After the new version of Google Earth was released a few weeks back, I can now get high resolution images of the yishuv (settlement) in which I live. I can even make out the exact street and house. Amazing technology.
This also enabled me to measure the exact distance from my home to the center of Ramallah – approximately two and one half miles (well within Qassam-range, God forbid). Although it would be pretty difficult to walk it (being that there is my town’s security fence, a valley, quarry and a pretty steep hill or two in between), the proximity gave us pretty good seats for the fireworks show that took place last night.
The fireworks display was not limited to Ramallah and Kalandiya. They were going up from Arab towns and cities all over the West Bank (some corroborating blog posts from other Jewish bloggers in the area).
So what event happened last night that was worthy of such widespread celebration among the Arab towns in the West Bank?
They were celebrating the dozens of Katyusha missiles that landed in cities in Northern Israel yesterday. Missiles hit Nahariya (30 year old woman killed on her balcony, 30 others wounded), Rosh Pina, Kiryat Shmona, Acco, Tzfat (70 year old woman killed). And two missiles were fired at Haifa, Israel’s Northern city and port. In all over 70 missiles fired in a 24 hours period. (A little deja vu if you remember the celebrations going after 9/11).
If you will claim that Israel is dealing more punishment than it is receiving, that may be true. But there are some very distinct differences here:
- Israel is not aiming indiscriminately at civilian targets with the intent to injure and kill civilians
- Israel does not celebrate the civilian deaths that may inadvertently occur on the other side
That is right. Though it may surprise some of you, there were no fireworks going up in Tel Aviv and Be’er Sheva last night celebrating the bombardment of Hizballah headquarters in Lebanon or the death of a family in Southern Lebanon.
The citizens of Israel are behind their soldier 100%. We are not happy when civilians on the other side are hurt or killed. But we realize that when civilians on the other side rejoice at the death’s Israeli civilians that this is not a war that will be won by sending back roses. I just read a blog post giving over some quotes from the US Civil War general W.T. Sherman (who basically razed the south during the final stages of the war). These statements could very well symbolize the attitude that may be necessary in order to emerge victorious (and not just against Lebanon). The longer Israeli thinking reflects the attitude that holding back will somehow discourage the enthusiasm of those who celebrate out deaths, the longer this will go on. This has been the way of the Israeli government over the past few years. Over the past three weeks, this attitude has begun to crumble. The sooner it is done away with, the sooner this will all end.
- Every attempt to make war easy and safe will result in humiliation and disaster.
- War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out.
- The object of war is a more perfect peace.
(This article was cross-posted on Newsvine)