Run over twice

When we throw our soldiers under a bus we should expect them to get run over.

I don’t want to rehash the Azaria trial, whether he did the right thing or not.  That was for the court to decide but I sincerely hope that all extenuating circumstances will be taken into account when he is sentenced.

We send our boys and girls to the army, expecting the IDF to turn them into men and women within months if not weeks. Train them to defend the nation, be ready for traditional warfare but also look through underpants drawers for weapons while old women screech in their ears.   Ask them to process different and sometimes contradictory information in milliseconds.  To have foresight and hindsight and coolness under fire all at once.

It’s not humanly possible.  And when they screw up, and they will because they’re human beings in situations you can’t possibly prepare for, their lives can be ruined.

It’s just a few hours since precious young people in uniform were murdered in Jerusalem, mowed down by a released terrorist in a huge truck.   This time they were soldiers, another time they will be- and have been- civilians.  It’s hard to get away from the timing. That this monster picked soldiers to kill right after the Azaria trial to humiliate us with our own ‘morality’, to show that even our strong members are weak. I’m getting persistent reports that armed soldiers hesitated to stop him because they didn’t want to do the ‘wrong’ thing and be criticised or worse. Much worse.   So some even ran away.

I’ve learned to think of us as the enemy thinks of us; he gains honor from our hesitation, courage from our concern.   We’re demanding to have a moral army and society as we should, but the most IMMORAL thing of all is to let innocent people die.  Period.  Have we forgotten that in all the chatter about not losing who we are?   We won’t stop being the best of humanity as a whole (the measure to use, as opposed to comparing ourselves to perfection), but if we don’t protect ourselves all that talk will make a nice philosophy book but we won’t be here to read it.

Let’s face the facts.  We live in a battlefield not of our choosing. Some of us are in uniform and some are not but this is real and ugly and messy and mistakes will be made.  Let’s not blame the soldier or civilian who isn’t super human. Let’s identify the terrorists, their leaders both secular and religious as well as the so-called enlightened sector that enables and empowers them, and do everything we can to stop them.

Let’s not throw anyone under a bus anymore, or eventually we’ll all get flattened.

Be ready. Don’t be afraid. Fight to win.  Or we won’t.

About the Author
Eve lives her passion for her country and her people as a licensed Israeli tour guide, with her online Sunday radio broadcast "Rejuvenation with Eve Harow" on the Land of Israel Network and as a popular guest speaker in varied forums in Israel and North America. Eve, who earned a Master's degree in psychology before making aliya in 1988, is the Director of Tourism for the One Israel Fund; on the Board of Governors of Ariel University; a member of the JNF Speaker's Bureau and the Board of CAMERA's Israel affiliate. Eve served for over a decade as a councilwoman in Efrat, where she and her physician husband raised 7 children.
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