Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Breaking News

Defiance at Funeral for Gaza Family

Even as neighbours picked through the rubble of their destroyed house for survivors, the stunned Dalu family arrived at Gaza’s main hospital on Monday to collect the bodies of nine relatives for burial.

“Is this your wife?” asked a medic inside the morgue.

“Ahh, what happened to your face sweetheart?” her husband said, weeping and collapsing into the arms of his spouse. The woman’s face was burnt beyond recognition.

Israel’s bombing of the Dalu house in Gaza on Sunday was the deadliest single attack since it began an offensive it said was aimed at deterring Hamas and other militant groups from firing rockets over the border at its towns and villages.

Nine members of the Dalu family, a mother and her four children, a grandmother, great grandmother and two aunts died in the Gaza strike. Two other neighbours were also killed as the building collapsed.

The father of the family was at the local grocery with his young son when the house was attacked. He returned to the wreckage to find most of his loved ones dead and trapped in its battered shell.

The Israeli military said on Monday it could not yet provide an explanation about the incident and that an investigation was under way.

Ninety Palestinians, more than half of them civilians, have been killed since the hostilities began on Wednesday, hospital officials said. Three Israeli civilians have been killed.

The bodies of 12 people killed in Israeli air strikes since Sunday crowded the morgue in Shifa Hospital, while outside dozens of relatives and friends tearfully awaited a final glance on their dead before walking them to the grave.

There have also been scenes of grief in Israel, where a rocket fired from Gaza tore into an apartment building in the southern city of Ashkelon, killing two men, aged 29 and 27 and a 24-year-old woman. Police said 1,100 rockets have been launched at Israel since the offensive began on Wednesday.

RESCUE OPERATIONS

In Gaza, mourners also worried about the fate of Yara, a high-school girl, and Mohammed, 25, whose bodies could be trapped under the Dalu house rubble as rescue operations continued frantically into a second day.

“They killed a family that was safe and happy,” said Hatem Dalu, 40, a relative and a grocery owner.

“For no reason, Israel has committed a massacre, an ugly crime. All those victims were either children or women,” he said, crouching on a hospital staircase.

Despite ongoing violence and the sounds of explosions, several thousand mourners marched in their funeral as the bodies, draped in Palestinian flags, were held on stretchers while family carried the dead children in their arms.

“Resistance created a new formula. If Gaza is hit the resistance will hit Tel Aviv and beyond Tel Aviv,” said Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri at the funeral.

Due to a lack of space in the Martyr’s Cemetery, the nine bodies were crowded together into three graves.

Mourners around the stricken patriarch said Israel was trying to increase the number of civilians deaths in order to mount pressure on militant leaders to agree to their terms for a truce being discussed by Israeli and regional representatives in Cairo.

Engage

  • SHARE YOUR FEEDBACK

  • UPCOMING EVENT

    SKY & SCULPTURE

    Hybrid: Online and at the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan

    Oct 2, 2022

    6:30 pm ET · 

    A Sukkah, IMKHA, created by artist Tobi Kahn, for the Marlene Meyerson JCC of Manhattan is an installation consisting of 13 interrelated sculpted painted wooden panels, constituting a single work of art. Join for a panel discussion with Rabbi Joanna Samuels, Chief Executive Director of the Marlene Meyerson JCC of Manhattan, Talya Zax, Innovation Editor of the Forward, and Tobi Kahn, Artist. Moderated by Mattie Kahn.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.