Tel Aviv Diary - March 14-18, 2014 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

March 14, 2014

It's Purim. Everything is upside down on Purim. We've been celebrating for days and the rockets keep falling. I seem unable to record the silliness, the crazy costumes, the unbelievable world that is part of our daily lives. We sat at the bar in Papa's last night while alarms went off in Sderot, accompanied by kassams and thunderstorms and flooding - but what did we talk about? Where the Malaysian plane has gone. My theory was (and still is at the moment) that it went to the nearby islands.

But what about the Jihad? What about the cars destroyed in Jaljulya? What about all the bills going through Knesset that seem only to insure Bibi's re-election?

Just have another beer and change the subject.

I'm not complaining about my companions here. It's me too. What else can we do?

March 15, 2014

The Israel Association of Writers in English met with the University of Sophia on December 13, 2014 to broadcast a reading live. Unfortunately they didn't manage to get the system to work, and I fear they didn't manage to film either. Fortunately at some point Ezi stepped in and manned another camera. And Mark Levinson set it up on youtube. So here it is. Rochelle Mass got left off, but Sharon Kessler, Richard Sherwin, Mark Levinson, Michael Dickel and Helen Motro are there. I'm at the end.

Here's my paranoid scenario. the Malaysian plane was hijacked, landed in some remote area of Kazakhstan, got rid of the passengers, and now is being filled up with fuel and nuclear dirt to drop on Israel. No one else seems to be thinking this, and I didn't even share this with Ezi, but i can't believe the passengers have survived this ordeal, nor do they have any value to these kidnappers. It makes sense to me that it is the aircraft that can be flown into the ground that has value. And of all the conflicts in the world, it is this one that can be solved with an attack of this sort.

I shared it with Ezi. He agrees with the first part of my analysis.

So what's new in Tel Aviv? We have been biking in the pastoral heaven that is part of our neighborhood. Purim has brought out the imagination of almost every one. Costumes are better than ever because people are no longer buying things ready made. They can't afford it, they are tired of the same old thing, they are letting their imagination come out.

March 16, 2014

Sorry, I can't do Purim this year. Everything I write seems to come out right-side-up instead of up-side-down. First, the whole Malaysian mystery is driving me mad. So much information is available in the world and still a few people can keep a secret from us all. It's something I can't wrap my head around. We should be able to share and understand information. Second, the pain of all those people - the fate of the people in the aircraft, the uncertainty of their loved ones, the fear of all those in the area. Third, the fact that my scenario has been clear to me for days - and it is not a pretty one for the world. If it is possible that Al Keida has managed to plan what I have been imagining, it is imperative that we learn how to cooperate with information, and work together to prevent such crimes.

We seem to come a bit of a distance from the late Zyggy Frankel's poem, "The Terrorists"


We operate from airfields we did not build,
smuggling explosives we did not invent
onto planes we wouldn't know how to pilot.

Thank you, civilisation, for your blessings.

I think he wrote it in the last decade of the twentieth century, when we had already lived through some terrorist activities, including the bombing of Dizengoff Center, when, I seem to remember, he called me from there on his cellphone. (That was before the beginning of the cellphone craze and they were large and very heavy.)

But to return to the subject. What right do I have to complain of communication problems? To whom do I communicate?

March 18, 2014

Please forgive the silence. I am digesting Germany and it seems a bit harder to take than the last time I was here. I will return to communication as soon as I can figure out the problem.

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