What Israeli Survivors Believe Now


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What Israeli Survivors Believe Now

Oct. 30, 2023
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Video by Iris Zaki, Tamir Elterman and Jonah M. Kessel

Ms. Zaki is a filmmaker. Mr. Elterman is an editor and filmmaker. Mr. Kessel is the deputy director of Opinion Video.

After Hamas attacked their country this month, many Israelis fled to hotels, where they sought some version of safety. There, they’ve been processing their trauma as they move from that harrowing morning into a new world. In the Opinion video above, filmed in the days after the attack, survivors reflect on what they lost, who they blame and what’s next — for them and for Israel.

Despite being at war, polling from the Israel Democracy Institute suggests that Israelis are more optimistic about the future of their country now than they’ve been at any other point this year. Still, for the residents of Kibbutz Kfar Aza, where more than 100 Israelis were killed, any optimism they had before the attack has been replaced by an uncertain future. Here, Israelis grapple with what can be recovered — and what is lost forever. That includes a fundamental loss of faith in a defense system that didn’t work. As one asked of her government, “Why didn’t you protect me?”

Iris Zaki is a Tel Aviv-based filmmaker. Tamir Elterman is a filmmaker and editor.

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