Even as she struggles to pick up the pieces after her home was destroyed by a rocket
launched from Gaza, one southern resident says that she is not angry at the Palestinians who shell Israel.
"I have no reason to be angry at them," said Zilpah Youz, a resident of the Eshkol Regional Council. The district in the northwestern Negev was on the receiving end of several dozens of rockets in recent days.
"I'm angry at the government, which isn't taking care of us," she said.
The tense lull early on Thursday gave Youz a moment to reminisce about Moussa, a Palestinian who built her home two decades ago. The laborer arrived in her town from Rafah,
along with several others, to work in construction and farming in the early '90s.
"Moussa was a good friend of mine, he took care of everything I need for my home," she says. "When the Philadelphi Route was opened, his home was destroyed in Israeli fire. The community decided to help him, and all its members donated money so he could build a new house."
Youz near what's left of her home (Photo: Avi Roccah)
The rocket that shattered her own home on Wednesday made her think of her old friend.
"When I saw my home in ruins, I thought to myself, 'Moussa's house has been destroyed again,'" she says.
"I am dying to hear from him, I hope he gets in touch… I miss my neighbors," Youz adds, referring to the Palestinians residing across the border in Gaza. "They are closer neighbors than the ones in Tel Aviv. They are suffering and we are suffering, while the politicians on both sides celebrate."
'We're all suffering.' Youz' home (Photo: Avi Roccah)
Youz, who spent the night with her daughter in an alternate residence, says she yearns for things to return to normal.
"I can't wait to get into my work clothes and go back into the house," she said. "Perhaps I will find some of my personal items."
A quiet night in the south came to a halt around 9:30 am, when a mortar shell that was fired from Gaza landed in Eshkol yet again. No damage or injuries were reported.
Around midnight an Egypt-brokered ceasefire
between Israel and Hamas
went into effect. Over the weekend more than 70 rockets and mortars were fired on the southern communities, injuring three Thai migrant workers and damaging several homes.