Tyler Rabbi takes shelter in Israel after militants attack

Congregation Beth El

POSTED: Wednesday, July 9, 2014 - 6:40pm

UPDATED: Thursday, July 10, 2014 - 4:00pm

A hail of rockets and air struck over Israel and Gaza Tuesday targeting areas like Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. One Tyler rabbi has been there through it all. He said, "theres been a lot of raw emotion here."

With two days left of Rabbi Neal Katz' trip in Israel militants fired rockets which forced him to take shelter.  He said, "about ten seconds after i left the door, the sirens went off in Jerusalem. i went into a bomb shelter, every public building has a bomb shelter, we waited it out ten minutes, the bomb was shot down with the iron dome, and we just walked back to my apartment."

Katz has been in Jerusalem for a month, leading a tour and taking classes. He said, "oddly enough what we're studying is war and peace in the Jewish textual tradition." Its not his first time in the middle east. He's lived there for more than two years and traveled there numerous times. He told me he's a lover of Israel. However, this time was an eye opening experience. "Generally Jerusalem and Tel avid are left alone, but again, these are unguided missiles that are just shot and whatever they hit, they hit," said Katz.

He describes it as a different level of normalcy. The sirens go off, people take shelter, and then life goes on. "I'm not fearful, i mean Israel, theres hundred thousand tourists here right now, and theres a very highly skilled response to everything that's going on with the rockets," said Katz. As he travels back to the states on Thursday he hopes for one thing, and said, "there are still those of us who yearn for peace, however that's going to happen, and if not peace, at least a cease fire."

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