Flagler Beach Resident Currently in Israel Shares Harrowing Experience

gaza israel war airstrike

Sivan Fima, a Flagler Beach resident since roughly June of 2022, is currently in Israel; having been there visiting family and friends since September 11th. Sivan has resided in the U.S. since 2004, after she had served her 3 years in the Israeli army. Sivan was born and raised in Jerusalem, for a total of 21 years. She recounted to us that she had experienced two terrorist attacks during her 21 years of life in Jerusalem, but neither of them could compare to this latest attack. Since living away from Jerusalem and Israel, she told us, “I’ve come to realize that it was chaos there.”

**TRIGGER WARNING**

We reached out to Sivan via video call and were able to sit and hear her experience over the last 6 days. This story contains subjects that may be hard to read about, such as death, destruction, terrorism, rape, and other subjects pertaining to war. Please be aware that some images may be sensitive to some readers.

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Sivan told us that it is day 6 there since the initial attacks, and that they are still finding bodies. She described to us that the villages have been laid to waste, and that many of the deceased are unrecognizable; forcing authorities to collect items to attempt DNA matches when possible. She explained the last death toll count she had heard was over 1300, with 40 of them being babies, 300 soldiers and the rest being men and women civilians caught in the crossfires. That doesn’t include those who had been kidnapped by the Hamas. Sivan recounted that during the attack terrorists not only kidnapped whomever they could, women and children included, but that they also raped the women. Sivan said, “I don’t want to spread fear, but I want people to know what has actually happened, I want them to hear the truth.”

Sivan told us that initially she went back for a few reasons; to visit her family that still resides there, celebrate her fathers birthday, and for IVF treatments. When asked if they saw this attack coming she said they didn’t know, but her and others over there cannot believe that their government didn’t see it coming. She said one of the biggest concerns and struggles they are facing over there right now are the rumors and thoughts that they could have been betrayed from the inside. She states she has no idea whether those rumors and ideas are true, but that is the basis of the atmosphere among many civilians. She told us that she herself and many others feel their country cannot protect them, that their government is weak, and they are scared their government will not step up as needed.

She condemned those who support the terrorist actions, saying, “I want this issue gone, no one deserves this. Do your own research, make informed decisions and spread the truth. I don’t want this to happen anywhere.” She went on to explain that there are many details regarding issues in the Middle East, such as the Free Palestine Movement, that are not reported on in many news outlets. She urges everyone to really do some active digging to find the truth before deciding which side of the aisle to stand on.

She wanted to tell her friends and neighbors in Flagler Beach, that she misses being in the states, and that if anyone wants to help, she said, “Stand with Israel, we need it right now.”  Sivan also told us that they have no return date set yet. Currently there is only one airline flying in and out of Israel and it is booked out.

 

By Krys DeWind

Krys DeWind has been a Flagler County resident since 2016. She is active in her community and is always looking for ways to better it. She has a community first attitude which is one of the central founding ideals of the Flagler County Buzz.

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