Message from Our Israeli Connection

Shalom Long Island community!

My name is Noam Basharti, and I was a shinshin on Long Island and at RSNS during the years of 2018-2019.

I wanted to use this platform to write to you as your friend, as an Israeli, and as a former officer in the IDF who is at the heart of the war currently taking place in our country – Israel.

I’m sure you have all heard about what is going on, and have your own way of dealing with the situation – *all feelings are valid.*

As a former shinshin, I dedicated a year before my military service to Israeli advocacy. This is an issue that is crucial right now. Unfortunately, Israeli advocacy in the face of antisemitism and anti-Zionism is the second battle we are facing right now.

For anyone who feels lost, I’m here to tell you that IT’S OKAY.

But this is the time to BE ACTIVE, in *any* way possible.

I encourage and invite you to ask any questions you might have, research, and try to understand the importance of what is happening right now.

I know that these are difficult times for the Jewish community in the Diaspora as well. We’re here with you. Together, each of us can help in any way we can, we’re stronger than any hate directed at us.

Personally, I lost a friend, Dekel, in this war. Dekel is the bravest person I know. He was also a shinshin in Atlanta. The people closest to me are at the front lines, and my whole family is pitching in to help where needed. I myself, was a commander in the Ground Force and saw the war up close.

*If you feel like you can help as well,* I ask you to do so. Speak up, raise awareness, and stand for the truth.

*Talk* about it at your university/ with your friends/ at a family dinner. *Share* any verified information on your social media. And most importantly, *be proud* – no matter how much people spread hatred and try to instill fear in you.

If you are looking for any resources for information, myself and my other Israeli friends from Long Island.

Please contact me. I want to hear from you. I am in this with you.

Stand by your Jewish and Israeli friends.

Stay strong and safe.

Lots of love from Israel,

Noam ‎Basharti