Monday, July 08, 2002

Tal G in the suburbs? T. and I are very fond of Jerusalem. It has a mix of old and new - there are people who are old-style ultraorthodox, old-style nervous types who would have been labor unionists 30 years ago, new style yuppies, and neo-spiritual types. Its handsome buildings and quiet atmosphere are quite a contrast from Tel Aviv. And it's sometimes a powerful experience being near to the old city and the Wailing Wall. But economic and other pressures are making us think about moving out.

Over the weekend we were looking at a small town called Modiin about half-way between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. As a place to live it has its pluses and minuses like any town. It's also very close to the Green Line -it has been quiet there, but there has been occasional shooting on the 443 highway into Jerusalem. Consequently a lot of people take the longer route via the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv highway. In the neighborhood that we visited, there was someone whose wife had been in a coma since one of the Jerusalem bombings. Some new apartments include a "sealed room" in case of a chemical attack. And there was the jokester who said told us that it's a good place to live because it's close to the airport - "so that after the leftists have given Arafat the whole country except for the Greater Tel Aviv autonomous zone, you'll be able to make a quick exit".

That guy's cynicism is misplaced. The Labor party is in major disarray, and 80% of Jewish Israelis support the current IDF actions in the West Bank (">report). I heard that Shimon Peres has now told a French newspaper that Oslo was a mistake (don't have the details).

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