25-year-old Israeli Woman declared hero for saving Nir Am from Hamas
An Israeli woman, 25-year-old Inbal Lieberman, is being celebrated as a hero after her quick and decisive actions saved her community from Hamas as terrorists began attacking their kibbutz, Nir Am, just a mile from the Gaza Strip. Lieberman heard explosions early on Saturday, but the sounds were different from the usual sounds of incoming rockets; suddenly she realized, she was hearing small arms fire.
She rushed to the armory, handing out guns to her dozen strong security team, then coordinated their response amidst the chaos of the unfolding attack, placing her team in strategic positions to repel the assault and save the kibbutz from slaughter.
The 25-year-old set up ambushes, making life difficult for the invaders. Lieberman’s small team held off the enemy force for hours; she killed five terrorists herself, while her team claimed the lives of 20 more during the long fight.
Residents of Nir Am spent up to 16 hours hiding in safe rooms without electricity while security team members fought off terrorists; without air conditioning, television, or phones, only the sound of the pitched battle taking place outside their front doors as kibbutz members fought off terrorists trying to infiltrate it to murder or kidnap them.
“It was amazing, my husband was part of the standby unit that worked to prevent more casualties,” the cultural coordinator at Nir Am, Ilit Paz, told Israel Hayom.
“They heard the shots and made contact on their own with other members of the standby unit and with Inbal — and they understood that they were told to be on standby, but Inbal made a decision not to wait and be jumped operationally. In fact, the fact that they did it early prevented dozens of casualties.”
The Maariv Daily reported that social media posts celebrated Lieberman’s heroism, with one saying she deserves the Israel Prize.
“When it's all over, this woman will receive the Israel Prize,” the post said. “The story of her heroism is a story that will go down in Israeli lore for generations. Inbal is the reason there is one kibbutz in the entire surrounding area that remains unharmed — Nir Am.”
Inbal and her family, like many other kibbutz residents, evacuated after the fighting. They stayed in a hotel in Tel Aviv where, on October 9, Inbal Lieberman celebrated a birthday she almost didn’t get to have. Mayor of Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai visited the hotel to meet and congratulate her.
"Inbal is a heroine," Huldai wrote on Facebook. "Her story, which is being published everywhere, leaves no one indifferent - for her coolness, courage and bravery. Thanks to Inbal, dozens of lives have been saved. Thanks to her, Kibbutz Nir Am was saved. Today, Inbal arrived with her family at one of the hotels where we host border residents. I was honoured to meet her.”
Nir Am is among precious few communities that Hamas attempted to enter but instead were repelled from. In Ein Habsor, also near the Gaza Strip, a handful of locals with only two rifles and a few handguns held off a larger force of armed Hamas terrorists, Noam Gotliv, told the Times of Israel.
“What happened to us was part alertness, part miracle,” Gotliv said.
The death toll has continued to climb as more and more victims are recovered; security forces and Zaka, an Israeli volunteer group that handles human remains after terror attacks, continue to work to find and collect bodies.
The military said that number had climbed over 1,200 by Wednesday morning, according to the reports, with over 3,000 injured and an estimated 150 people abducted and taken to the Gaza Strip in unknown condition.
The dead include 14 Americans, with many countries confirming citizens who were victims in the attack, including the UK, Canada, France, Thailand, Nepal, Russia, Ukraine, Cambodia, Germany, Philippines, Chile, Brazil, Italy, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Ireland and of course, Israel, who declared itself at war.
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