Miss Iraq Sarah Idan (right) with Miss Israel Adar Gandelsman in December 2017

By Yochanan Gordon

If there is anything history has taught us, it’s that all great accomplishments require a big dream. It’s the dream, or perhaps the willpower within mankind, that serves as the impetus to pursue those accomplishments despite anything that may stand in our way.

A message from the people of Iran

The people of Iran and Israel are NOT enemies.Watch this powerful message from a brave, peace-loving citizen of Iran to the people of Israel.

Posted by StandWithUs on Wednesday, June 27, 2018

I mention this here because of a video I came across the other day. It’s a video of an Iranian man, who although he is sitting in front of a video camera with part of his face obscured, identifies himself as 36-year-old Ash, from Iran. But before I get to the contents of the video, a word about the style which it was made is in order.

A few months ago, a 10-year old girl by the name Cassidy, who apparently had been the victim of bullying in her school, took to YouTube to bring attention to her plight. During the video, which lasted only a minute and eight seconds, she remains completely silent, holding up papers on which the message she wanted to convey was written. The video went viral online, and drew a video response from players and managerial staff of the New York Yankees who responded in the same silent way.

Back to the first video. Ash, who has never been to Israel, declares his love and support for the Israeli people. He writes, “my people are not at war with your people, but are victims of the dirty and outrageous policies of our rulers for the past forty years.” He logically asserts: “Having never been to Israel myself how can I hate?” He signs off, “Hoping for the day when Israel and the people of Iran could be freely connected as in the past. I love you Israel.”

Both of these videos were produced without sound purposefully, but for two different reasons. In the case of 10-year-old Cassidy, it was too hurtful for her to speak, therefore she wrote her message and displayed it on the camera in front of her. In the case of Ash, he is not at liberty to speak given the nature of the regime where he lives.

This comes just six months after a selfie taken by Miss Iraq Sarah Idan, with Adar Gandlesman, Miss Israel. The distribution of the selfie resulted in Idan and her family having to relocate to Israel due to the inevitable vitriolic and threatening messages of the leaders and fundamentalists within her repressive society.

What I see connecting all of these videos is a will amongst the people to change the status quo.

This has been the thinking of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who has released what is now a series of short video overtures to the people of Iran, offering them promises of a brighter, better, freer and more affluent future in an alliance with Israel. Mr. Netanyahu himself understands that if enough people had the courage to change the status quo it could all end in an instant.

We are currently situated in the month of Tammuz, a month that signals the time in history which led to the destruction of the two Temples and all the suffering and tears that have flowed from our collective face over the better part of two millennia.

The greatest sages in the history of our people who have lived their lives in exile have prayed and pleaded with God to bring back the Beis Hamikdash and an end to this long, bitter and painful galus. Sadly, for many, exile is perceived as a reality that only God has the power to change when the time is right.

Perhaps the message here is not to get discouraged by the inability of great people before us to change this status quo, but to band together as an amalgam of many people, determined to make a difference and we will certainly be successful.

 

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