Israel and terrorism

In response to Omri Fine’s letter “Double standards” (Oct.18), I would like to share a part of the vast diversity of opinions among Israelis related to the Israeli-Arab conflict.

More than sad, it is frustrating to read again and again the excuses that the right wing in Israel (which Fine represents very well) gives to justify the never-ending Israeli occupation.

It is frustrating because as long as the majority in Israel will continue to believe that in the name of “self-defense,” the Israel army has the right to invade refugee camps and shoot blindly at almost any target – including houses in which children reside – no justice in the Middle East can be done.

As an Israeli army officer, I am ashamed that the army’s tanks, helicopters and pilots are used for these kinds of actions. How much longer will it take? Fine to understand that the occupation is the problem, and that the reason kids are being trained to kill is the result of 37 years of occupation and humiliation? How much longer before Israeli citizens like Fine understand that the use of tanks in crowded civil areas, such as refugee camps, have no justification and is equivalent to any terrorist action?

The lives of my kids, Omri, Itamar and Orr, are worth exactly the same as the life of Mustafa, Ahmad and Fatima. Israelis must understand that! If you are worried about the fact that kids are being trained to kill, give them some hope. If you are worried about religious brainwashing, stop some of the extremist rabies on the West Bank. They are just as dangerous.

The fact that we were victims of a most horrible genocide 60 years ago does not give us any excuse for an unlimited use of unnecessary and nonjustifiable force. Omri, let’s finish the occupation tomorrow, today. I am still full of hope that our lives will be much better thereafter.

Eran Raizman, graduate student, veterinary medicine