Sun. Jul 14th, 2024
alert-–-inside-kibbutz-where-hamas-launched-deadly-attack-on-innocent-farmer-families:-an-upturned-child’s-cot-next-to-a-thick-pool-of-congealed-blood-and-flies-buzzing-everywhereAlert – Inside kibbutz where Hamas launched deadly attack on innocent farmer families: An upturned child’s cot next to a thick pool of congealed blood and flies buzzing everywhere

At kibbutz Nir Oz – a tranquil haven of 400 farmers until, mind-bogglingly, a quarter of the population were kidnapped by Hamas snatch squads – Mail photographer Roland Hoskins and I came across sights we wished we had never seen.

At a home with a colourful children’s play house in the garden and toddler toys everywhere, there was an upturned child’s cot, right next to a large, thick pool of congealed blood. A putrid stench of death hung in the air, which was thick with buzzing flies, and I came very close to vomiting.

Elsewhere, a girl of about six, a boy aged seven – kneeling, with their heads down, and their hands tied behind their back.

On the other side of the dining room table, where a family feast had been prepared, the father and mother, their rigid bodies in the same positions.

It gets worse. According to rescue workers who found them, the family had been tortured. Missing fingers, and ‘an eye taken out’. Each was executed with a bullet. And then the Hamas savages tucked into the Sabbath meal on the table.

A house of horrors:  Sam Greenhill visits the kibbutz Nir Oz to witness first-hand the carnage left after Hamas’s deadly attack on the peaceful farming community 

Inside one home is a colourful children’s play house in the garden surrounded by toddler’s toys. An Israeli flag dangles down amongst the clutter

Chief Reporter Sam Greenhill pictured at the the scene of Kibbutz Be’eri which is 4km from the Gaza border and was attacked on Saturday, October 7

These were the final savage moments of one kibbutz family, as told by the civilian volunteers who helped recover their bodies.

READ MORE: Trapped in Gaza: Hundreds of foreign passport holders hoping to escape to Egypt are not allowed through border as Israeli tanks line up ready to plough into besieged Palestinian enclave after Hamas attacks


I have heard several horrific accounts over the past days here. And the fact that it is so shocking – after two weeks of relentlessly harrowing stories – shows how deeply this country is traumatised by the October 7 atrocity.

Yossi Landau has 30 years’ experience with Zaka, a civilian voluntary group whose members help ambulance crews in the identification of the victims of terrorism, road accidents and other disasters, and where necessary gather body parts for proper Jewish burials.

His voice trembled as he recounted the ‘bad dream’ of how he and his comrades went into Be’eri kibbutz after the massacre there.

Mr Landau, 55, said: ‘The first house we saw was a couple, father and mother, sitting on their knees on the floor, their heads down, hands tied behind their back. On the other side of the dining room was a seven-year-old boy, and a girl, maybe six, sitting in the same position, hands tied behind the back.’

Mr Landau, who has 22 grandchildren, said the bodies showed signs of torture. ‘There were missing body pieces – an eye just taken out, fingers being…’ His voice trailed off. ‘And in the end, they all had a bullet.’ Tormenting himself with the horror, he began to wonder in disjointed sentences who had been tortured first and ‘if this was the children looking at the parents being tortured’ or the other way round. ‘And those terrorists sat and ate the Sabbath meal that was prepared for the family, eating while torturing these children.’ 

Hamas thugs went house to house hunting for Israeli families during their murderous assault 

Sam walks n around one home, where toys, clothes and furniture was strewn all over the floor 

‘A putrid stench of death hung in the air, which was thick with buzzing flies, and I came very close to vomiting’, wrote Sam following his experience (pictured is one of the homes)

Chief Reporter Sam Greenhill was told how Hamas terrorists allegedly tortured their victims – which included children and babies – before killing them 

It is hard to imagine a more gut-churning scene, but Mr Landau barely paused for breath before his next hideous recollection tumbled out. ‘Then we see a woman – she was about 30. She was lying on the floor, a big puddle of blood, face down. We had to turn her over in order to put her in a body bag. She was a pregnant woman. Her stomach was butchered open.

‘The baby that was connected to the cord was stabbed and she was shot in the back. Did she see that? What was done to her baby? We don’t know. We had a debate between us, to use two body bags, one for the baby and one for the mother? We decided to use only one because we didn’t want to disconnect this baby from the mother.’

It is too awful to contemplate. Is it really true? There has been no way to verify this utterly harrowing account. And it should be said that Mr Landau is a civilian, albeit a highly experienced first responder, rather than a clinician. There will be plenty of cynics claiming this is all Israeli propaganda. But last week I interviewed four of Israel’s most senior forensic pathologists, who have the gruesome task of identifying the 297 most disfigured bodies. They too told me of the worst imaginable, seeing babies with no heads and the remains of children who had apparently been tied up when they were murdered.

Like Mr Landau, they told of having to separate the remains of people who had been hugging tightly as they were burnt to death.

Sam (pictured in front of an upturned children’s cot) said some of the atrocities were ‘too awful to contemplate’

Hamas terrorists torched homes. One of the victim slaughtered was a pregnant woman who had her stomach butchered open, it was claimed (pictured the damage inside one home)

A scorched clock is pictured amongst the rubble at the kibbutz Nir Oz

In his testimony, Mr Landau, who was sitting with three of his colleagues, told how in a shelter near the border town of Sderot, ‘we saw 20 people who were hugging themselves, trying to defend themselves. They were all burnt to death. We had to separate them’. 

And in Kfar Aza, a village just a couple of miles from the Gaza fence, as Zaka volunteers thought they had collected all the bodies after 10 days, they found another. ‘Suddenly we see a body, 14 or 15. He was outside,’ said Mr Landau. ‘It looks like he was running and they probably got mad at him. We found him without his head. He was without a head. The evil, the horror, I don’t know why this has to happen.’

Nearby were ‘two piles of children’ aged about 10 to 15. He raged: ‘They weren’t even shot – they were hands tied and all burnt. Isn’t that war crimes?’

There are indeed compelling evidence of atrocities in all the villages I have visited in the past week. 

Only the most entrenched sceptic would doubt the accounts of people such as Mr Landau and his colleagues.

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