The siren sounded for my town yesterday evening and we went to sit out the mandatory ten minutes in my bomb shelter.
A dull boom was heard, not so far away.
It turned out to be sad news.
The rocket exploded in one of the many Bedouin encampments somewhere between Jewish Omer and Bedouin Lakiya; maybe even the one in my photo.
Two sisters of the al-Atrash tribe were wounded by shrapnel.
Atir Alwaliki, age 13, got it in the knees and is a lot better today.
But Mar'am, 10, was injured in the stomach and is fighting for her life at Soroka Hospital.
The tin-roofed huts (enlarge the picture to see) are no protection against the rockets fired by Gaza, and Hamas doesn't seem concerned that they injure their fellow Arabs here in the Negev.
Some 80,000 "dispersed Bedouins" have set up camp, sometimes a separate encampment for each extended family, all over the Negev, refusing to move to the towns that have orderly infrastructure and services which the government built for them.
Officially, these are treated as unrecognized or illegal villages.
Like so many problems in the Middle East, this is a complicated one that no one knows how to solve.
The "Lands of the Negev" video, although old (2010) and one-sided (made by the Israel Land Administration authority), can give you some background.
Let us hope the missiles stop soon (eight straight days of conflict already).
Let us pray for healing for Maram and Atir.
UPDATE! Haaretz has this welcome update today, Wednesday:
10:25 A.M. Education Minister Shai Piron visited Maram Alwakili, 11, the Bedouin girl who was wounded Monday when a rocket hit her home in the area south of Lakiya. He met with her family and offered words of support.UPDATE #2
Dr. Tzachi Lazar of the pediatric emergency ward described an improvement in the girl's condition. "She has woken up, and is communicating with her surroundings, and breathing on her own. Keep in mind the severity of her wound, a shard of shrapnel had entered interior abdominal organs."
The rockets on Bedouins happened in spite of the Gaza Hamas spokesman's ridiculous promise on this video.
(A is for Alwaliki sisters for ABC Wednesday. Linking also to Our World Tuesday.)
Some papers spell the names Atil Alwakili and some write Atir Alwaliki. ??
This just published in the Jerusalem Post:
Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael-Jewish National Fund announced on Sunday that it will provide 160 portable bomb shelters to communities adjacent to the Gaza Strip. The KKLJNF raised $4 million from Diaspora Jews for the project, which will place concrete structures in Ofakim, Bnei Shimon, Gan Yavne, Sderot, Naveh, Bnei Netzarim, Sdot Negev, Eshkol, Hof Ashkelon, Merhavim, Sha’ar Hanegev and Netivot as well as in the Beduin communities of Lakiya, Sha’ar Shalom, Rahat and Hura.
. . . The article continues here.