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Stand up against terrorism and violence: a call to the international scientific community

A letter sent by the top of the Weizmann Institute to colleagues in academia around the world requesting that they not evade the condemnation of terrorism on 7/20/32

Dear colleagues and friends,

We are writing to you today not only as scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science, but also as fellow researchers advocating the values ​​of truth, knowledge and humanism.

As you all know, last Saturday, the holiday of Simchat Torah, Israel was subjected to an unprecedented attack by Hamas terrorists. More than a thousand innocent Israelis were murdered - mothers, fathers, babies, children and the elderly, as well as young revelers and revelers at the party. Hundreds of female and male Israel Defense Forces soldiers were killed or wounded. Bodies of victims were mutilated, many women were brutally raped, and about 200 Israelis were kidnapped to Gaza. Many are still missing and it is not known what happened to them. Houses were burned to the ground and entire settlements were wiped out. At the same time, Israel is under an incessant missile attack from Gaza, directed against the civilian population.

Wounded and hurting, Israel unites to help survivors and provide support to those in need. Even though the destruction is great and many, the people of Israel are showing the world what courage is and what a firm stand is these days.

Although the atrocities committed by Hamas are indisputable facts, these days we encounter incitement, fake news and horrifying anti-Semitic propaganda in the international media, social media and campuses around the world

Unfortunately, the pain and loss did not escape the Weizmann Institute community either. As a leading research institution in Israel, we are committed to doing everything we can to help the nation heal and rebuild - from hosting refugees on campus to organizing donations for the victims. In the long run, we will help rebuild our country with the best tool humanity has: knowledge, education and science.

Although the atrocities committed by Hamas and the tragedy of the Israeli people are indisputable facts, these days we also encounter incitement, fake news and horrifying anti-Semitic propaganda in the international media, social media and on campuses around the world. Painfully, even after seeing videos, photographs and other clear evidence of Hamas atrocities, many still believe that what happened last Saturday is just another manifestation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict - a conflict in which there are apparently two sides equally responsible for the deaths of innocents.

This is a moral equation that is, quite simply, unacceptable. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth. We are fighting pure evil in the form of fundamentalist extremists who, instead of life, seek to sow death and destruction - while using the Palestinian civilian population in Gaza as a human shield. The values ​​that guide the jihadist killers of Hamas are completely opposed to the values ​​of enlightenment and progress on which science is based.

In the face of such a horrendous injustice, it is clear that our scientific commitment goes beyond the limits of the laboratory; This is a collective responsibility that we share together as members of the international scientific community.

We must recognize that as scientists our words carry weight, and our public utterances have the power to influence opinions, policies, and ultimately, the course of history

By virtue of this responsibility, today we call on each and every one of you to stand by our side against terrorism. Just as we search for truth in science, so too must we search for truth in the world in which we live. The power of the scientific community is enormous, and our voices can resonate far beyond the walls of our institutions.

Recent events have shaken us to the core, but they have also reminded us of the importance and power of joint action, and the impact we can have on the world. We must recognize that as scientists our words carry weight, and our public utterances have the power to influence opinions, policies, and ultimately, the course of history.

May our voices be a light at the end of the tunnel.

Hoping for quieter days,

Management of the Weizmann Institute of Science

Prof. Alon Chen, President
Prof. Ziv Reich, Vice President
Prof. Roi Ozari, Vice President for Resource Development and Communication
Prof. Irit Sagi, Vice President for Innovation and Technological Applications
Prof. Alon Hermlin, Vice President for Administration and Finance

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