Faith and cultures unite in support of Israel

Participants raise flags just prior to the launch of the flotilla Sunday. (Brian Trout man/WCIV)

By Brian

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) -- As racial tension grows in Israel over illegal immigrants from Sudan and surrounding areas, locals united to raise awareness of the issues one of America's strongest allies faces.

A flotilla that began in Shem Creek, went out to the battery, under the Ravenel Bridge and back took place Sunday. Organizers said they felt it was the best way to the get the message across.

"We felt that in Charleston the weather is always so beautiful, there would be a lot of people out walking on the battery and walking on the bridge," said Murray Treiser, who as a part of his involvement with Chabad of Charleston and the Lowcountry became involved in the planning of the water parade.

Treiser said what was months in the planning resulted in three community boats and about 20-30 private boats donned with Israeli flags and people of several races, backgrounds and faiths.

"There's Jewish people, non-Jewish people, there's Christians," Treiser said. "We just want to mingle together and show that we are a united people -- Americans who are strongly supportive of Israel. We just want to show everyone here in Charleston how united we are in support of Israel."

There are reports that indicate Israel is currently managing a situation near its borders that involves about 60,000 refugees. While the government has not made moves to legalize the presence of the immigrants, they also cannot force them out due to regulations from the United Nations that prohibit forcing refugees back into a crisis.