Lights in the Distance

Observations and musings regarding new mommyhood and life in general.

Monday, May 03, 2004


Words cannot describe the revulsion I felt upon hearing of yesterday's heinous terror attack in the Gaza Strip. Whether or not I or others believe the settlements should be there is irrelevant at times like this, when a pregnant woman and her four young daughters are murdered in such a horrific manner, and you can't help but wonder about the depths of depravity to which these twisted individuals are capable of sinking. There can be no justification for the cold-blooded, point-blank murder of four little girls and their mother, no matter who they were or where they lived.

I choose not to focus on the political aspects of their senseless deaths, but on the personal tragedies of those left behind. In the blink of an eye, a family of six (seven, if you count the unborn baby) has been destroyed, reduced to a shattered family of one. To lose one child is to experience indescribable pain. You feel that your whole world has fallen apart, and indeed, it has. People around you continue to go about their lives, and you wonder if you will ever be able to do the same. You wonder if you will ever be able to smile again, to laugh again, to look at another child without wanting to die yourself. If you are lucky and you are strong, you will find the way to cope with your pain, and eventually, gradually learn to live again. The pain doesn't go away, it simply becomes a part of you, something you carry with you always, but with any luck, you don't let it rule your life. That is losing one child. How does one recover from losing an entire family? It is truly incomprehensible. How can you go on, knowing that those you hold most dear have all been taken from you, wrenched away with such agonizing cruelty? How do you find the strength to live, let alone to heal? It is at times like these that I almost envy those people who can derive some semblance of comfort in believing that even the most horrendous acts are all a part of G-d's master plan, and that somehow, their loved ones had completed what they were put on earth to do, and that is why they were taken. I truly hope that Mr. Hatuel, husband to Tali and father to four beautiful little girls, is able to find the strength to go on living, the strength to smile again someday.

What some people have conveniently chosen to ignore is that terrorism is always a crime. It is vicious, indiscriminate violence, perpetrated with the singular goal of causing as much devastation and carnage as possible. It can happen anywhere at any time. Thousands of innocent people around the world have been murdered while riding buses, trains and planes, going to work, going to school, going out to eat. The list is endless, and the "creativity" shown by the terrorists in carrying out their attacks knows no bounds. To differentiate between victims sets a dangerous precedent whereby some victims are more acceptable than others, essentially condoning the justification for murder. One can disagree with the settlers and their actions, or disagree with the actions of the Israeli government, but to "understand" the murder of innocent civilians by terrorists and see it as an acceptable consequence of these actions is just as culpable for these deaths as if he or she had personally pulled the trigger or set off the bomb.


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