Tag Archive | Egypt

Hamas’ Tunnel Plans

If you were wondering what Hamas was planning to do with the tunnels it was digging between Gaza and Israel, here’s the answer.  They were planning a massive massacre, to be carried out on the holiday of Rosh Hashana (in about two months).  Remember what happened to the Fogels?  Multiply that by a thousand.

Egypt, by the way, has been a good friend.  They’ve destroyed a number of tunnels (though their tunnels are different than ours; theirs are smuggling tunnels and the ones we’re destroying are meant for kidnapping, running, and hiding)  between Gaza and Sinai, and have killed quite a few terrorists.  Obviously, they have personal interest in doing this – it’s not just for us.  But it sure helps.

Earthquake Preparations

Today there was another minor earthquake, in Egypt, but felt in Eilat, measuring at 3.3.  That makes seven earthquakes in six days, six of the seven taking place in the north, around the Kinneret (Sea of Galilee).  There were two yesterday – a 3.3 and a 2.2; on Thursday there was a 3.5; there was one on Shabbat (Saturday), that also measured at 3.5, and two on Sunday, both measuring at 3.6.  Today’s was a surprising change, since it was felt in Eilat (all the way at the southern tip of Israel), instead of in the north.

Obviously, since we are so far away from both of them, we didn’t feel any of these quakes, and only know about it from the news.  Also, a few weeks ago, Yitzchak got a brilliant idea and called a friend who is on the city council, to find out that his brilliant idea is correct (I still don’t fully believe it and won’t until I see a source, but he has a point): All the buildings here are built according to the earthquake codes, even though most of these buildings were built before 1980, when the codes went into effect.  The reason?  The building codes for earthquake safety are good for nuclear blasts, too.  (Not that I understand why the city would care, since we don’t have a nuclear reactor, but maybe one day when we get one they’ll decide to put it near this city.)

seven steps, 7 steps, earthquake preparedness, earthquake readiness, earthquake, earthquakes, earthquake drills, disasters, natural disasters, preparation, safety, prevention, planningSo now our emergency kit, started several months ago, is getting finished at an accelerated pace.  Not completely finished – we don’t have iodine pills yet, and we don’t have stuff to seal rooms during chemical warfare – but the basic stuff will be finished.  One thing that I want to put in is our marriage contract – according to Jewish law, a couple is not allowed to live in the same house if they don’t have their ketuba (marriage contract).  I want to put it in the bag, so that it’s there.  Yitzchak wants to keep it in the house.  Maybe we should get a second one written, and that way if we ever decide to divorce, I’ll get double the amount of money.  (Just kidding, it doesn’t work that way, and getting a second copy written is complicated, because technically I could take one copy to one court and demand money for it, and then take the other copy to the other court and demand money for it, and so to prevent that, there are rules about how to write a second copy and when it’s allowed, etc.)

It’s kind of nerve wracking to be hearing about all these earthquakes and that seismologists aren’t sure what will happen next.  On the other hand, seismology is not yet the most accurate of sciences, and the status changes often, soooo . . .

The experts don’t think that these small quakes change the likelihood of a big one.  On the other hand, they say that if a bit one happens, it’s each man for himself, and it’s up to us to make sure we’re prepared.

But you know what?  Every place has its issues.  We are much safer right now than we were in Jerusalem, for a lot of reasons.  And, we can keep our bag in the bomb shelter, which almost certainly will still be standing straight after any size earthquake, because it’s just a big metal box with windows and a door.

All I can do is pray that if a major earthquake does hit, we’ll all be together, and preferably near home, so we can find our blankets, emergency kit, and everything else – even if we have to dig a bit.  Hopefully, Yitzchak and his city-council friend are right and our building will still be standing strong.  But most important is that we’re together.  Next most important – that we find our bag – it has photocopies of critical documents, supplies, and everything else.

Please, G-d, just do us a favor and keep us together, safe, and close to home.

Israel, Syria, and Egypt

israel, syria, lebanon, middle east, middle east maps, israel syria egypt lebanon, israel war, syria war, jordan, middle east conflicts, israel maps

from The Israel Project

Suddenly, my internet works again.  I can check my email, the news, and work, while Shlomo is sleeping.

And I realize that even though we have good news, that no one was killed in Judea and Samaria during 2012 because of terror attacks, that is very isolated good news.  The rest is worse.

I have been skimming and skipping articles on the Syrian rebellion.  I know that the IDF changed the rules of engagement, and I’m pretty sure they widened the border area to keep Israel’s north safer.  So, I felt better.  Then I read Arlene’s blog, and I remembered something that I had forgotten, or chosen to forget: The Syrian government is losing control.  They are on the brink of collapse.  They have one of the largest stockpiles of chemical weapons in the Middle East.  This stockpile, if not moved or destroyed, may well fall into Hezbollah’s hands.  And we all know what that means: Bad news for Israel.

And I read more, and remember, and realize, that things never really calmed down after Operation Pillar of Defense.  For that matter, they did not calm down, really, since Operation Cast Lead.  We are on the brink of the third intifada – not that the second one ever really ended.  That, to me, is more scary than Syria.  War with Syria is one thing.  Intifada is another.  Intifada, to me, means bus bombings and restaurant bombings.  These I cannot deal with.  Air-raid sirens and bombs falling are something else.  These I can deal with, very simply: Everything is canceled, we all stay home.  I work as usual, Yitzchak continues studying.  We go to a bomb shelter when needed, and we are safe, even if our stuff may not be.  This I can deal with.  Worrying about buses being blown up or turned over, or restaurants being blown up (not that we go to restaurants, but still), or riots in random neighborhoods – this I cannot deal with.  (Not that I don’t deal worry about it anyways . . .)  There is no warning siren, there is no safe place to run.  Yitzchak thinks that a third intifada will take the form of rockets.  I hope and pray that he is right.

And then there is Egypt, which is also undergoing a serious civil war.  Luckily, they are not as immediate a concern as Syria is.  But a concern they certainly are, and it is just a matter of time.

Maybe I should stick my head back into the sand.  It was much more peaceful there.

More good news is that Israel has had less terror attacks this past month than in the previous months.  Thank G-d.  These are miracles, true miracles.  Perhaps it is because security is tight, and we are on guard.  No matter what the reason, it is definitely a miracle, and we need to say, thank G-d.  But, we cannot rely on this miracle to continue.

And now, more than ever, I am grateful that I work from home, on the computer.  It gives me flexibility, and it allows me to not obsessively worry about Shlomo’s safety, because usually, I am with him.

May G-d protect us and keep us healthy, safe, and secure.  I will not leave my country, but sometimes I seriously contemplate it.  G-d helped us win the war in 1948, He helped us win the war in 1967, and he helped us in 1973.  War is ugly, war is cruel.  But G-d has helped us, against all odds, and I pray that He will do so again.