Dr. Ezzeldeen Abu al-Aish, a gynecologist from Gaza who lost three of his eight children and a niece over the weekend in IDF shelling, said he is still expecting an explanation from Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
"He should just tell me the truth and say 'we made a mistake'; I'll accept it. He should tell the truth if he wants to go to bed at night with a clear conscience," said Abu al-Aish, who has been working at the Sheba Medical Center for the past few years and researching the treatment of Palestinian and Israeli children at the Gertner Institute. He also worked at the Soroka Medical Center for many years.
Two of his daughters are hospitalized at the Barzilai Medical Center in Ashkelon and the Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer in serious condition.
An initial IDF inquiry revealed that a tank fired back at the Jabalya refugee camp after being fire on by gunmen. After learning that Abu Al-Aish's family members had been hurt, the Coordination and Liaison Authority at the Erez crossing decided to evacuate the injured to Israeli hospitals.
"No gunfire emanated from my home, and no one from Hamas got near it; if they had, I would have shot them myself," the doctor said.
Abu Al-Aish recounted the shelling of his home: "I freaked out for the first few minutes after the incident. I didn’t know what was going on. It felt as though I was being slaughtered. I ran around in the apartment, looking at body parts – who is dead and who stayed alive. I saw that Mayer (his daughter) was gone. Bisan, the eldest, took her last breath. I began counting the bodies and then ran downstairs to scream."
The funerals of Abu Al-Aish's daughters Bisam (20), a business administration student, Mayer (15), Aya (13) and the niece Nour (14) were held in Gaza Saturday, but the doctor, who is tending to his injured daughter Shada (18), could not attend.
The IDF said Sunday that the investigation into the incident has yet to be completed, adding that the building in which the Abu Al-Aish family resided housed gunmen who opened fire at IDF forces. However, the army said it was not ruling out the possibility that the apartment was hit by Palestinian fire or explosive devices planted nearby.
Hanan Greenberg contributed to the report