The War, the Elections, and the Rain
I seems I always start a new post with "I haven't written in a long time". And here I am again. Life takes over and it seems I either never have the time, or never make the time, to write about life in the land. So today I'll take a little time and give another glimpse.
We've been home, here in Israel, about 4 and a half years now. In that time we've moved 5 times and I've held 5 different jobs. Tzachi has finished school and is looking towards the Army. JDC is working hard and looking for more work, Ari is wishing his lessons were in English even though he speaks Hebrew better than all of us. I won't deny it's hard to make it here. We struggle with too much month at the end of our money still, every month. But we all still love it here.
We just had an escalation entitled "Amud Annan" (the Pillar of Cloud that lead us through the desert after the exodus from Egypt), with Hamas in Gaza that lasted, well really 12 days. Officially it's 8 days, but those residents of Southern Israel will happily count the number of days at the beginning before we started firing back. We kept the TVs tuned to a special "Shabbat Radio Station" over the Shabbat of the escalation to hear when the attack sirens went off, so we knew what areas to pray for, and if the sirens would come in our region. It seems we would stop and listen to the sirens every 45 minutes or so, in the south, in Jerusalem, in Tel Aviv, everywhere but here.
There was a terrorist bombing on a bus in Tel Aviv (in case you didn't note how different that was, the bus bombings during the 2nd Intifada were in Jerusalem) and two of the terrorists responsible were caught right here in our little mall in Modi'in. Seems at least one of them was "local", though no Arabs live in our city, I guess they can still come in and hold jobs in the mall.
Most Israeli's don't agree with the ceasefire, me included. Though I was not in favor of a ground incursion into Gaza. I was in favor of a serious "Shock and Awe" campaign like the US waged in Iraq. Most Israeli's, me included, believe it's time to take Gaza back and tell the terrorists they can go live in Egypt, or Iran, or someplace else because we are just fed up with their lies and propaganda, their constant rocket attacks on our civilians, their lack of caring for the lives of even their own civilians, their preschools of hatred. Well, I could go on, but I won't.
Today is the Likud primaries. It's like the Republican or Democratic primaries. Except those we elect for Likud will sit in the Knesset (like the house or senate) based on how many seats that party gets in the general election next January 22nd. The PM candidate whose party gets the most votes will be the Prime Minister. We don't have a separate vote for each Knesset seat. Whoever wins the party chair then selects among the others elected which will hold certain portfolios - like the US Cabinet. It's a little more complicated than US politics, but likely just as underhanded and corrupt.
Of course again, I am voting for Moshe Feiglin and his Jewish Leadership block in Likud. Last time around he should have held a Knesset seat, but Bibi managed to swindle him out of it by some fancy, and not quite legal, tricks to push him just below the number of available seats that Likud won last election. This year Moshe is getting even stronger support, and most Likud voters are very disillusioned with Bibi, who says all the right things, but then agrees to a cease-fire with Hamas. Actually most voters are disillusioned period, for likely the first time since Oslo was signed is the majority of the population ready to say "Oslo is a failure, there can never be land for peace."
We look around at all our neighbors and the tension keeps escalating. Any one who says there isn't going to be a war is simply not looking at the region realistically. Turkey is openly advocating Sharia Law and condemning Israel for the recent escalation with Hamas. Syria's secular government (albeit dispicable despot) is hanging on by a thread fighting against several insurgent groups, who have recently signed a pact to cooperate to overthrow Assad. The majority of the fighters are Jihadist Muslims, even the US State Department was helping to recruit them (in case you didn't know what the Ambassador was doing in Benghazi before he was murdered). Egypt has elected the Muslim Brotherhood to rule their country and a constitution comprised of Sharia Law has been presented. Morsi just gave himself dictatorial powers, and they're the open conduit for Iranian money and weapons into Hamas in Gaza. Jordan is on the brink of economic collapse, the oil pipeline from Egypt that was blown up in the "Arab Spring" has never been rebuilt and so new oil is now much more expensive. Riots in the Street, etc. So today Iran pledged free oil to Jordan if they will open new trade and "religious tourism" agreements with Iran. Hmm, wonder who those religious tourists might be??? Hizbullah in Lebanon is ramping up their war technologies, vowing to be ready for the next war with Israel (that we're not interested in having by the way). Iran, well, we all know what's going on with Iran.
But stop, because this is what the world is doing. What is HaShem doing? Well, it's raining in Israel. Since the ceasefire it's been raining in Israel. Day after day. The sun comes out, and then the rain clouds come and it rains. Perhaps that doesn't mean anything to you, but we here in the land know it is HaShem blessing us, renewing us, reminding us that HE remembers His covenant with us. So while we think we know what's going on, really it's just time to stop and pray. Thank you HaShem for bringing me home to this wondrous place. Thank you HaShem that my daughter and her husband now live here in the land! (Wow, what a miracle that is!!) Thank you HaShem that You know the minds of humankind, yet Your plans will not falter, and Your promises will abide. Thank you HaShem that we live in a land that loves life, because You love us.
So though I may offer savage opinions on what's going on here or there. And moan and groan about, well almost everything. Don't be fooled, because I've just become an Israeli. But I haven't forgotten who is really in control. And I haven't forgotten to Whom I owe everything. And I am certainly grateful for my wonderful husband, and wonderful children, and adorable beautiful amazing wondrous grandchildren (whom I miss more than breathe itself! - may you all be with us soon Amen!) Tomorrow the sun will come up and I will wake to another beautiful day in this amazing place.
To my friends and family, pray for the peace of Israel, we all appreciate your prayers! Finally, pray that HaShem may be glorified.