Tel Aviv University launched an exhibit at its 1,000-seat Smolarz Auditorium on Oct. 19, displaying photos of those abducted, missing, murdered and/or killed in the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel.
It shows both civilians and soldiers in the Israel Defense Forces.
The initiative was led by Daniel Zilber, chair of the student union, in collaboration with the university.
The exhibit is part of a broad initiative led by Shaked Benafshi, initiator of the students’ public diplomacy war room United Against Terrorism, which includes dozens of support rallies and exhibits at nearly two dozen universities in the United States and Europe to assist in Israel’s public diplomacy efforts and expose the horrors of the Hamas attack.
Participating campuses include Harvard University, Yale University, New York University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Columbia University, the University of Michigan and many others.
“At this time, we are still in the midst of the inferno, in the midst of war,” said Zilber. “Many of the dead have not been identified yet, the wounded are just beginning to heal—in body and soul—and our families, our friends, are lost. We are here to try to illustrate, even slightly, the extent of the horror, and show the world: We have been butchered.”
He continued, emphasizing that “this is neither a slogan nor a cliché: Despite the carnage, we shall triumph. Despite the disaster, we shall come out stronger. We, the students, the future generation of the state of Israel, will do everything to make sure that such a disaster never happens again, not on our watch!”
Benafshi, former chair of the National Union of Israeli Students, said: “We see students coming together in unprecedented ways to strengthen Israel’s publicity and stand behind us. Also, since we assume that as time goes by, international public opinion will probably turn against Israel, we regard the activities of citizens and students in dozens of countries worldwide as a strategic asset for Israel’s public diplomacy.”