, was “all for terror, terror and more terror.”

Now, after Israel has “exhausted every effort to achieve a cease-fire” with the Palestinian Authority, the Jewish state “had no choice but to combat terrorism by ourselves in order to restore security to our citizens,” the prime minister said.

The main purpose of the operation, he said, is to “uproot” terrorism in a “battle for our homes, values and way of life.”

“This struggle is going to be long, difficult and complex,” he said. “It requires unity, determination and faith in the justice of our cause.”

“It will be carried on until we triumph.”

“Only by overcoming terrorism and winning this battle can we achieve a cessation of hostilities,” negotiations and the “much sought-after peace and security for generations, which we all want.”

Sharon also addressed what he said was an imbalance in world opinion on the conflict.

“It seems today that everyone is concerned about Arafat, whether he will have two or three rooms, with or without electricity. I do not detect the same degree of concern in the world about the two little children” whose mother, pregnant with twins, and father were murdered by a Palestinian terrorist outside the entrance to a toy store.

And while terrorism shakes Israel, Sharon noted the anti-Semitism directed against Jews in the Diaspora.

Israel stands “behind you in the struggle,” he said. Just as Israel is a “Jewish worldwide project,” the Jewish state feels a “responsibility to Jewish communities around the world.”

Finally, Sharon offered hope with his faith in the Jewish people.

“On Wednesday, we read in the Haggadah that in every generation, some have arisen against us to annihilate us but the most holy, blessed be He, always delivered us out of their hands. I believe that just as we overcame our past enemies, we will overcome all the obstacles facing us today.”

“The Jewish people have seen harder times than the one that we are facing,” he said. “When you consider all the hardships, persecutions and Holocaust that our people have undergone, you reach one conclusion: the Jewish people are indestructible, and I’m sure that we are indestructible.”

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