The Jerusalem Post has founded the Gush Katif blog, written by Rabbi Ari Katz:
Until this past summer, I was a rebbe in that hesder Yeshiva, and I then I happened to see an ad in the paper for a Rosh Yeshiva in the Yeshiva high school in Gush Katif. This all took place after Sharon had announced his plan for uprooting the Jewish settlements there. I had always been very ideological, thanks to my parents education and the institutions which I had learned in. I felt that the right thing to do at the time was to move there. I saw the ad as some type of sign from Hashem, and after talking it over with my family, I went for the interview. One thing led to another, and I was offered the job.
I envy his faith, if not specifically his location.
I thought that I was coming to the Yeshiva to educate them. At the end of the day, I ended up learning a whole lot from them. I learned what true emuna is. I felt that I was able to get through this tough year because of them. I always knew that I would see them come to davening with their bright smiles everyday. I always knew that they would come to class with good spirits. I always knew that I would find them playing basketball on the court.
I was unable to explain this at first. After all these kids had gone through – the mortar shelling, the terrorist attacks, and now the danger of them losing their homes. If this scenario would happen in any other place on earth, the kids there would surely have been devastated by now, if they hadn’t run away already. But in Gush Katif the people are made of something much stronger. Hashem gives these people special powers. This was the only “logical” explanation that I could think of.
Not to be a stickler for semantics (because I would never be something like that), but I’m not sure this is a blog as much as it is a periodical column ( “Letters from Gush Katif” or “Gush Katif Diary”), and this first installment is introductory and lacks illustrative substance. Still, perhaps future installments of the column/blog/diary will provide an interesting perspective on what it’s like to live in Gush Katif now.