Tuesday, June 02, 2009


Now that has to be a name you haven't heard of in a long time. Or for you youngsters a name you never heard of.

Joe Btfsplk was a cartoon character from the Li'l Abner comics. Everyone loved poor Joe. Why 'poor Joe'? See, he was always drawn walking under a cloud with little drops of rain just about to land on him.

That is how I feel today in Israel...well, not only today but especially today. See, today we are having a massive air raid drill throughout the entire country. At 11:00 the air raid siren will shrill and everyone has to rush to their fallout shelter or secure room, if they have one in their homes. We don't. Our flat was built before they became a mandatory feature in each apartment. Imagine! A mandatory feature...

I will be home when the siren goes off. My shelter is six floors down in the basement. Jerusalem is lucky. They tell us we have three minutes to get to the shelter. Other places in the country have seconds.

Don't get me wrong. I am glad we are having this drill. I remember growing up in Windsor, Ontario and having fire drills and air raid drills in school where we either had to walk out...single file and slowly...from the building, or dash under our desks and put our hands over our heads.

Then the 'bad guy' was Russia and Russia was farrrrrrrrr away. The fear was real at the time, but the threat was as nebulous as Joe's cloud.

This fear is real and right across the street. And I do not believe this is just an 'exercise'. It is too massive and too serious and too real for just an exercise. I am sorry my babies are going to be rushing into their shelters at school and nursery school today. But I am thrilled they will be with people they trust who will help them understand what is going on in a language they will understand.

The Big Bad Wolf is knocking at the door. And we little ahem 'Pigs' have to build a house of bricks.

I read two articles this morning when I got up. The first was from The Washington Post and I quote:
Obama Says U.S. Must Be More 'Honest' With Israel
By Michael D. Shear
On the eve of his trip to the Middle East, President Obama promised today a dose of tough love for a new Israeli government that has signaled significant disagreement with his administration's policy for the region.

"Part of being a good friend is being honest," Obama told National Public Radio in an interview taped this afternoon. "And I think there have been times where we are not as honest as we should be about the fact that the current direction, the current trajectory, in the region is profoundly negative, not only for Israeli interests but also U.S. interests. And that's part of a new dialogue that I'd like to see encouraged in the region."

Mr. President, Sir, Part of being a good friend is understanding and accepting, if and when, your friend has a view different than yours. Part of being a good friend, is standing solidly beside your friend in public and, if all forms of dialogue still have you with different viewpoints, then accepting that your friend has the right to think differently than you do. Part of being a friend, is not being friendly with your friend's enemies...with people who have hurt your friend or are planning to wipe him off the face of the earth. Part of being a friend is just that...being a friend. Not a 'fairweatherfriend' when things are going smoothly. But, a real friend, who understands the other guy's fear and pain and will stand beside him when the bully is knocking at his door.

But, my dear readers, I have never thought that President Obama is my friend. Mr. President, walk a mile in my shoes. You don't get it. I know you don't get it. What scares the bejezzus out of me is the thought that by the time you do get it,it will be too late.

After reading the entire article from the Post this morning, I read another article, and I quote: The speaker is Steven Harper, the Prime Minister of Canada.
Toronto (JTA)By Ron Csillag · June 1, 2009
"This week in parliament, we will introduce legislation that will give victims of terrorism the power to obtain just compensation from those responsible for their suffering," Harper said. The bill "will allow victims to sue perpetrators and sponsors of terrorist acts, including foreign states, in Canadian courts."

The measure, Harper said, aims to send a "clear message that our government will hold the sponsors and perpetrators of terrorism accountable for their crimes."

"We remain among the world's most vocal in opposition to not only the nuclear program of the government of Iran but also to its malevolent anti-Israeli and anti-Jewish declarations," Harper said.

"It is all too common nowadays for politicians to claim to support Israel and the Jewish people. Yet when Israel is attacked for the umpteenth time, because its enemies refuse to accept the right of the Jewish state to exist, these same politicians are quick to condemn Israel, to accuse it of war crimes and to demand that it unilaterally suspend its right to self-defense,” he said. "You will not hear that kind of double-speak from our government -- ever."

Back to our friend Joe.One storyline in the early 1970s features him trapping his cloud in a special anti-pollutant jar. Joe becomes romantically involved with a gal for the first time—until her crazed ex-boyfriend shows up to kill him! Joe reluctantly opens the jar and releases his cloud in order to take care of the boyfriend, and wistfully realizes that he wasn't meant for any other kind of life. As he returns to his normal, loner existence, his cloud once again in tow, he is for the moment satisfied to be who he really is.

That is how I feel today in Israel...well, not only today but especially today. Do we, in Israel have to accept as normal a loner existence? I thought the world learned a lesson. But maybe I was wrong. And, if so...then I guess Israel is going to have to tread softly but carry a big stick.

May you and yours never have to do what me and mine are doing today. But, my dear friends, I honestly do believe that if the world doesn't stop the black cloud that is growing over our heads, then all of us are going to run into shelters sooner than you think. So, maybe instead of rhetoric and olive branches we have to shake some sabers and...I was going to say 'call a spade a spade', but I don't want in anyway to be thought of as racist, so, instead I will use a Hebrew expression:l'kroh et ha yeled b'shmoh...to call the child by it's rightful name.

Stay safe. Always.

Have a great day...stay safe...and thanks for dropping in.


At 10:36 AM, Anonymous Miriam said...

Well written!

At 2:52 PM, Blogger Susan said...

Thank you for posting this!!! I will be sharing this posts with my friends.

I for one stand with Israel, and pray for the peace of Jerusalem as we are instructed to do. I am not alone, there are MANY Christians who stand with you and pray daily for the peace of Jerusalem. The Jews are God's chosen people. Obama and his ilk will soon find out.

At 12:22 AM, Anonymous David said...

I am humbled to be the brother of such a thoughtful, insightful and eloquest writer. Thank you for speaking your mind and your heart in such a gifted manner. Stay safe, David

At 4:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are praying daily for you and for all the people of Israel. As a matter of fact we had special prayer after having your post read to us last night at our meeting.

MANY in America are standing with and supporting our brothers and sisters, Israel. You are not alone.

Many of us keep informed on the daily news in Israel but I will also be visiting your post for that personal touch of information.

Thank you for sharing.


At 4:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for reminding us to pray and be alert.

At 3:45 PM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

dear sandra...i can't believe that someone actually printed out my blog and then read it at your meeting...how absolutely wonderful...thank you soooo much for your prayers...they mean a lot

At 5:38 PM, Blogger Susan said...

I told you I would be sharing this post with my friends!!!! :o) They all wanted your blog link. I knew they would.

At 5:41 PM, Blogger marallyn ben moshe said...

thank you susan...it is so important that we get the word out...i really appreciate your love and support...stay safe


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