The nature of the discussion about Israel tends to focus on the political and cultural. Sadly, these days we often find ourselves asking pointed questions about Israel’s military and security services, while they have to defend and explain the difficulties of maintaining their presence, sometimes with violence, within the territories.

In light of that, we often lose sight of the bravery and effectiveness of the Israelis who serve Israel’s security services, often at great personal risk, and usually with great professionalism. Kudos to Jerusalem Post for writing a piece just about that today. Unfortunately, it comes about because one of these silent warriors, Shin Bet agent Oded Sharon, was killed by a suicide bomber while ensuring that this terrorist didn’t make it to a civilian target. Oded has left behind a wife and three young children, ages 1 through 9. They will never see their father again because he stood on the front lines of defense against the kind of people who would heartlessly target children such as his simply because they are Israeli or perceived to be Jewish.

The article points out that last year 367 planned attacks by Palestinians and another 159 that were about to be carried out were thwarted by the Shin Bet. Individuals never took or received credit for their effectiveness or commitment. These men typically give up family time and make themselves available at all hours of the day or week if the information could stop an attack. Each and every day they save lives. It’s terribly sad that Oded had to give up his life in the line of duty. I wish his family all the best.

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