Rescue workers during the massacre – “There were trucks full of bodies”
A 39-year-old rescue worker spoke in an interview about the situation in the border area with the Gaza Strip.
ZAKA members help recover the dead after attacks by Hamas militants. (archive photo)
The ultra-Orthodox rescue service Zakka is helping to recover the dead in the border area with the Gaza Strip.
In the Jewish faith, every part of the body must be buried.
An assistant from the civic organization talks about the horror that occurred at the site.
a Rescue workers in Israel Unimaginable scenes were reported at the site after the massacre committed by Hamas terrorists. “We thought we were strong, we thought We had seen it all“But we were convinced of the opposite,” says Avigdor Stern of the German News Agency. The 39-year-old is one of hundreds of volunteers from the Zakka Rescue Service who have been helping for days in the border area with the Gaza Strip to fully recover the dead in order to pay their respects.
He was in the synagogue when he heard about the worst bloodbath in Israel’s history. He actually wanted to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Simchat Torah (The Joy of Torah). “But we couldn’t dance, we just cried,” he says. After the holiday, he and his colleagues drove to villages in the border area and found kilometers of destruction. “In that moment our lives changed forever,” says Stern, who lived for several years as a rabbi in Constance on Lake Constance.
“There were trucks full of bodies.”
“Such a mass of bodies, one body and another body and another body,” Stern says. There were so many that there were not enough body bags. They had to be ordered from all over Israel. “There were trucks full of bodies,” Stern says, describing the scenes at the site.
He and his colleagues had already witnessed a lot – victims of tsunamis, earthquakes, accidents and attacks, but this dimension no one expected. “Women, men, children, babies, I can’t explain it at all,” Zakka’s assistant says and shows a photo with a small body bag. It says “Baby”.
Stern explains that in the Jewish faith, every part of the body must be buried. This is how people’s last respect is paid. This is ZAKA’s job. “We knew we couldn’t stop, we knew we had to do it now.”
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