Saturday, July 15, 2006
George W. Bush may be a dope, but unlike smarter leaders such as Jacques Chirac and Italian PM Romano Prodi he is smart enough to understand and not afraid to openly say who is to blame for the war that is going on in Northern Israel and Lebanon. In the meantime Israel remains the only or at least the main culprit in the eyes of the world. We are the only ones who break the rules of international law, we are the only ones who turn innocent civilians into victims. The other side only consists of victims. Yesterday I saw an BBC report that said it all. For minutes I saw pictures of ruins in Beirut and children in Lebanese hospitals. Then the reporter said something like "In Israel, too, rockets have fallen" and we saw some pictures of a burning house somewhere in Northern Israel. The 'too' is very telling here, because it shows the utter blindness of Israel-bashers who, whenever Israel makes victims, turn on their automatic pilot, start to blame Israel, not being interested at all in even a feigned effort to make a cause-and-effect analysis or to widen their circle of possible additional offenders. We spent another night in our 'bunker'. I went to bed about an hour after my wife fell asleep, because I enjoyed almost some pure beauty for half an hour or so. When I zapped around on the couch in our living-room before joining my wife and our children in bed I saw Daniel Barenboim accompanying Thomas Quasthoff performing Die Winterreise. I watched it from halfway through Erstarrung until Einsamkeit, enjoying a wonderful performance of some of my favorite Schubert songs ( one of them Der Lindenbaum, the subject of a recent posting ) before my eyelids got heavy and I went to sleep. Yesterday a brown envelope from the army gave me a real fright. I know that they are almost exclusively calling only well-trained reservists and that normally calls for reserve duty come in a green-white envelope but you never know. I need at least until the middle/end of september to finish my thesis, and doing guard duty for a few weeks would totally ruin my schedule and jeopardize my PhD. It turned out that I worried for nothing. I simply was promoted to first sergeant, an administrative promotion that one gets automatically every specific number of months and years. While my wife will always outrank me ( she was an officer) I am the highest-ranking soldier in my own family ever since I became a sergeant a few years ago. The real soldiers are doing their difficult jobs near and across the borders with Gaza and Lebanon this very moment. On television yesterday we saw a portrait of one Cobra helicopter pilot, a major who normally is a wine importer and culinary chef. With his baby face he is two years younger than I am and has such a tremendous responsibility. He was identified with a nickname that he was given during his pilot training, Speedy He wore a helmet ( the names and faces of pilots and other specific security personnel are never shown ) and told us about the two most important things that he and his colleagues have to do when doing their jobs: fulfill the mission and make sure as much as is possible that bilti-me'uravim ( those who are not involved ) are not hurt. For some reason, when it comes to both caring for the security of my family and sincere efforts to try and protect human rights, I trust major Speedy and his colleagues more than Mr Chirac, Mr Annan, Mr Assad or Mr Nasrallah. May he and all other IDF soldiers and other members of Israel's various security services who are fighting Hizbullah and Hamas and trying to stop the rocket attacks against Israel and to return the kidnapped soldiers do a good, successful job, and may they all return home safely from each of their missions.
Posted by Bert at 9:54 AM