Local Pictures
Classified Ads
 Announce Births
Email Us
Buy A Copy
Local Links

click here to
The Daily

web page consultants:
Servant Technologies


04-26-03: Celina resident offers Israeli perspective of war
The Daily Standard
     The people of Israel, for the most part, remained calm during the United States' war against Iraq, Israeli Avram Keusch said he feels.
    Keusch moved to Celina with his wife, Sarah Baker, and two young daughters nearly 18 months ago for an analyst job at Community First Bank.
    He has lived the majority of his 38 years in Israel, where his parents and most of his immediate family still reside.
    "Israel is about 300 miles from Iraq, and there were some fears about missile attacks and chemicals, but all in all, I think they were calm about the war. His family did not follow the war all that much," Keusch said during a recent interview at his Celina home. "It was different in 1991, when Hussein paralyzed the country. He sent missiles and now, the majority of our people are very happy to have the Iraqi regime toppled."
    Keusch remembers, as a child, occasional terrorist attacks and said suicide bombings in Israel have increased, particularly in the last two years.
    "It's really a terrible thing. And now, when the United States' war with Iraq broke out, the people in Israel were given gas masks, because of the possibility of chemical warfare," Keusch said.
   "At that time, Purium, a holiday that resembles Halloween in the United States, was being held and parents just told their children the gas masks were part of the holiday," His wife added.
    Keusch notes that he has lived in Israel and returned back to the United States on at least two separate occasions.
    "I was born in the United Sates and was 6 years old when my family moved to Israel, in 1970," he said. He spent his childhood in Jerusalem, Israel.
    In Israel, all men must serve three years in the military when they turn 18 and women are required to serve two years. Keusch served his three years prior to earning a bachelor of science in mathematics at Hebrew University in Jerusalem.
    Luckily, he was not involved in warfare during his stint with the military.
    At the age of 24, Keusch came to the United States to work toward his doctorate in business administration at Indiana University (IU) in Bloomington, Ind. It was there he met his wife Sarah, a native of Fort Wayne, Ind.
    Coincidentally, his wife had spent a year in Israel during her junior year of studies and knew Keusch's parents, who had operated a post office on the campus.
    "When I met Avram at IU, I couldn't believe it when he told me who his parents were, that I actually knew his family," she said.
    At the age of 28, Keusch returned to Israel with his new wife. Their two daughters, Rivka, 7, and Naomi, 4, were born in Israel. The couple spent eight years in Israel before returning to the United States two and a half years ago.
    The United States' war against Iraq was not their biggest fear, they said. It was the United States' shift in foreign policy that causes them the greatest fear.
    "They (United States) decided to go on their own with the war against Iraq (without the sanction of the United Nations). This was a war to change a regime, a war of choice," Keusch said. "That is worrisome to me. Iraq doesn't exist now. There is a lot of thinking on what they want to get done, but little thought on what they will do now. I would like to see a realistic approach to foreign policy."
    "My fear is that a precedent may have been set," Sarah Keusch added. "You have to consider the rest of the world."
    Keusch enjoys talking before an audience about Israel and has been a guest speaker at area functions. Unfortunately, his job at Community Bank was brief and he is seeking employment now. His wife is a freelance writer for various publications.


Phone: (419)586-2371,   Fax: (419)586-6271
All content copyright 2003
The Standard Printing Company
P.O. Box 140, Celina, OH 45822