My phone beeped…too many times to be a message about something silly. Shots have been fired in Tel Aviv…first reports are confusing. They are fighting to save a woman’s life; eight others have been wounded. In real-time, we listen and then the thought, the terror frozen as my hands fumble for the phone. “Please God…please God…”
My husband answers the phone. I can hear the noise of him driving in the car. “Where are you?”
“On the way home,” he answers. “Why?”
“Where?” I ask him again, the fear is slowing. “Where?”
Already close to our home; far from Tel Aviv and the tragedy being revealed before our eyes.
Nine wounded…five in critical condition…three have died. Three lives gone.
The pictures are confusing. A policeman is seen shooting. Two terrorists have been neutralized. Three lives.
This morning it was announced that once again the army had changed the rules of engagement; that soldiers are ordered to hold fire if the terrorist is running away. Tonight, after shooting nine people, the terrorist ran out of ammunition and was running. Police shot at the terrorist and brought him down. He was, it seems, moderately wounded. A test for the Israeli government. Will you punish a policeman for shooting someone who has just murdered three people?
All over Israel, we are listening to the news. We are hurting; we are angry. We are checking in with friends, asking where they are. We are crying. We are listening to reports that the Arabs are celebrating. Four dead. Another has died.
The Arabs are celebrating…what…what in God’s name are they celebrating? The murder of innocent people simply because they were caught eating in a restaurant?
These are the emotions of Israel this night – fear, anger, pain, worry. We grieve this night; we mourn and ask when will it end…and we know it never will.