The Iron Lions

Testimonials from the war in israel, Oct 23'

Shai Salem


We have been living in Otef for 8 years out of choice, with full knowledge of the area's advantages and disadvantages.

On September 1st, we were accepted as members of Kibbutz Nirim. We chose Nirim because we fell in love with the place - loved the community, the people.

Saturday was a horrific experience. Inside the shelter with my son Arbeli, when terrorists from outside turn our house upside down and literally destroy everything to take loot, while Polly holds the shelter handle so they don't get in and I hug Arbeli tightly to me.

I could think of a million reasons and guesses why they didn't try to get in, but it doesn't really matter. The important thing is that it didn't happen and we are healthy in body (the mind is another matter).

Throughout and after this event, our community demonstrated, once again, that we had chosen well. The standby unit that was in the field, fought and made the casualties in the kibbutz as few as possible. Our kibbutz friends who were with me on WhatsApp throughout this whole thing and helped me remember to breathe, and in retrospect also expedited the military security coordinator's arrival.

In Nirim, there was something different from the other kibbutzim in the area that I was unfamiliar with. The news that is slowly coming, mainly from Be'eri, breaks my heart and I don't know what it will be like to go back to work after something like this. In the meantime, we are in Eilat, and we will replace all our property that has been stolen and I'm sure that will be fine. It will take a long time to recover from this war, which isn't over yet. Thanks for all the messages, interest and support. We really appreciate it. By the way, our Skoda is roaming somewhere in Gaza, so now it's their problem.