From: Stuart [stuart…]
Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2006 11:28 AM
To: stuart…
Subject: Return to the front line!! And how.

After withstanding pressure from our children, we made the decision to return to Haifa today and got quite a homecoming!.


The journey home was uneventful, we did our shopping in Bet Shemesh not knowing what the situation was in Haifa. As we approached the city, the roads were almost deserted. A major junction we use to travel up the mountain did not have even one car waiting and with flashing amber traffic lights we were able to continue without stopping.


We have now been home for two hours and have had to go into the protected room on three occasions as the sirens start to sound. On the first occasion we heard the sound of 5 rockets exploding but from our location they could have landed anywhere from Nahariya to Haifa. (it now transpires there was a direct hit on a home in Nahariya and one killed, others injured.) We did not hear any explosions from the last two sirens. Quite a homecoming.


Yesterday there was a direct hit on a home in Haifa. A friend, Lennie Maschkowski, who is a real expert in photography took the pictures attached, I hope you can read them. The first shows the wall of the building around 100 -150 metres away from the building that was hit, peppered by the ball bearings that are encased in the missiles to cause maximum injury and damage. The second photo shows the effect on a car nearby which gives the indication of how densely packed these balls are in the missile head. Picture three show the steel balls relative to a one shekel coin which is 2 mm of ¾” in diameter.    


In discussing the situation over breakfast in Jerusalem this morning, I think that Hadassah (Hasja) summed it up ideally. Israel is performing the operation to remove the cancer, now the question is will the Lebanese government be prepared to continue with the Chemiotherapy?


In an interesting article, it seems many people are happy with what Israel is doing (again?). The Arab Times-on-Line from Kuwait has some interesting views and you can read the whole article on the web site below or a summary which follows. What is particularly interesting is the last paragraph.


By Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times


In suumary Al-Jarallah says that “people of Arab countries, especially the Lebanese and Palestinians, have been held hostage for a long time in the name of “resisting Israel.” Arab governments have been caught between political obligations and public opinion leading to more corruption in politics and economics. Forgetting the interests of their own countries the Hamas Movement and Hezbollah have gone to the extent of representing the interests of Iran and Syrian in their countries. These organizations have become the representatives of Syria and Iran without worrying about the consequences of their action.

With the Palestinian Authority close to collapse and the Lebanese government beginning to give up responsibility for what is happening in its territory, Saudi Arabia has been forced to come out of its diplomatic routine and indirectly hold Hezbollah responsible for what is happening Lebanon.

Without mentioning Hezbollah by name Saudi Arabia blamed certain
“elements” inside Lebanon for the violence with Israel and said “it is necessary to make a distinction between legitimate resistance and uncalculated adventures adopted by certain elements within Lebanon without the knowledge of legal Lebanese authorities.  The Kingdom has also said “these elements must take responsibility for their irresponsible actions and they alone should end the crisis created by them.” This angry response from Saudi Arabia has politically isolated Hezbollah and Hamas besides holding them responsible for their actions.

This attitude of Saudi Arabia, which has been doing all it can to protect the Arab world from Israeli aggression, is enough to unmask the adventurers, who have violated the rights of their own countries and tried put their people under the guardianship of foreign countries like Iran and Syria. A battle between supporters and opponents of these adventurers has begun, starting from Palestine to Tehran passing through Syria and Lebanon. This war was inevitable as the Lebanese government couldn’t
bring Hezbollah within its authority and make it work for the interests of Lebanon. Similarly leader of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas has been unable to rein in the Hamas Movement.

Unfortunately we must admit that in such a war the only way to get rid of
“these irregular phenomena” is what Israel is doing. The operations of Israel in Gaza and Lebanon are in the interest of people of Arab countries and the international community.