Going to a War Zone

106

“You realize you may be going into a war zone?” I was asked as I booked my ticket to Israel. The time is Passover, a major holiday in Israel, and unlike all my other travels, this time I do not dismiss the notion outright and altogether.

The time to go to an all out war against Israel is actually as good as any. Iran has benefited greatly from the turmoil in the Middle East (which she may have actively orchestrated in part), the constant rise in the price of a barrel of crude and from the world’s focus turning away.

Iran has already shown it will stop at nothing, now fully aware the USA has no deterrence power over its agenda. Flexing a naval muscle and sailing via the Suez Canal was just Iran’s latest show of force.

There are reports that chemical warheads were caught on the way from Libya’s rebel (“Freedom”/”Obama’s Democracy”) forces to Hamastan’s Gaza. They usually hand out candy in celebration of a particularly brutal execution of Jews or an attack on the USA, but Mustard Gas is particularly potent in enticing their twisted minds.

Other reports indicate there are CIA agents active on the ground in Libya. We speculated before there were CIA agents in Tahrir Square, and desktop intelligence gathering must be ruled out in both Egypt and Libya.

Hamas anti-tank missile hit a school bus in Israel this morning. One kid is wounded, but there is no longer danger to his life. Luckily most other school children disembarked prior to the hit. For all we know, this could have been “occupational hazard” or “collateral damage,” simply put an operator who did not aim properly, so the casualty was a school bus instead of a tank. As long as there was a hit!

To reinforce the act, more than a dozen mortar shells were fired at Israel immediately following.

Israel did not wait. While President Peres called Hamastan a “Terrorist Zone,” the Israel Defense Forces reacted.

We all remember eight years of the IDF bombing empty fields or vacant tunnels after direct hits. But what I remember more than anything is my first stop at Sderot. I was expected at the Police Station there for a tour of the area. I parked around the corner, just next to a pre-kindergarten.

Since it was my first visit to Sderot, and since I did not know what “Tseva Adom” (“Color Red”) meant in practice (I thought it was a siren, its tone going up and down, but it turned out it was just the words themselves repeated over and over again), I went to the fence and asked the kindergarten teacher if I could speak with the kids.

Besides, it was an excellent opportunity to interview the local residents, Sderot’s future leaders (they were four year old then). I simply could not resist, knowing I would be told the truth, straight out, unembellished; the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

Israel is blessed in so many ways, but one in particular is the fact that she has been spared multiple deaths of children. Somehow, by a miracle and a special heavenly protection, none of the hits, including direct hits at schools, resulted in mass deaths or casualties. Not that the enemy would not have liked it or has not tried repeatedly. They actually have candy ready to be distributed were such a terrible thing to occur.

Israel however was not spared the thought of what would happen “if” the enemy fulfilled their agenda, and it has not escaped anyone’s mind. How would Israel react if she had to attend a funeral of fifteen, thirty or a hundred children? Would Gaza still exist?

While Israel has shown for eight long years it really did not care much about its residents in the south (possibly since they do not have a “voice” like the residents of Tel Aviv), Israel after the Second War in Lebanon (2006) and Operation Cast Lead in Gaza (2008-2009) has upgraded its military’s preparedness.

Thus the military was ready to respond, had something of unimaginable proportions happened, but would it be given the green light by the government? On its own, the IDF does not have permission to carry out unauthorized missions.

Will Israel’s political echelon have the resolve to act and stand tough?

Israel has allowed time and again its political and international clout to diminish into nonbeing. “We will never negotiate on Jerusalem” was the consensus across the political spectrum, from Extreme Right to Extreme Left, yet both the Olmert-Livni government and the current Netanyahu-Lieberman government have already agreed in principle to do just that.

Israel cannot be taken seriously any longer, for everyone now knows she does not take herself seriously. Unified Jerusalem, Israel’s eternal capital, the very essence of the existence of the Jewish People in the Land of Israel, has turned into a place of no consequence, just another paper floating in the air.

Would Israel decide to conquer Gaza again, or would Israel obliterate parts of Gaza if Hamas were to hit and cause the death of a group of children?

Israel probably would not hesitate to respond, with might whose magnitude and resolve no one remembers since 1973 (it was all downhill from then).

The question then remains: Will Hamas receive the green light and directive from Iran to escalate its war against Israel?

Iran, after all, does not care what cost will have to be paid by Hamas. Hamas does not really care what cost will have to be paid by the Gazans. Neither Iran nor Hamas cares any about human life (except that of its leaders that need to be protected at all costs). They are all merely obsessed with bringing Israel’s end.

Is the situation ripe enough for a Passover War, the War of all Wars against the Jewish State?

We know there will eventually be a major conflict. We also know that this is not a game, but a determination to finish the job that Hitler and all those before began.

We further know, without a doubt, that Israel’s position is worse than ever before. First, her enemies have strengthened over the decades. Second, she has lost much of the vision, the drive and the necessity that were an integral part of her growing up as a modern country under constant threat. Simply stated, like a person who got married, had kids and is now ready for retirement, Israel is no longer the 20 year old in the prime of youth ready for battle.

Third, and most ominously, there is a growing consensus that Israel is Evil, that anything bad-unimaginable even to enlightened society -that might happen to her is justified, and her own fault.

The process of demonization, delegitimization and blood libels has been so deeply rooted in the collective modern civilization’s mindset, that it is impossible any more to separate Israel from the worse-Evil-that-ever-existed. The world community sees Israel as feared and repulsive, and the root cause of what is coming her way.

There will be a time after the next War when a new Body of Nations will emerge, a League once again intent to ensure that such evil as was unleashed will be kept under lock and seal, “never” to be released again.

I am uncertain what the world might look like at that point, but I know the Middle East will not be at all similar to what exists today, at the height of the “Spring Revolution.” Even its geography will change, many parts remaining uninhabitable for centuries.

I also know for certain that Israel’s casualties will be so severe that some would doubt her ability to survive. The Remainder of the Survivors, the very few, will be weakened, by seeing the end yet for some reason surviving the Holocaust.

We will look back at today, when we counted our blessings that just one child was injured and not a full busload was hit, and we will not even have the ability to think past what took place next.

The reshaping Middle East, Iran flexing its muscles and Hamastan becoming more “courageous” against women, children and the elderly, the sick and the frail, are no coincidence. They are aiming at where it hurts most, and they do so purposely. It is no longer a question of will Israel retaliate, or will she have resolve. She will have no other choice.

The Serpent has shown its head, and war is inevitable. Very bad times are ahead for all of us.

In the series “Postcards from Israel,” Ari Bussel and Norma Zager invite readers throughout the world to join them as they present reports from Israel as seen by two sets of eyes: Bussel’s on the ground, Zager’s counter-point from home. Israel and the United States are inter-related – the two countries we hold dearest to our hearts – and so is this “point – counter-point” presentation that has, since 2008, become part of our lives.