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December 22, 2014 / 30 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘soldier’

Orders are Orders

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

For many Israelis, the Presidential election in America had a special urgency because of the increasing nuclear threat from Iran, and the hope that Romney would take a more militant stance than Obama. I wrote a short story on the tragedy of looking to America for our salvation, which appears in my award-winner collection of short stories, “Days of Mashiach” which was translated and published in France this year by a non-Jewish publisher, with reviewers comparing me to Voltaire and the famous fable writer, Jean de la Fontaine.  Big deal. Anyway, enjoy the story, and for readers who value true Jewish literature, I invite you to check out some of my other books at Amazon.

ORDERS ARE ORDERS

By Tzvi Fishman

For the third time that day, Izzy was looking through the snapshots his wife had sent him when a rock richocheted off the guard tower. Outside in the dimming twilight, he couldn’t see a thing. It wasn’t the first time that a rock had hit the tower during his three months on the isolated Samaria hilltop. Arab kids had nothing better to do than throw rocks at Jewish soldiers. To be on the safe side, the young Israeli tightened the strap of his helmet. Orders were orders. And in the army, safety came first.

His gaze turned back to the pictures. How happy his son looked at his first birthday party, as if he understood its significance. Izzy had asked for a special leave to attend the celebration, but since he had only one week remaining in his Hesder army service, the request had been denied.

“Pang!” “Pang!” “Pang!”

Smashing against the metal guard tower, the rocks sounded like bullets. Down below, at the crest of the hill, on the other side of the sheep pen, a group of dark figures had gathered. Izzy stuck his rifle out the window in warning. Just to be sure, he called his two buddies, who were out patrolling the area in a jeep. Some people thought the settlers were irresponsible for staying put on remote hilltops like these during the Intifada, but Izzy didn’t agree. Israel was the land of the Jews, and a Jew had the right to live wherever he chose. It was the job of the government and the army to protect its citizens, whether they lived in Netanya or Hevron.

To his way of thinking, the situation was absolutely absurd. So what if a Jew wanted to live in a cabin on a desolate hill in the heartland of biblicalIsrael. Why should the whole world make such a fuss over it? Why should it bother foreign presidents and kings? Didn’t they have better things to worry about than what a handful of Jews were doing on the other side of the globe?

The twenty-one year old soldier tried his best not to think about it too much. Instead, he studied Gemara whenever he could. He spoke to his wife every day. In a week, he’d be finished with being away in the army, and he could get down to being a father to his one-year old boy.

When a brick smashed through the thick plastic pane of the window, Izzy instinctively ducked. Down on the hillside, a mob of Arabs was advancing his way. Across the dirt road, on the roof of the small wooden cabin, an Arab youth was hauling down the Israeli flag. As luck would have it, the settler who lived on the one-man yishuv was off at a wedding. Besides the barking dog, Izzy was the only defender on the remote, windswept givah.

Figuring he may need some back-up, he phoned his friends in the jeep, but they were being stoned too.

“We’re on our way,” they told him.

Rocks pounding the guard tower reverberated like popcorn popping in a microwave oven. Izzy fired off a few shots in the air to warn off the attackers, but the Arabs continued to advance on the tower. Like the good soldier he was, he wouldn’t fire at them until he received a direct order. His rabbis had taught him that the government of Israelwas holy, the Israeli army was holy, and so was its chain of command. Calling his Mem-kaf, he described the situation and requested permission to shoot.

A Party for Arafat Near The Mount of Olives

Monday, October 29th, 2012

(((CLICK BELOW TO HEAR AUDIO)))

Yishai is joined by soldier, artist, father, and activist Marc Prowisor.  Prowisor, who is also the director of security projects the One Israel Fund, talks with Yishai about a party held by Arabs, to celebrate deceased leader Yasser Arafat held near the Mount of Olives studio.  They also discuss what is going on among Arabs inside of Israel.

Yishai Fleisher on Twitter: @YishaiFleisher
Yishai on Facebook

Hamas Releases Gilad Shalit Film

Sunday, October 21st, 2012

On the one-year anniversary of the release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, Hamas has released a film describing the Israeli soldier’s abduction in 2006.

According to the film, which was released on Oct. 18 on the website of the Hamas military wing, Ezzedeen al-Qassam Brigades, Shalit thought his captors were Israeli because they had put on uniforms resembling those of the Israel Defense Forces.

The operation on June 25, 2006, was carried out at 5 a.m. because “that’s when the Zionist soldiers tended to nap,” one of the interviewees in the film said.

The armed militants who captured Shalit crawled along a 300-yard stretch to reach his tank from the mouth of the tunnel that had been dug in advance. They then split up into three detachments. One was comprised of two men, Mohammed Frauna and Hammed Rantissi, who were discovered and killed on their way to a watchtower.

Another group placed a “very large” explosive charge under the barrel of Shalit’s Merkava tank. They moved back, detonated the charge and fired an anti-tank rocket at the vehicle.

“We saw a soldier climbing up from the hull so we shot him, then another climbed up so we shot him too,” a man named Abu-Hamza said in the film. “We heard someone shouting from inside the tank. We reported that we had a live soldier we went into the tank and we took him. He shouted that he was Jewish because he thought we were Jewish because of our uniform.”

Shalit was released from captivity on Oct. 18, 2011, in exchange for more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners being held by Israel.

IDF Base Robbed

Friday, October 19th, 2012

An IDF base a few miles west of Tiberias was robbed Friday morning after masked men entered the base, tied up a soldier, and stole his rifle and several other weapons.

Training in Lebanon-Like Terrain

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

These are future IDF commanders practice infantry maneuvers in thickets that resemble those found in Lebanon – lots of trees, plants and shrubbery.

We took this image from the IDF Spokesperson’s Office, which also wrote the above inscription.

I shudder at the talk of war. I hate war. I’m not trying to sound liberal or enlightened. I hate war viscerally. I was 12 during the ’67 war and didn’t like it, despite all the miracles. I remember my dad’s ashen face during the three weeks before that miraculous victory. He had seen war. He knew war could come at you and everything you thought would be there forever is suddenly a small heap of rubble. My dad taught me to hate war.

Both my dad and I also recognized that at some point you must fight. We were not pacifists. We just hated war.

I was a soldier in a terrible war, in ’73. It was even more hateful than the one before.

I hated every single war we’ve had to endure.

In the poll we ran over bombing Iran, I checked the option “Avoid attacking at all costs.”

Only 73 out of a total of 1,016 voters sided with me. And 31 chose “Do nothing.”

Seeing this image of sweet Israeli boys preparing to do war in a Lebanese terrain frightens me. I could recite as well as anyone else the sound reasons that exist to send them into yet another war. I only pray we won’t.

Avoid attacking at all costs. I suppose what I really mean is “Avoid attacking for as long as absolutely possible.” Obviously, I don’t mean we should take it on the chin if our somewhat unstable neighbors to the north decide to go nuts on us.

But I can’t bear the thought of yet another war. I’m not ready.

One Female Warrior Excels during Fire Exchange, as Another Is Shamed

Monday, September 24th, 2012

The shooting incident at Egyptian border that claimed the life of Cpl. Natanel Yahalomi last Friday, was the first combat encounter of Cpl. S. and her comrades of the Caracal Battalion, Yedioth Ahronoth reported Monday.

“I thought about my the parents,” she told the men and women of her unit. “I told the wounded man ‘You’re a hero, I know you’ll be strong.’” In the end, her message is: “be as warrior-like as you can.”

She related how it all began: “Suddenly we heard over the com system a female soldier yelling ‘They’re shooting at me, they’re shooting at us.’ I said the driver – ‘Take us to her as fast as you can, and while he’s driving, I’m thinking I have no idea what I’m going to see. We all had no idea what we’re going to see, really. It was the first encounter with terrorists for me and for the battalion.”

S. attempted to minimize her own role and stress the competent performance of her brothers and sisters in arms: “I thought about the female soldier we had heard over the com-line and was afraid for her. She deserves all the praise, no less than I do. She alerted the forces to get over there.”

According to a report in Kol Israel Radio Monday morning, a large contingency of troops spent more than an houring searching for that other female soldier, who had given the original alert. They feared the worst – that she had been abducted by another team of terrorists. In the end it turned out that she had been hiding in perfect silence in the bushes nearby.

Once she realized that Cpl. Yahalomi could not be saved, “I knew we were in mortal danger,” she continued. Then S. managed to accurately hit one of the terrorists who carried powerful explosives on his person – and she prevented him from blowing up near the soldiers.

“One of the terrorists blew up right before our eyes, and parts of him were flying in every direction,” said Cpl. S., “then, after the shots started, I began to understand what was happening, where we were and from where the terrorists where shooting at us.”

After assaulting and shooting from a prone position, S. and her comrades returned to the wounded man, Matti Yelovsky, who is recovering from his injuries in Soroka hospital.

“I went back to him and said, ‘Be strong, you have stomach injuries.’ He told me he knew that and was in pain, so I asked him to stay alert despite the pain. ‘You are a hero, I know you’ll be strong,’ I told him. We loaded him on the stretcher in the hospital I continued with my commander.”

According to the Kol Israel report, the female soldier who hid in the bushes admitted that she was afraid to open fire in order not to become a target for terrorists.

It has also been reported that the brigade commander interrogating the female soldier told her she did not act as befits a warrior. “You were scared, ran away and did not seek to engage the enemy,” he said.

The soldier replied, “I had no chance against them.”

Haredi Soldier that Was Thrown Out of Shul Honored with an Aliyah

Thursday, September 6th, 2012

The story about the Haredi soldier who was shamed and kicked out of the Toldos Avraham Yitzchak synagogue in Beit Shemesh is not over yet, reports B’Hadrei Haredim: the soldier arrived at the synagogue this week, in civilian clothing, and was honored with an aliyah to the Torah by one of the members.

As, reported last week, a uniformed, 27 year old Haredi soldier, father of two, came to the Toldos Avraham Yitzchak shul in the Nachala U’Menucha neighborhood of Beit Shemesh to pray. At the courtyard entrance, one of the chassidim warned him: “Don’t enter this beis medrash in an IDF uniform.” Later on, when he did decide to go inside, he was verbally attacked by one of the men in the shul who yelled, “Get out, you impure person! Get right out!”

On Monday, close to 11 AM, the same soldier arrived to pray at one of the “shteiblach” (smaller shuls) on the lower level of the same building. According to the report of a person who was also praying there, “the other worshippers spoke with him nicely, even those that had shouted at him. They also spoke about the commotion that resulted from the story’s publication.”

He also said that “one of the people praying there even bought him an aliyah.”

They sell aliyot on a weekday morning? Seriously? That’s a much bigger story than the whole soldier thing…

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/haredi-soldier-that-was-thrown-out-of-shul-honored-with-an-aliyah/2012/09/06/

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