Home World Kfar Aza Must Live – John Podhoretz, Commentary Magazine

Kfar Aza Must Live – John Podhoretz, Commentary Magazine


I went to see Kfar Aza, the kibbutz where the October 7 massacre—in which 5,000 Israelis were killed or wounded out of a population of 9 million—began in part. I’m not going to describe what I saw in any detail, because my efforts will fail. Instead, imagine a flood zone where the flood has subsided, but there had been no flood, only murderous rapists and rampagers and torturers who left behind an apocalyptic ruin. Furniture overturned, houses gutted by fire, mattresses strewn about—it’s only when you imagine what it looked like before and what it took to make it look the way it does now that the true horror is revealed. The population of Kfar Aza was 760 on the morning of October 7; by nightfall, 65 of them were dead and 20 had been taken hostage. it took the IDF three days to secure control of the area. Three days.

The IDF and the government has left Kfar Aza as is, awaiting the decision of the surviving members of the kibbutz on whether they will return and in what kind of way. At this moment it has become a kind of way-station inside Israel of what is commonly called the “March of the Living,” the trips that are taken through Poland to see the sites of death camps and World War II massacres. It’s also an unofficial outpost of Yad Va-Shem, Israel’s Holocaust memorial, which has become a…

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