A few kilometers to the south, in Gaza, as buildings crumble from airstrikes, patients at the Barzillai Medical Complex are showing strong anti-Palestinian hatred.
Ashkelon, a thousand-year-old port at the gates of Gaza, is at war. Although it has not been evacuated, the streets of the city of 150,000 people are almost empty. Burnt cars, broken windows; Some buildings bear the marks of rockets. Day and night alerts are common. Here, the wind shakes as the IDF strikes fifteen kilometers north of the Gaza Strip.
To the south of the city is the large Barsilai Medical Complex. Adjacent to a large beach park, it has a relaxing view of the immensity of the Mediterranean Sea. Hundreds of injured people, including many children, remain at the center of rescue operations during the October 7 Hamas attack. It has long been a symbol of southern Israel’s resilience in the face of rockets from Gaza: the hospital has been hit twice since October 7, but work there continues as normal. We welcome the diplomatic delegation that comes to attend to the sorrows of separated families and to assure the unfailing unity of distant peoples. French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna was there on Sunday 15 October.