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Toronto-born Israeli reservist describes ‘chaos’ on frontlines of Gaza border

“We’re combating for our lives right here. We’re coping with a vicious enemy.”

That’s what Michael Zenou informed CP24 in an interview on Friday from the frontlines of the Israel-Hamas battle close to the Gaza border.

The Toronto-born Israeli reservist was in Israel on Saturday when Hamas, a delegated terrorist group by the Canadian authorities, launched a shock assault that left greater than 1,300 folks, largely civilians, lifeless and noticed 150 folks delivered to Gaza as hostages.

“[It was a] commonplace morning. Preparing for the health club. After which out of nowhere, we acquired an [air raid] siren at 6:30 a.m. The spouse [and my daughter] went to the shelter after which we acquired information of the, , the infiltration,” Zenou mentioned.

Inside an hour, Zenou mentioned, he acquired a name from the Israeli navy, which knowledgeable him of a name up of roughly 200,000 troopers. He mentioned he was informed he wanted to gather his issues and head to a military base.

Now, Zenou is on the frontlines of the north aspect of the Gaza border, the place he mentioned the sound of air raid sirens is heard 20 to 30 occasions a day and notices of Hamas infiltration by the use of tunnels are retaining troopers on excessive alert.

“It is chaos…I used to be myself in a gunfight on Wednesday between a unit of eight Hamas terrorists who had been all killed,” Zenou mentioned.

Born and raised in Toronto, Zenou is the son of an Israeli ex-pat and beforehand served within the Israeli navy for 2 years when he was 24.

Since 2015, he has travelled between Toronto, the UK and Israel working in actual property.

Zenou had simply returned from a vacation in Toronto along with his spouse, who’s from Israel, and their daughter who was additionally born there.

Now 32, Zenou mentioned he had skilled for “lately,” referring to the present state of affairs between Israel and Hamas, however was shocked by how shortly the battle started.

“Nothing’s occurred like this, on this scale, since 2006. And it occurred in seconds. You are out right here. You realize, I have not seen my child, my spouse in over per week,” he mentioned.

“We do not know when we’ll go to our mother and father, once I’m going to see my little one, my spouse.”

Michael Zenou Toronto

On Friday, Israel’s navy informed some 1 million folks to go away northern Gaza and head south forward of an anticipated floor invasion.

As evacuations came about, Israeli warplanes struck automobiles fleeing south, killing greater than 70 folks, based on Hamas’ media workplace. For its half, Israel’s navy mentioned its troops had carried out short-term raids in Gaza to battle militants as troopers looked for hostages.

The United Nations referred to as Israel’s evacuation order “unattainable” Friday and mentioned the size of the directive would have “devastating humanitarian penalties.”

Zenou admitted he’s undecided how lengthy he’ll be on the frontlines however mentioned he’s anticipating an “prolonged interval” of fight.

“We’ve got no selection. We’re beneath assault. If someone was attacking Canada, slaughtering your folks, , as a rustic, we’d get up,” he mentioned.

“We have to do what we now have to do now to revive a protracted standing calm within the area. And security for Israel. As well as for the Palestinian people who find themselves struggling by the hands of this terror group Hamas.”

As of Friday, roughly 1,800 folks have been killed in Gaza, based on the well being ministry for the territory.

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