Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Letters From Israel

November 9, 2011

MOBILE SHELTERS by Rachel Saperstein, Nitzan/Neve Dekalim

"Do you know the fellow who works in the pizza shop?" a friend asked.
"Of course" I answered.
"Well" my friend continued, "he's ordering a mobile security room. It's costing them quite a bit of money but they have no choice. It's impossible to run with five small children, especially in the middle of the night, into the sewer pipe shelter. He says his kids are terrified. They're wetting their beds, clinging to him and his wife, and afraid to go to sleep at night. 'What will happen if you can't get all of us into the pipe on time?' his oldest kid asked."

We only have ten seconds from the sound of the siren to get into the concrete sewer pipe in our cul de sac. Hence the mobile shelters. Last week, with the sirens wailing, I watched grandparents running into the sewer pipe clutching their grandchildren wrapped in blankets. An infant was held by her pregnant mom.

"Where are they going to put the security room?" I asked my friend.
"They'll cut out parts of the plasterboard wall in the children's room and attach the shelter to it. If there's a night of heavy bombardment they'll put mattresses on the floor and the kids will go to sleep directly from the bath."

Bath time is always frightening. One always wonders if the siren will wail while one is all soaped up. "At least I'll die clean" my husband says.

Last Sunday morning we had the first real experience of the Iron Dome anti-missile defense system. The sound was horrific. Pieces of shrapnel from the exploded missile fell close to a nearby housing area. Is Iron Dome a blessing or a curse? Over fifty missiles have been fired at our western Negev area. Only two or three were intercepted by Iron Dome.

A mother came in to the Community Center as I was talking to the director. "My daughter is afraid to go outside after school. Could you recommend an after-school activity for her? She really trembles from fright."
"How about tae kwan do? The children learn self defense and it's twice a week" the director said. "The children feel empowered. It just might work."

The mother said she would think it over. She was embarrassed to admit the activity was too expensive for her.
It is at moments like this that Operation Dignity steps in to help. But because of our severe shortage of funds I had to remain silent. Perhaps with your help I'll be able to get back to this mother.

Please help Operation Dignity to help people, our people, Gush Katif people, to weather the storm.


Shekel or US$ under $250 should be sent directly to Operation Dignity, POB 445, Nitzan 79287, Israel

For a US tax deduction checks of $250 or more, earmarked for Operation Dignity, should be sent to
Central Fund for Israel, 13 Hagoel Street, Efrat 90435, Israel
Central Fund for Israel, 980 Sixth Avenue, New York, NY 10018, USA

See our website – – for further details.

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