Hundreds leaving Beachwood to March for Israel in DC

BEACHWOOD, Ohio (WJW) — The recent rise in vandalism and antisemitism throughout Ohio is prompting the Jewish faith to join forces to attend the “March for Israel” event.

Sixteen-hundred people will be loading 25 buses at midnight on Monday, the caravan leaving Beachwood heading to Washington, D.C., in a show of solidarity against the atrocities taking place in Israel — the war now in its second month.

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“Twenty of us in total, three from Cleveland, visited Israel — really, to meet with people who had survived trauma,” said Erika Rudin-Luria, president of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland.

It’s a small solidarity mission to Israel having a huge impact here at home. Rudin-Luria recently spent 40 hours in Israel. She heard story after story of relatives being kidnapped, raped and murdered.

“But their focused now on getting through whatever this war is. They said, ‘We’re gonna; we’ll fall apart later. Right now, we have to support each other.'”

And that support is gaining momentum here at home. The Jewish Federation of Cleveland said more than 1,600 people will load 25 buses at midnight, heading to our nation’s capital for a march on Washington.

With more than 200,000 Israelis displaced as a result of the war, and the rise of antisemitism here in Cleveland, Columbus and throughout the state, they say the march is a must.

“I think it shows that people know that right now is not a time to be silent. Showing up counts. Showing up is important. The message we sent out to people was, ‘Take your kids, cancel the plans that you have, so that you can explain to the other person that there is something that is threatening me and my family right now, today, in this country.”

More than $32 million has been raised in Cleveland and sent directly to the victims to help with food, shelter and the mental well-being of survivors.

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FOX 8 News asked Rudin-Luria if she thought President Joe Biden is doing enough to calm tensions in the Middle East.

“There are pictures thanking President Biden on the island highway near Tel Aviv. Everyone I spoke with in Israel is very appreciative of President Biden, and all of the other elected officials in the United States that are supporting them,” she said.

The purpose of the march, the president of the Jewish Federation in Cleveland said, is three-fold: One, that they stand with Israel. Two, to release the hostages now. And three, send the message that true hatred has no place in this country.

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