Why I returned home, when traces of massacre remain all over

Opinion: I returned to my community in the Western Negev and I know I will be alone; I am waiting for others to come share a life of insecurity together with me - because they don't have another home either

Matan Tzuri |
The day after, not for Gaza, but for us, the residents of the Western Negev (at the public's request, I am weaning myself from the term "Gaza envelope"), it is important for us to be even more involved. But beyond that, one basic fact must be recognized: Gaza still remains across the border. point. Therefore, the threat will also remain.
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The popular opinion heard among angry residents that "we will not return as long as the threat exists," is understandable and accepted, but does not match reality. Residents of Sderot and northern Negev settlements will be forced to learn to live with a sense of insecurity and raise children under a security threat. In the meantime, we wait for the Israeli government and the to IDF restore our lost security and dignity.
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נתיב העשרה
נתיב העשרה
Destruction caused on October 7 in Moshav Netiv HaAsara
(Photo: Amir Levy/Getty Images)
Even if we destroy all the people of Hamas , even if the IDF eliminates its leaders down to the last one, is this a guarantee that rockets will never be fired at us? Everyone is looking for this precious product called "sense of security," but it is not on the shelves nor in stock . It will take a while before we feel it again. But what will we do until then? We will go home. Is there a choice? This is our home and we have nowhere to go.
It is also the home for residents who currently have no physical home to return to, but I hear that they are more determined than others. The nice but overcrowded hotels and the financial grants that everyone makes sure to serve with such exemplary precision are not an eternal solution. Take it from me, just let me go home. Give us our lives back.
I recently returned home and I have no security and no sense of security. Is there anyone in our promised and secure land who walks among us brimming with a sense of security? If so, I'd love to stick to him and absorb a little, because I don't have any. But nowhere else but in my home will I feel at home.
The area is injured and bleeding. The beautiful spaces and corners of the landscape are polluted and ravaged by the traces left by the terrorists on October 7. I drive the roads and they are cracked and stained with car fires. Sweet corners in forests and blooming areas became areas of murder and fire, and these images will never be erased from our memory. But this is my place, and only I will purify it again.
I'm not some super-patriot who speaks in lofty words along the lines of "I came to Israel, with a hoe on my shoulder." I, and most of the residents in my opinion, are simply ordinary citizens who want to go home with their families. I didn't come back with the Israeli flag and all the pathos that garners likes. I came back with a small bag and with a big load of pain and longing for my friends who were murdered and kidnapped.
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מתן צורי
מתן צורי
The author, Matan Tzuri
(Photo: Avi Moalem)
I am waiting for the obvious question "but what about the children?" The children are alive, thank God they survived. They are rooted here just like me and have nowhere to go. Nor do they have the patience and strength to continue wandering. They don't have a sense of security either, just like me, but we'll learn to live with it. After all, the sense of security that is being talked about will not return in the coming years. And those who think so do not understand the magnitude of the tragedy we experienced here. Time does its thing. Step by step, things will work out, somehow, and we'll all meet here again.
That's why I came home. I know I will be alone and I have no complaints against those who currently choose not to. But I'm waiting for them to come share a life together with me in insecurity. Because they, like me, have no other home.
• Matan Tzuri is a Ynet and Yediot Ahronoth reporter
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