Just Another Day
First, the smiles…
3 more illustrations from Hadar Chen’s ‘Monster Calendar’. You’ve seen 3 already..
Now 3 more….
January – Among the Roman ruins in Ashkelon’s coastal park.
February – A kiosk along Tel Aviv’s trendy Rothschild Blvd.
March – A picnic in any of Israel’s many forests, none of them older than the first wave of immigration. (This was a barren land before Zionism kicked in).
Back to reality…
We do get the International news here, and I think we treat it as most people should and do. With limited interest:
William and Kate’s little boy
Aftermath of Notre Dame
1 million species threatened with extinction
Another tragic plane crash
Another suicide attack – this time in Afghanistan
Thai King crowned, with his ex-bodyguard Queen just behind
Starvation, war, genocide, oppression – and the unemployment rate in USA goes down again.
Local news always seems more important, as it affects our pockets, our neighbourhood, our survival. Being overdramatic? No more or less than some of the people interviewed today outside Windsor Castle. For us, our news can be traumatic.
My friend, Allan, had downloaded an App which sounds the alarm when a rocket is launched. Yesterday, it almost never stopped sounding.
(I am sure he could have set it in such a way to only sound when he was in imminent danger. I recall, 2-3 years back, driving through Montana during the fire season. The alarm sent to all smartphones in the area was unbelievable: a real siren, and a clear message to ‘turn right’ or ‘turn around’).
But we were on our way to Jerusalem’s YMCA. This is a famous landmark in Israel, located immediately opposite the King David hotel. At the back, there used to be a local football stadium. This has now gone, replaced by expensive apartment blocks and a sports centre that would not be out of place in Dubai.
We were there to play Pickleball. Allan’s trying to introduce the sport in Israel. He brought all the equipment with him from USA. (It’s a mixture of tennis, table-tennis and badminton, ideal for us oldsters, but also perfect for anyone).
So while we played pickleball, hundreds of rockets were being fired at our neighbours just 40 km. south of us, and the IDF was retaliating. Our neighbours in the south were either in the shelters or in hospitals, or dead.
The same can be said for the Gazan’s, although their leaders have provided very few shelters.
Well, Hamas and/or Islamic Jihad do not necessarily act upon well-laid plans. Possible reasons:
Next week’s Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv. Thousands of overseas visitors will be here. Many performers are already here, practising their songs. Madonna’s appearing. Bar Refaeli is co-hosting.
Last month’s Israel elections – still in coalition negotiation stage. It must have been very frustrating for the Palestinians that they are no longer the main subject in Israel.
May 5 was the beginning of Ramadan. Last week was Holocaust Day. Now comes Memorial Day (remembering the fallen during Israel’s numerous wars), which is followed the next day by Independence Day.
The Palestinians see that as a catastrophe, and, knowing already then that they would become the leading recipients of UN money for the next 1,000 years, they adopted the name ‘Nakba Day’. If or whenever they make peace, they will forever have their Nakba Day; a reason to shoot 100s of rockets at their neighbours.
The oft-delayed Trump’s ‘Deal of the Century’ peace plan is due to be announced at the end of Ramadan next month. As anything less than 110% of the original agreement would not be enough for the Palestinians, they will launch 100s more rockets.