Lives — Not Statistics
Posted on September 1st, 2010
This morning, one of our friends here in Neve Daniel sent me this e-mail:
Hi – I am sitting here crying because one of the women murdered tonight was my son’s gannenet. Yehuda is six and is mentally retarded – his teachers are our world because they bring him such joy when the world is such an overwhelming and confusing place. Cochava was an angel, and we were with her an hour before she died – she was on her way home from the gan welcome back orientation when she was murdered.
Here is how Israeli National News reported the terrorist attack:
Yitzhak and Talya Imes were the parents of six children, the eldest one being 24 years old and the youngest one being a year and a half old. Talya Imes was nine months pregnant when she was killed by the terrorists.
Kochava Even Chaim was a teacher in Efrat. She left behind her husband and an 8 year-old daughter. Her husband,one of the first Zaka first aid volunteers to arrive at the scene, discovered suddenly that his wife was among the victims.
Avishai Shindler had only recently moved to Beit Haggai with his wife.
Meanwhile, the New York Times and most of the Western media reported that four “settlers” had been killed and discussed if this might disrupt the “peace” process.
Just the other day, Palestinian Authority President Mauhoud Abbas said that “Israeli security does not justify continued occupation.” While I may take issue with the term “occupation,” I would say that the life of a kindergarten teacher justifies a hell of a lot.
How ironic that for days leading up to this heinous murder (I should say heinous murders — four people were killed, including a pregnant woman) the media was filled with stories about how wonderful a job the Palestinians were doing in terms of security. Yeah, great job. I feel much safer.
The mosques in Gaza let us know how Palestinian really feel. “Praise be to G-D over this heroic act” was blared out all night over the mosque loudspeakers. “Mosque?” Isn’t that supposed to be a term for a religious establishment?
Here is the Palestinian’s definition of “heroism.” A car with four people was fired upon by a passing vehicle. To make sure that these men and women — returning from school orientation for their children — were dead, the “heroes” stopped their car, aimed their rifles at point blank range and fired repeatedly into the bodies. The “heroes” then fled the scene satisfied that their “heroic” action was a success.
Meanwhile, the PR firm working for the PA gave the following statement to Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad to read:
The attack, and its timing are meant to harm the PLO’s efforts to garner international support for the success of the peace process and its demands, in order to bring about an end to the occupation.
Sounds like he’s all shook up, right?
You know something Salam? Not really interested that you feel this attack has hurt the PLO’s interests. Because at the end of the day, we are people — not talking points or statistics.
Our lives are not concessions. When you complain that the murder of a kindergarten teacher should be regretted because it hurts your interests, it simply shows how little you understand about the concept of peace. (Ironic considering your name, Salam.)
When you can look at this act with same gut wrenching horror as a six year old who just lost his teacher, you will be ready to make a real peace.
But until then, spare us the rhetoric while we bury our dead.
The e-mail I received concluded like this:
I wish I could scream out to the world how unfair this is, how senseless to waste such a beautiful giving life, but I have no outlet to tell everyone. Then I realized maybe you will be writing about what happened, and so perhaps you can include this part of the story, to put a person behind the story.
So please, if you also feel like screaming any crying, forward this article and tell the world that kindergarten teachers, pregnant women, fathers, mothers, husbands, and wives are real people, not just statistics.
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