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July 22, 2014

Rocketsí Red Glare

Harry M. Covert

For the past week, I’ve been inundated with instant rocket reports slamming into Israel. The iPhone rings every few seconds that another town has been hit.


No, these attacks haven’t been here in Frederick County. Thankfully, political opponents pro and con in these parts haven’t resorted to such sneaky spasms; I mean sending destructive munitions into Winchester Hall or other sections where partisan unrest is rather bubbling.


Sure is good that campaigners haven’t resorted to such murderous actions to gain control of the governments.


The ability of handheld computers to report each time a rocket is instantly fired is quite an attention getter. Oh, yes, these rockets are being fired from Gaza into the towns and cities in the State of Israel.


What relevance does the war – the constant fighting – have to do Frederick County? Plenty. Almost every resident of the county has a friend or family member in the Middle East and around the world.


The rocket alert continues to blast every three or four seconds. It’s difficult to ignore them. I sincerely hope that some truce can be made immediately. Unfortunately, centuries old hatred still reigns.


The deadly bombs coming from guerillas make no sense. No one likes to admit it, but American Christians, primarily Evangelicals, support Israel and its right to their homeland, surrounded by enemies who want to destroy it. The land was mandated to Israel in 1948.


Most Christians and people of faith believe the words from Genesis where God said, “I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse.”


Following the Nazi crimes of World War II, Jews from all over the world flooded into Israel to build their homeland. They have certainly done that and under extreme conditions, always looking over their shoulders.


Within the last three minutes of this writing, attacks have landed in Rishon LeZion, Ashdod, Shaar Hanegev, Eshkol, and Ashkelon.


Imagine if similar actions occurred in Thurmont, Middletown, Monrovia, Emmitsburg, Camp David, and the Great Frederick Fair? A terrible thought indeed.


My admiration for Israel’s secret services has always been high. After such devastation in human misery of the concentration camps, the world should never forget and never allow such killings to reoccur. Israel won’t and should not.


For years I have tried to figure a way to recall this story. I began in the newspaper business in my hometown. On Wednesday afternoons once the sports pages had gone to press, I helped a veteran editor collect all of the church news for Thursday.


In one afternoon a man, dressed in short-sleeve shirt and khaki pants, brought in the neatly typed news of the local orthodox synagogue. As an 18-year-old rookie trying to grow up, I noticed blue numbers on the man’s left arm. In ignorance, I asked what the tattoo meant.


Instantly, my older colleagues were startled. Several yelled “shut up” and “sit down.”


The man from Adath Jeshurun Synagogue merely smiled and shook hands with this boy. In seconds, my education increased. I became heavily interested in history.


Ignorance is not bliss. It can be most embarrassing. The learning process is usually rapid, particularly in an old-time newsroom.


One of the most troubling things about politics in Frederick and the nation today is simply that hatefulness has become so welcomed and prevalent.


Look at events in Israel, Palestine and throughout that area of the world. Tragic. We can only cry.


Frederick and this nation have a blessed spot in the world.


Alexis de Tocqueville put it this way: “America is great because she is good. If America ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.”


I trust the latter is still taught in schools, beginning in kindergarten and continuing through high schools.


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