Adele Raemer
Life on the Border with the Gaza Strip

“No Injuries Sustained; No Damage to Property Incurred”

Last night, at 2 a.m., another rocket was fired into Israel from the Gaza Strip. (In Hebrew, this form of attack is insensitively called “tiftufim” or “light showers”, as if the threat were nothing more than the falling of water from the sky.) Still, sirens screamed again jolting hundreds of residents of southern Israel from their sleep; sending them running to safe-rooms (if they have them) or to the nearest stairwell (for those with no other option).

This time, I was spared that early-morning exercise. I live on a kibbutz on the border, but further south of yesterday’s rocket attack. I learned about this latest event in the morning when I was shaken awake by the reverberations of the IDF retaliation bombing. That was around dawn.

No Damage to Property

Last night’s rocket landed in an open field, north of the Gaza Strip, and landed somewhere between the kibbutzim in that area and the industrial area of southern Ashkelon. All the residents from those areas were unceremoniously jolted from their sleep.

The troubling part of this is that the Morning News announcement following such an event always states: “A rocket was fired into Israel from the Gaza Strip. No injuries were sustained; no damage to property incurred”. OK – no damage to property, granted. But “no injury”? Do you have ANY idea what it’s like when your heart is sent from 0 – 200 mph in a nano-second as you are suddenly and loudly thrown from your sleep by an incoming rocket warning? Do you KNOW how long it can take to calm down after experiencing that, and get back to sleep? Have you ANY idea how children who lived through last summer’s war are affected by such instances?

I’ll tell you how: regression to bed-wetting, nightmares, fear of going to sleep, difficulties concentrating in school… the list goes on and on. Those of us who live here are all PTSD to one extent or another, and the sound of an alarm, or the “Red Alert” (for those of us who are closer to the border) heave us all back to our flight instincts to take immediate cover.

Of course, the only solution is getting back to the table and reaching a political solution. The same old they-bomb-us-we-bomb-them doesn’t work. Never did. Been there, done that, got the t-shirts.

Rather than just sitting by and feeling helpless, there is a multi-partisan lobby that is being founded officially in the Knesset next week: MKs Yifat Shasha-Biton (Kulanu), Haim Yellin (Yesh Atid) and Omer Bar-Lev (Labor) are leading it. The opening meeting of the new Lobby for Israel Borders (Western Negev and Northern Israel) will take place next Tuesday, July 21, 2015 at 12:30 in the “Jerusalem Hall” in the Knesset. Please join us. Because every time a rocket is, fired regardless of whether it hits a building or just sets off alarms, there IS damage done, and we REALLY have NO time to waste.

(If you wish to participate, please sign up with an email to obarlev@knesset.gov.il including your name and ID number.)

Lobby Launch

About the Author
Born in the USA, Adele has lived in a Kibbutz on the border with the Gaza Strip since 1975. She is a mother and a grandmother living and raising her family on the usually paradisaical, sometimes hellishly volatile border. She is affiliated with "The Movement for the Future of the Western Negev", and "Achdut Im Hadarom" for sanity's sake. She also moderates a FB group named "Life on the Border". https://goo.gl/xcwZT1 Adele is a teacher of English as a Foreign Language, as well as a teacher trainer and counselor for the Israeli MoE for EFL and Digital Pedagogy. She blogs here about both Life on the Border, as well as about digital pedagogy, in "Digitally yours, @dele". She has recently become a devoted YouTuber on the topic of digital stuff. (https://goo.gl/iBVMEG) Her personal channel covers other issues close to her heart (medical clowning, Life on the Border, etc.) (https://goo.gl/uLP6D3) In addition, she is a trained medical clown and, as any southern clown would do, clowns as often as she can in the pediatric ward in the hospital in Ashkelon. She was recently included among the Haaretz "Ten Jewish Faces who made Waves in 2018" https://goo.gl/UrjCNB.
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