Jewish Singer Turned Soldier: ‘This is a War for Peace’

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Barry Segal

Yair Levi never wanted to be a soldier in the Israel Defense Forces. His life aspirations were to become a singer and writer in his native land of Israel, and to bring peace and harmony to his people through song.

And while Levi has had the opportunity to do just that, through very unfortunate circumstances, he has also had to serve his country in the IDF. With war now raging in Israel with the terrorist organization Hamas and other enemies wishing to destroy Israel, Levi has been forced to put his career goals on hold—for a second time—and put his country before himself.

A Jewish Levite, Levi has served as a captain in the IDF off and on for eight years and was called up immediately after Hamas brutally and unexpectedly attacked Israel on Oct. 7.

All Israelis are required to serve in the military for a period of time when they turn 18 years of age, and Levi performed his duty at that time.

“We all have different dreams than to be soldiers,” Levi said in an audio interview with Charisma News from Israel. “When we are 18, we have to go into the army. I was a singer before I went into the army, then I become a soldier, a fighter.

“When I quit, I got back into music and became a singer again. And now, I’m back to being a soldier. This is how it is in Israel. When we have a war, we all come together and we need to fight for our land. It’s not easy, but we have to do it. We have to defend our country. We are just regular people, but we also are soldiers because we are needed.”

Israel is surrounded by enemies who have not only expressed their hatred toward the Jewish people, but many have warned that they simply want to destroy Israel. For many, they know, but won’t admit, that Israelis and the Jewish people are the “apple of God’s eye.”

As a Jewish singer, songwriter and music producer in Tel Aviv, Levi creates a unique mixture of Jewish soul music with his faith and his biblical values. Through his songs, his website claims, he is “able to revive ancient music and bring it to today’s world.”

His music also “creates a connection between people from different cultures and regions.” One of his latest efforts has certainly done that.

Levi recently collaborated with American worship leader and songwriter Sean Feucht and Lebanese singer and songwriter Carine Bassil to create the song “God of Israel,” an anthem to hope and peace in a world gone crazy. The song meteorically rose in less than a few days after its release to the No. 1 spot on the iTunes Christian genre chart.

It is a song that is sung in Arabic, Hebrew and English.

There has been some controversy connected to the release of the song as iTunes and Spotify, on its download page, have refused to acknowledge Levi’s participation in the song. Feucht and Bassil are convinced that it’s because Levi is Jewish.

Bassil is a woman without a country. As a Christian, she has been banned from Lebanon since Dec. 2022 for preaching and singing about God’s Word.

“We must obey the Word of God no matter what the price,” Bassil says. “In the end, He is the true God of Israel, whether they like it or not.”

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The global media has painted Israel as a warmongering nation full of hate for its “attacks” on Palestinians. It has tried—and succeeded in many circles—in making Israel the villain in this war between it and Hamas.

But Levi has a different take on the conflict, and one that he knows God shares with him.

“This war is a war for peace,” Levi says. “People don’t want to go to war, but after all of the terrible things that Hamas has done—murdering people including babies—the people of Israel need to protect themselves.”

Yair says he realizes the war will make next month’s holiday of Hanukkah—a time of peace the Jewish people—difficult. Soldiers, like him, will be away from their families and will not be able to enjoy the holidays as normal.

As the song “God of Israel” conveys, “In the land of peace, God of Israel, blessed be your name.”

“This is a fight for peace. We are trying to eliminate the hatred,” Levi says.

May the joy and peace of God fill the hearts of Jews—and Palestinians—so that they may live in harmony. {eoa}

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Shawn A. Akers is the online editor at Charisma Media.

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Yair Levi (Yair Levi official YouTube channel screenshot)

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