Friday, January 21, 2005

Monday Thoughts -- UPDATE


Below, I linked to an article about Ella from Sderot and how she needed our prayers. Sadly, her injuries were too much, and she was laid to rest today. Article from Jerusalem Post in the comments section.


Martin Luther King Day. Just wanted to acknowledge its importance. What an amazing man. I wish we would remember his teachings more.


Victor Davis Hanson really nails what he tackles. Here is one article that came out January 7 -- I'm a bit slow. But check it out -- it's solid:

The Disenchanted American
Are we growing world-weary?
"There is a new strange mood of acceptance among Americans about the world beyond our shores. Of course, we are not becoming naïve isolationists of 1930s vintage, who believe that we are safe by ourselves inside fortress America — not after September 11. Nor do citizens deny that America has military and moral obligations to stay engaged abroad — at least for a while yet. Certainly the United States is not mired in a Vietnam-era depression and stagflation and thus ready to wallow in Carteresque malaise. Indeed, if anything Americans remain muscular and are more defiant than ever." Read the rest here.


I wish the MSM would do more to cover the victims of mortar attacks in Israel. Naomi Ragen once again is alerting us to what's going on. Please say a prayer for this brave girl.

"Seventeen year-old Ella from Sderot was on her way home from the Bnei Akiva  youth movement Saturday night with her friend and her  ten-year-old brother when the alarm sounded.  They raced for the nearest shelter, but when they heard the whistle of the missle, they knew they wouldn't have time to reach it.  Ella's friend lay flat on the street, Ella  threw her body over her little brother's to protect him.  He emerged with only slight wounds, but Ella herself sustained serious head injuries and is now unconscious and in critical condition in Soroka Hospital." Read the rest here.


At 2:30 AM, Blogger RomanWanderer said...

Good article. Being from Europe though, I'm not that worried about what the 'others' think. They're mindless sheep. (The others being those who criticize America).

I'm more worried about the differences between Americans, in America.

At 8:10 AM, Blogger Esther said...

You and me both, RW. Excellent point.

At 11:44 AM, Blogger Esther said...

From the Jerusalem Post:

Ella Abukasis, 17, laid to rest

Prayers accompanied Ella Abukasis as she left the world Friday morning.

Abukasis, 17, died at 9:00 a.m. at the Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba. She was critically wounded when a Kassam rocket exploded as she and her siblings were returning from a Bnei Akiva youth group meeting in Sderot on Saturday.

As medics fought to stabilize the girl, she was taken first to Barzilai Hospital in Ashkelon and later brought to Soroka in Beersheba.

She was laid to rest at 12:30 p.m. on Friday in Sderot.

Her 11-year-old brother, Tamir, was also wounded in the attack, as shrapnel lodged in his head. He was spared a worse fate when his sister dove to protect him after hearing the warning siren.

"She protected him with her body, and now her blood stains are on his pillowcase. It was a miracle that he survived," Ella's father told Israel Radio.

Despite her serious condition, Ella's family refused to give up their hope.

According to the Jewish custom of adding names with positive connotations to seriously ill people, Ella became known as Ayala Chaya after the attack. "Chaya" means living.

Even after the doctors pronounced her brain dead Tuesday, the prayers continued outside her hospital room. There was a constant flow of visitors, both friends and family, as well as officials, like Sderot Mayor Eli Moyal.

Her father, Yonatan, spoke in an interview with Israel Radio on Friday morning. "The doctors said she was completely brain dead – there was nothing that could be done. And even though she was gone, she left her entire body, full. It just looked like she was sleeping. But she wasn't."

He said that once he understood from doctors that it was the end, he had to check into the halachic (Jewish legal) implications.

Yonatan said that at least his daughter merited that "the most prominent rabbis of our day decided when to return her soul." The family consulted with rabbis Mordechai Eliyahu, Shlomo Amar, Ovadia Yosef, and Elyashiv.

Yonatan told the radio that the rabbis did not give an approval to disconnect his daughter from the machines, but they accepted the advice of Rabbi Dr. Halperin, who said that in the case of brain death, the connection must remain while the heart is slowly let to die. When the medications in the machines run out, they are not replenished.

Ella's medications ran out Thursday afternoon. At 9:00 a.m. Friday morning she passed away.

Yonatan Abukasis said that he is maintaining his strength, for himself, and "for the family."

Ella's sister Karen said it was very difficult to deal with her sister's death. Since Ella was rushed to the hospital, she's felt that everything was gone.

Karen said her sister was "everything": She liked to help and to do anything anyone asked of her.

Speaking from the hotel in Beersheba where she and her brother were staying, Karen expressed fear of returning to her home in Sderot.

Living under the constant barrages of Kassams "is very scary" she said, a short while before her sister's funeral was to take place.


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