What words can be said when 13 worlds end because of the hatred of a culture that worships death? I don't pity Israel on this sad and tragic day. I pity anyone who lives in a country that does not mourn as we do now.
We mourn more deeply than you can imagine. In the coming hours, we will
learn as much as we can about the 13 soldiers we lost today, on the 13th
day of battle. Not just their name but where they were from, how many
siblings they had, what they loved and what they dreamed of doing in
We are a nation determined and proud. We are fighting an enemy who chose war when we wanted peace. Gaza chose war; Gaza attacked our land, our people, our homes.
When they strike our schools and hospitals, they rejoice. Because a school or a hospital to them is a place to hide weapons. There are so many injustices happening - the world will quickly point to the disproportionate number of deaths in Gaza. Isn't it amazing how the numbers jump...especially the number of children. One wonders if perhaps all the fighters of Hamas are under the age of 12.
One wonders where the parents are. With my body, I would protect my children. I would lock them in a room if I had to - how is it possible that Israel hurt so many children if they were being protected, rather that sacrificed.
For once, even the Secretary of Stupidity, John Kerry gave some insight when he said, "No country could sit by and not take steps to try to deal with people who are sending thousands of rockets your way."
What I will tell you is that we are a most unique country. And we will fight - all the more determined because we now fight for what they died for. Hamas has built an underground world of tunnels beneath cities in Gaza - it is fitting that they live as rats in the dark and scurry between locations.
It is amazing that the world is silent when Hamas threatens Palestinians that if they leave their homes, then from the tunnels below, Hamas will blow up the buildings. These people are prisoners, human shields and instead of protecting them, the United Nations hides Hamas rockets (and then gives them back to Hamas when they are discovered), and sends the Secretary General of the UN to Israel! Let him go to Gaza - let him demand that the occupiers of Gaza - the Hamas - be removed; that the people of Gaza be freed from tyranny.
Today, tonight, after a day of knowing that we had many dead but were not permitted to say so, tonight all the families have been notified. They join an elite and growing part of our nation - families in mourning. Forever, they will be united in their grief, forever just a little bit different from the rest of us.
We mourn with them, we cry with them, but ultimately, they walk just that much more alone. Thirteen more families have been added tonight; eighteen since the start of the war.
I am proud to be an Israeli tonight. Proud to live in a nation of mourning. What you have to understand is that the mourning here would be as great for one as for 13. Clearly the shock is greater, but each was a whole world...each is mourned.
I am proud that my country is doing all it can to minimize civilian casualties in Gaza - even if the world is too blind to see it. I am proud of the doctors who struggle in Israel tonight to help the wounded survive - including some Arabs who fought against our soldiers. In the hospitals of our neighbors, enemies would be dragged from their beds, interrogated, and assassinated.
I am proud that my country spent millions, perhaps more likely billions of dollars- to build bomb shelters - including portable ones placed in schoolyards and parks and in the middle of shopping areas so that people could run quickly and be protected. There are none of these shelters in Gaza, in Egypt, in Syria...because in each of these places, the greatest enemy of the people is their own government.
I am proud that my country spent millions, perhaps billions of dollars creating the greatest weapon we have - which isn't even a weapon at all. Iron Dome is a defensive shield against incoming rockets and missiles. It is not an offensive weapon and so would be deemed a waste of money by our neighbors - that which does not kill has no value in these societies. But Iron Dome has saved Israelis - more than 1,400 rockets have been fired at us in the last 13 days - more than 100 each day.
Dozens, more than dozens were on target to hit Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Beersheva, and beyond. Iron Dome stopped them and saved lives.
I am proud today to be Israeli, to mourn with my people, to know the truth of what is happening in Gaza and to laugh because once again, Gaza has turned much of the world into fools.