...Are you really in love with death? It does not look like that on TV. It seems to me that you love this holiday that was destroyed for you. You love to celebrate it with your family in your home, you love good food and the laughter of children. You could have celebrated this holiday just as you wanted to, had Hamas not attacked the "Zionist entity."
31 July '14..
Letter from a Zionist to a Gazan woman
You looked at me from the TV screen, tears in your eyes. On the evening of Eid al-Fitr you said that your holiday is sad. The food is like poison in your mouth, you have no home to return to. "Where is the world amid all this?" And you hated us so much, the Israeli Jews, and their army that destroyed your house in Shuja'iyya.
Mohamed Deif, the leader of Hamas' military wing who commands your troops in this war said our warriors crave life while your warriors are hungry for death. Is that true? We are ready to die for our country, but we are devastated by the death of every soldier; and although the rest of the world believes that dying in combat is part of a soldier's duty, and therefore it is not as sad, it is not seen like this among us – our soldiers are expected to come home, to mom and dad, marry their girlfriend, build a home and have children. We really sanctify life. And you? Is this the society you want to live in? A society that sanctifies death? Wouldn't you want children who want to live? That sounds like a rhetorical question, but judging by your leaders and your people's actions - in Gaza it is a real question.
We seem similar, living parallel lives on different sides of the divide, both of us have children and a family that we worry about. Both of us are worried about a war we did not want. But there are so many fundamental things that I do not understand, and I choose this platform to ask: Why do you let Hamas rule over you? Do you really believe that it is the best option? That it will lead your people to prosperity? Or perhaps that is not even its goal?
You see the billions of dollars that came in from the Gulf States and Europe, and you know where they went. You know that instead of helping your economy and turning Gaza into a blossoming garden, as it was before the Israeli left, Hamas invested that money in its death industry. You know that this money was supposed to buy you and your family food, supply you with work and infrastructure, build you power plant to produce your own electricity and end your dependence on the Zionists. You know that the European citizen who donates to you only wants to help you, not dig a bunker for terrorists. You know that Hamas stole the money from you. Why do you continue to support them? Why do not you take to the streets? Why do not you turn in this terrorist leadership that tortures its people?
Why do not you rebel against Hamas? Why do you provide it with shelter and support while it threatens its citizens with weapons or pays them to stay in combat zones that the Israeli military warned you to leave, thereby turning them into cannon fodder. Why do you continue to cover for your leaders who, while Israel destroys your house to reveal the tunnel dug under it, sit safely in their bunker and don't allow civilians to join them? Had your leaders cared about your life as much as they cherish their own they would open the underground city in Gaza to civilians until the war passes, rather than exploit their deaths to waive the body count to wave before the international community. The reason that there are so many fatalities is that your leaders wanted you to die. Your dead, your friends and your family, are merely a statement to Hamas. Tell me really - is their death worth it?
Maybe the desire for death is only the education for the generation of common warriors, while they, the leaders, actually love life very much. They hide when there is danger, they eat well, they fly around the world, sleep in luxury hotels and enjoy life they allegedly so despise. Does that not drive you crazy?
And what do you think about us, the Israelis, do you really believe the Hamas propaganda about us? Do you believe that killing children is in our nature? It's very hard to think independently when you are being brainwashed, but look at the reality. Hamas hides weapons and tunnels, and its leaders are hiding themselves in kindergartens and hospitals. If we really were the child murderers they tell you we are, we wouldn't mind shelling kindergartens and their inhabitants. But we do not. Or at least – hardly ever. We do our best, even if it delays the fighting, not to harm innocent civilians, let alone children. Look around. Look where your leaders are hiding - and you know what our weaknesses are. Maybe it will make you reconsider all the propaganda that causes you to send your children to join the ranks of the martyrs.
Are you really in love with death? It does not look like that on TV. It seems to me that you love this holiday that was destroyed for you. You love to celebrate it with your family in your home, you love good food and the laughter of children. You could have celebrate this holiday just as you wanted to, had Hamas not attacked the "Zionist entity."
Is there a real uprising in Gaza against the people who caused all this? When you ask "Where is the world amid all this," what do you mean? Where is the world to punish the Zionists, or where is the world to rescue us from this bloody regime?
Karni Eldad is a musician, married, and a mother of two, a resident of Tekoa (West Bank).
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