NJ's Jewish and Palestinian communities worried for their families back home after deadly attack on Israel
Both Jewish and Palestinian communities in New Jersey said they're worried for their families back home in the aftermath of Hamas' deadly attack on Israel.
Sunday marked the second day of the rapidly intensifying war between Israel and Hamas. Nearly 1,0000 have been killed since the Hamas militants began their assault on Saturday.
Palestinian Americans in Paterson said they were worried about loved ones in their homeland.
"We all are very concerned about the lives of our families, our friends. We have friends over there. We have families,” said Paterson Deputy Mayor Raed Odeh.
Here in New Jersey, there has been support on both sides of the conflict. Many have focused on receiving updates from those on the Gaza Strip and Israel.
"There are so many people shocked and horrified. This was completely unexpected," aid Dov Ben-Shimon, executive vice president of the Jewish Federation of MetroWest New Jersey. "So many of my friends and family members are saying this is the Israeli Pearl Harbor, this is the Israeli 9/11."
The Jewish Federation of MetroWest New Jersey stood in support of Israel at an event in Short Hills on Sunday night. A number of local representatives attended the event which area synagogues and organizations put together.
"It's very important for us to be here this evening, so that our friends and families back in Israel and our community here in New Jersey see our support and understand how many people are grieving here in our New Jersey communities" Ben-Shimon said.
Israel undoubtedly sees the potential for a war that could open up on multiple fronts.
Many Palestinian Americans said they worry about the innocent lives at stake on both sides.
As for open conversation, however, some Jewish Americans said it's time to take a stand.
"We can dialogue with our friends at all times. There is a level of barbaric inhumanity beyond which you can't have these conversations," Ben-Shimon said.