Life on Alert in an Israeli Town

[New York Times] Steven Erlanger - Sderot, a working-class Israeli town less than two miles from Gaza, has been hit over the past four years with some 2,000 rockets of improving range and explosive power - 22 in the last eight days. Eight Sderot civilians have been killed by the rockets. For many Israelis, Sderot embodies the fears of what happens when they pull back as they did from all of Gaza more than two years ago - the land turns into a staging ground for attacks by extremist Palestinians that a peace treaty will not stop. The problems of Sderot - and of a Gaza run by Hamas, considered a terrorist group by Israel and the U.S. - are at the heart of Israel's security concerns. But those concerns are present only in the abstract in the American-led peace effort, which features negotiations between Israel and Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah, who has no control over Hamas or Gaza. The people of Sderot live in a most un-Israeli hush, so they can hear the rocket alerts. People keep their car windows open and their radios and televisions on low volume. They take quick showers, no longer sleep in upstairs bedrooms, and avoid public places at what are considered peak rocket times.

2008-01-09 01:00:00

Full Article


Visit the Daily Alert Archive