"Milkamah" is the Hebrew word for 'war'. I didn't learn it in ulpan. I learned it from the daily news, which has gone from being on now and then to being on constantly. Bus drivers go by with their radios blaring; the coffee shops and security stations of buildings all have their televisions turned to the latest news. The country is mobilizing in the face of rocket attacks all over the north.
Yona is up north now. She called to tell us she never made it Nahariyah, as planned, and instead stopped in Acco. She moved south from there to Kiryat Tivon, a town outside of Haifa. Haifa is currently taking Katyusha attacks from Iran's proxy army, Hezbollah.
Katyusha rockets landed in the northern Israeli towns of Karmiel, Hatzor, and Majd el-Kurum, as well as several other communities, throughout the north on Thursday. On Thursday morning alone, there were confirmed Katyusha attacks on Nahariya, Rosh Pina, Kibbutz Hagoshrim, Kibbutz Mishmar Hayarden, Gadot, Kfar Nasi, Beit Hillel, Kibbutz Mahanayim, Kibbutz Kabri, Mount Hermon, Netiv Haasarah, Mount Meron, Shlomi, Zar'it. Hospitals are moving patients to lower floors and expectant mothers are being housed in bomb shelters.
By this afternoon, rockets hit Karmiel, Safed, Hatzor, and Majd el-Kurum as well.
At least 28 people were wounded in Majd el-Kurum - two moderately and seven from shrapnel. Majd el-Krum is a major Arab city. Katyushas, once launched, don't distinguish between Moslem, Christian and Jewish Israelis.
Two are dead: a woman sitting on her apartment balcony in seaside Nahariyah and another elderly woman in the Mt. Canaan town of Safed. The latest news reports indicate over 200 hospitalized.There is a report, unconfirmed, of a man killed in Safed and a boy trapped in a bombed building.
If you aren't familiar with the geography, then allow me to explain that this is a full-scale rocket attack all along the north of Israel, from the Mediterranean sea to the Syrian border, and as far south as major cities like Karmiel and Haifa.
And the EU is portentiously announcing that Israeli reaction to the Katyushas raining down on us is "disproportionate."
I wonder what a 'proportionate' response is?
During World War II, Germany launched the V-1, a missile, like the Katyusha, that had no guidance system and was designed to hit and terrorize civilian areas. There was virtually no protection against these Nazi missiles, but the RAF didn't hesitate to bomb Germany into rubble even more than it had before, along with American and other Allied Forces assistance. Was THAT disproportionate?
Hello, world? This is a war. It is not a police action, not a terrorist strike. It is missile attacks on civilian population centers at a time when Israel is in compliance with UN directives concerning the northern border with Lebanon. There's no such thing as a 'proportionate response' in a war. There is only winning and losing.
We can't afford to lose. We won't lose. One Shoah was enough.