Israel-Iran: War or no War?

Two weeks ago, my roommate received the letter.

He is expected for his reserve duty on mid  September for 5 days in the north of Israel.
In Israel, men  until the age of 42, and women until 24, have to complete up to one month of reserve duty for the military.

My roommate is worried. Normally, he is called to military reserve in spring. “Now they call me up in September, at the time it is supposed to start.”

He refers to the war with Iran. A lot is said about it lately, rumors say it will start in mid September.”

I can understand he is mad. He still has several papers for university to write, after that he wanted to take a couple days of vacations.

I do not think there is going to be a war or better, I do not know. I grew up in a country that hasn’t seen war for 67 years  and no war is expected any time soon. My friends and I, we never talk about war, war is happening somewhere else.

But here it is omnipresent. Last weekend it was worse than ever.

On Thursday a reporter of the TV- Channel tweeted that they will launch a special broadcast on the war on the following Saturday.

Rumors started to circulate: Apparently, Prime Minister Netanyahu has invited key media representatives to an unofficial press conference on Saturday night.

“This means war,” some shouted, “Here we go!”

“You don’t start a war like this”, others say.

But all of them are worried.

My roommate is mad. He has an important exam on Sunday.

“How am I supposed to focus on my studies like this?  Who knows if the exam on Sunday is even taking place? Maybe tonight I get the SMS with the secret code. Then I have to pack my things and go to this certain place where they pick up me up for the military. Then the war has started! ”

We do not know… He decides to study anyway.

On Saturday, he sits grumbling at his desk while I travel to the Dead Sea, although with no good feeling. I check my Haaretz App almost every hour.

On Saturday evening we have dinner together, Trina with pita.

“False alarm, wasn’t it?”

We are relieved.

Nevertheless, my roommate decides that we should start making thoughts about finding the closest bomb shelter to our home.

I know bomb shelters from Germany, left-overs from the 2nd World War. They are usually grey, big and made out of concrete. There is a big one in Hamburg, it hosts cool parties.

“The bomb shelter has to protect us from the rockets,” my roommate says. That is why it should be beyond the earth.

We walk past cafes where young people with retro clothes sit in front of their Apple computer.

They don’t seem so worried about finding bomb shelters.

Finally, we find a solution. The underground parking lot under Habima Square.

During normal days designed for thousand of cars of the theater visitors. It is perfect. Spacious and with several exits,  only 2 minutes from us.

Then we forget about the war for a while.

And so does the media, it seems.
The daily newspaper Israel Hayom, known as the voice of prime minister Natanyahus, which printed topics related on Iran’s nuclear program on their front page during the past weeks, now seems to find interest in other topics not related to the upcoming war. (haaretz)

Is Netanyahu trying to back out?
To reassure Israel, President Obama announced a few days ago open and covert actions against Iran, including a new  anti-missile-system in Qatar. (NY Times)

Reassuring news, but the best news reached me today.

A text message from my roommate:  “They have cancelled my reserve duty. No explanation.”
Maybe just a coincident in which one shouldn’t put too much interpretation. Both of us, we are very happy!


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