The view from my veranda

The 19th Day after the 7th

The nineteenth day after the 7th

25th October 2023

Dear Friends, I know we are all exhausted, wrung out emotionally, but I want you to watch one of the bravest women I have ever seen; Rachel Polin Goldberg whose son Hersh was kidnapped, after he and his friends were blown up and he lost his arm. I want you to hear her words in the United Nations, before the Security Council of the United Nations, the corrupted Security Council of the United Nations. When you have listened to her calm, measured words, I want you to understand that immediately afterwards Antonio Gutteres the Secretary General of the United Nations spoke out against Israel’s actions in Gaza. In the words of Yad Vashem, he failed the Never Again test 

My friend Monica went to a major vigil in Central London and was given a poster with the name of one of the hostages, it was Hersh Goldberg Polin

Normally I try to keep the links to a minimum but I couldn’t in this case. The Secret Service of Israel interrogated those terrorists that were caught immediately after the massacre on the 7th of October. What they had to say was not surprising but the fact that they said it, that they felt that they were played, brainwashed, and spoke of it so easily was surprising.

A dear friend has been taking journalists and diplomats to the south, to the scene of the heinous crimes, showing them the pictures and videos that we have been spared. Concerned friends asked him if he could survive what he was forced to see in order to get the message across. “I am coping, I have to stand back from the horror. For me, what is painful over and above the terrible things we see, smell (still) and know about, are the more “innocent” scenes in the homes of front-line kibbutzim. A lounge where coffee is half-drunk on a kitchen table, a newspaper open, toys on the floor. But there is no-one home. A still-life that is repeated in house after house, of a quiet existence 07:00 on that Shabbat morning, before Hamas unleashed barbaric crimes against humanity on these peaceful folks. This is 2023 and we are the IDF. We will finish Hamas.”

Last night the missiles were virtually non-stop salvos, each missile stopped by Iron Dome, it is spectacular to see but the booms of the missiles combined with the sharp booms as Iron Dome eliminates them are equally terrifying for children and adults alike. The missiles reached all the way from Gaza to the coastal towns, Tel Aviv and Ra’anana and one or two even as far as Haifa. Life is not easy but we all know that this will stop, that we will wipe them off the face of the earth

I am not a panicker, I tend to be on an even keel, at least on the outside, but I decided that under the circumstances it would be irresponsible if I do not prepare the “Mamad” the safe room. We are told to take in water, (and of course some Cola Zero for Zvi) medicines, a first aid kit, snacks, a torch and so on. I decided it is better to be prepared than regret. I found the correct video explaining how to use the special air filter equipment and have the appropriate cell phone chargers, I’m Android and Zvi is iPhone and apart from that I am about to go to another one of the exceptional meetings in the village library. We are not hiding away in a corner, we know that all the previous governments ensured that we have bomb shelters in every public place, that we are warned, because in Israel, the army, the IDF which is a people’s army, does everything in its’ power to protect us. Here in Israel the fighters protect the civilians and so in the constant barrage of missiles the number of people harmed is minimal. In Gaza the brave fighters of Hamas hide behind mothers and babies, families and hospitals so the death toll is ghastly.

All our suspicions of the incitement to hatred in the UNWRA schools has been proven by Impact-se.

IMPACT-se  has found that at least one hundred Hamas terrorists are graduates of the UNRWA education system. At least 50% of school students in Gaza attend UNRWA schools; IMPACT-se reports show hate-teaching, incitement to violence in these schools.

In further evidence of Hamas-UNRWA links, on October 16, UNRWA deleted a social media post alleging theft of fuel, medical supplies; likely bowed to Hamas pressure. $75 million in US aid given to UNRWA four days prior to Hamas attack, originally withheld over concerns that funds would be misused. Only pressure from potential voters can force the USA to withhold funding to UNWRA.

Today I went to the supermarket and yet again, found that everyone responded immediately to my smile, ready to find something to talk about. A delightful man in the queue for the check-out, a man with two crutches, didn’t complain about the long wait, we talked about the fact that it is much harder to stand than to walk around with the supermarket trolley, about which cleaner to use, about the general mood….. until it was our turn, finally, to pay. It was the same in the lift (elevator) we all wish each other a better day, more appropriate than “have a good day”.

This evening we had another get together of the community and again it was incredible. We thought we were just introducing ourselves, but it turned into a “So where are you from and for how many generations is your family here” We each had a story, for some reason one of the people, Erez, knew everything about Wales, even about the Welsh language, but the most fascinating was a lady called Margalit who told her family’s story from Gdansk, through Russia, Poland, Romania and finally to Israel, at last. What a proud lady she is to be Israeli. We didn’t talk about the situation at all.

One of my Facebook friends, Anton Delin, wrote “They are turning the clocks back on Saturday night/ Sunday morning. How I wish we could turn the clocks back 22 days” Oh Anton, if only.

With love to you all from the most incredible civilian force ever. Funnily enough I’m not talking about the IDF, the truly magnificent body of Israelis, but about the way that the people of Israel, ordinary people have stepped up to the plate. It is heartwarming and it works like clockwork.

So many tears have fallen over the last 19 days, not just mine, not only the families of the fallen and the missing, not only the families of the hostages, but all of us worldwide. All we want if for them to come home, for someone to bring them home. My song for today will bring forth the tears you’ve been holding back, the Israel Opera singing Bring Them Home from Les Miserables.

Bring them home, please bring them home.

With love