Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Subtleties of Language, Israeli Rural Southerners Didn't "Desert" their Homes, They Just "Went Out"

I'm fascinated by how people speak and especially how they manage to give such inaccurate impressions. I sell clothes, and frequently when customers ask for something nice for their young son or daughter, after showing them children's clothes I discover that they are larger in size than I am.  After over three and a half years at the job I've learned to ask a lot of questions before escorting the customer to the right department.

Many years ago I took a life coaching course and we were told how important it is to listen, not only to the words but also to what isn't being said.

Today I caught an interview on the television news with someone from a small community in Israel's south. I'm not in any position to pass judgment on anyone. I know that many of the rural residents were advised to leave their homes during the war. And I certainly understand that between the disruptions of the alarms and the actual dangers of the Arab Gazan Hamas rocket attacks, it wasn't easy for anybody to stay home for the summer.  But I still I was amused at how one woman explained it:
לא עזבנו. יצאנו.
Lo azavnu; yatzanu.
We didn't abandon [our homes;] we just went out.
I don't envy their summer and the disruptions, bombings, destruction and death all around. Every couple of weeks the government would tell them that it was over, that the tunnels going under their homes were destroyed and the ceasefire would hold.

First responders and IDF soldiers at the scene of a mortar barrage on Kibbutz Nirim in the Eshkol region. (screen capture: Channel 2) Read more: 2 killed, 4 hurt in mortar strike on southern kibbutz | The Times of Israel Follow us: @timesofisrael on Twitter | timesofisrael on Facebook

Even today, less than a week before the school year is supposed to begin here in Israel, it is reported that tens of thousands of Israeli children aren't living at home and don't know where they will be going to school. Nothing is very clear The local governments don't want to be held responsible for transporting kids from community to community.

People who had lived in Gush Katif during the years of frequent Arab terrorism and rocket attacks insist that very few people abandoned their homes to escape the dangers. They also remember with great bitterness the support for Disengagement from those communities now targeted by the terrorists who now use Gush Katif as a base to attack Israel. Many of those who have suffered this summer had mocked the predictions that Disengagement would just bring the terror to them.

We are now in the Jewish Month of Elul. It's time to apologize and repent...


Sammy Finkelman said...

I don't know what it means by Yatzanu, but what she's saying is they didn't leave for good. She didn't add the word L'sha'ah - for a time, or L'zman (for the time (of war, presumably)

Yatza is a word used for going out of Mitzraim - and that going put is for good. Or for a long time. There is a kinha that compares that to going out of Yerushalyim. (B'tzaiti M'yerushalayim)

But anyway, she meant they didn't abandon their homes - they are ready to come back when it's safe.

Batya said...

Sammy, I also saw the "yatza" and Egypt connection, but for this I had to look at modern Hebrew and not Biblical.