What It Feels Like From Here
By Shoshanna Keats-Jaskoll
I'm going to try to put into words what many/most of us here is Israel are feeling, to help the rest of the world understand.
On the very simple level, we feel for parents whose children are missing. And not just missing- stolen, by very very bad people who hate them and everything they stand for. People who think nothing of murder and torture. People who believe that they are in the right and that these boys are prisoners of war.
We feel for the parents who don't know if their children are being beaten, fed, allowed to go to the bathroom or even if they live.
We feel for the children who are terrified, alone, completely unaware of what will happen to them, likely in a dark, scary place with men carrying loaded weapons screaming at them in a language they may or may not understand. They are either together or separated from one another. They know Shalit sat for 5 years before he was traded for 1000 terrorists and prisoners- two of whom are alleged to be the current kidnappers.
We scream in rage that our children can be treated like this, that much of the world says that we are occupiers and so are fair game.
Many of us know people who know these boys and their parents. Many of us could easily be these parents.
Many of us travel the same roads, see the same places... we know they are out there and we just want them back.
Many more sons are out there tonight working to find them before it is too late. These types of operations... they are fraught with danger.
In the meantime, shots are being fired at roads we travel, rockets are flying into our cities and children are running into bunkers waiting for the explosions to fall.
We are angry, we are scared, we can barely think of anything else. "normal functioning' is an impossibility for very long. On top of the human issue, vile people are comparing the boys to rats, Palestinians are passing out candies and celebrating the stealing of these young men. Out of the woodwork, all across social media, horrible people are telling us we are next, we will be soap etc etc.
On the other side, thousands upon thousands are coming together to pray for these boys. In all cities, at the kotel, across the world...
Watching the mothers speak, I am in awe. I am ashamed that they are giving me strength when it should be I who is working to give them strength.
This country feels hard. It feels strong and it feels together. Yes, there are those who dissent, but they are a whisper against the roar of togetherness at these times... I do not know how this will end. I am terrified to think of what is happening at this very moment.
Please forgive us if we seem jumpy, testy, unable to focus, or start calling for severe retaliation until our boys are back safe and thank you for the support that shows you are with us.
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