Boaz Yeari: 'I can see Gaza from my window'

Making aliyah under fire

Color Red alerts, mad dashes to fortified spaces and loud blasts in the middle of the night – these are only some of the things Israel's new olim have to deal with after choosing to make aliyah to cities in line of fire

Color Red alerts, mad dashes to fortified spaces and repeated sounds of blasts – these are all too familiar to longtime residents of southern Israel but for those who have just recently made aliyah, the routine represents a frightening and incomprehensible new reality.


Daniel, 48, and his wife Caroline, 41, made aliyah last week from Canada with their three children, all in their early teens, and settled in Ashdod. On their first night in town they were "introduced" to the earsplitting siren that alerted them to the fact that rockets were being fired from Gaza. Their aliyah experience took a very sharp turn.


Daniel and Caroline Dahan: 'Israel is home'
Daniel and Caroline Dahan: 'Israel is home'

Discussing the move to Israel, Daniel says they had planned it for years, thinking of everything from jobs, home, friends and even schools for the children. Yet they never imagined they would have to run with the children through the stairwells to take cover, he says. "It was very frightening and the children were crying."


After Thursday's brutal terror attack, Dudu, a veteran Ashdod resident, advised Daniel on how to act when the sirens go off. Though according to Daniel, nothing prepares you for what you feel when the sirens begin to sound in the middle of the night.


In spite of their concerns and fears the family says it will not allow rockets and terrorists to change their plans to settle down in Israel. He noted that he came to Israel with a great passion and still feels that Israel is his home.


'You feel instantaneously Israeli'

His teenage daughter Michal, 14, sounded less enthusiastic, especially since the interview was interrupted by yet another air raid siren in Ashdod. She said she didn't understand why rockets were being fired on Ashdod adding that it had a paralyzing effect on her. "I told my father that I want to go back to Montreal."


Boaz Yeari, 18, whose Israeli parents left Israel before he was born, arrived in Israel by himself last week and is now staying at Kibbutz Saad in the Gaza vicinity area ahead of his enlistment to the IDF within the framework of the Tzabar project, a joint project between the Ministry of Immigrant Absorption and the Scouts movement.


"I can see Gaza from my window. There's a Color Red alert at least once a day and you can see and hear our planes attacking Gaza," Boaz noted. "It's a strange feeling but it also makes you feel you're instantaneously an Israeli," he added.


"You do feel fear but when I see that everyone on the kibbutz is so used to it and calm, it helps and I immediately feel that I'm getting used to it too."


The Immigrant Absorption Ministry stated that Minister Sofa Landver and Director General Dmitry Apartsev visited the south to get updated on the olim's situation. Moreover the ministry said it operates telephone hotlines and a multi-lingual website to help new olim deal with the security situation.




פרסום ראשון: 08.22.11, 12:18
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