As did the Jews of ancient Persia when faced with the prospect of annihilation by their enemies, Jews and others across the world will stand together on Thursday, at the advent of the holiday of Purim, in solidarity with Israel in its fight against terror. Except they will be doing so on the internet.
Jews from every walk of life, in every corner of the globe will be able to participate in the online rally, scheduled to start Thursday night at 11:00 p.m. Israel time, 5:00 p.m. EST.
The history-making worldwide cyber-rally has the support of more than a dozen well-established Jewish groups and has been promoted through list serves, organizational websites and social networking sites. Notices have been flooding the email boxes of Jews in both hemispheres.
More than a million people are expected to log in and participate in the first-ever event, which will be kicked off with live speeches by civil rights attorney and staunch Israel supporter Alan Dershowitz and former Canadian Justice Minister Irwin Cotler.
The rally will continue through live cameras at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, where demonstrators will be joined by Chief Rabbi of Tel Aviv and former Israel Chief Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau and former government Minister Natan Sharansky. A parent of a boy who was wounded in the bloody terror attack on the Merkaz HaRav Kook Yeshiva two weeks ago will be present at the Western Wall as well.
In London, rally participants will hear speeches by UK Chief Rabbi Sir Jonathan Sacks as well as David Trimble, former First Minister of Ireland.
Solidarity rallies will also be held – and broadcast live online – in France, Australia, Brazil and in the United States. Holocaust survivor, Nobel Prize winner and author Elie Wiesel will address the crowd along with Marvin Hier, Director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles.
To log on and join Jews around the world as we stand in solidarity with the residents of rocket-battered Sderot and other western Negev communities under Arab attack go to http://www.together4israel.org on Purim night.
A bit of advice to its members from the Nefesh B'Nefesh (NBN) North American aliyah organization, an enthusiastic supporter of the event: "If you are not going to be near your computer at the exact time of the rally, please leave the browser on the page beforehand so you can still participate in your absence." The primary goal, the email notice reminded, is to get 1,000,000 people online at the same time.
"Seven solidarity rallies … on four continents … live on the web … one million people coming TOGETHER. Show you support for our brothers and sisters living under the constant threat of terror," urged the NBN notice.