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The Middle East (Israel included) is preparing for yet another war. It seems that every 10 years or so there is a war, whether we need one or not. Sometimes there are two.
For a personal Iraqi view of these preparations - see http://www.dear_raed.blogspot.com/ .
It is a moot point whether or not Israel or Israelis support this war, since nobody asked us. Nobody asked us when the USA, Britain, France and Germany helped to create the Saddamonster in the 80s. Nobody asked us the USA, Britain and France attacked Iraq, and then, in a collosal and inexplicable "oversight" forgot to finish the work. It didn't take a geopolitical genius to figure out that leaving Saddam to fight another day would mean trouble. It also left the Kurds, Shi'a and and various other enemies of the regime to their fates, which included being gassed, dissolved in acid and other humane treatments.
Now the USA is finally prepared to do something, and so, as noted, we are all preparing for war. Everyone is pretty much convinced this is going to happen, in the two weeks most likely, or by the end of March for certain. The nightly TV news program is explaining the best way to behave in case buildings collapse, and discussing the question of whether or not to hoard medicines.
Israeli preparations include:
The leaflets distributed by the home front command (in Hebrew, it is "Pikud Haoref" - the Neck Command) feature cheery families wearing gas masks. The father is reading a book in the sealed room, while Mommy entertains the daughter. The teddy bear does not have a gas mask. The theme of these books seems to be, "The family that is gassed together, stays together." The front cover of these leaflets features a wholesome family picture. The picture of the mother, in modest turtle neck sweater but without a suitable hair covering, caused ultra-orthodox religious fanatics to riot and beat up mailmen delivering these leaflets. In the last war there was a great crisis, because someone had to engineer, at great expense, a special gas mask that could be worn over a beard.
An ominous feature of these booklets, is that they are dated January, 2003, which suggests that there will be periodic updates for each of the wars that the USA may plan to correct its diplomacy.
In the last war, everyone praised the emergency news bulletins given during these attacks, which became a regular feature of Israeli life. The wailing of sirens was followed by a soothing announcement, guaranteed to calm the most faint hearted among us. "Your attention please. This is an emergency. Israel is undergoing a missile attack. Please stay calm and enter your sealed rooms." This was repeated in Hebrew, English, Russian, Arabic and Amharic. This was followed by the calming voice of IDF spokesperson Nahman Shai, whose job it was to give incorrect information about where the missiles were landing, as well as to disseminate misinformation about the effectiveness of the Patriot missiles.
After the war, it took quite an effort to remove the tape that sealed the windows and door in our bedroom, much to the detriment of the pain. An improvement in this war - we are promissed that
Another great improvement is the availability of anti-WMD kits for pets. For about NIS 1500 apiece, we can get kits for dogs and cats. Cheaper kits that don't do anything at all cost about NIS 200. No kits for tropical fish. Tough. I think our dogs will also have to take their chances.
When they make the movie about this war, American cinema companies will write at the end:
Many Israelis are not bothering with gas masks and sealed rooms this time, as they were worthless
For a view of the war preparations and the Iraqi regme from inside Baghdad, including some pictures - visit http://www.dear_raed.blogspot.com/
For a view of Saddam's regime by an Iraqi expatriate and e-friend - http://www.geocities.com/skhalis/
Some news items are below.
By Haaretz Service
During the 1991 Gulf war, in which Iraq attacked Israel with 39 Scud
"I've heard other journalists saying that the lesson to be learned from
"To all those who expect Israel Radio to do this, I am hereby announcing
"As in the last war, when the matters are over, we will open up
He said that during meetings held by Communications Minister Reuven
Nadav added that in contrast to the 1991 war, "for all of those who wish
Mon., Feb. 10, 2003 The Jerusalem Post
The cover page of the brochure features a photo of an Israeli family,
Angry residents of the Mea Shearim neighborhood pushed around the mailman,
The mailman had been working the same beat for seven years and knew his
In Mea Shearim, residents voluntarily cut themselves off from the secular
The brochures were put together by the Israeli military to prepare the
During the 1991 Gulf War, Iraq fired 39 Scud missiles at Israel, causing
The Yediot Ahronot daily cited army officials as saying one solution would
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Replies: 1 Comment
If the US does invade and takes over Iraq, I predict:
Posted by Karen @ 02/15/2003 01:31 AM CST
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