The killings are in Israel this time. My cell phone rang and rang as I saw patients yesterday. I knew. It was my mother wondering. Which Yeshiva, exactly, is it that Little One attends? (In her defense, the names of the schools do sound alike sometimes).
I heard about it from a patient. She came in for her appointment strolling her baby and told me, 8 students murdered in a Jerusalem seminary. I gasped and got on-line (what would YOU do?), cried for a moment, controlled myself, stifled what I wanted to say, Animals. Or maybe I said it.
I know the school. A friend of mine teaches there. I know the neighborhood. I have cousins there.
What gauls me, believe it or not, is the celebrating of death in the streets of the Palestinian territory, the Gaza Strip. What is this? How does an entire people celebrate the deaths of students, the deaths of the innocents?
They dance, they say, because these murders are retaliation for an Israeli military operation in Gaza in which Israelis targetting terrorists. The Israelis, once known for espionage, assasinate known terrorists. It is the only way they know to win this war. Otherwise it's back to destroying empty buildings again.
But CNN tells us:
. . .Dan Gillerman, Israel's ambassador to the United Nations, told CNN he saw no connection between Thursday's shooting and Israel's operations in Gaza.FD said to me when I picked him up last night, "A copycat of the Northern Illinois University massacre?"
"This is not a story of retaliation," he said. "These people have been terrorizing Israel for years, have been carrying out suicide bombings and indiscriminate attacks for years."
Gillerman said the Security Council should condemn the attack. "They they are so, so quick sometimes to criticize Israel for defending itself. I would like to see those members convene as we speak in order to condemn this in the strongest possible terms."
Except that I think Kazmierczak was mentally ill. These Palestinians are homicidal. If the man who murdered children yesterday had been taken alive (and there is no one thinking that ever possible, this was a suicide mission) he would go to jail. Kazmierczak would get medication and a very long stay in a hospital.
Our story is like this. When the Jews fled Egyptian slavery, the Egyptians, sorry to have ever let them go, chased after them.
The Jews reached the Red Sea. The bravest jumped right in to swim across, but the Old Mighty, impressed with his bravery, parted the waters for the rest of the nation. The Jews crossed on dry land and the Egyptians followed, but The Old Mighty released the waters, let the Egyptians drown.
The Angels began to sing at the deaths of the Egyptians. The Old Mighty got angry and chastised them. "My creatures are dying and you sing?"
Sure, you can say, That's just a story.
But it's the way we think. The Jewish people don't sing when people are slaughtered, not ever. We cry when people die. I believe, when it comes down to it, most of us don't feel good about the assassinations of terrorists, either. We wish it would all stop.
May the mourners be comforted in the Gates of Zion.