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B’nai B’rith marched in solidarity with Israel today at the March for Israel rally on the National Mall.

The march united communities nationwide in support of Israel and its people to urge the swift release of the 240 hostages held by Hamas and combat increasing anti-Semitism. The march was scheduled to coincide with a Congressional session where lawmakers were deliberating on emergency supplemental aid to Israel. An estimated crowd of 300,000 gathered to show their support, waving the Israeli flag and holding signs that called for action.

“The March for Israel today in Washington was a powerful show of unity for Israel, but it also sent a clear message about the difference between good and evil,” said B’nai B’rith CEO Daniel S. Mariaschin, who attended the March. “The Jewish community was joined by many friends in Congress, faith groups and so many others in declaring steadfast support for Israel in its war against Hamas, for the fight against global anti-Semitism and to remember and advocate for the immediate release of all hostages. We are proud to stand with Israel now, and always.”

Israeli President Isaac Herzog addressed the crowd live from the Western Wall, vowing that Israel will rise again to rebuild itself and condemning the rampant anti-Semitism following the Hamas attack.

“We come together as a family one big mishpacha, to march for Israel,” Herzog said. “To march for the right of every Jew to live proudly and safely in America, in Israel and all around the world. We come together to march for good over evil, for human morality over bloodthirst. We march for light over darkness.”

Deborah Lipstadt, the U.S. special envoy to monitor and combat anti-Semitism, reaffirmed President Joe Biden’s strong support of Israel and U.S. dedication to fighting anti-Semitism. “Jew hatred, the world’s longest, oldest form of prejudice has pierced and permeated too many countries,” Lipstadt said. “The fight will be a long one, but Jews have faced such challenges before and have overcome them.”

Rachel Goldberg, mother of one of the hostages, Hersh Goldberg-Polin, delivered an impassioned speech about the fate of her son and other hostages, noting that the world stood by as they were, in effect, buried alive.

“Hundreds of thousands of people stood together today in the U.S. capital city and with one voice declared support for Israel’s defensive actions against Hamas,” B’nai B’rith President Seth Riklin said. “It was an inspiring and meaningful demonstration to the world that Israel, and Jews throughout the Diaspora, will defend the home of the Jewish people from terrorists.”

As the war continues, B’nai B’rith will maintain our support of Israel by keeping our community informed, condemning war-related anti-Semitism and raising emergency aid for Israel.