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Cartooning in Conflict
Chicago Nov. 4-6


Saturday's in Captivity

Tal Kfir Schurr

05/14/2010 On Friday in Jerusalem, a group of people met in a protest tent to commemorate the 203 Saturdays Gilad Shalit has been rotting in captivity. Tal Kfir Schurr, a bereaved sister, and a PCFF member spoke at the gathering .

"Shalom, Shabbat Shalom (may you have a peaceful Sabbath, Saturday. A customary Sabbath greeting).


The invitation I've received for this gathering addressed me as a  representative of bereaved families.
Although I do not feel like a representative, I can tell you how I feel.
My little sister, Yael, was killed almost seven years ago in September 2003.

The pain over Yaels death is intolerable. My longing for her is endless. And there is no comfort.

Yael was killed in a suicide bombing.

Most of the people behind the suicide attacknow sit in Israeli jails.  Yet,  there is no comfort for such a loss.

While I was thinking about what to say tonight, I thought about the similarities between the words 'comfort' and 'revenge (in Hebrew Nehama and Nekama)'. Although the similarity may not be a coincidence, revenge differs in that its outcome always remainsempty.  Revenge will not bring Yael back to me. Revenge cannot remedy the absence of a loved one. Just as detaining all the people doesn't justify holding Gilad in captivity, even if it's justify to revenge them for all the injustice they did.


No one asks for my opinion. No one asks me 'What do you think about prisoners  being released in exchange for the return of Gilad Shalit?
On the one hand - feelings of  helplessness exist.  People state that there is 'Nothing to do' and ask 'What can I do to help bring Gilad Shalit?

On the other hand, as per the Hanukkah song - We came to expel the darkness--Each one of us is a little light.

Anyone can make a difference.
We live in a place where the public chooses decision makers.

We, as members of the public, have a civic and moral duty to say and do something.

We need to make a sound.

I can say here, in a loud voice:

I want the Israeli government to release all those who helped kill Yael in exchange for Gilads return.

That's what I can do to stop the terrible suffering from him and form all those who love him.

I have two daughters. My oldest daughter is almost four years old. She was born in mid-August in 2006, two months after Gilad was kidnapped.

Although, she's not standing here next to me, I know exactly where she is at this moment.  

It is not normal for Gilad's parents not to know where or in what condition he is in. It is not normal for him not be at home with them now. 

Every day that passes in which Gilad Shalit is not with his family is a bad day.

A bad day for Gilad, a bad day for his family and a bad day for us  who remain captives, trapped in this ongoing conflict.

Tal Kfir Schurr
Translation Roni Druks

Top Photo: Tal Kfir Schurr. Bottom Photo: Yael Kfir.


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