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News and views on Israel, Zionism and the war on terrorism.

May 20, 2003

Gems Written Yesterday By Other Israeli Bloggers

Summed up by Allison Kaplan of An Unsealed RoomWho Rides The Bus?

So who rides the bus from a Jerusalem suburb into town at 5:45am? 44 year old Marina Tsahvirashvili does, or used to, on her way to work in the kitchen of Shaarei Tzedek hospital; so did 63 year old Yitzhak Moyal, on his way to the sorting room in Jerusalem's Central Post Office; and 42 year old Ghaleb Tawil, also a hospital worker; 34 year old supermarket worker Ronny Yisraeli; 55 year old Nelly Frob, maintenance worker in the police station in the old city; 52 year old Olga Brenner, a cleaner in a new immigrants radio station; and even 67 year old Shimon Ostinsky, once an economics lecturer in Kiev, now a guard in a car park in Jerusalem.

Just ordinary, hard working people, scrambling for a living, ride the bus from a Jerusalem suburb into town at 05:45am.

Who would blow up such people? 19 year old Bassam Jamal Darwish Takruri, son of a well-to-do Hebron family, would.

I look at the pictures, on this side and on this side. Here - a good looking young warrior, from an affluent background, taking his fate in his hands, sacrificing himself for an exalted cause, to be remembered and revered forever as a hero; here - people who got up early day after day and worked hard and long to feed themselves and their loved ones, to pay the rent, to survive. Not striving to be heroes, not striving to be anything. Just people. Like you and me.

Where is the poetic justice in this? Why are the cold-blooded murders of these people seen by so many as fitting revenge of the weak? Why is this young, good looking, physically strong and economically secure kid perceived as being more desperate than a 67-year-old economics lecturer making his way in the soft early morning light to his dead end job as a guard in a car park?

-- By Imshin

and here's a second one:

Depressing Day

It's been another one of those days: one of those days when, as a simple citizen sitting at my table working, I feel totally powerless. I can imagine a sudden and massive strike, of perfectly accurate missiles flying through the windows of Gaza and knocking Rantisi between the eyes; of the F16 dropping its load on Arafat in his headquarters and finally putting an end to that monster; and, perhaps, of the hope, the whisper of hope, that one day the Palestinian street might rise up and cry, hold, enough.

But none of these things will happen. This war cannot be won in six days. It cannot be won fifty years. Because the fact is that the Palestinians still dream of waking up one morning and finding that the Jews that defile their land will finally have been driven into the sea. The Hamas and the Jihad and the Hizbullah and Al-Qa'ida and Abu Sayyaf and a thousand other organsiations with different names will not be satisfied until they have forced their religion upon the world with the edge of the sword. The Western appeasers who thought that they could be bought did not understand them. Because they believe in nothing themselves, they assumed that everyone can be appeased. Because the flame of religion does not burn within them they thought that flame dead. It will perhaps one day consume them.

Imagine this: the whole world awakes one morning to the cry of the Muezzin calling the faithful to prayer. The poor are lead by their spiritual leaders to the mosque where they give praise unto Allah and his last true prophet, Peace Be Upon Him. The rule of God's law is supreme, those rejecting that faith have been destroyed or subdued. Peace and harmony reigns under the all-mighty empire of God on earth. True justice has prevailed. Vengeace against the wicked has been wrought. Tranquility, harmony as the sun rises over the desert once again.

Enticing, no? A dream perhaps. Unless you happen to reject that prophecy, to disagree with the enslavement of non-believers, to want to dance your own dance and sing your own song and shave and wear purple clothes and educate your daughters and not cut the hands off thieves. Unless you want the freedom of thought and of ideas, the freedom to do as you wish, to eat what you want to eat when you want to eat it. Because if that's what you want, then I'm afraid this vision is not for you: you're one of the condemned, and you will have to die in the bloodbath. That's the tough reality, my friend.