Thursday, July 10, 2014

Bombs on Jerusalem - I'm pissed off

Today was the last day of the first summer session at the Conservative Yeshiva. To celebrate I went shopping with friends and had a generally lovely afternoon. Around 6pm I stopped back at the Yeshiva, retrieved my backpack from my locker and started walking to my apartment. At 6:09 pm the warning siren went off when I was less than 5 buildings from my apartment. A man in a car parked in front of me motioned for me to sit on the bench behind me situated next to a wall in a seemingly protected position. He sat down next to me and continued his phone call in Hebrew as the siren continued to sound. Turns out he was talking to a friend in Gaza.

Then the booms started. One. Two. Three. Four.  He estimated that the strikes were about 2 miles from us. We didn't know if there were others, if any got through, if anyone was hurt. Although we did hear ambulances (and very nearby) , we didn't see any plumes of smoke. We walked around -back toward the Yeshiva and the US Consulate building on Agron Street. Found one American 18 year old sitting on the ground in shock crying from his experience; we helped him on his way. Other than that, all looked pretty normal.  Ultimately we learned that 2 missiles were intercepted by the Iron Dome (B"H for that) and 2 missiles got through but no one was hurt.

He and I talked for a while more (turns out he's a journalist), exchanged business cards, and went on our individual ways.

On Debka. com I found:

« Breaking News »
Rocket salvo against Jerusalem 
DEBKAfile July 10, 2014, 6:09 PM (IDT)
Hamas launched a four-rocket salvo against Jerusalem Thursday afternoon, causing no damage or casualties. Two were intercepted.

Somehow this sounds so matter of fact, banal almost. In truth, that's almost how I feel. Matter of fact. I did call my husband to check in - wanted to hear his voice as I always do in extreme situations but more so so that he wouldn't worry when he hear the news. I ran into a friend from the Yeshiva and we exchanged hugs and talked a bit. But I didn't feel the upset and shakiness and fear that I feel like I'm supposed to be feeling. Like so many I know I are feeling. 

Some have asked if I want to go home to the States.  No way. I am staying here. There is no way I'd leave here now. I'm pissed as hell. Why is it okay for Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Sderot, all the other places in Israel to be bombed and NO ONE is saying anything? I don't understand it. 

I was raised to believe that human life is human life. All blood is red. All people have the right to live without fear. I know there are inequities here in Israel. There are other places too. I don't want to get into that. I just want someone to tell me why it is okay for this country's citizens and cities to be bombed when if the same thing, God forbid, happened to a city in the US or England or anywhere else there would be an outcry.  

Do people hate the Jews that much? What have the Jews as a people done to the rest of the world - now and throughout history - to deserve such a place, such a treatment, such a double standard? 

Part of me can't even believe I am typing these words to a blog that will go out on the internet. I usually shy away from overt politics as such. But I am sick - my soul is sick, my heart is sick. I was already sick from the situation here - the whole "Arab-Israeli politics" situation.  Now I feel deathly ill. And I don't know any remedies. 

To be created in God's Image - B'tzelem Elohim - is believe in the inherent right of all humankind (or homo-sapians as my dear friend and teacher Shaiya Rothberg would say) to live with dignity, without fear, with safety, with freedoms, with equality....  It is time to be fully who we are - Human - and repair this world we live in. 

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