Dana with kassams, and a backdrop of kassams
Dana, who lives in KIbbutz Nir-Am and who is one of the targets of Hamas rockets, stands in front a collection of kassams fired during the past year.
Click on the photo or on this line for a Youtube video made by Dana.
Hamas has targeted civilians for the past nine years.

Gaza Border

Courage and determination
along Israel's Gaza border


Gaza border
An Israeli jeep patrols the Gaza border. Beit Hanun,
in the background, is less than two miles from Sderot.

This website, created in February and March 2008, is dedicated to those individuals who live in the Sderot, Israel, area, and are within range of the thousands of rockets fired from
Gaza in the past several years.

 
Yohai Begayev
Painting by Yohai Begayev, aged 10, 4th grade,
Haroeh Elementary School
, Sderot, Israel
"God, we love You."

Since 2000, over 7,000 rockets have been launched from the town of Beit Hanun, in Gaza, toward Sderot, in Israel.

"We have decided to make Sderot a ghost town," said a spokesman for Hamas in a recent article. "We are not going to stop launching our rockets until they leave." But in spite of this barrage of iron from the sky, the majority of the population has stayed, living in their homes and going about their daily lives.

Most of the press coverage has shown the panic that can take place when the rockets begin to fall. This is dramatic and has frequently been tragic, with thirteen people killed in the past seven years. But it is not the whole story. Although some of the residents have fled, many more have stayed and have become stronger. Instead of becoming a "ghost town," Sderot is a vibrant and energetic city which will not be defeated. This is an accounting of one month spent near Sderot in early 2008.


The perception I had of the Sderot, Israel, area before I visited was that of a population living in fear,
constantly in a state of panic as seen in the photos left and right above. But the reality I found was far
different, with a tough and resilient people able to live under difficult conditions.

"The Qassam's speed in the air is 200 meters per second. The distance from the edge of Beit Hanun to the outskirts of Sderot is 1,800 meters. Therefore, a rocket launched from Beit Hanun takes about nine seconds to hit Sderot. "Haaretz article.
 
"There is no more Jewish act than living in Sderot," said Los Angeles Councilman Jack Weiss, who visited this area in the summer of 2007. "They are truly on the front lines of our entire people."

Observations and opinions from a one-month stay near Sderot

This is a personal website, created to help recognize the daily acts of bravery by residents of Sderot and the other communities near Israel's border with Gaza. Throughout this website I have included my personal observations. All photos are by me unless otherwise indicated.
Richard Smith
, Kibbutz Nir-Am, March 2008

kassam launch
kassam launch

Rocket launch, from a Hamas film

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