/ a personal I witness account of the war against the Hizbolla, by Barry Silverberg, on the spot, although the spot is getting hot.


The explosion tears through the walls of the house and tears through your body with a deafening crack, rattling the windows and shoving the doors. You jump, but you're not worried. It's one of ours. Then there's another one: A bursting report followed by an echoing sound, as if superman were flying off to save Metropolis. KAPOW! Wungawungawunga wunga wunga. .The howitzer batteries deployed not far from our town are firing their 70 kilo shells. They fly way over our heads and into Lebanese territory, where they are providing cover for Israeli military action, or destroying the rocket launchers that have turned our summer into chaos. God guide their flight and give us something in return for this constant noise.


Knowing that its one of ours gives some relief, but as these things pound away hour after hour, day after day, your nerves get worn away. Think of those old comic book sound effects that just burst through the picture.


If you've been following the reports of the war, (the news reports, no pun intended), you've seen that the foreign news people always ask how the locals can tell this friendly, but acrimonious fire from the real rockets that kill us. Ours go BANG whizzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz and theirs go fizzzzzzzzzzzzz BANG. I've had several times when I stuck my nose out the door thinking all was already clear, heard the approaching whizzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz and pulled my head in so fast that my glasses and teeth were left in the air and I had to open the door again and grab them back to my face and slam the door again before the BOOM came.


But that is not all. Aside from the shooting of our big guns and the barrages of incoming Katyusha rockets there is also the

siren that goes off whenever the radar

detects that rockets have crossed the border

in our direction.

Almost. Sometime the rockets come in

before the siren, because the border is so

close. Most barrages include a bunch of far

away booms, and two or three that resound with

a mighty clap meaning they've probably hit

the town. Then there are the light aircraft,

crop dusters spraying flame retardant on the

trees to slow the fires down. There are fighter

jets and helicopters in the sky. And there are all

sorts of muffled booms and pounding from

cannons further away, anti aircraft fire,

occasional gunfire, and mortars; just so we'll

have a change from our steady diet of Katyushas.

So a pleasant summer morning in Kiriat Shmona

Sounds something like this:

I wrote this as the war rolled into its 5th week. I wrote it in bits and snatches, because most of the day goes on my volunteer work, taking cover during the missile alerts, and doing the basic essentials to keep a family going: laundry, meals, the garden, hugging. Several times the siren sounded while I was mid sentence, and I frantically reached for control S and ran downstairs. The shelter has the TV, and we left the computer on the middle floor, which is somewhat protected.

There are many accounts of this war for there are more news crews in town than residents, and every boy has his blog. This account will be somewhat different.

If you enjoyed it, then pass it along; preferably to someone who will publish it and send money, but to friends is also OK. I have my own ideas about what aspects to write about but I welcome questions, too.



Barry Silverberg,

90% of Kiriat Shmona,

August 9, 2006


Recent articles can be found here:


New Lamentation for Ninth of Av



See more Silverbergs live on ITN (yawn! Where's my makeup girl)