Israel endures a wave of terror and like many times before, we will prevail
By Rolene Marks
Once again Israelis have bowed our heads in sorrow. Once more our hearts have been broken.
Over these past two weeks, Israel has endured another wave of terror that resulted in the loss of 11 lives. Terror waves are not a new phenomenon but they bring with them a whole gamut of emotions. Fear, overwhelm and heartbreak are just some of them.
I don’t know about you but I am angry. I am angry. I am angry at a world that has ridiculous expectations of Israel while ignoring the unique security challenges that we face on a daily basis. I am angry at the world that expects Israel to do everything in our power to supply military weapons in a conflict that has nothing to do with us. The fact that the weapons that people are demanding we send may not be the right kind for this particular war; or that their own countries have yet to provide military aid says more about the critics than Israel. Israel is already making an enormous contribution and will continue to, despite our own precarious security situation, which we have been reminded of yet again this week.
While it is greatly appreciated that foreign ministers have condemned the recent wave of terror, the hypocrisy of those that proclaim to be social justice activists but stay silent when our citizens, including a Druze soldier and Arab Christian police officer, are murdered is staggering. Who cares about some dead Israelis right?
I am angry at a world consumed with the slap of one self-absorbed actor of his peer at an awards ceremony that is so out of touch with reality; but cannot spare a thought for victims of terror. I am angry, so angry that those who consume their days with sham “human rights” reports, which contains the bitter language that whitewashes terror, stay silent about the murders of our civilians. Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and others who denigrate Israel can shove their accusations of Apartheid. Israelis live, work and die together. These past two weeks, Jews, Arabs and Druze and two Ukrainian refugees were murdered. We have mourned them, together. At the funeral of slain Druze officer, Yazan Falah, which was attended by thousands, his uncle spoke about how he left behind “an army of friends”. This was evident in the sea of people holding their mobile phones with the torches lit up in tribute to him. Falah had insisted on joining the Border Police, despite being exempt from combat service as an only son.
During the mourning period that followed, a group of Jewish school children on a trip took time out to pay a visit to his family. The message was simple. Yazan was a son of Israel – and all of us mourn his loss.
The same respect and love was exhibited for murdered police officer Amir Khoury. Several busloads of Haredim (Ultra-Orthodox) departed from Bnei Brak, the scene of a horrendous terror attack where 5 people, including Khoury who had tried to eliminate the terrorist were murdered. The buses were emblazoned with signs that read “Khoury is an Israeli hero” in Hebrew and were filled with scores of Haredim, bound for Nazareth to pay their respects to the slain officer. Khoury was buried in a Christian ceremony, with his coffin draped with the Israeli flag, bearing a wreath in the shape of a cross and surrounded by thousands, including his fellow police officers, United Hatzalah rescue workers and heartbroken Haredim.
This is the Israel that the Amnesty Internationals and Human Rights Watches don’t want you to see. There is no Apartheid here, no separation, just unity in grief.
I am angry at the disproportionate obsession of the media, global institutions and political pundits who gleefully point fingers at Israel but are silent when our citizens are murdered. The UN Human Rights Council just passed four resolutions against Israel but barely managed to scrape any together to excoriate Iran, Syria or Belarus!
I am angry at the forces of evil who want to derail the sincere, hard work by many towards peace in our region that has seen far too much bloodshed and sorrow. One of the stated intentions of the terrorists who carried out the Hadera attack that killed two 19-year-old Border Guards, Yazan Faleh and Shirel Abukart, stated that they wanted to disrupt the historic Negev Summit that was taking place at Sde Boker. This historic summit, hosted by Israel and attended by the foreign ministers of the USA, UAE, Bahrain, Egypt and Morocco was a seminal moment for the advancement peace efforts and increased cooperation in the region. The terror attacks were roundly condemned by all the visiting dignitaries.
Terrorists cannot and MUST NOT win! I am angry and filled with sorrow that there are now 11 families that in the space of one week have been shattered forever. They will never be the same.
Terrorism is nothing new. Israelis have experienced waves of terror before and two intifadas and even though every attack and every incident feels very personal, we will not let it break us.
Israelis have bowed their heads as victims were laid to eternal rest. We have cried rivers of tears.
But we will remain hopeful for peace to prevail. We will remain resilient. We will remain unbroken. Because that is how we win. That is how we defeat terror. We will hang our blue and white flags, the symbol of hope of thousands of years, proudly. We will stand strong. We will let the anger and sorrow wash over us and we will triumph over terror. We will remain resolute, resilient and grateful for our security forces working around the clock to ensure our protection and stamp out terror.
May the memories of all who have been killed by terror be blessed. Am Yisrael Chai!
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