This is a personal and completely subjective account of what's happening to ME over here in tel aviv. I know that watching the news from afar can be stressful because you always get a feeling that somethis bad is happening is some other part of the world and you don't exactly know what because you are not there, so this is just to tell you what's up.
Yes there are bombs falling on this country. And they aren't in tel aviv. Yet. I personally don't know anyone who lives up north or in haifa where the missles have landed, but my roommate does and she's constantly on the phone with her family who are sitting in bombshelters. Meanwhile in tel aviv life looks as usual when you look around, with some exceptions: everyone's tv's and radios are turned on all the time to get live updates and people talk all the time on the street about war. The discussion on the street is so pro-war, racist and violent that even when we chant at a demonstration against war slogans that are as non-radical and simplified as "No to war, yes to peace" we get very very angry responses from the brainwashed masses who are convinced by the media and all sorts of high-ranking army generals that this war is necessary. On internet websites like gaydar, for instance, traffic is at peak rates “ I guess war makes people horny, or is it the thought that soon theyâ€™ll be enlisted in the army up north and won't have another opportunity to fuck. As about me “ I'm not scared, I'm depressed. Depressed of the complete ruins of Lebanon, of the rising death toll from a war that is so fallic and male-ego driven, on the disguisting dialogue that is prevelant in israeli media and on the street that makes no room for expressing opposition to war and is completely careless at anyone who dies who isn't jewish or israeli – for whom over the death of over a hundred people doesn't count if they're not jewish. my need to scream against the war is rising.
But no, I'm not scared and neither is most anyone I know. The general feeling around me and my friends is that even if something happens in tel aviv, no one is going to leave this city. No matter what will happen, I don't see tel aviv being hit anything remotely like beirut is, or having any real war-like situation happening here, and sorry, sitting in bombshelters a little bit isn't quite war.
I guess that there are a few things that should be made clear about the middle east: one is that disregard with the thought of planning for the future is common here (for example the idea of planning something like the queeruption a year in advanc)
because you never fucking know what you'll wake up to the next morning that will ruin all of your plans. The second thing is that even under warlike conditions, siege, occupation, incursions, etc. people continue on living their lives. Whether it's road blocks or checkpoints or the apartheid wall in palestine, people still go to school and work, even if it takes them three hours instead of half an hour. People in israel will go to work and school the day after sitting in a bombshelter. Life here continues. It's not pleasant, but it's a part of living in the middle east. And no one is panicking over it either. For this reason, I like others in the queeruption think that plans for the queeruption will continue as usual.
And these are some of the reasons expressed by the israeli queeruptors to keep on going (this could be seen as a sales pitch of as to why you should come here, but like ishai said in his letter, just because I don't feel scared I don't think that I should convince anyone who feels scared or unsafe to come here. Such feelings are understandable.)
we are not expecting a harsh or devastating war. At best nothing will happen here and at worse we will sit a bit in some bombshelters. What will happen if the queeruption will be cancelled? We will have paid a lot of money to rent a huge club that will sit empty and will have thrown a year's worth of planning and work away just so either nothing will happen or at worse, if something does happen, we'll be stranded each one in his or her home in front of the tv and bummed out that there is no queeruption. Instead, if we hold the queeruption we can unite our powers to have some fun together at a time we need it, to empower our queer community, and to use our collective prescence to resist the war. As someone mentioned at a meeting we had, more people die in suicide bombings than in all the people who died in haifa and all the suicide bombings didn't stop people from coming here for tourist purposes. But say, worse comes to worse, we can sit together in a bombshelter, hug each other, have sex, throw anti-war parties “ bombshelters are sexy! “ which is so much more than what we will do at home.
No one thinks its dangerous enough not to live here, and we won't leave tel aviv, and for this reason we all think it's safe enough to come here.. A part of the idea to move the queeruption from the safe harbor of europe into the lands of the middle east is to make more political and attunted to what's happening in the sphere around them. Unfortunatelly, I think that essentially this is life in the middle east. People who will come here will both have an opportunity to feel it and to act against it, which is why coming here is important. And personally, a queeruption live from the bombshelter, as unlikely as that will happen, is an exciting thought to me.
Should anything happens and we will lose our feeling of safety and need to modify our scheduled plans for the queeruption like if the world pride is cancelled, we promise to let you know and you can re-assess the situation.
Sending kisses of peace