The life and suffering of the returned hostages – Al-Watan newspaper

The life and suffering of the returned hostages – Al-Watan newspaper

We called him on his cell phone: Gilad, how do you feel seeing all these Israelis coming out of the Gaza tunnels? Answer: Click. Once we stopped where he worked: Shalit, what is your life today? He left without comment, his beard straggly, a set of keys in hand: Israel’s most famous former hostage – two thousand days of captivity were exchanged for 1,024 Palestinian prisoners – today he is also the most silent. They arrested him in 2006, when he was twenty years old, while patrolling the Gaza border. They released him in 2011, when he couldn’t hope for it anymore. For twelve years, Gilad Shalit remained in the shadow of himself and his story. He graduated, got married, and ended up working in a bank. And He always remained silent. Never a word about how things went. And I never thanked you for the way they pulled that off.

Honorary citizen

The hero has been reproduced on millions of posters, the honorary citizen of Rome and Paris, the corporal whom the entire country has waited for, since the day after his release, and he has slowly turned into an uncomfortable ghost. A little love: One newspaper wrote: “The worst agreement in the history of Israel.”. They say Shalit is haunted by feelings of guilt, and no one is doing much to help him. Every time there is an attack, everyone thinks about it 1,024 Palestinians were released from prison to save him, and Yahya Sinwar was also among themHe was one of the masterminds of the Sukkot massacre on October 7. “You have placed too much weight on Gilead’s narrow shoulders,” his father Noam protested one day. Maybe Netanyahu would have preferred my son to return in a coffin?

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Back home this happens too. There are more than 1,500 people in Israel who have escaped the restrictions of Hamas and HezbollahAnd the Syrians and Egyptians. Hatuvim, to kidnap. Prisoner of war, prisoners of war. It’s a veteran’s nightmare that lasts a few weeks or forever. Getting out of hell after long negotiations.

Soldiers and civilians

Anyone who goes home angry or depressed, confused or betrayed is definitely not sleeping. Soldiers and civilians spending their lives rebuilding their lives: many of them you meet in Zedfu in Tel Aviv, the Zahal Organization for Disabled Veterans, a small white house in the Green Zone where 5,600 disabled veterans from all conflicts live and those who have escaped from the enemy’s cages share treatments and a lounge. Sports games, memories and even a shooting range. “Carrying the memory of being a prisoner of war is one of the most painful human experiences.”Blindfolded, gagged, raped, humiliated, tortured, threatened, those who They leave. Sometimes he cannot deal with such cells, so he goes away, enters the mazes of his mind, and goes to the other world. “I did this by learning not to feel sorry for myself,” explains Amnon Sharon, 76Colonel who was wounded, captured and tortured in Syria in 1973: “Whether you are a hostage or a prisoner, you depend on the blessings that your captors give you. You won’t be sure of anything until they release you. When you leave, you have to face a new situation. No fault. No projection of the past or future.”

Favorite songs

The return of hostages alive is the problem of every country at war. Sometimes, a critical conscience. Taboos Hatuvim It was broken just a few years ago by an Israeli TV series, high ratings and hotly debated: Stories Those who could not forgive themselves for their survival, somewhat similar to what happened after the Holocaust, the memory of atrocities, and the accusations of those who felt abandoned by their country., the remorse of those who were manipulated by the executioners. There, in Lebanon as in Syria, not everyone enjoyed the strength of Colonel Sharon, who suffered torture in prison “singing his favorite songs loudly.” Once out of the Gaza tunnels, not everyone will be able to contain their anger towards the government, which they have already shouted in videos published by Hamas. Two years ago, at the Zikhron Ya’akov military base, a meeting was organized between those captured in the Yom Kippur War and an old Israeli general who was, at the time, responsible for defending the southern border. It has now been nearly fifty years. But in the end, the reservist who was taken hostage by the Sinai Bedouins, still angry, did not abandon the doubts that had been gnawing at him for half a century: “Where did the best intelligence in the world disappear to?” General Shmuel Gonen asked. And your huge army? Why did he leave us alone? Why didn’t any of you come to save us? It leaves the impression: So do I The same questions that torment today’s hostages.

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