Letter-Writing Campaigns Gain Steam

In honor of the Jewish New Year, letters and cards are sought for lone soldiers, Gilad Shalit and Jonathan Pollard.

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Hillel Fendel, | updated: 16:59

Rosh haShanah card
Rosh haShanah card

In honor of Rosh HaShanah, the Jewish New Year, at least two well-wishing letter-writing campaigns have been initiated.

For Lone Soldiers
A Facebook campaign has been started to send letters to soldiers in the IDF who have no family in Israel. The campaign, which can be visited here, states that the Lone Soldiers have “come from all around the world to enlist in the IDF and defend the State of Israel.” 

The organizers call on readers to “show our gratitude” for those who “risk their lives” in this manner “by sending a letter expressing our thanks and inspiring them to continue doing the great job they are doing. Tell them how proud they make you! Tell them how inspiring they are!” 

The letters will be screened, and "no missionary letters will be tolerated." Each letter will go to a different lone soldier, and will be distributed by the Lone Soldier Center.

For Gilad Shalit
Another campaign calls on the public to send greetings to captive IDF soldier Gilad Shalit, who has been held by Hamas for four years without having been allowed a single visitor.

The Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations has set up a webpage where supporters can send greetings and blessings to Shalit, 24, who has just marked his fifth birthday in captivity. The greetings will be passed on to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) for delivery to Shalit. However, there is no guarantee that the greetings will actually get to their destination; the ICRC says it has thousands of letters and cards that have piled up over the years in storage in Gaza, waiting for Hamas to allow their delivery to Shalit.

For Jonathan Pollard
Israeli citizen Jonathan Pollard has languished in American prison for nearly 25 years, after the plea bargain deal the Israeli and US governments had agreed to was abruptly violated by Judge Aubrey Robinson, who sentenced him to life in prison with a recommendation that he never be paroled. His crime - one count of passing classified information to Israel - was one that is generally punished by 2-4 years in prison. The Justice for Jonathan Pollard site writes, "Now more than ever, as Jonathan Pollard begins his 25th year in prison, your letters are a precious resource and sorely needed. Please write to Jonathan!"

His address is:

Jonathan Pollard #09185-016
c/o FCI Butner
P.O. Box 1000
Butner, NC

U.S.A. 27509-1000