Civil Mobilization in Times of War



13 November 2023, 19:00 - 13:00 


Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, headed by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, held a webinar on the moving Israel civil mobilization during the war.


In the webinar panel, the following inspiring alumni took part:


  • Prof. Merav Roth - psychoanalyst specializing in grief, a leader in therapeutic efforts since 7/10, and an alumna of the Humanities Faculty at Tel Aviv University.

  • Adi Aton Lapidot - CEO of the Shashua Family Foundation, and an alumna of the Arts Faculty at Tel Aviv University.

  • Ron Scherf - Lt. Colonel (res.), one of the founding members and leaders of the "Brothers in Arms" organization, and an alumnus of the Engineering Faculty at Tel Aviv University.

  • Prof. Sagit Mor - from kibbutz Kfar Aza, professor at Haifa University Faculty of Law, and alumna of Tel Aviv University Faculty of Law.

The panel moderator:

  • Prof. Galit Yovel - Professor at Tel Aviv University School of Psychological Sciences and Sagol School of Neuroscience, and an alumna of the Social Sciences Faculty at Tel Aviv University.


Adi Aton Lapidot started by saying that:


"This meeting is important. First of all, I think that in times of war, everyone looks for the groups they belong to in order to be supported by and support them, and Tel Aviv University alumni community is absolutely such a group that has accompanied me for years."


"The Shashua Family Foundation chose to build a rehabilitation program for preschool children and to support small businesses which, unfortunately, we have experience with from the days of the Coronavirus ... I experienced October 7 first of all as a mother and it was very scary. Within two days, we at the Shashua Family Foundation, have already divided into teams working vigorously."


"Every crisis is also an opportunity and I hope that we will find solace and hope in the amazing civil mobilization that we see today. For example, that the young men and women who left everything to volunteer with children will stay in that occupation."


Ron Scherf noted that "we decided to put the past behind us, get under the stretcher, and contribute to Israel's resilience."


Prof. Merav Roth stated that:


"The human soul is always faced with two options: to agree with reality (about its dangers) or to refuse it. Should I go back in time to what I have no control over or be present and focus on what I can control; to stand up or fall down? What we call "the impulse of life" is always there and if there is someone around you in crisis, know that there is also a part of them that is looking for help and wants to heal! Do not despair of finding it in every person and in yourself. And last: from survivor's guilt to survivor's duty - everyone feels guilty, even those who went through the attack themselves. Guilt prevents us from healing. But we can connect to our duty as survivors: to rebuild. To succeed in this we will have to release our survivor's guilt and mobilize with all our strength, which we have!'


Prof. Sagit Mor had this to say:


"The business of raising funds for the kibbutz helped us, the members, to move from dealing first with the horror to hope and later to formulating a vision of revival. The need to explain to ourselves what we are raising money for, and to the donors what the needs for which they are donating, strengthened our belief that Kfar Aza will rise and be rebuilt, even if it is not yet clear exactly how and when."


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