5 Nesher Street, Nizanim – this is the new address of Shosh and Yosef Ben Dahan, former residents of the Nisanit settlement in the Gaza Strip. The couple are among the first to arrive at the city of ‘caravillas’ (mobile homes) built by the Disengagement Authority to receive former settlers.
The city’s heads, together with representatives of the Defense Ministry and the Bezeq telecommunications company, greeted the new arrivals in Nitzanim.
“We decided we would not accept moving until the caravilla was really ours,” a Ben Dahan family member said.
“We have a feeling of excitement, but we’re also very confused, because we left a wonderfully strong and supportive community. We left only because of the firing of Qassam rockets towards the settlement, that’s what broke us.”
New home: Yosef Ben Dahan puts up mezuza (Photo: Tsafrir Abayov)
“We only told our children that we were moving last night,” Shosh said. “My daughter, who is nine, asked me whether there would be a shield against the Qassam rockets around our caravilla. I started to explain to her that this is not a place that sees rocket attacks, that they live in a different reality there. It’s not simple to move here, but we decided that it was time to pack up and go. You can’t wait until the last moment.”
Yosef agreed, saying there was no reason to wait. “We don’t want to get to the last day and find ourselves caught up in the confusion and embarrassment. We saw the caravilla, it's fine, but it’s very far from the 180 meter apartment we had in Nisanit. Today we’ll start moving our belongings here, and in the next few days we will move here ourselves.”
The couple are currently making their way back to Nisanit, where their children are waiting for them with impatience. “We are so excited. Now we can talk with the kids, and try to bring them over already today so they can see their new apartment. I have no doubt that this will be hard. The past year hasn’t been easy, especially the last few months. We came to Nisanit from the United States, just to give you a picture of the move we made,” Shosh said.
However, the event's atompshere quickly deteriorated when confused families began arriving at the site, and optimism turned to anger.
“I feel cheated,” Meor Zada told ynet. “I thought that a site that saw hundreds of millions invested in it would have had more to offer. How do they expect me to move five people into an apartment with two and a half rooms? We are angry and bitter,” said Zada.
Mariah and Amos Halpon, also Nisanit residents, circled the site for an hour before finding their new home, which they found to be 60 meters large. The couple were furious with the result. “Where does all our equipment go?” asked Amos. “I have a tractor at home, and a kitchen table that will not fit in here. It makes me so angry. We were expecting a much larger apartment and this is what we get.”
When Maria received the key, she entered one of the rooms with her young son and burst into tears. “This is hard. It’s very difficult for me to leave everything behind and move to an apartment like this. But I have no choice,” she said.
There was much anger when the Gozlan family, also of Nisanit, arrived to find their new apartment. “This is outrageous,” they said. “Its fraud."
"They gave us such a small apartment knowing we left behind large and spacey apartments. How can an entire family and all of its belongings live in such a small apartment? We have to live here for at least two years.”
“This is a shame for the state of Israel. We’re already going through a difficult process, the least they could have done was show minimum consideration.”