The story of a dog named Bella
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The story of a dog named Bella

Mia Leimberg emerged from the darkness of the Gaza tunnels with her faithful dog Bella. She held her close. So she wouldn’t run away. Mia marched towards freedom, surrounded by armed men with black masks and green uniforms.

Despite this opening, I didn’t come to tell you Mia’s story. I came to tell you about Bella’s. Bella, the family’s beloved shih tzu, was kidnapped alongside Mia.

On that Saturday of the seventh of October, they stayed with Mia’s aunt in Kibbutz Nir Yitzhak. Mia had phoned her father, Moshe Leimberg, when the rocket attacks began on that morning, fearing for his safety rather than hers. After that, she sent him a picture of their sleepy dog, saying it had calmed down.

At about 11:00, terrorists entered. The family had attempted to hide in a sealed room,using a chair to keep the door shut before they were discovered by the Hamas militants.

We know this from the text messages they sent to Mia’s father — in the last meeage,they wrote that the terrorists entered their home and broke things, sent kisses emojis, since then he lost contact.

After days fearing the worst, the IDF told Moshe the phones were last traced to the Gaza Strip. In the shadow of the massacres by Hamas and the concern for Mia and her mother who were kidnapped to Gaza. Moshe thought that his dog ran away from home. He was as surprised as everyone else who watched the release of the hostages yesterday.

It is clear to me that the Hamas operatives’ decision to keep the animal alive was a part of the group’s relentless propaganda attempting to depict itself as more humane.

For Mia the period of captivity was 53 days, but for Bella the number of these days is equal to a few years. After hearing all those children’s testimonies, I’m trying to imagine how Hamas got Bella out for a walk? If the children were given almost no food, what kind of food Bella received?

Unfortunately, I still don’t speak canine, so I don’t understand Bella, so you and I can only imagine. If I have more details, dear readers, I will tell you in my next posts.

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