The mayor of Los Angeles and other city and community leaders unveiled an artwork exchange between the children of Los Angeles and Sderot.
In LA this week, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (photo) unveiled the "Red Dawn" art exhibition. Red Dawn is the alert system in Sderot that warns of incoming rockets from Palestinians in Gaza.
"This artwork tells the story of the trauma faced by these children in a most compelling way,” said John Fishel, president of the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles.
Councilmember Jack Weiss brought the Sderot students work back with him from Israel in August. During the violence in Israel this past summer, students from the Science Orthodox School expressed their feelings through art, many of them emotional drawings that reflect the trauma with which they have grown up.
"By welcoming this artwork, the people of Los Angeles are showing their support for and solidarity with the people of Israel," Weiss said.
Villaraigosa called Sderot Mayor Eli Moyal this week to express his concern from Los Angeles for the citizens of the southern Israeli city following a barrage of rocket attacks this week that left one woman dead and several people injured.
“My thoughts and prayers go out to Mayor Moyal and the people of Sderot,” Villaraigosa said. “I have tremendous respect for Mayor Moyal and the people of Sderot, who live their lives in the shadow of terror. It makes you truly grateful for the peace and safety that we have here in Los Angeles.”
The last time Villaraigosa spoke with Moyal in the summer, the conversation was interrupted by multiple Kassam rocket attacks on Sderot.
Sderot, a town of 24,000 about 1 kilometer (.6 mile) away from the Gaza Strip, has been the target of most of the crude homemade Palestinian rockets, Kassams, for six years now. The rocket attacks swell and subside at intervals, but since Israel pulled out of Gaza a year ago, they have escalated and the attacks have especially escalated in the past two weeks.