Captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit may soon be released in a prisoner swap with Hamas.
The significance for the Israelis? The New York Times provides a revealing quote:
Rabbi Weiman-Kelman of Jerusalem said that the controversy over Sergeant Shalit was precisely what made life so different in Israel from his native United States and to him so appealing.
“There is zero distance between the Shalit family and the rest of the country,” he said. “It is very, very personal. That is part of the thrill of living here, although it is also suffocating and overwhelming. For those of us who are junkies for meaning, living here is pure heroin.”