Published on 31 Jul 2014 Sections ,

Voice from Israel: ‘I run to the bomb shelter every day’

Sara Merson, a contestant from the United States who is on Israel’s version of The Voice, volunteered in the country and decided to stay. Then the violence began.

Tel Aviv funeral

I personally rarely leave the house and am running down to the bomb shelter numerous times each day and in the middle of the night. At the moment, Israel is under a constant barrage of rockets, coming from Hamas in Gaza, in attempts to kill innocent Israeli citizens. I am fortunate to have an internship that allows me to work from home, so I don’t leave. Most people here go to work and then come home. You don’t see many people out in my city.

I think it takes two sides for a ceasefire to work, and each ceasefire accepted by Israel has been almost immediately broken by Hamas. Today for example a ceasefire was supposed to start at 3pm and by 3.05pm, I was running down to the bomb shelter.

Read Inigo Gilmore's blog: On the streets with Israeli mourners in Jerusalem

This is the reality of what’s going on here.

‘Killing our people’

I feel that this situation is terrible. The main goal of Hamas is to shoot rockets into civilian populations to kill as many Israelis as possible. Fortunately, they have been wildly unsuccessful because of the Israeli governments’ protection of its citizens. Rocket alarms, shelters, and the Iron Dome anti-missile system are just some ways the government is protecting its citizens.

I feel extremely sad for the Palestinian people because clearly their government places killing our people at a higher value than protecting its own citizens. If not, they would not be placing rocket launchers and weapons facilities in and around schools, hospitals, and private residencies.

They wouldn’t have spent millions of dollars into building concrete tunnels, with materials given to them by Israel to build schools, hospitals, etc. in order to infiltrate into Israel and kill our citizens.

‘Disgust’

What most people don’t believe is that the Israeli Defence League (IDF) is going above and beyond to reduce civilian casualties, more than any army in the world. But civilian casualties are a great pawn for Hamas to gain global sympathy. It truly disgusts me.

For now I am staying set. I am not considering moving.

I think the international response is mostly one-sided and biased, a reason why I have stopped watching the international news. People around the world do not understand the situation we are in and are putting Israel into a bad light, which is exactly what Hamas wants.

If people around the world could imagine getting constantly fired with by rockets coming from a terrorist association into their civilian cities and homes and towns, for no reason other than to kill them and wipe out their nation, maybe they would think differently.