Carrying black flags, the children of Gush Katif greeted the President of Israel, Mr. Moshe Katsav and his wife Rachel, on their visit to Gush Katif, the Jewish area of Gaza planned for expulsion.
In a meeting with the president, residents spoke from their hearts reminding Mr. Katsav how they reclaimed empty desert, built beautiful communities, founded synagogues, schools and yeshivas, and tend farms which supply 95% of insect-free kosher vegetables to Israel and the world.
Einat Yeffet, 17, said “my teacher was killed, a day after my brother was murdered, but we kept up our struggle. Now my government wants to expel me and my family. Why do we deserve this?”
Mrs. Rachel Saperstein, an immigrant from the United States, recalled in English that her husband lost his right arm in the Yom Kippur War and two fingers were shot off his remaining hand by an Arab terrorist. “We gave our body and blood to the land of Israel, and now that we are middle-aged we are to be thrown out of our home. Why?”
The President, feeling the frustration and anger, said the people should use legal means to fight their case. He stated he could not interfere with political decisions but he understood the wonderful people of Gush Katif and their contributions to Israel. He added that even the leftist parties appreciate the sacrifices, pioneering spirit and the bravery of the people of Gush Katif.
The meeting, held with mutual respect and admiration, concluded with a pertinent question by a reporter. “Why” he asked, “does the Israel Supreme Court turn down IDF requests to demolish empty Arab buildings used by snipers, while the government of Israel demands the expulsion of Jews and the destruction of their homes?”