Liat Admati Makay is a survivor of the massacre at Kibbutz Be’eri in Southern Israel. This is part one of her Hamas survival story as the terrorists arrive, translated from Hebrew.
In her testimony account Liat says: Hamas went from house to house, tormenting, butchering, slaughtering, looting, torching and kidnapping.
Since the day of the massacre, Liat hasn’t been on social media but she felt the urge to tell her story. On December 10, 2023 she signed on, for the first time so she could tell a firsthand testimony that she will share in a series of posts.
Here is part one of her horrific experience, in memory of Noy Shosh, her close friend who was murdered. Also in memory of the members of her community. In memory of the warriors from Be’eri Rapid Response Team who fought for their home against the evil Hamas and who lost their lives in the process: Arik Kraunik, Gil Bowomz, Hagayi Avni, Eitan Hadad, Shahar Tzemach; may their memories be blessed. In memory of Israel’s security forces who arrived to fight in the fires of hell. And with a painful cry to bring all the hostages in Hamas captivity back home.
Kibbutz Be’eri 7.10.2023
On Saturday, October 7, 2023, at 6:30 a.m. Liat woke up to the sound of huge explosions. The house was shaking. In her family WhatsApp group she wrote: “What could this be? Thunder? I’m seriously asking as it just woke me up!” At the same moment, her sister Ella wrote: “It sounds like a serious attack.”
At 6:31 a.m., Liat wrote to her neighbor Evyatar: “Did you close the metal windows [in your safe room]? I heard there’s a rocket attack in the area.”
Evyatar wrote back right away: “Yes. Are you okay?” She replied, “I am.”
In the next few minutes, they all received an alert about a terrorists’ infiltration into the kibbutz, and that they should enter their safe rooms (shelters) and shut themselves in from the inside.
At 7:05 a.m., Gal, Evyatar’s other half and Liat’s neighbor wrote: “Liati, come over to our place.” She answered that she was okay for now.
At 7:14 a.m., Yair Avital, Liat’s brother-in-law and her sister’s other half and a member of Be’eri’s Rapid Response Team, wrote that there were gun battles inside [the kibbutz] and to lock the doors.
Something in Liat’s gut wouldn’t let her rest; she had a feeling that this time it is going to be different. Not just a terror episode from Gaza they experience many times and that was curtailed in no time. She got out of bed and got dressed.
Hamas Survival Story
Liat then called her neighbor Evyatar and Gal answered the call; she said, “Liati, come here now!”
Liat asked Gal how she could get out of her house and Gal’s response was, “Get up, exit through the back door, and I’ll wait for you at our entrance.”
While on the phone there were knocks on Evyatar’s door and he asked: “Who is it“‘. Through the door they all heard someone speaking Arabic. In a 60-second decision, Liat grabbed her cell phone and ran barefoot to Evyatar and Gal’s house.
They slammed shut the door to the safe room and barricaded themselves in with their three small children, one a 4-month-old baby, and Sasha, the family dog.
Liat’s heart was pounding and she was trying to catch her breath. No more than a few minutes had passed before they heard knocks on the door of the safe room. They looked at each other and stayed quiet. Liat entertained the idea that maybe half an hour had passed, and it was surely the IDF (Israel Defense Force) that showed up.
There were more knocks on their door. At this point, Evyatar asked: “Who is it?” The knocks continued and Evyatar asked again, “Who is it?.” Through the door they heard someone speaking Arabic.
Evyatar yelled back in Arabic: “Ahrujh min huna!” [Arabic for “Get out of here!). There was a reply in Arabic, and again Evyatar told whoever, “get out of here.” The terrorist left.
Liat was under the impression that there was one, maybe two terrorists only. She even cursed their luck that of all the houses the terrorist[s] had come to their house. But since he just left, in her naivety she thought that the whole event would surely be over pretty soon. And in that moment, the gates of hell opened for them, a hell that even the devil couldn’t dream of.
Calling Security Forces
It was around 7:45 a.m. that dreadful Saturday, the Simchat Torah Festival, when they tried calling the security forces to come to their house. Liat then called everyone she could to get assistance. In a quiet voice she told whoever was on the other side of the line that there was, or maybe still is, a terrorist in their house and could they please come to help them.
The horrifying noise came from outside, from every direction; they heard gunshots’ explosions, a battle had taken place.
Swarming With Terrorists
As time went by the situation started to become clearer to them; it wasn’t looking good at all. Kibbutz Be’eri was swarmed with terrorists. They didn’t know yet that there were hundreds of terrorists. The terrorists went from house to house, tormenting, butchering, slaughtering, looting, torching, kidnapping.
The calls for help came from everywhere, from every neighborhood, and the army … the army didn’t come. The gunfights were nonstop. An hour passed and another hour went by and the horrifying noises came from outside, from every direction – gunshots, explosions. The kibbutz became a battlefield. Liat went from despair to being deathly afraid, to holding on to the smallest seed of hope.
Then the electricity went out and with it their ability to communicate. Her phone battery was weakening. They slowly lost their connection with the outside world. Liat felt the anxiety taking over every fiber of her being, also for everyone in her family. Her body ached and it hurt for her to breathe.
At that point, Liat hadn’t heard from Ella, her sister, for hours. She knew that Yair, her sister’s other half, had been injured during the fighting, but she didn’t know his condition or anything beyond that.
“I understood that it was entirely possible that I would be murdered there in the cruelest of ways,” that was going through her mind.
Liat was crazed with worry to the depths of her soul. She didn’t want to leave this earth, this life. She wasn’t ready to depart and she understood that it was entirely possible that she would be murdered there in the cruelest of ways.
Another long hour passed, every moment seemed to be an eternity. By now Liat and her friends were more than 12 hours into the ongoing mayhem and atrocities while sitting in the dark, almost completely dehydrated, while periodically munching on the small amount of food they had with them. Liat was not feeling well. She felt that her breathing was getting heavier; her heart rate kept going up and down inconsistently. And the worst, she was afraid. I’m so very afraid.
By now their phone’s battery lost all power. They were sitting in the dark, but found one of the kids’ games which lightened up the atmosphere in the room just a bit.
Liat and her friends used a wooden stick to hold the door handle shut tight so they could rest somewhat instead of holding it.
Liat was out of oxygen, she couldn’t breathe well. There was no bathroom she could use and so she had to urinate on some of the kids’ clothes, and then she stuffed it at the bottom of the safe room door, in case the house was set on fire.
Liat sat on the floor on a blanket under the metal window of the safe room while gunshots could be heard from all around. She held her hands to her sides with despair.
IDF Arrive, Then Leave
Over 12 hours passed. Around 9:00 p.m. and as night fell, the IDF Special Forces finally arrived at their house. They told them that they couldn’t rescue them now, not yet.
Lian told one of them in a weak voice, “There’s a baby here!” But they left; they had to drive the terrorists away.
Liat and her friends had to return to the same nightmare, the same horrific loop, the same deathly fear that hung in the air.
Not ready and not wanting to die kept rumbling in Liat’s head. She kept on saying to herself, “It will be okay. It will be okay.”
At around 4:00 a.m., almost 24 hours later, the Security Forces returned and told them they had come to rescue them and the couple next door and their daughters. They stood with the soldiers inside the dark house. The soldiers asked them to pack a bag (which Liat didn’t have) and to put on shoes. Gal gave Liat a pair of her sandals to wear.
The smell of war and death was in the darkness of the air. Liat and her friends were rescued under fire, through the back garden. Evyatar carried a child, Gal carried a child, and she held the baby, Daniel.
“I held Daniel close to my chest and put my hand over his head, on his face. If something happened, I would take the bullet. Just not him,” she thought.
A number of soldiers protected them walking ahead and behind them. Gunfights could still be heard in the surrounding neighborhoods.
They marched through a wall of smoke to get to the military armored vehicle, and they all crammed inside it. A soldier yelled “heads down” telling them to put their heads down to protect themselves. The vehicle shook and Liat held baby Daniel tight so that he wouldn’t be hurt. She was on her knees and her legs got completely bruised.
Liat and her friends were taken to the assembly area near the entrance to Kibbutz Be’eri; there she heard for the first time that her sisters and their families had been rescued earlier and were evacuated. A sigh of relief; they were alive.
End of part one of this ordeal.
Liat: “My heart is wounded and it is not easy for me to put it all in writing.
“Thank you to everyone who reads this; thank you to those who were with me online in the hours when I was under siege in the safe room. Thank you to everyone who tried to help however they could. Thank you to those who were there, and to those who are still there. Thank you to my beloved family, who are here with me as we endure and are enduring this difficult and painful journey. I miss my home. We will have a home again.”
7th October 2023 is a day to remember the Hamas attack.