Turn away from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it. Psalms 34:14 (The Israel Bible™)
Dozens of participants took part in “Kites for Peace” event Monday, in Los Angeles’ Balboa Park. The event, which the organizers hope will be repeated around the world, was held to raise awareness of the latest wave of kite terrorism, affecting Israel’s southern border communities with Gaza.
Several dozen children and their parents took part in the event, preparing and flying the kites together in a unique display of love and support for the residents of Israel’s border communities with the Gaza Strip and the IDF soldiers protecting them. The project, called “Kites for Peace,” was the initiative of World Bnei Akiva (WBA) emissaries in LA, Eli and Shani Skaist. During the evening, the mostly elementary school children, learned about the nefarious use of kites by Palestinians in Gaza – who have released similar projectiles, not in the name of enjoyment but destruction. Their actions have caused damage to more than 740 acres of Israel’s agricultural land. Participants wrote greetings and messages to the residents of Gaza border communities and IDF soldiers on their kites which were then flown on a small aircraft.
“This has been such a heartwarming event,” said the Skaists, the Bnei Akiva emissaries who initiated the event. “The enormous physical distance between us and those who lives in the Gaza border communities is a difficult distance to bridge. Our hearts are with Israel and we felt that we had to do something to help. So, we decided to call on Los Angeles residents to come out and identify with the residents of Israel. We are all praying that the kites flown by the children of Los Angeles yesterday will be an important reminder to everyone that the kite is an innocent toy, light years away from the destruction it has caused in Israel.”
“Initiatives such as the ones we saw yesterday in Los Angeles are a source of strength for all of us,” said Roi Abecassis, Director of World Bnei Akiva. “Our emissaries have taken on an important and painful cause. In the name of World Bnei Akiva, I call on our branches all over the world, and indeed on youth movements in general to continue this incredible initiative, and to call upon Jewish communities worldwide to support the people of Israel in this difficult time, ” he concluded.