Monday, January 05, 2009

War is Hell

It's easy for me to say that war is hell, from my (relatively) safe nest in the Tel Aviv "bubble," but this latest invasion into Gaza by the Israel Defense Forces can't be nice for anyone in the Middle East. Innocent people get killed, hurt, widowed, orphaned, sick with worry. If I had had the bad luck to live in Gaza with no place else to go, I would be pretty miserable and scared today. That being said, here in Tel Aviv I am also pretty miserable and scared, because I really don't understand why the Western media reports seems so anti-Israel. Do journalists in England and the US really believe that Hamas deserves sympathy, do they really want to see Israel disappear, or are they misguidedly trying to sympathize with innocent Palestinians, even those who voted for Hamas hoping for an improvement in their lives? Somebody please enlighten me: I feel thick-headed.

I am in the bind of wanting to know what's happening but not wanting to read any papers or listen to any broadcast news (in English) because I will end up just feeling worse, but it seems frivolous to do anything else, except maybe work on improving my Hebrew reading skills. How I wish this would end soon, but it may not.

I think I'll start knitting a hat for a soldier.


Carol Feldman said...

I am feeling very thick-headed, too. I do not understand how so many cannot understand what is happening here.
I also sit in Tel Aviv, worried sick and feeling frivolous if I am not constantly checking the internet for updates. I don't know what to do, either.

Savtadotty said...

I guess we are in the same boat. It's nerve-wracking. Wanna knit a hat with me :-) ?

Anonymous said...

Let me explain.
Many of us in Europe are against this war because

1 We don't think this war will bring peace in the long run, quite the opposite,
2 We are upset by the civilian suffering. Call it "misguided", we still don't think the gazan civilians deserve this.
3 Antisemitism will grow in europe.

Perhaps you'd understand better from reading this.

That being said, there are many europeans who support this. I guess you're reading the wrong papers.
Helen in London

Savtadotty said...

Helen, Thank you so much for your sensible and serious reply. it's such a relief to read a calm comment after the hysteria going on in the blogosphere. I agree with all three of the points you make, and yet I still support the idea of fighting terrorism on the ground. Not being a military or political strategist, I don't know whether the Israeli action is wise, but I do know we had to do something, and talking with Hamas in a diplomatic framework would simply legitimize terrorism, and talking to the UN has been notably and consistently unsuccessful in the past.

As for long-run peace, no politician could survive if he or she really admitted how long it will take for peace in this region: I'm guessing a few generations.

Gazan civilians don't deserve this, but even today there are civilians in - for example - Somalia who don't deserve the suffering they are experiencing, and the West doesn't seem to be doing much.

I read Haaretz every day, also blogs by Egyptians, Lebanese, and left- and right-wing Israelis.

I've just posted another idea (above) on the subject, and I applaud the EU and Egypt for their current efforts. Note they refrain from even mentioning Hamas in discussions of cease-fire and truce. I can only admire the Hamas masterminds for authoring a drama that has gripped us all, at the expense of the innocent.