March 14: Cost of resilience

As individuals and as a country we have shown ourselves to be incredibly resilient. Unfortunately, that resilience has come at a great cost.

letters good 88 (photo credit: Courtesy)
letters good 88
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Cost of resilience Sir, - I must take exception to one aspect of "Determinedly normal" (Larry Derfner, UpFront, March 7). Phrases such as "the only injury" or "no one was injured" have not belonged in the vocabulary of those of us who have treated anyone since at least the start of the second intifada. I have treated those involved directly in terrorist attacks and those living "safely" in the center of the country. All have been greatly impacted by the events of this terror war. As individuals and as a country we have shown ourselves to be incredibly resilient. Unfortunately, that resilience has come at a great cost. Every one of us living here in Israel is, at the very least, "lightly injured." Pop a balloon or watch the look on someone's face when a car backfires, and you will see that we have all paid the price (not to mention the road rage, the domestic violence, the risk-taking behavior of our adolescents). Each person living in the line of fire endures multiple traumatic moments in the course of a day. Their impact is cumulative. The trauma of the sirens, the lack of a safe space, running for shelter with no time to spare, the lack of restorative sleep, no privacy, the fear of not knowing where one's loved ones are, the inability to plan or predict, the images of injury, having or fearing having one's life's belongings destroyed - all impact on one's physical and emotional well-being, forever. DR. BATYA L. LUDMAN Psychologist Ra'anana British impartiality... Sir, - It's reassuring to know that the British are vigilant in excluding dangerous provocateurs who could undermine the public good ("Feiglin banned from entering Britain," March 9). This puts Moshe Feiglin in the same category as that notorious terrorist Menachem Begin, who was similarly marked by British authorities for many years. It seems Feiglin's mistake lies in not advocating genocide of the Jews and accusing Israel of conspiratorial plots, a la Ibrahim Mousawi of Hizbullah's Al-Manar TV - in which case he would be warmly welcomed to participate in numerous political events ("Visiting Hizbullah official in UK tries to project moderate image," March 6). MORRIS KARLIN Mercaz Shapira Sir, - Re "Edinburgh U. calls off Israeli ambassador's lecture after protests" (March 7): Maybe it is time for Scotland's Jews to arrange a protest against the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign for its support of terror groups who indiscriminately send daily barrages of rockets into Israel's cities and villages, where there are no military targets, so that the intent is clearly to try and kill or maim as many civilians as possible; and that from civilian areas in the Gaza Strip, from which Israel withdrew over two years ago. STANLEY LAWSON Jerusalem ...Israelis' complicity Sir, - The saddest and most regrettable message gleaned from Amnon Rubinstein's cogent and accurate analysis of the rampant anti-Semitism which has "journeyed" from Munich to Oxford, is the complicity and active participation in defaming Israel by Israelis like Norman Finkelstein and Michael Ben-Yair. How can we expect an honest assessment of Israel's challenges in the face of implacable hatred if its righteous cause is sabotaged by its own citizens, using terminology and accusations that would have made the Nazi hierarchy proud? ("Munich comes to Oxford," March 12.) FAY DICKER Lakewood, New Jersey Needed, now Sir, - Kudos to David Horovitz on his superb "Moral blindness" (March 7). The statement by Sky News's Al Scardino that the Israeli targets coming under rocket attack were situated beyond Israel's sovereign borders was repeated in a France 24 news bulletin the same day. I was enraged to hear the announcer refer to the Kassams falling in "Israeli-controlled territory" and disgusted with the station's news item on the Jerusalem yeshiva massacre, which stressed that it came in retaliation for the killing by Israel of "over 100 Palestinians, at least half of whom were civilians." A very brief interview showed an obviously distraught Shimon Peres, followed by a lengthier clip of an exultant Hamas leader praising the attack as a retaliation for Israel's massacres. Never does France 24 mention that the rockets are fired at Israel from civilian areas. Israel desperately needs an international TV station broadcasting in English and Arabic, and possibly also in French, Spanish and Russian. Surely there are enough Jews worldwide who would support such a station? M. L. ROSTOWSKY Tel Aviv Eight holy souls Sir, - The slaughter of eight yeshiva students last week shocked Jews throughout the world. How can we, as individuals and as a nation, express our common sadness and try to identify, somehow, with these pure young souls so cruelly butchered? When we remember that they were killed in their study hall, engaged in the study of Torah, the unique heritage of the Jewish people, a way is opened to us. How appropriate it would be for us to commemorate those eight holy souls by engaging in the very act they were engaged in when they gave up their lives. The day after the shloshim, the 30th day of their passing, is Sunday April 6, Rosh Chodesh Nissan. Let us dedicate this day as a day of learning Torah. Not in the hope that it will solve the terrible problems that face us; not because it will necessarily bring comfort to the bereaved, but because we will be doing what they loved to do - learning Torah for its own sake, with no ulterior motive ("'God is our security,'" March 10). YAKOV ABRAHAMS Jerusalem