The Iron Lions

Testimonials from the war in israel, Oct 23'

Ornit Arbel Alfassi


My parents Shlomo and Ahuva Arbel, aged 75+78, are survivors of Kibbutz Kisufim, survived the inferno of Saturday 7.10.23.

In fact, thanks to my mother, my father remained alive and it seems all the good deeds he did in his life worked in his favor.

My parents, as usual, were sleeping in the sheltered room, and at 6:30 in the morning the familiar “Red Alert” siren pierced the silence. Within seconds, massive volleys of rockets flew in all directions.

Confused in the face of the madness, they realized they had to stay in the sheltered room and not leave even for the bathroom (after all it's morning). After many long minutes, they started getting messages on the kibbutz internal WhatsApp group that this was the “promo” for what's to come, and that terrorists had infiltrated the kibbutz.

At first I still managed to communicate with my dad via WhatsApp calls to get an update from him on what was happening in the kibbutz. But at some point, contact with them was cut off and I understood the phone network was down, electricity was out and there was no way to contact the kibbutz. Who didn't I call???!!!

Crazed and worried by the situation, I tried gleaning information from the news, but Kibbutz Kisufim wasn't mentioned in the news.

I went mad about this and told Almog Boker everything I knew more or less, in order to dispel the fog over what the media didn't know about what was happening in Kisufim.

At 6:30pm, my dad opened the door of the sheltered room, in order to get to the kitchen to pour himself some water, because thirst overcame him since he wasn't feeling well.

My mom who was in the sheltered room heard the terrorists' voices under the window and yelled at my dad to come now!!!! In a fraction of a second my dad ran to the entrance of the sheltered room and then boom!!!

A mortar shell with no “Red Alert” siren warning landed at the entrance of their home and pierced everything around it, with the front door blasting open and everything penetrating inside to the kitchen and living room.

Another moment of delay and my dad would no longer be with us.

A few minutes later the army arrived to the house and pulled them out of the rubble, helmets on their heads, while leading them under terrorist and rocket fire toward the kibbutz gate.

My parents experienced a great miracle, and thank God they survived.

Many of their friends were not so fortunate. There were those who were kidnapped/murdered/burned alive.

The rest of the amazing community of Kibbutz Kisufim also survived, thanks to our hero army – the IDF.

The Kisufim community came out wounded, bleeding and bruised in the face of the horrors committed against them by Hamas criminals, but they are also a strong, supportive and well-organized community, and I wish these good and dear people success in rebuilding emotionally and physically.

May the memory of all the murdered be blessed🙏🏼

I share in the grief of the mourning families

And may the kidnapped return to us speedily, Amen!!!