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Ben eludes the security guard and hops into her arms for one final kiss goodbye. Itís a moment Iíll remember for the rest of my life.

A short time later, in the boarding area, I get a hold of an Israeli newspaper and begin catching up on the latest news. The head bombmaker for Hamas, I learn, has been killed. Israel, as usual, is being blamed for his death; revenge attacks have been promised. In south Lebanon, three soldiers were killed by a roadside bomb. The shekel has fallen against the dollar, meaning my rent payments just went up again.

The call for early boarding goes out. The flight attendantís pleas to let the young and the old board first are ignored; a familiar tightness begins to grip at my stomach.

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