April 24, 2002 |
My favorite Israeli cafe hired a security guard and installed a gate after a Palestinian suicide bomber nearly blew the place apart six weeks ago. It was a near-miracle that one of Caffit's waiters, Shlomi Harel, noticed the sweaty youth in a heavy jacket and backpack. "I looked at the guy, and I didn't want to believe, but I knew it was him," says the 23-year-old Shlomi, as if referring to the monster of his dreams who had suddenly become real. Shlomi, who has pierced ears and one pierced eyebrow, grabbed the backpack, saw the wires and detonator, then pushed the terrorist out the door.
June 28, 1991 |
In order to get a better handle on that terrorist raid by a group of Kashmiri Muslims on a vacationing party of young Israelis in Srinagar, a quick review of history should be helpful. When Israel was still in its infancy as a nation, the first Knesset, or parliament, made it mandatory for all young men and women to train for three years in the Israeli Defense Force. At the urging of Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion, the only exemptions were granted to serious young students of religion.
October 12, 1986 |
Two years ago, the value of the Israeli shekel was falling so fast that some merchants converted their receipts into U.S. dollars before the close of business each day, lest their earnings lose buying power overnight. Since then, economic reforms instituted by Israel's national unity government - an unprecedented partnership of the country's two main political blocs - have helped tame the runaway inflation, bolster domestic industries and stabilize what had been a desperately troubled economy.
June 12, 2001 |
A particular meteorologist delivering the morning weather forecast on Israeli radio always ends with wishes for a good day. Now, almost as an afterthought, he's begun to add, "Just let it be a quiet one. " Every listener in Israel knows it isn't the wind he's referring to. From conferences to school outings, from family picnics to job-related travel, what Israelis universally refer to as "the situation" has become a variable always to be factored...
April 9, 1994 |
In a land where gunfire echoes down alleys and stones shatter windshields, one man's silence now rings loudest. PLO Chairman Yasir Arafat has yet to say a word. Three days after a suicide car bomber from the Islamic Hamas movement killed seven Israelis in Afula, Israelis are increasingly calling on Arafat to condemn the attack, and some are demanding that their government break off talks with the PLO if he doesn't. To be sure, the killings have been roundly criticized by top PLO officials, including their leader in the West Bank, Faisal Husseini, and their chief negotiator at the Cairo peace talks, Nabil Shaath.
January 2, 1986 |
Their names burst on us, to the sound of gunfire and exploding hand grenades. This time it's a shadowy, nebulous figure named Abu Nidal, sowing Rome and Vienna airports with death and terror, then fading into the dim, hidden recesses of the Arab world. And we're left trying to cope with the bloody scenes they leave behind, and the diagrams the newspapers draw of how the terrorists got in, got out (as familiar now as football replays), and the listings, in fine print, of the dead and injured.
June 17, 1994 |
When I tell people I just came back from a month in Israel, Gaza and the West Bank, they usually ask me if I'm a pessimist or an optimist. What they really want to know is whether I believe the self-rule accord between Israel and the Palestinians has a chance of working. My answer is that this depends mostly on the Israelis and Palestinians themselves. This may sound simplistic, but I still believe it to be accurate. I am fully aware that the 250-page accord signed in Cairo last month between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization is so complex that a high-priced lawyer would have trouble parsing it. It grants self-rule in Gaza and the West Bank town of Jericho, but also leaves open for future negotiations all the most difficult questions.
January 5, 1986
News reports indicate that Israel plans to retaliate against the recent terrorist attacks at the Rome and Vienna airports. It should be obvious to everyone that such retaliation is totally ineffective in stopping future terrorist attacks against Israelis as well as against innocent citizens of other countries. As a result of Israel's invasion of Lebanon in 1982 with the killing of thousands of Palestinians in the Sabra, Shatila and other camps (by Lebanese Christians - editor's note)
February 5, 1990 |
At least nine people were killed and 18 injured yesterday when two men fired machine guns and threw hand grenades into a bus in Egypt carrying 31 tourists, most of them Israelis. A previously unknown Egyptian group calling itself the Defense of the Oppressed in Egypt's Prisons claimed responsibility for the 5:30 p.m. attack. An anonymous caller told a news agency in Cairo: "The organization launched the attack on the Jewish bus to discipline (Egyptian President Hosni) Mubarak's regime and his interior minister, who started his term with savage torture of prisoners in Torrah prison," referring to an Egyptian prison.
February 12, 1988 |
There is reason for sadness in the condemnation Israel is getting from other nations for using deadly force against Arab demonstrators. The reason is that the situation was inevitable from the moment of Israel's creation. The problem seems to have no solution; it seems intractable. Yet, Americans - Jew and Gentile alike - were very pleased at the time of creation of the Jewish state. It seemed so humane, so just, coming as it did after the revelations about the Holocaust. Those revelations about the Holocaust did not prevent the Western nations from rejecting the remnants of Europe's Jews.