Rally for Israel Draws Hundreds - myfoxcarolinas.com

Rally for Israel Draws Hundreds

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Sunday afternoon is usually spent enjoying the weather with family or getting ready for the week ahead, but this Sunday hundreds gathered at Romare Bearden Park in uptown to show their support for both Palestine and Israel.

The Rally for Israel was organized last week, but a smaller group of Palestinian supporters showed up Sunday to demonstrate as a response to the rally.

People supporting Israel brought flags and signs and sat on the lawn to listen to an hour's worth of speakers... some of whom traveled from different parts of the country to be present.

Congressman Robert Pittenger was there to demonstrate his support for Israel. He said Sunday's rally was a good way to get the attention of elected officials and let them know that peace is the goal.

"Anything good that happens in this country has happened because the people got involved," said Pittenger.


Retired legislative assistant Joel Segal said the first step towards peace is bringing the two sides together. "You don't negotiate with your friends, you negotiate with your enemies," he said.

The speakers led the crowd in songs and prayers, and though most of them had very thoughtful and urgent things to say, the mood at Romare Bearden Park was generally uplifted and supportive.

Some were worried that the presence of support for both sides would create drama, aggression, or even violence. But the rally began and ended peacefully.

Representatives from both sides emphasized the importance of demonstrations like this one for the purpose of education. Danya Neyfeh from the Palestinian American Community Center said "Most Americans don't have a solid understanding of both sides."

She says peace cannot be achieved until people really understand what's really happening.

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