Every parent has had this heart-stopping, chilling experience at least once. And even once is once too many...

You are with your young toddler, inside a crowded shopping mall or walking along a downtown sidewalk facing a whir of oncoming traffic.

A second ago, your child's hand was warmly nestled into yours. Now he is suddenly gone. He has disappeared. Into thin air.

Your heart begins racing. Your palms become sweaty. Your stomach is caught in your throat. You feel faint from fright and you are finding it difficult to breathe. You frantically begin to search for him. You steel your gaze to pinpoint anything colored with the very pale shade of blue that is your son's shirt. In vain, you attempt to squelch the dooming thoughts ablaze in your mind...the horrors of what could happen...what might be the terrifying end result. The picture of little dismembered limbs stuck under screeching brakes or menacing kidnappers walking off with your child invades your brain.

Your mind is exploding. Tears begin forming in your eyes. You are running...blindly...frantically...You must find your perfect, sweet, little child.

And then, miracle of miracles, from the side of your eye, you notice him. You grab him tenderly, hugging him closely towards you, vowing never to let him go, to forever envelope him in your protective embrace. You heave a huge sigh of relief, forever grateful for your safe reunion.

It will take several more minutes for your pulse to stabilize, for your heavy breathing to settle and for your shaking arms to steady. But as you check your watch, you notice that what seemed like an interminable passage of excruciatingly painful time was indeed only...15 seconds.

Did you perhaps overreact? Given the short time that elapsed, was your fear completely unwarranted? No, you know very well, that 15 seconds is plenty of time for a deranged criminal to grab a hold of your child and make his way to the exit. Fifteen seconds is long enough for your energetic toddler to innocently jump off the pedestrian sidewalk right into the path of the racing traffic.

Fifteen seconds may sound like a short span of time, but not 15 seconds of torture. Not 15 seconds of absolute agony that could result in untold misery for the remainder of your life.

It was the worst 15 seconds that you have ever experienced.

Now multiply that one horrific experience of 15 seconds by twenty times. Every day. Imagine what the tension would do to your psyche.

Twenty times a day, every day. For an entire week. For months on end.

Imagine if after those interminable 15 seconds, you were not yet reunited with your child, but you heard a terrible, huge, loud explosion—one that crumbled cement buildings as if they were a deck of cards, and one that caused blazing fires to erupt all around you. One that destroyed homes, buildings, factories and outdoor playgrounds—and all who were unfortunate to be stuck underneath them.

Imagine now tightly you held your child when he was safely returned to you and then imagine if your arms, the warmth of your home or the protective walls of your child's school could never be adequate enough protection.

That he was vulnerable and in danger everywhere he went. Every moment of the day. Twenty times a day. And you could do nothing to stop it.

And as you imagine the horror you felt in those unforgettable 15 seconds, imagine the heart-throbbing 15 seconds after the alarming call of "RED ALERT—TZEVA ADOM" that every citizen in Sderot has experienced in trying to run to hoped for safety before a rocket came crashing down on them. Twenty times a day.

Six-thousand-five-hundred rockets have been fired into Israel, at all times of day and night. Two hundred and fifty thousand men and women, from the elderly to newborn infants, are under the direct threat of the rockets' firing zone. Hundreds of Israeli civilians have been wounded and several killed by these rockets.

And as you imagine all this, as well as how horrifying 15 seconds can be, you will not question why Israel has entered Gaza.

Instead you will ask this: if a government is appointed to care for and safeguard the lives of its citizens—what took them so long?!