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August 2, 2015 / 17 Av, 5775
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Of Course it was Planned!

I quickly lost count of how many rockets were fired at my country. At one point, the reporter was counting - "one, two, three, four, five, no six, seven, eight.
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Elie spoke of the initial targets during the time he was in Gaza – each was an ammunition depot, a stockpile of rockets and explosives intended for use against our civilians. Only later would he find out that the targets he hit were precise, truly and accurately identified as ammunition depots, and often mosques.

If you put explosives in a House of God – a church, a mosque, a synagogue – it is no longer a House of God; God leaves that place, even Allah leaves it. It becomes what they have turned it into  – an arsenal, a legitimate target. And if you are a mother and you know that this is a Hamas weapons depot, you have no one to blame but yourself if you stay there. Give us 200 meters, be safe and give us 300 meters. You’ll lose your mosque as you deserve to, but you and your children will be safe.

The look in my youngest son’s eyes as he listened to the siren will haunt me for a long time. I can close my eyes and see his face. Worry was there; a bit of a sense of surprise that we were listening live and in real-time to our country being attacked. He was waiting, tensely, for the boom that would come upon impact.

My country is once again a nation at war. How many wars can a person live through, I wonder to myself. How many times must we do this, again and again, until they stop firing missiles at us. The message of hatred I get on Twitter and in the comments here remind me that this really isn’t about those 1967 borders. Each time I ask, they never answer the most basic question.

The Palestine Liberation Organization, the base and forefront of the Palestinian Authority and blood brothers with Hamas, says it was created to fight the occupation and force Israel back to the 1967 lines. Why then, one must wonder, was the organization created in 1964?

There is no answer to that logical question, at least not in English. Though this time, once again, they speak of an occupation that is not 45 years old, but 65 years old. They are, at least some, being honest – it is our very existence they want to deny.

And so, once again, forever and still – they launch rockets at us and we plan and implement. In anger we call them idiots and speak quietly among ourselves about turning Gaza into a parking lot.

And now in more pain than you can imagine, I report that there’s been a direct hit on a home in Kiryat Malachi – three people killed, 2 injured – this is a family we are talking about and not an arms depot. There were no weapons there, just people hoping to survive this latest war with Gaza.

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About the Author: Visit Paula Stern's blog, A Soldier's Mother.

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