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Eyes Wide Open | Photo Blog

Israel, July 2014: Life in fear of rockets

July 2014

"Now, during the operation, I stay at home with my four kids, day and night. When the siren goes off, we leave our apartment and gather in the staircase. We hear and see rockets being diverted [by Israel's "Iron Dome" defense system] or hitting targets very close to us. Every explosion makes the whole building shake." – Ety Levy, a single mother from Ashkelon

"Even though the village was recognized by the state a few years ago, there is nothing here to protect us. There are no security rooms and no bomb shelter… When I leave for work in the morning, my children beg me to stay with them. They say they’re afraid I won’t come back." – Yusra Abu Kaf from the Beduin community of Um Betin

Millions of Israeli citizens, many of whom are children, have been living under the threat of rocket fire for more than two weeks. For hundreds of thousands of Israelis living in the south of the country, this terrible situation is part of an ongoing routine. The unrelenting attacks have disrupted their lives, denied their right to live in security and hurt their ability to make a living. Every venture outside – to work, school, or a recreational activity – is attended by a sense of danger. Some residents have even decided to relocate for fear they or their loved ones would get hurt.

The following photographs were taken by Dudu Greenspan from Be'er Sheva, by Activestills, and by Reuters photographers.

Deliberate targeting of civilians by Hamas and other Palestinian armed groups defies humanity and is morally and legally reprehensible.

The rocket firing at civilians must stop.

The home of Marina Rachmilov, 86, from Be'er Sheva, after it was hit by a rocket. Photo: Dudu Greenspan, Be'er Sheva
Ashkelon residents run for shelter during a bomb alert. Photo: Baz Ratner, Reuters
Ashkelon residents and search and rescue teams take shelter during a bomb alert. Photo:
Damage caused by rocket in community close to Gaza. Photo: Ronen Zvulun, Reuters
Avichai Journo inspects rocket damage to his home in Sderot. Amir Cohen, Photo: Reuters
Israeli man inspects rocket damage to his kibbutz home in southern Israel. Photo:
Damage caused by rocket fire in kibbutz in southern Israel. Photo:
Funeral of Dror Khanin, 37, a father of three killed by mortar fire at Erez Crossing. Photo: Ronen Zvulun, Reuters

Eyes Wide Open Photo Blog by B’Tselem is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. You are free to use the photos in the blog. However, any public use of photos must include copyright credit to the photographer and B’Tselem.