Israeli Teens on Growing Up Under Rocket Fire

The Fellowship  |  April 15, 2019

In Israel, every young person joins the IDF to help protect their homeland once they reach the age of 18. Ynet News’ Matan Tzuri takes a look at how a life under rocket attacks and war has shaped today’s young people’s outlook on the prospects for peace:

It was in 2001. Israel had not yet withdrawn from Gaza but a new reality was forming.

At first they were short range mortar shells fired into Sderot and farming settlements close by. Most of them caused little or no damage. But as time went on, the frequency of the shelling increased and their accuracy improved claiming lives of civilians.

Israel embarked on three rounds of military operations including massive shelling and troop incursions against the Hamas controlled enclave.

The Iron dome missile defense system was developed in response to the ongoing attacks but the rounds of fighting and intermittent shelling became routine.

The rocket generation was born into a reality of shelling, sirens and frequent wars. Now, heading into adulthood, we heard nine of them speak out.

Shaked wolk: ‘We grew up differently. From a young age you have to look out for yourself, be aware of the nearest bomb shelter and how quickly you can take cover, this is character building’.

Noya Primer: ‘I doubt I will raise my children in this way. I wouldn’t want them to have to run the shelter in the middle of the night’.

There is not unanimous agreement about what should be done, some think Hamas must be destroyed, others hope for a political solution that will not include more fighting, but these nine teens share a sense of despair, saying: ‘That’s just the way it is’ or ‘nothing can be done…’

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