“I need to stop watching the news.”
This is what I told myself – saddened – the other day as I pointed the remote to the TV and said, “That’s enough.”
The fear on those babies’ faces was too much.
I had to stand up and walk away. I couldn’t think about it anymore. It was easier to change the channel.
Before I shut off the TV, though, the footage of those children – probably not more than 6 years old – physically shaking and crying out with fear as their equally terrified parents loaded them into a small sedan was branded in my memory.
Moments earlier, they were delighted, seemingly, to speak to the journalist interviewing them on the streets of their neighborhood about their late evacuation.
The family was Palestinian Muslims and one of the last in their area in Gaza to depart.
Others had evacuated already because of the rocket strikes in their neighborhood. Rubble was everywhere.
The children were too young to understand why they were leaving.
But they weren’t too young to understand the noise of the bombs that exploded around them mid-interview.
Their bodies convulsed with fear, and then, the tears began.
They were afraid, and all they could do was get shoved in a car and drive away from their home with few possession.
On Thursday, three more Palestinian children died from Israeli air strikes in Gaza City.
Every day when I turn on the news and watch footage of what’s going on in the Holy Land, my heart aches for the residents – especially the children.
But my heart also breaks for the Israelis, who are frustrated to the point of war because they don’t know any other way to rid Gaza of Hamas authority.
And the war is expected to get worse as other Palestinian Islamic militant groups more radical than Hamas are expected to retaliate.
And meanwhile, amid rockets and bombs launching at one another, people are dying.
Animals and buildings and homes and the lives attached to those things are being destroyed.
Children are afraid and dying.
And all I can do is turn off the TV.
Jennifer Preyss is the faith editor for the Victoria Advocate. You can reach her at 361-580-6535, jenniferpreyss.com , or on Twitter @jenniferpreyss.