Aviva Schalit: No price is too dear

Regev, Goldwasser families call on gov't to up efforts to release soldiers.

By
July 12, 2007 21:34
2 minute read.
jpost services and tools

jp.services1. (photo credit: )

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

"I parted from you without a mother's kiss, because you don't like kisses. So I gave up on it that once," Aviva Schalit said, recalling the last time she saw her captive son, Gilad. Thursday night in Haifa, she read an open letter to Gilad at a rally on behalf of the three soldiers kidnapped last year. In a rare public appearance on the anniversary of the start of the Second Lebanon War, Schalit looked out at the crowd of thousands and spoke as if she were talking to her 20-year-old son. "My dear Gilad," she said as she recalled how she had taken him part of the way back to his base on June 22, just three days before he was kidnapped by Hamas next to the Gaza Strip. "It was the last time I saw you and heard your voice," she said. Later that day, she called him, but his cellphone was off. Nor was she successful in the days that followed. "On Sunday, after I heard about the incident, I left you a message on your phone to call me. I'm still waiting," she said. Schalit recalled for Gilad some of the events of the last year - including how Hizbullah kidnapped reservists Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev on July 12, an event that sparked last summer's war. "On August 20th we celebrated your birthday and I was sure you would be with us to celebrate Rosh Hashana," she said. The holidays passed, "and you didn't arrive," she added. "A year has passed, 12 months, 55 weeks, 382 days. I'm counting days and I am imagining that you are counting the seconds. You're good at math." The horrible year that has passed for her family, Schalit said, was nothing compared to what her son has endured in captivity, where he was "wounded, alone, in the dark, in hell." "Gilad, we won't be quiet and we won't let another year pass without you," she said. She promised she would do everything she could to bring him home by continuing to meet with world leaders and other influential people. In reference to the argument over whether or not the price that Hamas has demanded for Gilad's return was too high, Schalit said, "Nothing is too dear." One should not quibble over what to pay for children who are sent on military missions for the state the way one might argue over the price of an apartment or a car, she said. This past year, the Schalit family has heard from their son twice. In September, they received a letter, and a year after his capture, Hamas sent them a cassette on which he spoke to them. But the Regev and Goldwasser families have heard nothing from Eldad and Ehud. Regev's mother passed away nine years ago from cancer. His sister-in-law, Tair, spoke at the rally. She called on Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Ehud Barak to fulfill their obligations to the three men by doing everything in their power to bring them home. Tair said if Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah truly desired the return of the men held in Israeli prisons, he should negotiate a prisoner swap. "Why aren't you hurrying to reunite your mothers with their sons," she said. Miki Goldwasser, Ehud's mother, also appealed to Lebanese mothers to support a prisoner swap. "Mothers shouldn't be afraid of threats," she said. "I have written to you and asked to meet with you, but I haven't gotten an answer. But I'm calling on you from here: Rise up and fight for the release of your sons."

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Jisr az-Zarq
April 3, 2014
Residents of Jisr az-Zarqa beckon Israel Trail hikers to enjoy their town

By SHARON UDASIN