For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
Iris Twito, the mother of two sons injured by Qassam rockets in the city of Sderot, decided to grant an exclusive interview with Sderot Media Center, following the Gaza aid flotilla fiasco. "The entire world hates us," says Iris, "but they don’t know what we’ve been through."
The Twito family is a living testament for why there is a naval blockade on Gaza. "It’s not just Sderot that is under threat today, but the whole country," said Iris. "It is vital that we stop these flotilla boats because we cannot allow Hamas to terrorize our Israeli children."
Sitting on her patio in Ashdod, with a cigarette in hand, Iris recalls the most horrifying experience a mother can go through. Three years ago, Iris’s sons Osher and Rami, then eight and 19 respectively, were walking to an ATM machine in Sderot, when the rocket alarm went off. As the two brothers frantically attempted to locate a shelter in the middle of one of Sderot's main streets, the Qassam rocket struck meters away from the two.
The exploded shrapnel sliced through the boys’ legs. Residents poured out to the street to help but another rocket alert went off, forcing everyone to flee to shelter again. Moments later, the ambulances arrived to transport the boys to the closest hospital, Ashkelon's Barzilai hospital located 20 minutes away from Sderot.
Amidst the flashing cameras at what was one of Sderot’s goriest scenes resulting from a rocket attack, Iris collapsed from the shock of seeing of her two sons lying next to each other, surrounded by a pool of their own blood. The entire city of 19,000 were subsequently shocked by the developments to follow.
I visited Hevron in November 2000 after the outbreak of the Rosh Hashanah War to see what could be done to assist in the face of the growing daily attacks on the community. After returning to work for the community in the summer of 2001, a bond and a love was forged that grows to this day. My wife Melody and I merited to be married at Ma'arat HaMachpela and now host visitors from throughout the world every Shabbat as well as during the week. Our goal, "Time to come Home!"