Though the term has been cheapened on these shores after having been spewed across the entire landscape like water from a firehose, in some places it still has meaning. The Nir Am kibbutz would definitely be one of those places.
Israeli Woman Who Helped Save a Kibbutz: ‘I’m Not a Hero, I Wasn’t There by Myself’
‘I hope you won’t have too much to do,’ Inbal Lieberman was told when she first took the post of security coordinator for Nir Am less than a year ago
Inbal Lieberman doesn’t want to be everybody’s heroine. She refuses to grant interviews, rebuffing the attention. She would like to remove the crown placed on her head by the masses online. Like many others living in the vicinity of Gaza, Lieberman just wants a little peace of mind and a safe space to grieve.
Last Saturday, she and her colleagues in Kibbutz Nir Am’s guard detail saved hundreds of people, but they too knew people who were killed by invading Hamas forces in the neighboring communities. The hundreds of calls and texts reaching her at her hotel in Tel Aviv contrasted starkly with her state of mind.
During the first hours of the ongoing war, while Liebstein (head of the Sha’ar Hanegev regional council Ophir, from whom came the pull quote in italics above—M) was meeting death trying to defend other people in the area, Lieberman encountered the test of a lifetime. At 6:30 A.M., as rocket sirens wailed, everybody in the kibbutz – seasoned in these matters – ran for shelter. Lieberman also went into a shelter, but then she heard other noises. Unusual ones.
Ofer Lieberman, her father, is a different kind of parent. Unlike others, he evades the expectation that he will hail his daughter. He finds it more comfortable to reconstruct the event as he experienced it. “The electricity went out because of the rockets and she ordered that the power not be restored so nobody could open the gates to the kibbutz,” he says. “The security detail had woken up and she took the decision to arm them and place them in positions.”
And so it was done. Like in the mythological stories of early Zionism, Lieberman and 11 other kibbutz members stood guard and waited.
Like in any of those mythological stories, the precise details of her heroism were inflated. Social media messages reported “25 terrorists killed” while actually one had been killed and one wounded. But for three hours, Lieberman and the security detail fought from positions within the kibbutz and with militants some dozens of meters away from the entrance.
Other kibbutz members could hear the whole thing from their shelters. Her father, though, though left the safe room for the kitchen at the height of the battle to fry an omelette. “She called us at some point, asking for a sandwich,” her father explains. “So I left the shelter, made her an omelette sandwich and brought it to her.”
You see what I mean about heroes, I’m sure. Lieberman père and jeune fille both qualify as such, eminently. Cross-dressers and Nee-grows who collapse into paroxysms of hysterical grief claiming “genocide” anytime someone looks at them disapprovingly for, respectively, public acts of pedophilia and looting/burning of entire cities assuredly do NOT.