Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism chair Yaron Shavit sends his wishes for a year of peace, and year filled with respect for diversity in Israel.

Dear friends in the UPJ region,

Unfortunately, once more we find ourselves listening to Drums of War, looking at pictures of queues in gas mask distribution stations, and all of this gives a special insight to the reflections we always need to have as Jews this time of year.

In the blessing I sent together with IMPJ Hanhalah to all our leadership, I mentioned that we have to confront the fact that there are elements, within our society and from the neighboring nations, that just take advantage of our basic values including the value of; “live and let live”, but it is time we draw clear lines as every society has to do if it wishes to defend itself.

We can’t afford to remain indifferent to the people (outside and within), who do not accept the basic principal of diversity; respecting the right of another person to be different and to live one’s life as one chooses, as long as they themselves respect the same principal!

I wish all of you and yours, first and foremost a year of peace, שנת שלום, a year of respecting diversity, the wisdom to see the ones who don’t, and the commitment to be able to stand up for our common basic human principals.

שנה טובה ומתוקה

Yaron Shavit