ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 142

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US immigrant, Holocaust survivor join protest in Tel Aviv

Carrie Keller-Lynn is a former political and legal correspondent for The Times of Israel

Julie Gray, left, and her life partner Gidon Lev, take part in protests in Tel Aviv on March 16, 2023. (Carrie Keller-Lynn/Times of Israel)
Julie Gray, left, and her life partner Gidon Lev, take part in protests in Tel Aviv on March 16, 2023. (Carrie Keller-Lynn/Times of Israel)

An American immigrant to Israel and her Holocaust survivor husband are among the thousands of protesters blocking Kaplan Street in Tel Aviv.

Holding a sign saying “I didn’t make aliyah for this shit,” Julie Gray says she came to Israel looking to be part of the Zionist project and to live a life aligned with her values but feels like the government’s push to consolidate power over the judiciary is threatening that vision.

“When I came to Israel 11 years ago, I came because I believe in this country, its history, and what it embodies,” she says.

“It’s shocking to me the fascist turn this country is taking, on the heels of what happened in America,” say says, adding that “the Jewish state is cannibalizing itself.”

Her octogenarian husband, Gidon Lev, a Holocaust survivor, says that he lived through fascism and is deeply concerned about Israel’s current direction.

While Lev stopped short of saying that Israel’s situation amounts to fascism, he says that it is “dangerous for our existence as a free and democratic state.”

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