Daily Israel Report

US Jews Fight in IDF, Remember 9/11

American Jewish IDF soldiers, only eight years old at the time of 9/11, remember the tragedy while fighting for their Jewish homeland.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 9/12/2011, 11:06 AM

Lone Soldiers in the IDF
Lone Soldiers in the IDF
Ricki Rosen

American Jews, only eight years old at the time of 9/11, remember the tragedy while fighting in the IDF for their Jewish homeland.

Lone soldiers, who immigrated to Israel without families and usually enlisted in the Israeli army almost immediately after landing at Ben Gurion airport, spoke with IDF spokesmen abut their horrid childhood memories.

"When I got home from school that day my mom was waiting outside the door with tears in her eyes," said Cpl. Karen Zmora (23) from New York, currently serving as an instructor at the Special Forces K9 Unit.

"I sat in front of the TV and I remember feeling very upset and confused trying to understand what was happening. It looked like a horror film; I could not comprehend the destruction, and the amount of people going to lose their lives," she explained.

"It took me a long time to get a grasp on what happened," said Gitit Chromoy (21) from New Jersey, a former Special Forces female combat soldier. "I was in middle school and didn't quite understand what was going on but I remember everyone getting picked up from school early."

Maryland native Cp. Alon Diamint-Cohen, 23 and a Field Intelligence combat soldier, recalled, "I was in 7th grade and it was during third period art class when I heard that the twin towers had fallen. It took another jumbled hour of confusion, rumors, and explanations until the situation became clear and we understood that a great tragedy had befallen the entire United States."

“After lunch the school and staff all lost the ability to function and sent everyone home. I spent the rest of the week watching replays of what happened to the towers on the news, as a stunned America tried to recover from a devastating blow.

"The entire experience wasn't only a terrible tragedy, but also a violation of everything Americans relied on. The fall of the twin towers on September 11th triggered the beginning of a new more aggressive and less innocent generation of Americans," he concluded.

Cpl. Angy Shavit,18 and a New Jersey native who serves as a female combat Artillery Corps soldier, said, "I remember walking into class after lunch. My teacher pulled down a map and began to explain to us what had happened. Although we were in the 4th grade, I remember everyone glued to the news.”