Revered peace activist missing after Hamas assault

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Revered peace activist, Vivian Silver, is feared missing after she sent a harrowing text message during the recent Hamas assault in Israel. Known for her dedication to improving the plight of Palestinians and her efforts towards creating a shared society between Jews and Arabs, Silver’s disappearance has left both sides of the border in shock and devastation. Friends, family, and fellow activists are desperately awaiting news of her whereabouts, hoping for her safe return. As one of the Israeli captives in Gaza, Silver’s impact and reputation have led those close to her to believe that her captors will treat her with respect, but the uncertainty and lack of information surrounding her situation prevails. This article sheds light on the remarkable life and work of a woman who has dedicated her life to peace and activism, and whose absence is deeply felt by many.

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Revered peace activist missing after Hamas assault


Avital Brown sent a WhatsApp message to her friend Vivian Silver, a Canadian-born peace activist living near the Gaza Strip, as soon as she heard about the Hamas attacks in Israel. Silver, a 74-year-old grandmother, quickly responded, describing the chaos and danger in her kibbutz, Be’eri. However, Brown never received a reply to her immediate response. There is fear that Silver has either been killed on the spot or abducted by the militants and taken to Gaza. Known for her tireless work to improve the lives of Palestinians and promote coexistence between Jews and Arabs, Silver’s reputation extends on both sides of the border. Friends and family believe she is among the Israeli captives in Gaza.

Revered peace activist missing after Hamas assault

Revered peace activist Vivian Silver

Vivian Silver was born and raised in Winnipeg and moved to Israel in 1974. She dedicated her life to social justice and gender equality, first working for a nonprofit organization in these areas. In 1998, she became the executive director of the Negev Institute for Strategies of Peace and Development, where she focused on training and empowering the local Arab Bedouin community. Her efforts in this field, along with her Arab partner Amal Elsana Alh’jooj, led to them being awarded the 2011 Victor J. Goldberg Peace Prize for their commitment to promoting peace and development in society. After retiring in 2014, Silver became a leader of Women Wage Peace, a grassroots organization made up of Arab and Jewish women striving for a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Devastating loss for her family and community

Gershon Baskin, an activist involved in negotiating the release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit from captivity, has known Silver for over 30 years. He shares his thoughts on the tragedy, emphasizing the impact on her family and the entire peace-building community. Friends from Canada express their admiration for Silver’s lifelong dedication to peace and a shared society in Israel. Silver is a widow with two sons who live in the United States, having lost her American husband four years ago.

Revered peace activist missing after Hamas assault

Vivian Silver’s activism and impact

Beyond leading marches and rallies, Vivian Silver made a significant impact through her activism. She played a crucial role in helping Gaza residents receive cancer treatments, often driving them from the border to Jerusalem for their medical needs. Additionally, she advocated for fair pay for Arab laborers, ensuring that they received their wages even during times when they were unable to enter Israel. Her profound commitment to peace-building has earned her respect and recognition within the community.

Scope of the Hamas assault and hostages

The Hamas assault on Israel involved a surprise attack by militants who infiltrated the country through land, sea, and air. The extent of the attack has been devastating, with an unknown number of Israeli soldiers and civilians taken hostage by the militants. At Silver’s kibbutz, Be’eri, over 100 people have been found dead. Hamas has threatened to retaliate against civilian hostages if Israel continues to target civilians in Gaza.

Revered peace activist missing after Hamas assault

Silver’s recent rally and final encounter

Just three days before the Hamas assault, Vivian Silver led a rally in Jerusalem where thousands of women from different backgrounds marched together, calling for peace and coexistence. Silver’s final encounter before the attack was with Avital Brown, a fellow member of Women Wage Peace. They embraced each other warmly, and Silver invited Brown to visit her kibbutz, emphasizing how quiet and peaceful it was. Brown cherishes that last hug and hopes it won’t be the last time she gets to embrace Silver.

Hope and uncertainty for Vivian Silver’s fate

Avital Brown reflects on the warm embrace she shared with Vivian Silver and expresses optimism that it won’t be their last encounter. The uncertainty surrounding Silver’s fate is distressing for her friends and family, who desperately hope for her safe return.

Revered peace activist missing after Hamas assault


Vivian Silver’s disappearance after the Hamas assault has left her family and the peace-building community devastated. With a lifelong commitment to improving the plight of Palestinians and promoting a shared society between Jews and Arabs, Silver’s impact and activism were widely recognized and respected. The scope of the Hamas assault, including the number of hostages taken, adds to the urgency and concern surrounding her disappearance. Despite the uncertainty, there is hope for Silver’s safe return, and her friends and family continue to hold on to that hope.

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Revered peace activist missing after Hamas assault