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Gaza War Diary: 15 JANUARY 2024

My friend and neighbor got a call Friday afternoon from his daughter: her young husband, a soldier in the Egoz battalion in Gaza had been wounded.

It was only this evening that I called my neighbor’s wife, Laurie, to get details. Two terrorists had popped out of tunnels in Gaza and fired rocket propelled grenades at her son-in-law’s unit. They exploded. The result was one dead and four injured, two of them badly. Her son-in-law was one of the lucky ones. His was only a shrapnel injury, but it was in his neck, an inch away from his jugular. Laurie took the car and careened down to Ashkelon to meet her distraught daughter in Barzilai hospital. By then, he was post operative, the metal removed and the wound, still bleeding, stitched. He complained that the doctors had cut off his combat uniform. “That’s very expensive!” he fumed. She reminded him that they couldn’t very well slip it over his head and risk pushing the shrapnel in a little further…

When Laurie’s daughter, a student nurse who’d come straight from the hospital in her uniform, told the nurses that he’d bled through his bandages, they directed her to the service cart, and she changed it herself. “Maybe they thought you were staff,” her mother told her. “You should have told them you are the wife.”

Laurie couldn’t believe how wonderful everyone in the hospital treated them. They made sure to find Sabbath-observant Laurie and her daughter a hotel room, and Shabbat food, and even a voucher for parking. Her daughter refused to budge from her husband’s side the entire time, but Laurie got some sleep and joined her the next day. And all day, friends, fellow soldiers, came to visit. The worst injured were in Ichilov. Both had been hit in the face. One will need a new nose; the other a jaw and all of his teeth replaced.

One them is a lone soldier. The army will do everything for him. Everything. In addition, the men who have been with him since he was drafted will be his family, involving their own parents and families to make sure that he lacks nothing.

This is our country. These are our people.

The war with Hezbollah is going to be even worse than Gaza. Yesterday, an anti-tank missile was deliberately directed by that terrorist group at a private home in the North, killing 45 year-old Barak Ayalon and his 70 year-old mother Maya on their poultry farm in Kfar Yuval in the Upper Galilee. These were not combatants. They had evacuated, but needed to make sure the chickens were fed and weren’t suffering, so they came back to care for them.

According to the IDF information page, since the second Lebanon war Hezbollah, under the direction of Iran, has worked tirelessly to build its strength and improve its ability to harm Israel. It is now able to fire hundreds of highly accurate missiles a day into Israel. On the ground, Hezbollah trains Special Forces to cross the border into Israel and invade Israeli towns. In this scenario, which Hezbollah has referred to since 2016 as “Occupation of the Galilee”, small groups of well-trained Special Forces from the “Radwan Force”— which has trained for years in Syria, will infiltrate Israeli towns, carry out widespread massacres on the residents, and take others captive as leverage for bargaining.

Sound familiar?

It is thought that Nasrallah was planning just such an invasion when Hamas beat him to it. Not wanting to play second fiddle, he decided not to join in. Yet. But Nasrallah has threatened that this conflict would “open the way for hundreds, even thousands of fighters from all over the Arab and Islamic world to participate.”

In two wars in Lebanon, Israel successfully fought terrorists, withdrawing because of internal pressures. The Four Mothers social protest organization successfully lobbied for full withdrawal. On May 24, 2000, three years after the establishment of the movement, the IDF withdrew from Lebanon by the orders of Prime Minister Ehud Barak. As part of the ceasefire agreement, UN Resolution 1701 called for a zone free of armed personnel except for the Lebanese Army. Hezbollah ignored that, as well UN Resolution 1559 and the Lebanese Taif Agreement, which ended the Lebanese Civil War and called for the disbanding and disarmament of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias. Hezbollah clearly shows it has no intention of ever laying down its arms.

Every time Israel pulls back, it forfeits the victory it has earned, losing the its ability to protect its people. Every peace agreement with terrorists is eventually covered in blood. And social protest movements modeled on Four Mothers continue to destroy our country’s morale and its strategic advantage. It is to be hoped October 7 has changed all that.

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13 comments on “Gaza War Diary: 15 JANUARY 2024”

  1. John Baker

    John Baker
    Naomi, God bless you for what you do. I live in the UK. The muslim march last Saturday in London was full of troubles. The march on Sunday for Israel there was no problems that says it all? and there were thousand’s there too. We are all praying for you.

  2. John

    Naomi, I am Australian and I would like to apologise for our pathetic so called minister for foreign affairs that is visiting Israel at the moment, she reckons that she “represents” Australia, well she doesn’t represent me or most Australians if todays papers here are anything to go by, she and her boss the prime minister are an embarrassment to most of us here. Because of our silly preferential voting system here this government got in with only 30% of the votes. So 70% of Australia didn’t vote for them. Once again I apologise

  3. David Coh

    Naomi, please tell me how you continue to be a religious Jew. It seems to me that God has forsaken the Jews. Where is God’s protection that we pray for?

  4. Meirav Peters

    Until a few days ago ai was able to open up and continue reading you war diary but the last few days I am unable to contiue reading it when I press on this in the email. It is the same on my computer and on my phone. I noticed in the comments that someone else was having the same problem.

    • John Keeble

      Yes I’m still having the same problem, maybe it’s being blocked, I am in Australia. Can still get here by going to Naomi’s website and then clicking on diaries.

      • Dahlia Mevorach

        I have the same problem from inside Israel. If I use the link from the e-mail message, I can’t get in. If I go directly from the browser to, it’s fine.

    • Daveed

      A Jew asked a rabbi where God was during the Holocaust. The rabbi, normally a quiet, reticent individual, turned on the Jew, and admonished him, “You do not get to let Hitler off the hook!” In the 1940’s, when Jews were slaughtered by the millions, they had no way of defending themselves. In 2023, when Jews were again being slaughtered, they have an army with which to defend themselves. God seem to have given the Jews the brainpower with which to defend ourselves.
      We understand God almost as much as an ant understands a human being, although the gap may be even larger.
      Rabbi Yonis Mozeson, writing in The Times of Israel two years ago, said:
      A commentary on Midrash Tanchuma (Be’er Hamamorim) therefore concludes that the whole story [the son who didn’t trust his father the king’s judgement to pick a bride for him] can be summed up with one famous Talmudic dictum: “in whatever direction we want to go, God leads us.” (Talmud Makkot 10B). That’s a bit sobering and depressing. It means that God doesn’t micro manage our moral failings. God isn’t the parent that protects their child from ever making a mistake. Just the opposite. When we’re courting disaster God says “go for it.”

  5. David Bornstein

    What is really needed now is a good inter Muslim war! Sunni vs Shia. Good times during the Iran Iraq war. Muslims doing what they do best, killing each other! The rest of the world does not care and it consumes weapons and keeps them busy!
    Also, a good earthquake in the correct location for a change! Would be nice if the earth opened and swallowed the Iranian war machine! Not to mention Jenin and other filth strongholds.
    Allah did his job on the Turkish politician! Time to expand and be more ambitious!!

    • Ryan Keogh

      It would be sad if it wasn’t so pathetic. In spite of people complaining about Israel, nobody has killed more Muslims than other Muslim countries. Assad, Saddam, and others have killed many times what people claim Israel has, mainly against “apostates” or disliked minorities. I’m glad that I live in America, because I don’t to deal with that sectarian nonsense. Nobody knows who’s Catholic or Protestant. Meanwhile in Belfast, where my great-great-grandfather came from, they have to build walls to keep Catholics and Protestants from killing each other and rioting. Meanwhile I am the result of Lutheran-Catholic admixture. Can’t imagine a Shiite marrying a Sunni in Lebanon, or at least not without threats of violence or bloodshed. Sorry for the rant.

      By the way David, how is it going in Australia?

  6. golda urmacher

    when will Israel stop being America’s doormat?
    war plan should NOT be discussed with any country, even allies,
    prior to attack.
    America is my country, an I am ashamed to say, that Israel cannot trust America.
    Gaza and the West Bank should never have been given up, and Israeli citizens born in these areas removed.
    now they will be taken back and populated with Israelis.
    so what was accomplished? land for peace is BS.
    and those muslims living in those areas of Judea and Samaria?
    let them be absorbed by the 22 muslim countries of the world.
    instead of building vacant cities with sky high apartments that remain empty,
    let them build cities in the desert, universities, schools, hospitals, homes,f arms and
    put all these barbarians to work , humanize them, and teach them love of fellow humans.
    and if they don’t want to help heir own, it is not the world’s problems, nor Israel’s.

  7. Ryan Keogh

    Hate to say it, certain anti-war movements throughout history have shown to be used by the enemies of the nations where they are based. This could be seen during Vietnam.

  8. Phyllis Stern

    Naomi, God bless you for speaking truth. I live in the U. S. and it’s hard to know what’s really going on in Israel. I want you to know that there are MANY in the U.S. who are with you and praying for God’s protection, healing, rescue and help for Israel!
    Phyllis Stern

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