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Tevet 5, 5768, 12/14/2007
Following the Israeli security cabinet's decision to refrain from a full-scale military retaliation against rocket attacks from Gaza, state leaders have announced a national defense policy aimed at increasing protection for the shell-shocked Israeli town of Sderot.
At a press conference held at a fitness gym, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Ehud Barak named the new defense strategy: "Run, Jew, Run!"
Defense Minister Ehud Barak, sporting a Reebok sweat suit, explained, "In our times, a Jew who is not physically fit puts his life in danger, so we are allocating 4 million shekels from the defense budget to open fitness gyms throughout the Sderot region. Each street in Sderot will be assigned a personal trainer to get 'em all in good shape so they can run faster from the Arab Kassams."
Before continuing, the two State leaders screened the following realtime implementation of the "Run, Jew, Run" plan.
Prime Minister Olmert explained that sending troops into Gaza is not an option because "some of them may get hurt and killed."
CNN's Ted CommonSense asked, "Then why does the State of Israel invest resources into training soldiers if the executive branch is afraid to use the army?" Olmert replied that IDF training gets soldiers in top physical form so they too can participate in the new Run Jew Run National Defense Policy.
CommonSense pressed further, "But ten civilians have been killed from Arab Kassams and mortar shells…" Olmert cut off CommonSense and said. "If we send the army into Gaza, then not just ten, but rather tens of soldiers will get killed. It's simply not worth it."
CommonSense retorted: "But what if 100 civilians get killed from improved rockets?"
All eyes shifted to the Prime Minister. There was silence in the room. Had the policy makers taken such a scenario into account? Suddenly, a look of confidence came over Olmert's face as he declared, "Will going into Gaza bring these 100 people back to life? It will only get more soldiers killed! It's not in our interest."
One of the founders of the Four Mothers Movement in the audience stood up and shouted, "Olmert is right. If a Prime Minister cynically uses an army to protect the country's civilians, it will only get soldiers killed. Mr. Olmert is protecting our soldiers.
.The Press Conference proceeded with a demonstration of the new defense program. First, Defense Minister Barak noted that the Sderot early warning system gives 15-seconds advance notice of rocket impact. Barak then darted into an impressive sprint around the conference hall to prove the operational mechanism of the new plan.
Barak's coach held up the stopwatch for all to see and declared: "14 seconds and 56 hundredths of a second!"
Bowing his head and lowering his voice, Prime Minister Olmert recalled how Jews ran from their pursuers for generations. "This is our national heritage," explained Olmert. "Our forefathers ran from Egyptian taskmasters, and from Babylonian, Greek, and Roman soldiers. In later years, we ran from pogroms and inquisitions. Why break this glorious tradition now?"
Health Minister Yaakov Ben-Yizri (Pensioners Party) estimated that the monies saved to the health system by strengthening the physical fitness of the population would cover the proposed purchase of Harley Davidson motorcycles for the elderly who cannot make the 15-second dash to safety.
CNN's CommonSense: "But some civilians don't have the faculties required to speed on a motorcycle to safety. What about them?"
Prime Minister Olmert exchanged whispers with the Health Minister, punched a few numbers into a calculator, and then replied: "According to our calculations, the 'Run, Jew, Run' plan provides a solution for 98% of Israelis. Just as my predecessor Yitzchak Rabin said, 'it's a calculated risk.' If some old or handicapped Sephardim in Sderot get hurt, this is the price we have to pay."
A long-bearded Sderot resident (formerly of Gush Katif) was granted the last question. "Why not start by intensive bombing on Gaza from the air? This would reduce the risk to our soldiers who would follow with a ground offensive to halt the Kassams altogether."
Olmert: "Are you suggesting that we bombard kindergartens in Gaza?"
Sderot resident: "Mr. Prime Minister. We are fighting terrorists. Civilians will be killed in this struggle. It's either their kindergartens or ours. Which do you choose?"
Olmert: "I choose yours." An aide whispered into Olmert's ear and the Prime Minister quickly clarified, "I mean ours. I choose our nurseries and kindergartens. And besides, let's say we conquer Gaza. What do we do after the war?
Sderot resident: "We should stay there. Remember how few terror attacks there were before the 1995 Israeli pullout from Gaza under the Oslo agreements? The concessions of the Peace Process are precisely what brought about an escalation in attacks. In the Gaza region, we can rebuild the flowering Jewish towns and restore what was literally Israel's most advanced agriculture enterprise."
At that point, a Yassam Police Unit apprehended and beat the Sderot resident and brought him to the Serious Crimes Unit in the Petach Tikvah Police station. The Prime Minister announced that the suspect would be investigated for "incitement to genocide" and proclaimed that Israeli democracy would always provide a platform for the free expression of all opinions "provided that they are within reason."
Prime Minister Olmert concluded saying that if the "Run, Jew, Run" Defense Plan proves itself in the case of the Sderot region, it would be extended to Greater Tel Aviv just in time for the government's proposed withdrawal from Judea and Samaria.