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Hidden Damages, by M.R. O’Connor (Atavist magazine via Elder of Ziyon)

By   /   January 22, 2016  /   No Comments

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After his daughter died in a terrorist attack, Stephen Flatow won a historic judgment against her killers. But to collect the funds, he first had to battle his own government.
On the morning of April 9, 1995, three friends, American students studying in Israel, boarded a bus at the central station in Jerusalem. It was a few days before Passover, and they were headed to Gush Katif, a popular beach resort in Gaza, to swim and tan. The bus traveled southwest to Ashkelon, a small city on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, just eight miles north of the Gaza Strip. There they transferred to the number 36, a bright red bus, with 60 or so passengers. Many of them were young Israeli soldiers headed to beach resorts or to their jobs on military bases.
Alisa Flatow, one of the young Americans, had long, wavy brown hair and wore a denim skirt, a white shirt, and sneakers. She sat behind the bus driver, next to the window, beside her friend Kesari Ruza. The third girl, Chavi Levine, sat behind them. The red bus left Ashkelon and headed south on Highway 4 toward the Gaza Strip. Shortly after the bus crossed the unmarked border, two Israeli military armored vehicles pulled alongside to escort it through the Palestinian territory. The girls dozed as the bus passed plowed fields and greenhouses. They neared an Israeli settlement called Kfar Darom. Located between two military posts, it had a fence around it, like a compound.
Years later, Kesari would recall the moments that followed as a stream of blurry footage with a few sharp scenes. A loud and dull explosion. The window beside her broken. Was it rocks? Alisa falling toward her, eyes open, hands strangely curled. The bus kept rolling, and Chavi stood up in her seat and asked what was going on. Kesari told her to get down, and they both dropped to the floor.

Click here for very moving article

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