Wednesday, July 16, 2008

... And the bodies returned

Like most of Israel, I knew the exchange today would only return us the bodies of Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser. But when I saw the coffins on Haaretz's front page today, it just hit me. I was sad & angry, and those emotions stayed with me the whole day. But this blog isn't about the anger I'm feeling towards the 'human beings' celebrating up North at the return of their Arab 'hero', or towards our 'peace partner' president leading the Palestinian people in congratulating the family of that same Arab 'hero'. This blog is about showing solidarity with our mourning families, who today realized the two year nightmare was sadly a reality. As our President, Shimon Peres, said earlier, "Today we are all the Goldwasser and Regev families."


Sometimes you wonder - can this country continue that way it's going and actually survive? Can we continue to be led by a government that's more interested in their seats than their people and country? Can we continue to let our education system slump to the level of 3rd world countries? Can we allow the situation with the Palestinians to continue and erode both societies' ability to pursue a future? It gets you down ... You start to think that the love and passion that drove you to this country was perhaps a love that was meant for the dream that has been overcome by the capitalist dream. You tell your good friend about your disappointment with the road your country is going, and how important it is to get foreign passports for your kids just in case ... and he replies:

Let me tell you this - a few years ago I got pissed off about this country and while talking to my dad, I expressed thoughts similar to what you are saying now. He told me to cut the BS. He said this is our only country and the diaspora is not the place for Jews. This is from a man who fled Warsaw in World War 2 and was a refugee in the Soviet Union throughout the war.

His dad is 100% right ... We've been been through tougher times, and we, the people with immortality's secret, have survived and flourished. This is not an easy time, but here too, we'll overcome and push forward.

I don't have another country ... אין לי ארץ אחרת


giramondo said...

I understand your frustration about the direction the country is going in. So many people are more concerned about their own lifestyles than the good of the country, of Clal Yisrael. The leaders have set the example.

This pattern has been progressing over the years. Not that long ago, people used to leave their front doors unlocked in Israel. No one really had much to steal and there were few thieves.

Tikkun olam is possible though. It takes much courage to go against the stream -- it needs leaders and a movement by people who will set the right example for others. Little by little one can reverse the trend.

Living modestly is good for the soul... it causes one to focus on what is important in life.

You're right, this is your country, its problems are your problems, you are not a guest in a foreign land. You have a voice, you can do something about it

My condolences to the Regev and Goldwasser families and all of Israel.

Jimmy said...

Good post, mate. We are going through a testing period. It is looking concerning and even frightening.
However, your bottom line is the most important one - never give up on this country. As your good friend's dad said - this is the only place on the planet which is actually ours, and we must keep it for the next generations.

Let me quote a song we both know from another place. It's rather simplistic, but it can be applied on our situation in this country:

When you walk through a storm
Hold your head up high
And don't be afraid of the dark
At the end of the storm
Is a golden sky
And the sweet silver song of a lark

Walk on through the wind
Walk on through the rain
Tho' your dreams be tossed and blown
Walk on, walk on
With hope in your heart
And you'll never walk alone
You'll never walk alone