Four people died in Tel Aviv yesterday.
Four people died who didn’t have to die.
Four people died while eating cheesecake and sipping coffee.
Four people died while relaxing and enjoying themselves during an evening out.
Four people died, because two other people brought up on the poisoned milk of hatred and told that murdering Jews is okay, thought they should die and did everything in the power to make that happen.
Today, the world continues as it does every other day. The sun will rise as it always does. Around you, you’ll hear the sounds of hooting and the din of traffic. You’ll hear some laughing, maybe some people arguing, and even a dog or two barking, while chasing a bird they’ll never catch.
The world will continue to spin, while the news blares out on radios around you. People will be fixated on their mobile phones, oblivious to all around them while waiting for their bus to begin their morning commute. Across the world, people will be waking up while others will be going to sleep. Children will be returning from school with bags too heavy for them, while babies will be crying for their morning feed.
But for the families and friends of four people, life will stop for a moment.
Ido Ben-Ari, who fought in an elite army unit protecting his country, will not be kissing his children goodnight. And his wife will be lying in a hospital recovering from the same gunshots that took away her husband and their father.
Ilana Naveh will not be saying goodnight to her children, perhaps fretting over whether the school lunches she packed were enough. She was reportedly celebrating a birthday, and while they say life begins at 40, hers was ended at 39.
Near her was Michael Feige, a professor at Ben Gurion University, whose life was education and passing on his knowledge to others. His students will not get to hear him again.
And finally there was Mila Mishaev who grew up in Rishon Lezion – a pioneering city that got its name from the biblical verse, “First to Zion are they, and I shall give herald to Jerusalem.” Mila was engaged to be married, standing on the cusp of a new phase in life that will never come. She was waiting for her boyfriend to join her when terror came knocking instead.
Four people who contributed to the world in their own unique ways are gone now, leaving behind families who grieve and memories that will linger for a lifetime. And Israel too will remember them as they join the sad list of those taken from us before their time.
Today their bodies will be buried in the earth while their souls will rise to the place from where they came, and then… then life will continue as it always does. As it always must.
Because… what choice is there?