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Thursday, August 7, 2014

The Words of "Ordinary Israelis" About This Recent War

An Israeli soldier from the Paratroop battalion returns from the Gaza Strip on Monday
An Israeli soldier from the Paratroop battalion returns from the Gaza Strip on Monday
Tsafrir Abayov/AP
I asked some facebook friends what they think and how they feel now that the Israeli Government has been withdrawing from Gaza. My friends live all over the country and are from different backgrounds. I'll just quote them, identifying with a letter or name if that's what they requested. I've copied their replies.

Yiska from Jerusalem:
If it were only the end! Leaving the terrorist leaders alive, leaving thousands of rockets and an untold number of tunnels will only invite another war. The time to finish things off is now!

Esther from Netivot:
I am very frustrated. This leaves things unfinished, once again. It's just a matter of time before the rocketing here in Netivot starts up again. We can't put out trust in anyone but Hashem and YES you can quote me! The only 'offensive' decision made by our gov't was NOT to go to Egypt for the previous cease fire talks!! Everything else was defensive. Feh. They didn't finish up the business as they admitted that 30% of the stockpiled rockets remain and there may very well be more tunnels. So how the #@$@%^&%*^$ can Pikud Ha'darom call citizens to return to Zikim and other areas where tunnels were discovered? DUH! It's just a matter of time. 'Yisrael Betach 'ba'Hashem, ezram umaginam hu!"

Freyda from Netanya:
 Agree with the above. Also very concerned about the tunnels dug up north. What is the government doing about those? Why don't they finish off the terrorists properly instead of having to go in again and again - and again!!!

Shira from Israel:
 I am suspecting that it was orchestrated this way for some strategic reason that the gov't is choosing not to share with the public. Its too odd to be simply us whimping out. I really do believe that there is a military strategy here. That being said, the whole thing was rather anti-climactic and more than a little frustrating.

D from the south:
 I agree with Shira from Israel. There are obvious many things we don't know, and that's OK. I do not believe that we've heard the last of the Hamas or the Jihad but....I believed that Hashem will watch over us. He has for soooo many years.

Bracha from Beersheva: Maturity is looking at the many different variables, and knowing that what we are seeing is still only part of the picture. When we went into this war, we (average citizen joe) had no idea that neutralizing the terror tunnels were a major goal of the army's. What we FEEL is that this is not "the end" of Hamas or of the rockets aimed at us. Whether the ceasefire is a good thing for now depends on the negotiated settlement, and whether we can and do orchestrate the end of Hamas' regime in Gaza. Another thing we FEEL is happy and relieved to have our soldiers home, and on a personal level to go back to our daily routine, without worrying about unrelenting rocket fire. What we PRAY for is that the unity we have felt over the past month is not a passing phase. On another level, we PRAY that the Israeli public comes to a greater understanding of what we are doing here in Israel, what our attitude to G-d's gifts should be, and that this leads to a clear unequivocal statement on our right (no, obligation) to annex the areas we earned in a defensive war in 1967, What we KNOW is that G-d has watched over us until now, has orchestrated miracle upon miracle, every day for each of us personally, and that He continues to run the show. And that's why my answer to your question, Batya Spiegelman Medad is that it would be presumptuous of me to give a one-word opinion. May Hashem keep us all safe.

Freyda from Netanya: Wow, Barbara, that's a superb commentary!

Esther from NetivotAmen, Bracha,  Bravo! Beautifully put!! Batya, you MUST mention her words. Bracha, I have tears in my eyes!!! You wrote so eloquently what I'm sure THOUSANDS here in the south feel. Sending you a hug!! ((((  )))

H: What end? I haven't had my computer on for over a day which means I'm completely out of touch. There isn't going to be a genuine end until Sinai is in Jewish hands.

A Soldier's Mother: As with the last time, many of us feel that what wasn't finished this time will, inevitably, come back to haunt us again. We definitely hit them very hard; we saved many lives by knocking out the tunnels...but there was more that needed to be done, so say the soldiers coming and so say most of Israel. As to calling this the "end" - sadly, there has been no "end" for 66 years and I highly doubt we've gotten to any end now either

C:  I agree with what Shira wrote and also the beautifully put comment that Bracha stated. Well said!

Tovah from the south: Let me say this. I went shopping this morning in Netivot. As far as the residents of the city are concern the war is over. The ceasefire will hold. The streets are busy, the stores have customers. Kids are walking around and hanging out at cafes and Falafel joints. The city is alive. Baruch Hashem. I think for the most part BIBI and the heads of the IDF did a great job planning this mission. There are many decisions that we are not privy too as to why they did this or that.. Our chayalim were amazing. They served with pride. . When it is time for us to take over and resettle Aza, Hashem will lead the way for this to happen..this mission was not that time.

A taxpayer disgusted with the lack of leadership in Israel: We need to secure the safety of Northern Israel and the entire country before terrorism upon Israeli Jews ends. 

H:  It won't last. The quiet won't last even as long as it did last time. When the quiet is broken the fighting will be worse, possibly much worse, than it ever has been.

Chaya from Beit Shemesh: I like Tovah's comment. Very positive and truthful. I also believe what H  said to be true. I also don't believe the quiet will last long and the situation will be much, much worse, but as Tovah said, Hashem will lead the way. G-d willing, the next time we will be worthy to witness Hashem destroy the enemy for us through wonders and miracles with Moshiach leading the way! Halavai.... B'ezrat Hashem.

Tovah: My friend just commented on my timeline that Ashkelon is the same. Crowded street..back to normal. I have been reading different postings from people who live all over the country. I have come to the conclusion that the residents of the south see the ceasefire in a different light. This ceasefire is a breather for us. The people are out doing everyday things. Children are playing outside. Stores are busy. Traffic is heavy. Parking lots are full. Whether or not the ceasefire holds is another question, but for now it is good and positive.



yitz said...

While I can appreciate the upbeat mood expressed by many of the commenters here, I am sick & tired of seeing/hearing "well, we don't really have the whole picture." While that may be true, it doesn't take a rocket scientist (pun intended) to know that the job was NOT complete, that there are MANY rockets & tunnels left, and that Hamas is still in power. Why do we have to wait for the worst in order to be rid of this menace once & for all???

Hadassa said...

I'm "H". I haven't lived through the current missile barrages in the Negev, but I did live in Gush Katif for 14 years. I responded to Tovah's second to last comment somewhere else with: The calm before the storm - returns. It would have been better to finish the job. Over 60 Jews, most of them soldiers from all over the country, died in an "operation" that barely changed the status quo. I think that outsiders realize that the people most directly effected are enjoying the respite. We're just thinking about the long term, or not so long term, future and getting very, very worried. I do have a friend in the south who agrees with me.

Like yitz above, I can't be upbeat. I plan to head down south later today, but I have no illusions about the temporary quiet.

Anonymous said...

Good article. Agree with these two above commenters, Yitz & Hadassah.

Leah said...

This garbage isn't over yet. It "Feels" like birth pangs to me- like 10 centimeters dilated. Almost no time or very close between each contraction. It "Feels" like the crowning of the head- may it be geulah that emerges!
I pray for the safety of Israel's soldiers and her Jewish citizens and anyone who G-d deems innocent.
Over? Nope, sorry. Look at what's going in with Putin in Russia and Ukraine. North Korea and many many other countries. Over? Nope.
Don't mean to be a downner, yet I am a realist.

Batya said...

To put it simply, enjoying the ceasefire is like pigging out on a too sweet and rich cake. It is fun to eat but you will be sick and or fat from eating it.