Tuesday, August 16, 2005
dis·en·gage: to release or detach oneself

It would be incredibly remiss of me to not mention the events going on in Israel right now, as I am sure even my non-Jewish readers have heard about it in the news (for those unclear on what is going on you may go here for the Israeli government's explanation of what the Disengagement Plan is, and go here for a timeline map explaining how we came to this point).

I haven't discussed it up to this point for a number of reasons; I am a bit of fence sitter on the matter as I can clearly see arguments for both sides of the debate. Also, I can safely say that I am not as informed on the matter as I probably should be and therefore feel I can't really speak intelligently on the matter. I have been trying to track down facts, but it's hard when bias for or against the plan taints how information is written and presented. I have found it frustrating as I try my best to be as informed as I can be, especially about Israel.

As much as I have been a fence sitter, if pressed I would say that I lean slightly towards the "pro" disengagement side (which will no doubt have me falling out of grace now with a few Jewish bloggers), though I have to say my view has been seriously challenged since seeing footage of Jews being served eviction notices and being dragged away. I found I had tears in my eyes as I watched scenes of Jew against Jew, sometimes in angry and confrontational ways, and sometimes in calm, tearful, and pleading ways. I felt the pain of these people who were once supported and encouraged by their government to live in these areas now being betrayed and told they must leave "or else". It's just not an easy thing to see and if you don't know what I am talking about I strongly urge you to head over to Israellycool's post that shows pictures of exactly what I am talking about; it's gut wrenching to see such pain on a person's face. I have seen pictures of Israeli "settlers" sobbing as they watch their synagogues being torn down and love ones being dug up so that cemeteries can be moved, and I have seen soldiers crying as they are instructed to follow orders to remove their fellow Jews from their homes. Sometimes doing "what's right" seems so wrong.

For insights as to what it's like head over to some Israeli blogs; Imshin gives some moving impressions, Rinat gives a first hand account as a reporter here and here, as does Lisa. And a special nod goes out to Yosef over at If You Will It for this blue and orange ribbon concept which perfectly describes how I feel. This is one of the most pivotal and historical moments in Israel's history and existence. In an odd way I am anxious to get over there to be part of it... be a witness to it, and feel it first hand, however hard it may be. 13 days away.