Who is a civilian?

Because of the unique nature of Judaism, it can be hard to know who is Jewish, and who is not. That’s why it is impossible to live here for any length of time without hearing the age-old discussion: Who is a Jew?

It’s a question. It’s a topic for discussion. It’s often even an agonizing dilemna. And, there are times in Jewish/Israeli history when the question of Who is a Jew is a truly painful subject.

Not being a Jew myself, I watch this struggle from the sidelines – and it’s a privileged position that allows me to view the soul-searching of the Jewish people. And, there’s a lot of that going on.

One bit of soul-searching involves the current trade in suffering. Israelis in the North are suffering, and we suffer along with them. However, we also know that Lebanese civilians are suffering too – and that THEIR families and friends suffer too.

It’s an insane dilemna. Israelis have had to choose between Lebanese suffering and Israeli suffering. They’ve had to choose between Arab children and Jewish children. They’ve had to decide if Israeli mothers and fathers are more important than Lebanese fathers and mothers.

If you’ve never had to make that choice, trust me. It is horrible. True, some Israelis are so upset that the choice comes easily – until the dust settles and the recrimination begins.

So, how do you choose?

In one sense, you don’t. In one sense, you go after military targets wherever they are – no matter whether they are next to a school, or a hospital, or an old age home. Military targets must be destroyed.

That’s one kind of sense.

The other kind is one that YOU participate in. The Arabs are beating their chests over the truly horrifying civilian casualty figures, and when you listen to them, you are being launched into the debate. When you hear about the death toll among non-combatants, Arab apologists will ask you to condemn Israel.

I am asking you to think.

Both sides will be asking you to engage in a question much like the one that Jews have struggled with for generations. Arab apologists will ask you to accept the civilian death toll in southern Lebanon as evidence of evil on Israel’s part. Israel will ask you to tell them what else they could be doing.

I will ask you to think. Just because someone isn’t carrying a gun when they are killed doesn’t necessarily mean that they aren’t a combatant. Just as an army truck driver is a legitimate target, so is anyone else in the Hizbullah support structure.

Let me boil all this down to a single point. When you hear of the horrible civilian casualties, ask yourself an important question:

Who is a civilian?

2 thoughts on “Who is a civilian?

  1. Precisly!!! Those families who have allowed misiles to be housed under their own roof surely have the same view as Hizbullah.

    I put myself in their situation…If I didn’t have the same belief system and they (Hizbullah) were trying to force me into something I didn’t want to do nor did I agree with then I would have done everything in my power to get out of the situation.

    If I were the neighbor of someone who knowingly harbored weapons of destruction and I didn’t agree than I would have packed up my belongings and moved away. A very difficult thing to do economicly.

    OF course I live in the USA. When the guy downstairs is beating his wife at 3a.m. I call the police who come to her aid. A good indicator that things in my neighborhood changed for the worse is the smell in the air while I sit on my patio trying to enjoy the evening. It’s just not as peaceful as it once was.

    This didn’t happen over night people. Citizens of Lebanon surely could see Hizbullah activity no matter how covert. Signs would have existed in some form or fashion.

    It is terrible that human life is lost on BOTH sides, but it’s an outcome of war and the choices people make.

    Thanks to all who are willing to put their life on the line to eliminate the evil of this day and age in which we live.

    God Bless you all!!!!!!!!!

    Sheila

  2. So, who are ALL of the individual terrorists groups, and what’s wrong? This gets way too confusing..maybe just a little Cliff’s notes version..you know, like:
    1. Al Quada-Their problem is
    2. Hitszbullah-Their problem is..
    Is religion the issue in the Mideast? Why are all of these little psycho groups forming? Power?

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