"As someone whose been living in Israel for 34 years, who knows Israel and Israelis better than you â€“ let me inform you: All Israelis agree that these are hard times indeed. however, many of us acknowledge that they are not the worst in our history."
You know, one of the interesting things about having a diologue with people over the Internet anonymously is that you have no idea who you're talking to. I doubt that you know Israel and Israelis better than I do, but I will not belabor the point. If you do, then great, please educate me and the other readers.
Anyway, please tell me when, in your view, during the past 34 years Israel was in a worse situation. You pointed out the Yom Kippur war. Fine. I remember it well as a kid running out of temple to go sit in a bomb shelter in a suburb of Tel Aviv. I remember the fright, listening to a transistor radio in our building's miklat and hearing the news that the Syrians took over Mt. Hermon, while the Egyptians were sending missiles over my town, trying to hit nearby Tel Aviv. I remember well going to many shiva calls in my neighborhood after the war. It was a very sad war and many lost, but it was over in a matter of about a week.
And then came the Maalot massacre and the Savoy Hotel terrorist situation and I myself nearly died in a terrorist bombing in a central bus station in the town of Afula, but instead just being knocked down to the ground from the force of the explosion.
But I had recently recalled a dear friend of my family, an American who like us moved to Israel, who lost an arm in the Yom Kippur War. Just a few weeks ago, he was shot by a Palestinian terrorist while driving on a road connecting Jerusalem with his town. I heard his remaining hand was hit -- a tough break for someone who is a writer...
Anyway, there was never a time with daily mass murders like today, even in the worst times in the Lebanon War, when casualties were reported regularly.
This is a new and terrible situation and it requires different measures than ever before.
I'm not saying that Israelis stopped living their lives, but no one I know is the same these days. Maybe things are different in your neighborhood than in the rest of the country. I hope so.
"But again, there is not need to look at reality with complete pessimistic glasses."
That's right. But then again, there's no need to walk quietly like sheep to the slaughter.
"Israel had to buy guns, ammunition and WWII surplus airplanes from the Czech republic."
Sorry to say this, but if the US needs for Israel to do certain things so as not to offend the US coalition for the next war on Iraq, and Israel refuses, then Israel will find itself again without a fresh supply of US weapons and spare parts.
Look, clearly Israel has come a long way since before even being an independent state, but more than ever, it is subject to going along with the commands of other states who may not share the same interests as Israel.
With all the high "standard of living" that you write about, Israel operates at a huge foreign trade deficit, with an unemployment rate that some say is as high as 25%, and has never been able to stand on her own two feet economically.
So now there are some very real existential consequences, among them doing what the US says, or the foreign aid party will be over.
"Worse then the beginning of the violence 18 months ago, but Israel is not facing existential danger (as it has in the past.)"
Many would argue that the establishment of an enemy Palestinian state with no requirements for being a democracy, no enforecable limitations on its manufacturing of weapons, no mechanism in place to guarantee huge punishment in the event of further terrorism, and no requirement to stop teaching anti-Semitism and incitement to mass murder Jews is an existential danger facing Israel.
â€œAhitofel adviceâ€ is a well known Hebrew coin phrase. No one, including Ariel Sharon holds exclusive right to it."
Right, it has biblical meaning.