Photo Credit: Yakov Ben-Avraham
Greenhouses and homes in Morag, Gush Katif, one of the major Jewish communities in Gaza prior to the 2005 Disengagement.

There is no routine in continuous fire and danger of attack from Gaza, while our entire country is attempting to continue to live a “normal life” the attacks continue including the UN and media attacks along with the dangerous anti-Israeli attacks around the world.

Here in our country there is much attention, and rightfully so, given to the civilian residents of the communities in the south, especially those close to Gaza. The same residents that are under attacks and sadly have lost precious lives have made a decision to leave their homes on the most part in order to be safer. (safer because the attacks basically are all over Israel).


These same residents of what we term, “around Gaza” (otef Aza) speak about the last 14 years of attacks from Gaza and the continuous impending dangers that they face.

With all due respect and acknowledging this situation, there is one literally fatal aspect of this unacceptable situation which is ignored. Nine years ago these same residents of the communities around Gaza were busy demonstrating and calling to destroy our thriving communities in Gush Katif and to deport all of our families- “get our soldiers out of Gaza” was the slogan along with “a solution for each resident”.

Not one of the these people has had the honesty and courage to admit that the dangers we are facing today and indeed during the last 9 years are due to the destruction of Gush Katif and the Hamas take over of Gaza.

Not one of them remembers or mentions the tragic impossible situation of us having to remove our loved ones from their graves in the Gush, and re-burying them – opening old and new wounds in this horrific nightmare forced upon our families because of the destruction of Gush Katif.

This Thursday we shall again meet for the 17 memorial of our beloved young hero from Netzer Hazani, Yochanan Hilburg HY”D who fell in the Navy Seal tragedy in Lebanon. My beloved friends the Hilburg family along with Yochanans’ friends from the Navy Seals and from the Gush will again meet .

During all of the years of attacks on our communities both rockets, mortars, shootings, explosives NONE of our residents in Gush Katif either wished to leave or left. On the contrary, the determination of our families and love of the Land had more familes moving in all the time including groups who came to strengthen our families.

How we remember the groups of demonstrators holding up the cursed signs outside of the same communities who are under attack still today. “Get our soldiers out of Gaza!” ” Leave Gaza and bring quiet and peace.”

Even today, after 9 years when I head for the Cemetery in Nitzan my car wishes to continue to our Cemetery in Gush Katif. Standing with my beloved friends over the graves of our loved ones is even more heartbreaking since the destruction of Gush Katif.

How Yochanan loved those beaches and the sea shores. How we all loved the beaches – the agriculture – the beautiful synagogues – the thriving communities -the traditions such as the race in memory of Yochanan that used to be held on the familiar roads of the Gush.

I know that this will sound insane but we do wait, hope and pray to return to Gush Katif to rebuild as we did in Gush Etzion. But in the meantime we will never forget our loved ones who fell to protect our Land and will continue to embrace our beloved families who were forced to live this extra nightmare of re-burying our fallen and dead because of the wanton destruction of Gush Katif.


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Yehudit Tayar was born in Chicago Illinois and served as a councilor in Bnei Akiva Youth Organization. She has lived with her family in Bet Horon in the Benjamin Region for over 30 years, serves as an emergency first response medic, on the Board of Directors of Hatzalah Yehudah and Shomron,and is a spokesperson for the Jewish pioneers in Yesha. Married to Ami, mother of four children, and grandmother