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March 19, 2003
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Israeli school children seal class windows in case of Iraqi chemical/biological attack

The Jerusalem Post (www.jpost.com) reports that Israel is now ready for any potential chemical or biological attack from the butcher of Baghdad:

Israeli babies have special gas masks and suits

Groups of pupils were called in from their Purim vacation on Wednesday to help staff seal classrooms before schools reopen after Purim vacation on Thursday. [...]

At the Yitzhak Rabin Middle School in Modi'in, school staff and pupils cleared out equipment from security rooms, including computers, sofas, and bookshelves. Security rooms may be used for other purposes year round, and must be emptied when the Home Front Command gives the order to prepare for a possible state of emergency.

Schools have been ordered to seal windows with plastic sheeting and tape even if the windows were built to be sealed when closed firmly as part of the security room standard. [...]

Sarit Dayan, director of school security, said that all pupils have been drilled on evacuating to the shelters. Pupils have also been drilled on the use of their gas masks.

Ya'acov Saridan, a 10th grader, said he came to help teaches seal windows to ensure that "Saddam does not catch us by surprise."

In 1991, I was a college student at the Technion, Israel's Institute of Technology in Haifa. Iraq launched dozens of missiles at Israeli cities, deliberately targetting unarmed men, women and children.

If the butcher from Baghdad had weapons of mass destruction during the Gulf war, I would probably not be writing this article today.

I copy the full article below.

Schoolchildren seal class windows 'so Saddam doesn't catch us by surprise'
By NINA GILBERT, Mar. 19, 2003
http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?
pagename=JPost/A/JPArticle/
ShowFull&cid=1048050182902

Groups of pupils were called in from their Purim vacation on Wednesday to help staff seal classrooms before schools reopen after Purim vacation on Thursday.

Despite a national alert for a possible attack by Iraq, the Education Ministry has decided to keep the school system open until further notice.

At the Yitzhak Rabin Middle School in Modi'in, school staff and pupils cleared out equipment from security rooms, including computers, sofas,
and bookshelves. Security rooms may be used for other purposes year round, and must be emptied when the Home Front Command gives the order to prepare for a possible state of emergency.

The school has four security rooms that are designed to shelter two pupils per square meter. Since the rooms are only large enough to absorb
half of the school's 900 pupils, the school will operate on a split session basis if the ministry gives the go-ahead based on heightened security
orders from the Home Front Command.

According to the plan, pupils will come to school every other day for a long day of study.

The principal, Ilana Strahal, said she hoped that all pupils would come to school on Thursday and studies will continue uninterrupted even if
war breaks out in the region. She said her school made all preparations in advance for a state of emergency except for clearing out the security
rooms.

Schools have been ordered to seal windows with plastic sheeting and tape even if the windows were built to be sealed when closed firmly as part
of the security room standard.

Modi'in Mayor Moshe Schachter said there is not a single bomb shelter in the city of Modi'in, whose first residents arrived in 1996. Instead the
city of 40,000 has "100 percent" coverage via security rooms that became a building standard after the 1991 Gulf War.

Schachter said he is satisfied that the thick-walled rooms will provide sufficient security for the children in the city.

"A direct hit can't be absorbed any better by a bomb shelter," he said.

As war in Iraq nears, Schachter said he was more concerned about the safety of the children of the city, which is near the Green Line demarcation between Israel and the West Bank, during
the height of Palestinian terror.

Sarit Dayan, director of school security, said that all pupils have been drilled on evacuating to the shelters. Pupils have also been drilled on the use of their gas masks.

The school is also expected to equip the shelters with portable toilets and water supplies.

Ya'acov Saridan, a 10th grader, said he came to help teaches seal windows to ensure that "Saddam does not catch us by surprise."

Posted by David Melle at March 19, 2003 12:43 PM
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