Wednesday, October 3rd was an important day for American students studying in Israel. Two weeks ago, a hero of the Jewish people, Ari Fuld, ztk’l, was brutally murdered by a Palestinian Arab in an act of terror. Ari was a champion of Israel both on the battlefield and on social media. A master educator, Ari was able to show his followers the truth about life in Israel, and in particular, Judea and Samaria.
AFSI’s new program, If Not Us, is dedicated to showing American students the truth about Israel’s rights to Judea and Samaria and its fair treatment of the Arabs who live under Israel’s control. By ignoring the narratives, If Not Us takes students into the heart of the land and shows that Israel has nothing to hide.
On Wednesday, If Not Us led an educational and inspirational trip to the places most important to Ari.
The day started in Israel’s capital, where students heard from Ari’s father, Rabbi Yonah Fuld, and brother, Hillel Fuld.
The students then traveled to the spot where Ari saved lives and stopped the terrorist who fatally wounded him. Hearing form Gush Etzion’s spokesman, Josh Hasten, the students understood what happened in this act of terror…and why. During a Q & A session with master advocate, Avi Abelow, the students sat in Oz V’Gaon, a park built to answer another tragic terror attack, and were able to ask the crucial questions to understand the conflict. Israel’s rights to Judea and Samaria and the need for Israeli sovereignty were discussed at length.
The day ended with a trip to Ari’s Synagogue in Efrat. The students joined the community for Mincha and sat in Ari’s row, looking at the majestic view he enjoyed while he prayed. The students were challenged to make up for the Jewish people’s lost voice and take on a part of Ari’s large efforts. With a Torah lesson to end the day, these American students left with a sense of pride and determination to defend their land.
By: Rabbi Uri Pilichowski