The Student News Site of Great Neck North High School

Guide Post

The Student News Site of Great Neck North High School

Guide Post

The Student News Site of Great Neck North High School

Guide Post

Tragedy Harms My Family and My Land

The ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict recently came to a climax when Hamas sent rockets to Israel on October 7, 2023. Read this article to understand how this tragic conflict affected a student at North High.

After I arose from my slumber on a rainy and gloomy Saturday morning on Oct. 7th, 2023, I walked into my kitchen to find my mom hysterically crying, mourning over the loss of our people in Israel as a result of the actions executed by the terrorist group, Hamas. When I proceeded to ask my mom questions regarding the well-being of my family in Israel, she struggled to express to me that we were unable to contact them. My stomach dropped, and a newfound fear that I never thought I would have to endure persisted. Thankfully, my parents were able to get in touch with my uncle from my dad’s side and my mom’s aunt and uncle in Israel to find out that they were safe and okay. 

Before that point, I reflected back to the inhumane days of the Holocaust as something out of reach, and far from my present reality. I looked back and perceived these dark parts of Jewish history in sadness of course, but never have I ever felt this overwhelming pain in my chest, fueled by a strong concern for the well-being of my family and the Jewish community in Israel, than I had in that particular moment. 

The loss of Jewish lives solely due to their heritage deeply shook me, and left me feeling sickened by the realization that this tragedy is a grim reality. I never expected to witness this tragic chapter from my textbooks unfolding in real life, playing out right before my eyes. It frightened me to see babies beheaded, women raped, and countless others held hostage, tormented, and brutally murdered. On top of it, all of this terrorism was broadcasted on television and social media platforms for the public to see. The tragic event prompted me to reevaluate my priorities and recognize just how much I had underestimated the blessings in my life, one of which was the fact that I am still alive and breathing. What angered me incredibly was when I saw people on social media, influencers whom I admired, finding justification for this absolutely repulsive act. Disgusting. 

I immediately contacted my mother’s aunt, Doris, in the following days, and I sent her and her family my warm regards and prayers. In addition, my mom, who always retained a special connection with my aunt, FaceTimed her. Doris expressed that this is the worst attack Israel has ever seen and that she is scared and does not know what will happen next. She said that the Israeli government told everyone to fill up their bunkers with a lot of food in preparation for staying a long time. If she could, Doris would have flown to America right away. Her son, Avishai, who is a barber, supported the war effort by providing free haircuts to soldiers at an army base. 

My grandma, who I refer to as Safta, has a cousin who lives four miles away from the border of Gaza. In fact, her cousin’s husband, Nadav, spoke on the news. Nadav emphasized that the Western world should be aware of these terrorist groups that sanctify death over life, in which death is their main motive. He expressed his confusion as to why some governments are reluctant to depict these groups in the negative light that they are and declare them as terrorist groups.

My Safta’s cousin’s husband, Nadav, sharing his input on the conflict with the public (Credit: i24NEWS).

Nadav claimed that Gaza started getting rocket missiles, which were launched to kill as many as possible. He strongly feels that hatred is the only face of these cruel militant organizations. 

Through the videos that Nadav watched, he could see and hear the persecutors “enjoying and laughing when they butchered and massacred children”. Despite the fact that many of Nadav’s neighbors have fled the area, he and his wife do not want to leave and started wondering about it. Nadav preaches that Israel is his home, for he’s been living here forever, and hopes to remain in his country. 

My dad contacted his brother, my uncle, in Israel, Jonathan, and gladly he is safe and well. My uncle revealed his concerns about the future, however, he thinks everything will hopefully be okay, and he is trying to retain a positive mindset towards the situation. 

The ongoing conflict in Israel has really opened my eyes to what is beyond the bubble that surrounds Great Neck and made me more aware of the sufferings endured by my own people. The relentless violence and terror broadcasted across news outlets and social media platforms were difficult to digest. Witnessing the suffering of innocent civilians, particularly children, was heart-wrenching. Fear of not knowing what the next news report might bring was instilled in me, regarding not only my family but also the broader Jewish community.

My condolences go out to those who suffer grave losses from relatives who have perished during these hard times. Unity, compassion, kindness, and strength are some traits that I feel we all should strive to possess in order to make the world a better place and survive this hardship together.

Israelis coming together to wave the flag of Israel (Credit: BBC News).



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About the Contributor
Julia Hakimi
Julia Hakimi, Managing Editor
Julia Hakimi is a managing editor for Guide Post Online, who has enthusiastically pursued her interest in the business world, particularly in marketing, by taking part in DECA and even competing at the national level. She entertains her love for dancing by participating in the North High School’s Fashion Show and Kilties during her freshmen and Sophomore years of high school. In addition to her interest in the business world, she is also intrigued by psychology and biology.  Additionally, Julia loves to read books of her desire, bike ride, work out, spend her time with friends and family, write, and to excessively shop!

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