Nov 29, 2021

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In a recent interview with Israel365 News, David Rose, the International Director of ZAKA, gave an exclusive interview from the front lines of the Mount Meron tragedy.

As Rose explains, every year, ZAKA is called to Mount Meron, but mainly to ensure that children don’t get lost, assisting with medical emergencies or search and rescue operations in case anyone goes missing.

Rose added that although they were prevented from arriving at the tomb last year due to covid restrictions, this year was supposed to be a celebratory event as a type of reunion was taking place at the site of the burial place of Rabbi Shimon Bar-Yochai, the author of the Zohar.

He then described the harrowing moments of how ZAKA’s volunteers instantly went from joy to emergency life-saving mode saying: “volunteers that were dancing minutes before with their friends were rushing to save lives and staying on for hours throughout the night.”

Rose recalls his harrowing experience discovering a deceased 14-year old kid.

He touched on the trauma experienced by the volunteers who were dancing with their friends one minute and the next were cleaning up their bodies. Rose also spoke of volunteers who notices phones ringing on the persons of the dead bodies explaining that it was their loved ones who were calling them.

Although ZAKA has experience cleaning up some of Israel’s worst suicide bombings, Rose revealed to Israel365 News that this incident was something “beyond our imagination.”