Reaction to the Gaza conflict

KIMT News 3 – The fighting continues between Israel and Hamas in the Middle East and the Israeli prime minister is telling Israelis, get ready for a “prolonged” war.  More than a 1,000 people have died in the current three week conflict.  Those in our area say their concern only continues to grow for those overseas.

Alan Steckman and Ruth Newman are both members of the Adas Israel Synagogue in Mason City, and they’re both very concerned with what’s going on between Israel and Hamas.  Newman travels frequently to Israel; in fact she was just there in March.  She says even then, she felt the tension, especially in the West Bank area.

“Within Israel, there is more. Here’s the Arab population over here, here’s a Jewish population over here, and there has to be a very careful going back and forth,” said Newman.

She says one of the major issues she’s upset with, is the propaganda being handed out against Israel.

“Propaganda has been so one sided. It’s really a double standard there.  The Hamas, who is a terrorist group, have their whole intentions to do nothing, but absolutely annihilate Israel,” said Newman.

Steckman says he’s been listening to what Jewish leaders in Des Moines are saying about the conflict, and he feels there is no compromise in sight.

“If your Israel, you don’t necessarily want to surround yourself with a state that is determined to wipe you out off the face of the earth.  If you’re Hamas you want to do that, there’s no point in between,” said Steckman.

Steckman says he just hopes that a cease fire will be solidified in order to save the people there.

“What I would like to see happen, but I don’t think it’s possible, is for the two states solution, but there has to be an agreement, a solid agreement, that any conflict will cease,” said Steckman.

Newman says, even with the war, she has a strong love for the area.

”If I had an opportunity to go back now, I would, even with the unrest.  When you are in Israel, you truly do not feel the unrest.”

The United Nations Security Council is asking for a cease fire as the end of Ramadan begins.

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