Sarah Tuttle-Singer
A Mermaid in Jerusalem

The people of Israel LIVE, and live well


The people of Israel LIVE, and wow, how we live: With all teeth showing when we laugh, with tears when we stand for our national anthem, over coffee, over whiskey, at trance parties on the beach, when we pray, and when we kiss. Am Israel Chai, there is no question… A big fat F&ck You to our enemies throughout history who would see us felled.

Make no mistake: We exist.

Look at us: We, the children of expulsion, of so much persecution, of diaspora, of Holocaust.

Our roads run from north to south. We have solar panels on our roofs.
Our roots run deep into the ground. We sleep under the stars.

Look at us: No one will drive us away. No one did when we were but a few thousand, when we nearly starved on the road to Jerusalem. But now, look: We are one of the strongest military powers in the world.

It bears repeating: We are one of the strongest military powers in the world.

Yes, we get hit with rockets — but we have sirens, we have shelters, and we have Iron Dome. And above all, we have all the lives that were saved for one simple reason: Because we ARE strong. Because we have the mental and physical and emotional space to invest our time and our care into being prepared.

This is the mark of the privileged – and we ARE priviledged: We have that luxury of time to plan ahead for that war that inevitably strikes.

And yes, there will be a war. Make no mistake, there are lot of people who hate us and want to kill us, because anti-Semitism in all its forms doesn’t just go away. It waits. It lurks. And even when it sleeps, it doesn’t sleep for long. But… the best defense is what we’re doing: We have a country. We have roads, and airports and harbours and an army. We have cafes and beaches and schools and museums and such beautiful babies.

Yes, there was a war last summer, and yes, my kids and I spent several nights in a public bomb shelter with melting ice cream and a can of pringles, and yes, I will f*cking KILL anyone who tries to kill my kids… or I will die trying. (And yes, we still have nightmares, and yes we still line our shoes by the door just in case we have to run again, but still: We lived. We’re living.)

And NO. No one is going to wipe us off the face of the earth. No one.

Because despite the fear embedded in our DNA and fed to us by some of our leaders, Israel is strong. And the people of Israel are strong. Am Yisrael  Chai in strength and determination.

And the only way we will be destroyed is by our own doing.


About the Author
Sarah Tuttle-Singer is the author of Jerusalem Drawn and Quartered and the New Media Editor at Times of Israel. She was raised in Venice Beach, California on Yiddish lullabies and Civil Rights anthems, and she now lives in Jerusalem with her 3 kids where she climbs roofs, explores cisterns, opens secret doors, talks to strangers, and writes stories about people — especially taxi drivers. Sarah also speaks before audiences left, right, and center through the Jewish Speakers Bureau, asking them to wrestle with important questions while celebrating their willingness to do so. She loves whisky and tacos and chocolate chip cookies and old maps and foreign coins and discovering new ideas from different perspectives. Sarah is a work in progress.