Former Governors on the Gaza Perimeter: Hamas October 7th Attack 'Pure Evil'

KFAR AZA, Israel – “Pure evil” is how one former governor and evangelical leader described the Hamas massacre on October 7th, after visiting Kfar Aza, one of 22 communities along the Gaza border that came under attack.

Israeli Knesset member Danny Danon brought evangelical leaders including former governors Mike Huckabee and Sam Brownback to Kfar Aza as part of a solidarity mission to Israel recently.

“In this location, young families were massacred, kidnapped, raped, babies were set on fire and it all happened right here,” Danon told CBN News while conducting the visit to the kibbutz.

“We are here to remind to the international community that we haven’t forgotten what happened. That is the reason we are now in Gaza, chasing after Hamas and we are determined to complete the mission,” Danon explained.


Ilan Buyum lives with his family on Kibbutz Kfar Aza. His son, Yuval, killed in the massacre, lived in a next-generation neighborhood with young people 18 and up, who had moved out of their parents’ homes but stayed in the community. It was right next to the border fence with Gaza.

“At the morning of the attack we spent some time speaking (by phone),” Buyum told CBN News as he stood in front of Yuval’s apartment. “All the time (Yuval) says that he can hear them (the terrorists). They even tried to open his door but at that time, they just tried, and they moved on, and we hoped they won’t come back. But they did. About 12:30, we just lost contact with him.”

Not far from the apartment is a peaceful-looking fence, with Gaza in the distance. It’s one of the places where the horrors began on October 7th.  Hundreds of Hamas terrorists crashed through the gate into Kibbutz Kfar Aza. They murdered dozens, they took 18 hostages back into Gaza, from that place.

This is the reality that the people of Kfar Aza are living with. The 900 residents here have evacuated to another place. Some will come back, many probably won’t.

“My family is afraid to come back, but if you ask me personally, I feel I have something unfinished here, so I feel like I left my son here. So, I feel I want to come back regardless of how safe it is,” Buyum said.

He continued, “But as for feeling safe here, it will take a long time to build the trust again in the government and in the army. Because the reason that we lived here is that we knew that at the moment anyone crossed to the fence of Gaza there, the army will react and will prevent any form of attack on the Kibbutz. But it didn’t happen.”

Israel Defense Forces Reserve Captain Maya was there to brief the leaders on the story of Kfar Aza.

“The community here has suffered a great loss and these people, they are the people that believed in peace and worked towards peace, and they were murdered, again – in inhumane, brutal and barbaric ways – in their own houses,” Maya stated.

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Former Arkansas Governor Huckabee says he’s been coming to Israel for 50 years but nothing could have prepared him for what he saw. 

“I just want the world to understand, this was not a military effort, to attack the military of Israel. This was to slaughter innocent civilians, and children and women and elderly people. This is not the act of civilized human beings. This is the act of savages,” Huckabee told CBN News.

He called it an “attack on humanity” and said Israel must eradicate Hamas.

“This is not a political issue. It’s not socioeconomic. It’s not geographical. This is not horizontal – left and right – this is vertical. This is up and down – heaven and hell. This is good versus evil. And this is evil what happened here,” he said.

Former Kansas Governor Brownback said he was stunned by the carnage.

The collective shock in the country is palpable. It was not a bomb. It was personal, hand-to-hand carnage. The people stared somebody else in the eye and shot them – babies. The level of depravity and brutality is really stunning,” Brownback told us.

He said no one wants collateral damage in Gaza but Israel has to protect itself.

“And you see those signs across the United States of people saying, ‘From the River to the Sea, Palestine will be Free.’ Well, that means running everybody from Israel out into the ocean. And Israel has a right to defend itself and we should stand with Israel’s right to defend itself,” Brownback said.

Brownback noted that Iran is behind it all and getting away with it.

“To me two lessons are here: you’ve got to start confronting Iran directly, or you’re going to continue to see this, and you’ll see it again. And the second is, really allow the Palestinians to emigrate to other nations,” he added.

In the meantime, Danon says the world must give Israel time.

“You cannot fight evil with a stop-clock, telling you ‘OK, that’s it. Finish it.’ It’s not easy. They are hiding behind civilians. They are hiding in tunnels. They took the money of the world to dig an undercover town in Gaza. So, it’s not an easy operation. It’s the longest war we ever conducted. And we intend to win that war,” Danon said.

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