As Israel continues its retaliation against civilians in Gaza, the families of Israeli prisoners held by the resistance in the Strip find themselves at the center of a major dilemma.

A number of Israelis want their leaders to work to eliminate the resistance, while many fear that prisoners may be killed during the bombing.

The Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas), announced the death of a number of prisoners, including foreigners, as a result of the continuous Israeli bombardment of Gaza.

Prisoner Recovery

Recently, Israelis demonstrated in front of the Defense Ministry headquarters in Tel Aviv to demand the return of Israeli prisoners held in the Gaza Strip by the Qassam Brigades and resistance elements.

Foreign Policy magazine recounted how Israeli Ma'ayan Zein learned about the families of her two daughters and ex-husband, who live in Kibbutz Nahal Oz on the Gaza border, and sent a text message early on October 7 to check on them, after she woke up to the sound of sirens.

Two hours later, Ma'ayan Zein sent a second text message, asking if she could talk to her two daughters, but what she did not know was that the resistance succeeded in storming the settlements, taking a large number of prisoners with her.

Ma'ayan Zein is just one of many Israelis waiting for someone to tell them where their family members are, whether they are alive or dead, and what is being done to bring them home.

No answers

The families did not receive any answers from the Israeli authorities, despite their appeals to all parties to seek information about their relatives held captive by the resistance.

According to Foreign Policy, although Israel appointed retired Brigadier General Gal Hirsch on October 9 to serve as the government's coordinator for abducted and missing Israelis, and his office sent notices to the families of 199 Israelis held by Hamas, no public statement has been made by any Israeli government official regarding any apparent effort to free the prisoners.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office did not respond to Foreign Policy requests for comment, as did Gal Hirsch's.

Israel's Channel 13 had earlier said Hamas had sent photos of the family of one of the prisoners, explaining that he had been killed by Israeli aircraft bombing Gaza.