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Breaking the Silence

October 22, 2023
by Mark David Siegel

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.

Hello everyone,

Two weeks have elapsed since violence erupted in Israel and Gaza, and with each passing day, the mayhem grows.

Here at home, the horrors have been cloaked in a strange silence. Like many of you, I’ve spent hours gazing at pictures of Israeli children, murdered or kidnapped, and pictures of Palestinian children, lying on stretchers or climbing through rubble. Yet, few discuss the conflict out loud. In quiet corners, we whisper our concerns. We ask Jewish and Muslim friends if they have loved ones they’re worried about, and, it turns out, many do.

As physicians, we uphold the lives of all people, without exception. In our clinics and hospitals we care for refugees fleeing war zones, torture victims seeking asylum, and veterans who can’t escape their trauma. We don’t call people good or bad, and we don’t label patients deserving or not. We open our doors and hearts to all.

The same must be true in Israel and Gaza, where we must speak up for everyone.

In the days ahead, let us hope for the safe return of the hostages and let us hope for the cessation of violence. As physicians, let us defend the principle that all lives are sacred- Israeli, Palestinian, all.

Wishing peace for all,


Conflict in Israel and Gaza, in Photos

Submitted by Mark David Siegel on October 22, 2023