Notes from the small Israeli community, our neighbors, that live in Richmond Hill Saturday early morning we didn’t really know if we woke up or were still dreaming.
Only after a few hours did we understand that while the phones were ringing and beeping non stop from text messages, this evilness was already deep in Israeli communities, savagely and brutally spreading inside families homes and with an inhuman attack strategy attacking young people that are celebrating peacefully at a music festival.
The more the hours went by on that unrealistic weekend, the numbers of the loved ones that are no longer with us continued rising, 200, 300, 400......
Suddenly messages and pictures that this evilness uploaded to social media networks with insane pride showing the extermination and kidnapping of elders, parents with and without their kids and babies, young men and women.
The more the hours passed, the more news was answering “what is happening” and continued to spread in different media networks the things we prefer not to see that hurt our gentle souls.
Many families were watching, trying to call their loved ones and waiting for a sign that said “we’re OK”.
For some it came while shouting for help.
For some it came and then disappeared.
For some it never came and after a few days received the message that they didn’t want to receive.
For some still praying and waiting since that Saturday.
The more the days went by, more witnesses and more media was released to share the horror.
We all thought that after 1945 it wouldn’t happen again. Evilness with intention to do its plan with zero moral ethics.
Not all the people who were lost in that attack had the same beliefs, not all of them had the same nationality, not all of them believed there isn’t a solution for the Middle East. But they all had something in common - they all were on the Israeli side of the border, they all wanted to enjoy what this wonderful land has to offer to its residents and visitors. From the snowy mountains in the north to cities of sunshine in the south with a very diverse climate, very diverse community groups, very diverse cities, a beam of light in the Middle East.
Service is mandatory in Israel. In the years we served, the country evacuated land, including Gaza, to give an opportunity for peace and growth to Israel’s neighbors for establishing a state by focusing on looking forward to the young generation’s future as Israel did since 1948. Educating the kids to respect the past but take courageous steps to build a better future. Israel has already made peace with several neighbors and will continue seeking peace as it is part of its belief, our growth engine and for a better future for our children.
Israel experienced a severe hit that surprised the young soldiers watching the border. But those same soldiers, their friends and all other fighters also proved their heroic, unbelievable abilities to do a quick transition to the lions who protect their pack, and will face any terror that is coming to hurt the good in this world.
In just a few hours the battalions and special units took control of the Israeli communities, pushed back the evil to Gaza and now are handling the terror organization named HAMAS. Unfortunately, those same emergency responders had to face all that the evil had already done and left behind. These young men and women won’t be the same again.
Israel will recover and learn what needs to be learned and get stronger as the country has done in the past 75 years since its establishment.
Israel is focusing on returning home the 200 hostages that are being held in Gaza. Israel is wounded, but with a strong spirit, protected under two strong wings formed by 2 Aircraft carriers of the American bald eagle watching that others from the north or east borders won’t make a mistake they will regret, trying to keep everything stable in a tough and complex environment.
We have a small community of Israelis in Richmond Hill that relocated to support building the local industry, working together to build American made products for the North American market, taking pride in joining the American economy.
We’re experiencing challenging times, concerned for the homeland and family safety. We’re very much encouraged by the huge support our local community is showing us and wanted to share our thoughts and feelings about the current situation. We wanted to tell the story that each one of us has been experiencing since that Saturday morning. We’re highly confident that we all do not want to see this terror on earth.
I am humbled to present this article to you. Thank you to our wonderful Israeli neighbors who have shared their hearts with us. I always tell you, my readers, how I write about heroes, here are heroes writing for us.
Georgene Brazer is chairwoman of the Richmond Hill Downtown Development Authority. You can reach her at georgenebrazer@ gmail.com.