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THE GAZA WAR REACHES US
by Rachel Saperstein
Gush Katif Viewpoint 146
December 29, 2008
We have forty-five seconds from the time the missile leaves Gaza and reaches us. The tracking system lets each area know that a rocket is due to land in their vicinity. Then the siren wails. It may not land on your doorstep or penetrate your roof but it is somewhere around.
I know all of this because we got notices from the Home Front Command, the Regional Council and our own Neve Dekalim Council. The first two were slipped under our door; the latter, via email.
Today we even were visited by the army, which has taken over the Community Center. Reserve soldiers, both English speakers, knocked on our door, introduced themselves and asked me how I was feeling and could they come in for a chat about security. My first reaction was to say "You pulled us out of our home instead of cleaning up the mess we lived under for five years." My second reaction was my general politeness when people come to my door. I invited them in.
I assured them that I don't feel very secure in this cardboard house.
The two young men felt uncomfortable especially when they informed me that the Home Front Command was planning on bringing in large sewer pipes. Yes, you read that correctly, sewer pipes, made of thick concrete, for our protection. The pipes would be distributed to each cul-de-sac. When the sirens wail we would run outside, crawl into our very own sewer pipe and wait five minutes or at least till we hear the explosion. Then we crawl out and return to our cardboard homes.
I stared open-mouthed in disbelief. From our homes in Gush Katif to cardboard caravillas in a refugee camp to a sewer pipe. We have certainly hit rock bottom. I laugh as I write this. I have tears in my eyes as I write this. I was assured that the pipes would withstand an explosion close by but not a direct hit. Our bit of security.
The south of Israel has become a war zone. We went to Ashkelon yesterday. The health clinic I visited was practically empty. The mall in which it is located was mostly closed. Even the pharmacy, open when we arrived, was closed when we left at 4:30pm. Except for a shop selling mobile phones all was dark and deserted. A large city lives under the shadow of massive rocket attacks. Children can no longer go to school. Social and cultural events are cancelled.
Our local grocery and greengrocer are still well stocked. Mail is delivered. Electricity is still on. For how long?
This afternoon the sirens wailed. We heard three explosions in the distance. Friends are calling offering us a place of refuge. An emergency committee is being formed. I volunteer for it.
A reporter for a Danish newspaper called. Would I meet with him and
give him my take on the war. I agree, and he is thrilled to be
entering a war zone. Journalists are not allowed into Gaza, but those
who lost interest in us after our expulsion are interested once again
now that the war has reached us. I keep thinking of a motto from our
days in Gush Katif: "Those who flee from Gaza will find Gaza coming to them."
HOW TO FURNISH YOUR SEWER PIPE
by Moshe Saperstein
December 31, 2008
Rachel has been out inspecting the sewer pipes and reports they are larger than she first thought. As she put it, in her most diplomatic way, "I can walk in. You'll need a shoehorn." We haven't gotten ours yet.
Several of you complained to the authorities about the nature of our shelters and were assured they aren't sewer pipes, but muganiyot, which translates as 'teensy weensy shelters'.
What an amazing country this is! What a talent for verbal and physical deception and self deception. We are expelled from Gush Katif and the public is told we haven't been expelled, merely evacuated. We are assured 'there is a solution for every settler' and we are solutioned into refugee camps. We are put into cardboard structures which are verbally and physically whitewashed as 'caravillas'. And now our sewer pipe shelters are cutesy muganiyot.
The Jerusalem Post called Rachel yesterday asking permission to print GAZA WAR REACHES US. It will appear in tomorrow's Post. If I were normal I would be jealous. Thank G-d I'm not normal.
We have always had this "Picture of Dorian Gray" relationship. As I get older and uglier, she remains youthful and beautiful. Now I see this arrangement also applies to writing. As my own writing decreases in volume and quality because I'm choking on my bitterness, Rachel's output increases in volume and quality watered by her innate optimism and unshakeable faith. And I am near to bursting with pride at her success.
When the soldiers came to the door I took off, to Rachel's annoyance, refusing not only to talk to them but also to have to look at them. It was bitterly cold by our standards and drizzling, and I had fled in such haste I had no hat, sweater or coat. I stood in the drizzle, in pajamas, keeping warm by power-puffing on a cigar to keep it burning though sodden.
Yesterday the Great Dane was supposed to interview us and I again annoyed La Passionara by telling her she'd have to do it alone. After several hissy fits, foot stampings and hints of worse to come, I said I would stay. But I planned to sabotage things by pre-empting his questions with questions of my own:
"Have you seen the 1961 monster movie Reptilicus?" I would ask.
He would doubtless shake his head in the negative.
"You mean you haven't seen the only monster movie made in Denmark?"
Another shake of the head.
"Too bad. I wanted to ask you how a cultured, intelligent people could make the worst monster movie in history."
He would stare, vacillating between annoyance and amusement. Rachel would stare, smoke coming out of her ears.
"Did you know that when the monster snorts fire, it comes out looking like mucous?"
He would gasp. La P, with exaggerated politeness, would tell me I was dismissed. And as I walked out I would hear her apologetically explaining that I had suffered serious head injuries in the war...
Alas, 'twas not to be. The Great Dane called and cancelled his visit.
Several of you have, quite rightly, criticized me for the crudity of my descriptions of Barak and Livni. All I can say is, when you lose the skill to cut with a scalpel you use a bludgeon.
When Beastly Barak was ready to evict Jews from Beit Hashalom in Hebron he announced he was going to hold a series of meetings with settler leaders, thereby lulling our people into a false sense that expulsion was not imminent. When the air force was about to attack Gaza he announced that all border crossing were about to be opened, thereby lulling the Arabs into a false sense that action was not imminent. The lesson is, not only is he a devious bastard, but he views both our Jews and Gazan Arabs equally, as enemies.
Loathsome Livni, of course, is a pet hate of ours since her tenure as (In)Justice Minister when she prepared to remove children from their parents and operate kangaroo courts to place us in internment camps in the Negev.
And, with apologies for the outrageousness of this [clearly a product of my paranoia], I believe much of what is happening now is a collaborative effort by our Enlightened Ones and our Arab neighbors to get her elected prime minister, so that she can oversee our dismemberment. Surely her theatrical 'press conference' in Egypt "Enough is enough!" was designed solely to convince the gullible that her tapioca spine had turned to steel.
Terror victims, apparently, are entitled to private sewer pipe shelters, and Rachel showed me one today whose owner had furnished it with a rug, folding bed, lighting fixtures and, most flamboyant of all, a purple cloth covering. It looked like nothing so much as an unique Israeli invention, the Brothel Shelter.
Sadly, having completed his Arabian Nights fantasy, the terror victim packed his bags, sealed his caravilla, and fled for [presumably safer] parts unknown. One can only hope that even after the present hostilities end, the Brothel Shelter will be allowed to remain as a tribute to his ingenuity.
Moments ago there was a knock at the door. "Move your car! We are about to install your shelter." Our parking lot empty, except for one vehicle whose owner's whereabouts are unknown and which was removed by forklift, we are now ready to receive the government's gift.
Rachel is outside, chatting with workers, 'supervising' the
installation. I will leave it to her to describe the activity. What
scares me is that her eyes are aglow in a way I know too well:
Nadia Matar (email@example.com) of Women In Green distributed Rachel Saperstein's essay to her readers. Nadia is an activist who insists that Jews must not allow themselves to be ghettoized in their own land. They must be able to walk free anywheres in the land. This is what she wrote as preface:
The article below was written by our dear friend Rachel Saperstein, expelled from Neve Dekalim and now living in Nitzan. Rachel describes how the Gaza War has reached them too, expellees from Gush Katif, living in their cardboard homes.
Feelings here in Israel are very mixed. On the one hand we of course pray for a succesful IDF operation against the Arab enemy; on the other hand we have no trust in the real intentions of the Livni-Barak leftist government. People are furious that this government has done nothing for years against the kassams and the missiles, has done nothing to free Gilad Shalit, has agreed to give the Hamas months of quiet which enabled Hamas to arm itself with the most modern missiles that can reach Ashdod and Beersheva, and now that elections in Israel are around the corner and all polls show that Barak and Livni will be shamefully thrown into the opposition...all of a sudden Livni and Barak are waking up and are doing something. Something they should have done years ago. The fear in Israel is that this is just a brief and cynical show of strength by Barak and Livni to try to gain some political points, or even worse...to justify postponing the elections completely. Likud MK Steinitz even came out yesterday warning that a postponement of the elections will be a victory for terror.
Another fear we all have is that one of the secret purposes of this military operation is to bring down Hamas only in order to reinstall Fatah.
Since the Oslo agreements, the Israeli governments have tried to convince us that Fatah members led by the holocaust denier and arch terrorist Abu Mazzen are really "partners" that we can talk to and make agreements with. Yet, we have not been fooled and we know that this is a big lie. Fatah, Hamas, Jihad, Hizbollah and El-Kayeeda are all one and the same: Arab terrorists who work towards one goal: the destruction of Israel as a first step to a global islamo-fascist Jihad against the Western world.
We, parents of IDF soldiers, are sending our children to the army, knowing full well the price that we might pay, and this, on condition that our IDF soldiers will be sent to fight for the people of Israel and the Land of Israel. On the other hand we do not agree to have our children used as canon fodder for Abu Mazzen and the Fatah. At the contrary, we believe that all Fatah, Hamas and other terror leaders must be killed and their organizations destroyed once and for all.
So on the one hand, we all pray for the wellbeing of our brothers and sisters in the south, for our IDF soldiers and for a succesful military operation against the Arab enemy. On the other hand we must remember who is responsible for all this.
Let's remember that the Israeli Left laughed at us in 1993 when we warned that the criminal and shameful Oslo agreements would bring katyushas to Ashkelon and Ashdod . The Left even called us "hysterical warmongers".
Let's remember that when the IDf had full control over Gaza and Jews lived and flourished in Gush Katif, there were no katyushas on Israel at all. Only when the IDF abandoned Gaza in the year 2000, did the katyushas start falling; first on Gush Katif and Sderot and after the expulsion the Arab kassams reached Ashdod and Ashkelon.
Let's thus remember that it is Israel's abandoning first of Gaza and later Gush Katif that enabled the Arabs in Gaza to arm themselves like an army and launch missiles and kassams on Israel. Yes...let's remember that Ariel Sharon, Ehud Olmert. Tzippy Livni, Ehud Barak and all other pro-Oslo and "pro-disengagement" (expulsion from Gush Katif) politicians have created this mess, have created the monster of Hamastan in Gaza.
And thus let's make sure that we will have elections in Israel on February 10th. In those upcoming elections, let's make sure that we punish all those politicians who have enabled the Arabs to take over Gaza. Let's make sure Livni and Barak will be thrown far into the opposition. and let's make sure that this time the Israeli people elect a proud Jewish Zionist government that is not scared to tell the world:
The Land of Israel belongs to the People of Israel. No one has the right to give it away.
Luckily, lovers of the Land of Israel will have whom to vote for in these elections. Yesterday, finally, the real national camp united and formed one party. Members of Hatikva, the National Camp and Erets Israel Shelanu joined and recreated the Ichud Leumi, after the Bayit Hayehudi revealed itself to be a new version of the old wishy-washy Mafdal (NRP).
The renewed national Camp (ichud Leumi) has an excellent list. number one; Yaakov Katz (Ketzele) from Bet El, then MK Uri Ariel, MK Arieh Eldad, Dr Michael Ben Ari from Karnei Shomron, Uri Bank from Gush Etzion, Alon Davidi from Sderot, Dr Ron Breiman from Tel Aviv and so on. To read more on this good news: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/129089
Women in Green wishes this new party, that proudly waves the flag of Erets Israel, lots of success.
About Gaza: the time has come to free Gaza from its Arab occupation, to destroy once and for all Hamas and all other terror organizations, to reinstall Israeli sovereignty over Gaza and rebuild the 25 beautiful Jewish communities of Gush Katif. Rachel Saperstein and her friends must be able to go back. Back home.
In these times of war, may Hashem protect the People of Israel in all of the Land of Israel,
dec 30, 2008
Moshe Saperstein lost an arm while fighting in the 1973 Yom Kippur
War. A resident of Neve Dekalim in the Gush Katif area of the Gaza
Strip, Moshe was wounded in February 2002 when he drove his car into a
terrorist who had just shot and killed a young mother traveling in the
car in front of his. He writes frequently of his physical and
emotional struggles on the long road to recovery
He and his wife Rachel were among the thousands of Jews kicked out
of their homes in Gush Katif, in the Gaza strip, and forced into
temporary quarters so dismal, their still-temporary paper-based
trailers in Nitzan, seemed a step up. Contact them by email at
Moshe Saperstein lost an arm while fighting in the 1973 Yom Kippur War. A resident of Neve Dekalim in the Gush Katif area of the Gaza Strip, Moshe was wounded in February 2002 when he drove his car into a terrorist who had just shot and killed a young mother traveling in the car in front of his. He writes frequently of his physical and emotional struggles on the long road to recovery
He and his wife Rachel were among the thousands of Jews kicked out of their homes in Gush Katif, in the Gaza strip, and forced into temporary quarters so dismal, their still-temporary paper-based trailers in Nitzan, seemed a step up. Contact them by email at ruchimo@.netvision.net.il
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