On Chanukah, increase the light

Chanukah Lights

A Message from Lois and Dick Gunther

Winter approaches, and the days grow shorter. The world becomes darker and feels colder.

Donate This year, Chanukah comes at a time when we can still see some daylight when we light the candles, underscoring the gift of light, the miracle of Chanukah.

The story goes that when the Temple was re-dedicated, the Maccabees discovered that most of the olive oil needed to light the Temple's Menorah had been desecrated; what remained was only enough to keep the Menorah burning for one night. However, once re-lit, the Menorah burned bright not for one day, but for eight days - giving the Jews time to find and prepare a fresh supply of oil.

In the course of debating how to commemorate this miracle, two Rabbis argued about the proper order in which to light the flames. Rabbi Shammai suggested that eight candles should be lit on the first night, with one fewer each night, while Rabbi Hillel countered with the view that one candle should be lit on the first night, and an additional candle each of the following nights, until all eight candles stand together, burning, on the final night. Why? Because Rabbi Hillel believed such an order would symbolize the importance of increasing, not decreasing, light and goodness in the world.

We love this idea. We have always applied this philosophy in working for Israeli-Palestinian peace, and in advancing other Israeli progressive causes. Earlier this month, we fulfilled a promise to ourselves to again visit Israel and participate in the Americans for Peace Now Study Tour. We witnessed up close how APN and Israel's Peace Now movement work to increase light even at times of darkness, when the hope for peace shimmers but violence and belligerent policies threaten to blow it out.

DonateHad you asked us fifty years ago if we would still need to be working for peace, well into our eighties, we would have surely said no.

But we have not given up. Nor shall we.

We are inspired by the tenacity of our fellow Peace Now and APN activists who persist in keeping hope alive and making peace happen, such as the young activists and leaders that we met in the Peace Now office in Tel Aviv.

But just like the Maccabees, who took it upon themselves to seek oil to keep the flame burning after those eight miraculous days, we, too, cannot rely on miracles to keep the hope and possibility of peace burning bright.

We can't do it alone. As the forces of darkness, the enemies of peace, redouble their efforts to deny Israelis and Palestinians the peace that they want and deserve, we too must step up our efforts and increase the light.

Please increase your giving this year. Help us support President Obama and Secretary Kerry in their effort to broker peace for Israel. Please help us enhance hope. Help us increase the light!

Thank you,

Lois and Dick Gunther

P.S. Two young American videographers, interning for APN in Israel, accompanied us on APN's Study Tour this year. They have produced this short video with highlights from the tour. Our favorite moments are the ones featuring Peace Now's young activists, conveying the vibrancy and the dedication of these wonderful people. They reassure us that our efforts of more than five decades are extended and enhanced by Israel's best.

Your tax deductible contribution to Americans for Peace Now helps support Peace Now's essential programs.

Continue reading

News Nosh 11.25.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Monday November 25, 2013


Number of the day:


--Latest number of settler houses approved by Israel, Peace Now revealed. **

Continue reading

News Nosh 11.24.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Sunday November 24, 2013


Quote of the day:

"There are two issues that are the most fateful for this country and, of course, for me: education and peace. The subject of security I leave to the generals. Everyone else needs to be dealing mainly with these two issues."
--Dov Lautman told Yedioth financial reporter Gad Lior, who wrote in today's paper upon Lautman's death how much he admired him and how he never met anyone like him before.**

Continue reading

APN Welcomes Interim Agreement to Freeze Iran's Nuclear Program


Washington, DC - Americans for Peace Now welcomes news that an interim agreement with Iran has been reached in Geneva. APN President and CEO Debra DeLee commented today:

"We are happy that an interim agreement with Iran has been concluded in Geneva.

Continue reading

News Nosh 11.22.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Friday November 22, 2013


Quote of the day:

Mohammed and Michal to be wed at the Shahid wedding hall in Ramallah.
--Radical right-wing activities reach new level in Jerusalem as they try to discourage romantic relations between Jews and Arabs.**

Continue reading


Update: this action, now closed, ran in November 2013.  

The situation is urgent. This week the Senate is debating and voting on amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (the NDAA, S. 1197) - a piece of "must-pass" legislation that has become a magnet for amendments promoting various ideological agendas, including the anti-Iran-diplomacy agenda.

Call your Senators today (toll free - (877) 429-0678). Tell them: OPPOSE amendments to the NDAA that would undermine the current diplomatic effort to deal with Iran.

Continue reading

News Nosh 11.21.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Thursday November 21, 2013


Quote of the day:

"The test is not what the writer meant but what the reader understands."
--Justice Edna Arbel said in response to State Prosecutor, which does not want to indict far-right-wing rabbis on incitement for book, 'The King's Bible,' which they wrote about conditions in which killing a non-Jew is permitted.**

Continue reading


On October 31, Israel's Defense Forces pulled out its last troops from guard-posts in communities surrounding the Gaza Strip.

Continue reading

News Nosh 11.20.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Wednesday November 20, 2013


Quote of the day:

"I heard one of them saying he's in favor of human rights but not civil rights [for Palestinians]. Meaning, they shouldn't be allowed to vote. It's like in South Africa."
--Former cabinet minister Dan Meridor wonders what happens to the morals of his party, Likud.**

Continue reading

News Nosh 11.19.13

APN's daily news review from Israel

Tuesday November 19, 2013


Name of the day:

"Israel Trail of the Himalayas."
--Name of new trail for trekkers in Nepal, created with Israel's help [and great for positive PR - OH].**

Continue reading
1 2 3 ...463 464 465 466467 468 ...502 503 504