Friday, August 1, 2014

Pulling Together

This morning, Raphaela and I found ourselves at our local bakery, doing the usual errands for Shabbat.  On the way home, I noticed a large group of policemen and Israeli soldiers clustered on the sidewalk.

They were guarding the house of a family that had lost their eldest son in battle three days ago.

I didn't recognize the family name, and  spontaneously decided that these families who are sacrificing their children for the sake of the country, they need to know that we appreciate them and feel their loss.  I also thought it would be an excellent learning experience for Raphaela,  a chance to feel the entire Jewish nation pulling together to support each other.

We came in quietly and sat down in the back.  Various VIP visitors came and went with their security entourage and their television crews:  the Mayor of Jerusalem, the Chief of Police, the Speaker of the Knesset, etc.  I told Raphaela that all of us here, just by sitting here and filling chairs, were showing love for these families, and helping them through a very difficult time.

At a certain point, Raphaela asked if she could speak to the parents of the boy, Barkai Shor Z"L, and I went up with her.  My daughter didn't plan quite what to say, so she offered up what she does best IE unconditional warmth and a solid hug, to both the mourning mother and father.

I couldn't have been more proud of her, and then I thanked the parents for the their bravery and the 'gift' of their son.


Marta said...

Very moving.
However, I do not see any comments on the fact that this last - of many; and I suppose there will be more to come - war has so many civilian casualties on the other side. How do you - if at all - explain that to your daughter?
"UNICEF spokesman Christopher Tidey told a press conference that since the start of Israel's military offensive in Gaza on July 8, at least 447 Palestinian children aged 10 days to 17 years were reportedly killed as of Tuesday."

Doc said...

My daughter is five years old and I barely discussed this military event with her, because I need her to feel safe and go to sleep at night without night mares.
If you want the answer to your question regarding the terrible deaths of innocent children in Aza, ask Hamas, who used them as human shields. And also ask why there was no publicity regarding the 160 Palestinian children who died digging the tunnels, used as slave labour and then thrown away by their own people.

Marta said...

Unfortunately children of Gaza do not have the benefit of being sheltered from the facts of war. There are obvious cultural differences between at least parts of your nations. However, I am constantly surprised by onesidedness of arguments presented by both. When will this end?
"It’s an awful thing to make a truly tragic mistake, one that costs many lives. It’s worse to make that same mistake over and over again. Four operations in Gaza, an immense number of Israeli and Palestinian hearts that have stopped beating, and we keep ending up in the same place." Etgar Keret in The New Yorker