Hezbollah attacks from Lebanon have destroyed much of the Upper Galilee kibbutz of Manara.
“More than half of the houses in the kibbutz were destroyed by Hezbollah fire, 86 houses,” said kibbutz member Roni Yafet, Channel 12 reported on Saturday.
“Kibbutz Manara was badly damaged. It will take time to renovate it even after they tell us we can return. On Oct. 7 [the date of the Hamas massacre in the south], we decided to leave. We thought it would be for three days—we didn’t understand the magnitude of the disaster.”
Since the Hamas attack and ensuing war in Gaza, Hezbollah has engaged in a low-level war of attrition, with the Iranian terrorist proxy engaging in daily cross-border rocket, mortar and drone attacks.
These attacks can have deadly consequences, as was seen on Friday when the IDF announced that Sgt. Amit Hod Ziv, 19, from the 188th Armored Brigade’s 71st Battalion and Rosh Ha’ayin, was killed and another soldier was seriously wounded in a Hezbollah rocket attack on the area of Moshav Shtula.
Two civilians were wounded in the Upper Galilee village of Moshav Dovev last Thursday by an anti-tank missile fired from Lebanon. Ziv Medical Center in Safed said that a man and a woman were admitted with light injuries.
Simultaneously, terrorists in Lebanon fired an anti-tank missile at the northern community of Moshav Avivim, setting cars ablaze.
The roof of a house in Avivim on Sunday took a direct hit from an anti-tank missile, an example of how other northern Israeli communities have suffered damage to residential properties from the cross-border attacks.
Meanwhile, fears are mounting in northern Israel about a cross-border invasion similar to the one perpetrated by Hamas on Oct. 7, in which terrorists rampaged across the northwestern Negev, murdering at least 1,200 people, wounding thousands more and taking some 240 hostages back to Gaza.
Ofer Moscowitz, a resident of Kibbutz Misgav Am, located near Kiryat Shmona and close to the Lebanese border, told Channel 12 last week about the concerns about tunnels being used for a major attack.
“One night, about a year ago, around 3 in the morning, I heard digging. Other people told me they heard it as well. Strange, incomprehensible noises, like some kind of air hammer. Knocking noise, something dull. It’s stressful, it’s scary. I notified the army. The army does not take these messages lightly, they usually check them. The army came, asked me questions, and interrogated me about it. They didn’t offer too many conclusions; they don’t tell us anything,” Moscowitz said, as quoted in The Jewish Press.
“They checked; I don’t know what means they used. First, they asked what I heard, investigated, and then they said: ‘If you hear it again, inform us and we will do our tests.’ They may be checking closer to the fence. My house is 15 meters from the fence, maybe they check more in the direction of the border itself. I believe that they do their tests around the settlement, not inside it,” he said.
In December 2018, Israel announced that it had uncovered several Hezbollah tunnels dug under the border. The United States, Germany and the United Kingdom confirmed the existence of these tunnels.
Moscowitz is one of the few residents of communities near the Lebanese border who has not evacuated during the war. He said that he has come under fire from Lebanon and that much of his property, including farmland, has been destroyed.
“Our house is in a very dangerous area called the ‘Killing Zone.’ They tell you: ‘If you go near there, you know you’re taking a risk.’ My daughter was supposed to move to Misgav Am. I don’t know if I want my grandchildren to grow up in a dangerous and scary area. If the IDF does nothing, I will be afraid.
“On the other hand, you hear about the price that is being paid, our best sons are being killed, so I say to myself: ‘Wait, why do we need this headache?’ The avocado orchard is just money, what’s important is the safety of the people, who will continue to live properly,” he said.
“I will return and live in Misgav Am, but I won’t be angry if families with children say they are afraid to come back,” Moscowitz said.