- 1. They stand there, barking.
- 2. I see their mean faces.
They've come to kill.
- 3. And they tell my boss Bertold:
- 4. "Give us Boaz Rein or we'll eat
your customers. In one minute."
- 5. - Twenty-six dogs?
- 6. How do you know
there are 26 and not 30?
- 7. I'm coming to that.
- 8. - Well?
- Well what?
- 9. - Do you check it out?
- What do you think happens?
- 10. - I wake up.
- At that point every time?
- 11. Exactly. It always stops there.
- 12. - Since when?
- Two and a half years.
- 13. - And you call me now? At this hour?
- 14. Don't call me an asshole.
- 15. This dream is coming
- 16. - I haven't told you everything.
- Like what?
- 17. You know, in Lebanon...
- 18. What about Lebanon?
- 19. At the start of the war,
we went into Lebanese villages...
- 20. to search for wanted Palestinians.
- 21. Yeah, and...?
- 22. When someone enters a village,
the dogs smell and bark to alert.
- 23. Everyone wakes up
and the fugitives take off.
- 24. Someone had to liquidate them.
Otherwise our men would have died.
- 25. But Why you?
- 26. They knew I couldn't shoot a person.
They told me:
- 27. "Go ahead and shoot the dogs."
- 28. Twenty-six dogs,
I remember every single one.
- 29. Every face, every wound, the look
in their eyes. Twenty-six dogs.
- 30. How long before they started
appearing in your dreams?
- 31. Twenty years.
- 32. - Have you tried anything?
- Like what?
- 33. Therapy, a psychiatrist,
- 34. No, nothing. I called you.
- 35. I'm just a filmmaker.
- 36. Can't films be therapeutic?
- 37. You've dealt with all the issues
in your films, right?
- 38. But nothing like this.
- 39. No flashbacks from Lebanon?
- 40. No. Not really.
- 41. Are you sure?
- 42. No.
- 43. - Beirut, Sabra and Shatila?
- What about that?
- 44. You were only 100 yards away
from the massacre.
- 45. More like 200 or 300 yards.
- 46. The truth is
that's not stored in my system.
- 47. No flashbacks or dreams?
You never think about it?
- 48. No, no.
- 49. No.
- 50. You'll be okay, huh?
- 51. - You think so?
- 52. - You're sure?
- Yes. I'll think of something.
- 53. - Sure?
- 54. The meeting with Boaz
took place in winter, 2006.
- 55. That night,
for the first time in 20 years...
- 56. I had a flashback
of the war in Lebanon.
- 57. Not just Lebanon, West Beirut.
Not just Beirut...
- 58. but the massacre at the
Sabra and Shatila refugee camps.
- 59. What's wrong?
It's 6:30 in the morning.
- 60. We all have friends
who are lawyers, doctors, therapists.
- 61. Sometimes that friendship
- 62. But you wouldn't
wake your lawyer friend at 6:30.
- 63. My lawyer is
10 times cheaper than you.
- 64. I just don't understand.
- 65. Why Boaz's dream with the dogs?
- 66. Why that to jog my memory?
It has nothing to do with me.
- 67. Memory is fascinating.
- 68. Take this psychological experiment.
- 69. A group of people were shown
10 various childhood images.
- 70. Nine were really from their childhood
and one was fake:
- 71. Their portrait was pasted
into a fairground they never visited.
- 72. Eighty percent
- 73. They recognized the fake photo
- 74. Twenty percent couldn't remember.
- 75. The researchers asked them again.
- 76. The second time, the others said
that they remembered the image.
- 77. "Such a wonderful day at the park
with my parents."
- 78. They remembered
a completely fabricated experience.
- 79. Memory is dynamic. It's alive.
- 80. If some details are missing...
- 81. memory fills the holes
with things that never happened.
- 82. So my vision of the massacre
is like the fake photo?
- 83. It never happened?
I invented it? It's not real?
- 84. I don't know.
Who was there with you?
- 85. Carmi was there.
You know him from school.
- 86. And someone else I don't recognize.
- 87. - So go ask Carmi what he remembers.
- He's in Holland.
- 88. He's lived there for 20 years.
- 89. Go to Holland and ask him,
if it bothers you.
- 90. Isn't that dangerous?
- 91. Maybe I'll discover things
I don't want to know about myself.
- 92. Not at all.
- 93. You'll discover important things
that you want to know.
- 94. We don't go places
where we really don't want to.
- 95. A human mechanism prevents us
from entering dark places.
- 96. Memory takes us
where we need to go.
- 97. See all that?
- 98. Yes.
- 99. It's all mine.
- 100. All of it?
- 101. From those trees to the river.
- 102. - It all belongs to you?
- Yes, and the house.
- 103. It's about 10 acres.
- 104. - All that just from selling falafel?
- Just from falafel.
- 105. - Wow.
- Come and see.
- 106. - How much falafel did you sell?
- Three years was enough.
- 107. In the early '90s,
I had a small stand in Utrecht.
- 108. Health food was in fashion,
the Middle East too.
- 109. Falafel is both healthy
and Middle Eastern.
- 110. Everyone thought you'd become
a nuclear physicist.
- 111. Who did?
- 112. I don't know. Your family,
my family, our school friends.
- 113. They thought that by the age of 40,
you'd be nominated for a Nobel Prize.
- 114. By 20, that future was over.
- 115. Cold?
- 116. - Cold? I'm freezing.
- Let's go inside.
- 117. We have to walk all that way?
- 118. It's funny you've showed up now.
- 119. - Why?
- When you called...
- 120. I had just gone out with
my son Thomas. He's 7.
- 121. He was playing with a toy gun
and started asking questions:
- 122. "What did you do in the army?
Ever shoot anyone?"
- 123. - Did you?
- I don't know.
- 124. Let's go inside and warm up.
- 125. Would you mind if I sketch
you and your son playing in the snow?
- 126. No.
- 127. Not at all. Draw as much as you like.
- 128. I'll fetch him.
- 129. It's fine as long as you draw,
but don't film.
- 130. As strange as it sounds,
we were transported to war...
- 131. on a little Love Boat leased
by the army or God knows what.
- 132. They wanted to mislead the enemy
and launch a surprise attack.
- 133. What do you mean, a "Love Boat"?
With Jacuzzis and bars?
- 134. - All of that?
- That's how I imagined it.
- 135. I later found out it was
just an old commando boat.
- 136. For 18, you seemed pretty bright
to me. I never took you for a fighter.
- 137. Frankly, it was important to me
for a pretty practical reason.
- 138. I felt like everyone else
was screwing like rabbits...
- 139. and that I was the only...
How can I put it?
- 140. The only nerd
good at chess and math...
- 141. but with masculinity problems.
So I had to prove to everyone...
- 142. that I was the best fighter
and some big hero.
- 143. Did you succeed?
- 144. Yes, surprisingly enough.
- 145. I felt that I was strong and capable.
- 146. Then the war started and they
put us on that damned Love Boat.
- 147. - Then l...
- You what?
- 148. I puked like a pig. I wondered
what the enemy would think.
- 149. I finally collapsed on deck
and fell asleep.
- 150. I sleep when I'm scared.
- 151. To this day,
I escape into sleep and hallucinate.
- 152. Unconscious on the deck...
- 153. dreaming a woman would come...
- 154. and take me for the first time...
- 155. I saw my best friends
go up in flames before my eyes.
- 156. - Where?
- On the boat.
- 157. I woke up just before we docked.
It's dawn, and we're in a city.
- 158. - Which city?
- How should I know?
- 159. Sidon, I think.
- 160. Out of pure fear and anxiety,
we start shooting like lunatics.
- 161. - At whom?
- How do I know?
- 162. Then an old Mercedes drives up.
- 163. Everyone fires at it like crazy.
- 164. Two years of training,
and the fear...
- 165. the uncontrollable fear...
- 166. Then the silence.
The terrible silence of death.
- 167. At daybreak...
- 168. we could see our destruction...
- 169. without knowing where we were.
- 170. Lying in the car...
- 171. What was in the car?
- 172. The bodies of a whole family.
- 173. Why did you come here?
- 174. Me? I...
- 175. I lost my memory.
- 176. - In an accident?
- 177. - Did you have an accident?
- What do you mean?
- 178. In a car or at work?
- 179. No, I didn't have an accident.
- 180. I just can't remember anything
about the Lebanon War.
- 181. Just one image in my mind.
- 182. Somehow you're in it.
- 183. What image?
- 184. Were you there too?
- 185. It's hard to say.
- 186. What do you mean?
Were you there?
- 187. It's hard to say.
- 188. I don't remember anything
about the massacre.
- 189. But you were in Beirut
when the massacre took place.
- 190. Yes, I remember being there.
- 191. I'll never forget
us marching into Beirut.
- 192. But the massacre...
How did you say it?
- 193. That's not stored in my system.
- 194. - Right.
- 195. Then it happened in a taxi
to Amsterdam Airport.
- 196. Suddenly, all the memories
- 197. Not a hallucination,
nor my subconscious.
- 198. The first day of the war. Barely 19,
I haven't even started shaving.
- 199. We're driving down a road.
Orchards on one side...
- 200. the sea on the other.
We're shooting everywhere...
- 201. at everything, until nightfall.
- 202. That evening, when we stopped,
an officer tells me:
- 203. "Load up the dead and wounded.
- 204. Go and dump them."
- 205. "Dump? ll
- 206. "Yes, dump."
- 207. "Where?"
- 208. "How should I know?
Out there, near that bright light.
- 209. That's where they're dumped."
- 210. So I drive all the way back.
- 211. I had never seen an open wound
or any kind of bleeding before.
- 212. Now I was in command of a tank...
- 213. full of the dead and wounded,
looking for a bright light, salvation.
- 214. What should we do?
Why don't you tell us what to do?
- 215. - Shoot.
- At who?
- 216. How do I know? Just shoot.
- 217. - Isn't it better to pray?
- Then pray and shoot.
- 218. Finally we see the helicopter lights.
- 219. As we get closer to the light, we see
dead and wounded everywhere.
- 220. We unload mechanically,
as if we're not even present.
- 221. Then we turn around and drive off.
- 222. On the first day of the war...
- 223. I transported
the dead and wounded...
- 224. from tanks on the coast road.
- 225. I'm looking for people
who were with me.
- 226. Could your men
have been among them?
- 227. It sounds logical.
We were in the coastal area.
- 228. In the western sector. It's possible.
- 229. Do you recognize me here?
- 230. No.
- 231. I don't recognize myself either.
- 232. Crossing the border at Rosh Hanikra
felt like an excursion.
- 233. We took photos...
- 234. we told jokes.
- 235. We had time to fool around
before going into action.
- 236. Good morning, Lebanon
- 237. Good morning, Lebanon
- 238. Too much pain to carry on
- 239. Good morning, Lebanon
- 240. The landscape was beautiful,
trees all around.
- 241. A few scattered houses.
A really idyllic pastoral scene.
- 242. The slow drive allowed us
to enjoy the scenery.
- 243. May your dreams come true
- 244. May your nightmares pass
- 245. Your existence
ls a blessing, Lebanon
- 246. In a tank, you always feel really safe.
- 247. A tank is a very massive
- 248. Inside the tank...
- 249. we were protected.
- 250. You are torn to pieces
- 251. You bleed to death in my arms
- 252. You bleed to death in my arms
- 253. You are the love of my life
- 254. Oh, my short, short life
- 255. Tear me to pieces
- 256. I'm bleeding
- 257. Suddenly our commander
stopped responding. We lost contact.
- 258. - Was he beside you?
- 259. I saw his head slumped forward.
- 260. I went down inside and saw blood,
blood in the tank.
- 261. The blood was coming from his neck.
- 262. You were next in command?
- 263. Yes, I was.
- 264. But I didn't react immediately.
- 265. We just stayed in the tank
without even thinking of firing back.
- 266. Two minutes later,
there was an explosion.
- 267. Everyone tried to escape
from the tank hysterically...
- 268. without weapons or anything.
- 269. Those who stayed inside
were killed in the tank.
- 270. Iran as fast as I could...
- 271. in zigzags towards the sea.
- 272. My only thought."
- 273. "it's over. I'm done for.
- 274. They'll be here any minute.
All I can do is wait for the end."
- 275. I saw the building from which they
were shooting, and the commander.
- 276. I hoped he'd get closer.
- 277. I don't know why,
but he started to retreat.
- 278. I felt abandoned by our forces.
- 279. I imagined how my mother
- 280. We're very close.
I was always like her right hand.
- 281. I'm the only one
who helps out at home.
- 282. Like the first-born son.
- 283. I took a peek.
I saw them chatting, smoking.
- 284. I wondered why...
- 285. they didn't notice me.
- 286. I peeked a few more times.
I realized that they probably thought...
- 287. that everyone was killed
in the attack.
- 288. I decided to wait until dark.
- 289. I had a good place to hide.
- 290. I don't know why, but I decided...
- 291. to crawl out to the sea.
- 292. I didn't want to stay close to shore,
so I swam quite far out.
- 293. When I felt I was far out enough,
I started swimming south.
- 294. How was the sea?
- 295. Really calm, no waves.
- 296. I felt calm and at peace.
Just me and the sea.
- 297. I felt safe because the sea
was calm and peaceful.
- 298. But I was still really afraid...
- 299. that my strength would fail
and I'd drown.
- 300. Or maybe someone might spot me
and shoot at me, kill me.
- 301. While swimming through
this peaceful water...
- 302. I suddenly heard a loud noise.
- 303. I felt the water pulsating.
- 304. I felt the turbulent water
- 305. My body shook with fear.
- 306. I saw lights in the distance
and I headed in that direction.
- 307. They might be Israeli forces.
- 308. I kept swimming,
but felt my strength was dwindling.
- 309. I could barely move my limbs.
- 310. Sometimes I simply
let the water carry me along.
- 311. I eventually reached shore
and started walking.
- 312. I heard voices speaking Hebrew
on the two-way radio.
- 313. I knew...
- 314. that I had to get to them
despite my exhaustion.
- 315. To my amazement, it was
the regiment that had abandoned me.
- 316. After I got back to my regiment...
- 317. I felt like...
- 318. Like it was me who had
abandoned my comrades.
- 319. I always felt
that they regarded me like...
- 320. Like someone who didn't help
rescue his friends.
- 321. As if I had fled the battlefield
just to save my own skin.
- 322. I sometimes felt very uneasy.
- 323. I broke off contact
with the families of the dead.
- 324. At first I visited their graves,
but then I just stopped.
- 325. I wanted to forget.
I didn't want to relive those moments.
- 326. - Visiting the graves, you felt...
- 327. I felt guilty standing at their graves.
- 328. As if I didn't do enough.
- 329. I didn't do enough.
- 330. I wasn't the hero type who carries
weapons and saves everyone's life.
- 331. That's not me. I'm not the type.
- 332. I bombed Sidon today
- 333. Amid the clouds of smoke at dawn
- 334. I almost went home in a coffin
- 335. I bombed Sidon today
- 336. One month after Ronny Dayag
swam back home safely...
- 337. the army took the beach
from which he had fled.
- 338. They told us we'd soon attack Beirut
and that we'd all die.
- 339. But on the beach,
we didn't think much about death.
- 340. I had a hut of banana leaves.
- 341. Thinking back...
- 342. the smell of patchouli oil
still makes me nauseous.
- 343. It was really popular in the '80s.
For my roommate Frenkel...
- 344. patchouli was not just a fragrance,
it was a way of life.
- 345. Patchouli. How do you use it?
- 346. Show me.
- 347. You sprinkle a drop on your hand,
- 348. This way...
- 349. your comrades
always know you're there.
- 350. I remember my men telling me:
- 351. "Frenkel, you walk too fast.
Like a rabbit."
- 352. So what do you do? Patchouli.
- 353. In the dark, at night...
They couldn't miss me.
- 354. The scent is really strong,
even out in the field.
- 355. I still use it.
- 356. I bombed Beirut today
- 357. I bombed Beirut every day
- 358. If I came close to death
I couldn't say
- 359. I bombed Beirut every day
- 360. At the pull of a trigger
- 361. We can send strangers
Straight to hell
- 362. Sure, we kill some innocent
Along the way
- 363. If I came close to death
I couldn't say
- 364. I bombed Beirut every day
- 365. I bombed Beirut every day
- 366. Our daily routine was this:
- 367. Get up in the morning...
- 368. prepare breakfast
on those frying pans...
- 369. potted beef and eggs.
- 370. - On the beach.
- On the beach.
- 371. Take a quick swim...
- 372. back into uniform,
then go after some terrorists.
- 373. Someone yelled, "Frenkel!"
- 374. I noticed a boy holding an RPG.
- 375. A kid.
- 376. Frenkel, was I there too?
- 377. Sure. From training camp,
you were with me wherever I went.
- 378. - Even there?
- Yes, there too.
- 379. Good to know.
Of course I was there.
- 380. Is it possible that I can't remember
such a dramatic event?
- 381. We call them dissociative events.
- 382. It's when a person is in a situation
but feels outside it.
- 383. I was once visited by a young man,
an amateur photographer.
- 384. I asked him in 1983, "How did you
survive through that grueling war?"
- 385. He replied, "it was quite easy.
I regarded it as a long day trip."
- 386. He told himself,
"Wow, what great scenes:
- 387. Shooting, artillery,
wounded people, screaming..."
- 388. He looked at everything
as if through an imaginary camera.
- 389. Then something happened:
- 390. His camera broke.
- 391. He said that the situation
turned traumatic for him...
- 392. when they arrived in the vicinity
of the stables in Beirut.
- 393. The Hippodrome.
- 394. He saw a huge number
- 395. of slaughtered Arabian horses.
- 396. "It broke my heart," he said.
"What had those horses done...
- 397. to deserve such suffering?"
- 398. He couldn't handle seeing
those dead and wounded horses.
- 399. He had used a mechanism
to remain outside events...
- 400. as if watching the war on film
instead of participating.
- 401. This protected him.
- 402. Once pulled into the events,
he could no longer deny reality.
- 403. Horror surrounded him
and he freaked out.
- 404. You told me earlier that you can't
remember being in the orchard...
- 405. where the boy with the RPG was.
- 406. Can you remember other things?
Like going home...
- 407. chatting with friends,
events from that time...
- 408. something that maybe
reminds you of that time?
- 409. - Yes, in detail.
- For example?
- 410. I can remember perfectly
- 411. I remember when I was about 10,
there was a war going on.
- 412. And everything came to a halt.
All the fathers were at the front.
- 413. All children sat with their mothers,
closed up indoors...
- 414. behind closed blinds in the dark.
- 415. Just waiting for a plane
to drop a bomb and kill them all.
- 416. No one even dreamed
of going outside.
- 417. When I went home from Lebanon
for the first time in six weeks...
- 418. I saw that life
was carrying on normally.
- 419. My goal on leave
was to get back my girlfriend, Yaeli.
- 420. She had dumped me the night before
all of this started.
- 421. Remember how?
Add some Sprite.
- 422. Ready?
- 423. Bottoms up!
- 424. The memories are coming back.
- 425. I met people who served with me.
I almost have the full picture.
- 426. - At which point?
- The first day of the war...
- 427. the siege on Beirut.
- 428. You remember that
Yaeli dumped you a week before?
- 429. How do you know?
- 430. Didn't you know that
I was in love with her for years?
- 431. No, I didn't know that.
- 432. It's true.
- 433. What's wrong?
That was 20 years ago.
- 434. It's okay. I'm not angry.
- 435. At least you had your home,
- 436. What home? What family?
- 437. You have no idea.
- 438. My father...
- 439. To comfort me,
he told me that in his war...
- 440. World War ll...
- 441. Russian soldiers in Stalingrad...
- 442. were given 48 hours' leave
only after one year on the front.
- 443. They got on a train,
arrived home at the station...
- 444. kissed their girlfriends
on the platform...
- 445. then had to get back on board
to head back to the front.
- 446. Understand?
- 447. He thought it would comfort me.
In fact, he was right.
- 448. After only 24 hours,
I was called back to duty.
- 449. Back then, a new trend started:
- 450. Still popular today.
- 451. They're a blast.
- 452. A real blast.
- 453. So I arrive at this villa
on the outskirts of Beirut.
- 454. Everything is made of gold.
- 455. Fancy sinks, marble,
gold fixtures and all that stuff.
- 456. An officer sits in front of the TV.
He doesn't look at me.
- 457. He keeps repeating:
- 458. Fast forward.
- 459. Fast forward.
- 460. THE PLUMBER COMES 2
- 461. - I'm here to check your plumbing.
- Down here.
- 462. - Have you seen my tool?
- Which tool?
- 463. The big, long one.
- 464. Your pipes are so deep.
- 465. Fast forward.
- 466. Stop.
- 467. Hello.
Is that your red Mercedes outside?
- 468. I'm busy servicing a customer.
- 469. He changes the tape and says:
- 470. We received a tip-off
about a red Mercedes.
- 471. - It's coming to blow up your men.
- 472. Blow it up first.
- 473. - Every red Mercedes?
- Are you an idiot?
- 474. Did the Mercedes come?
- 475. We waited all night
for the exploding Mercedes...
- 476. for this impending disaster.
- 477. Then, in the middle of the night,
the phone rang.
- 478. Bashir is dead.
- 479. - Which Bashir?
- Bashir Gemayel...
- 480. the elected president of Lebanon.
- 481. A brother, an ally, a Christian.
- 482. Wake everyone up.
You'll be in Beirut in two hours.
- 483. I don't remember much
about the flight to Beirut...
- 484. except that I was having
obsessive thoughts about death...
- 485. because my girlfriend Yaeli
had dumped me the week before.
- 486. Death would be my revenge.
- 487. She would be ridden with guilt...
- 488. for the rest of her life.
- 489. While fantasizing about my death...
- 490. we approach Beirut.
- 491. A city with hotels, beaches...
- 492. and people scurrying about.
- 493. We land at the international airport.
- 494. Our Hercules army helicopter lands
next to jets from Air France, TWA...
- 495. and British Airways.
- 496. I was excited
like I was going on a trip abroad...
- 497. excited all over.
- 498. At some point I simply take off...
- 499. and walk into the terminal.
- 500. It felt as if I was on a leisure trip...
- 501. a sort of hallucination.
- 502. Like standing in a terminal...
- 503. waiting to choose my destination.
- 504. Before that '80s departures board...
- 505. the choice is all mine.
- 506. I see the 14:10 to London...
- 507. the 15:20 to Paris...
- 508. the 16:00 to New York.
- 509. I wander through the terminal
and see the duty-free shops:
- 510. Jewelry, tobacco...
- 511. alcohol.
- 512. While I'm still on this trip,
I suddenly realize what's going on.
- 513. Through the window I see...
- 514. that all the TWA and Air France
planes are just bombed-out shells.
- 515. And the shops are empty.
- 516. They've long since been looted.
- 517. And the schedule board
hasn't changed for months.
- 518. Then I start to hear sounds, voices.
- 519. I hear shelling in the city
and the bombing by the air force.
- 520. Slowly I begin to realize
where I am...
- 521. and I am afraid
of what will happen next.
- 522. We start walking
from the airport to the city.
- 523. Tall high-rise hotels
hover above us.
- 524. The sea is at our side.
- 525. We walk along a promenade
towards a large junction.
- 526. Then we come under sniper fire
from the upper floors of a hotel.
- 527. We can't see where it's coming from
or who is shooting.
- 528. A wounded soldier was lying at the
junction, but we couldn't get to him.
- 529. We were scared to death.
- 530. Then, in the middle of this hell...
- 531. that TV correspondent
Ron Ben-Yishai suddenly shows up.
- 532. He's walking upright,
dodging bullets like Superman.
- 533. Strolling along as if nothing's wrong,
while bullets whiz past him.
- 534. In front of him, a terrified cameraman
- 535. Trembling with fear,
he can't see beyond his helmet.
- 536. It was a large junction.
- 537. One lane led directly
into Hamra Street...
- 538. to the West Beirut district of Hamra.
- 539. I remember the sizzling sound,
a sort of hissing noise...
- 540. They were firing masses of RPGs,
and it sounded...
- 541. like a Native American
- 542. Before an RPG explodes,
it makes this hissing noise.
- 543. You don't hear an explosion...
- 544. but just this hissing,
then the walls shattering.
- 545. During all this,
civilians are seen on balconies:
- 546. Women, children...
- 547. and old people are watching
as if it were a film.
- 548. They are shooting at us
from all directions.
- 549. And we can't get across.
- 550. Throughout my military service,
I was a MAG shooter.
- 551. During my officer's training, I thought:
- 552. "You've used a MAG for so long,
why not try something else?"
- 553. So they gave me a Galil.
- 554. And while they're shooting at us
from all directions...
- 555. I realize that I can't shoot
with the Galil like I could before.
- 556. I missed the good old MAG
that I was familiar with.
- 557. So I say to Erez,
"Erez, do me a favor.
- 558. Give me your MAG.
I won't make it across with the Galil.
- 559. Give me your MAG
and we'll cross the street.
- 560. I'll shoot better."
- 561. He says, "Frenkel, are you nuts?
- 562. They're attacking us!
Stop babbling and shoot!"
- 563. I finally realize that I must...
- 564. take drastic steps.
I grab him and say:
- 565. "Listen, Erez, give me the MAG,
or I'll take it by force."
- 566. Whether an eternity
or just a minute...
- 567. there was Frenkel at the junction...
- 568. with bullets flying past him
in every direction.
- 569. Instead of crossing the junction...
- 570. I saw him dancing, as if in a trance.
- 571. He cursed the shooters.
Like he wanted to stay there forever.
- 572. As if he wanted to show off
his waltz amid the gunfire...
- 573. with the posters of Bashir
above his head.
- 574. And Bashir's followers...
- 575. preparing their big revenge
just 200 yards away:
- 576. The Sabra and Shatila massacre.
- 577. I'm starting to remember.
- 578. I've met people, I've heard stories.
- 579. Stories about myself.
- 580. I didn't want to believe them.
- 581. So what can't you remember'?
- 582. The day of the massacre.
I can remember everything else.
- 583. I don't understand
why people were so surprised...
- 584. that the Phalangists
carried out the massacre.
- 585. I knew all along
how ruthless they were.
- 586. During the storming of Beirut,
we were in the slaughterhouse.
- 587. - Where?
- The slaughterhouse, that junkyard...
- 588. where they took the Palestinians,
interrogated them, and executed them.
- 589. It was like being on an LSD trip.
- 590. They carried body parts
of murdered Palestinians...
- 591. preserved in jars of formaldehyde.
- 592. They had fingers, eyeballs,
anything you wanted.
- 593. And always pictures of Bashir.
- 594. Bashir pendants, Bashir watches,
Bashir this, Bashir that.
- 595. Bashir was to them
what David Bowie was to me.
- 596. A star, an idol, a prince, admirable.
- 597. I think they even felt
an eroticism for him.
- 598. Totally erotic.
- 599. Their idol was about to become king.
We were the ones to crown him.
- 600. The next day he was murdered.
- 601. It was obvious they'd avenge his death
in some perverse way.
- 602. It was as if their wife
had been murdered.
- 603. This was about family honor,
which runs deep.
- 604. Why did you come back?
- 605. I'm still having these hallucinations
about the massacre on the beach.
- 606. And you're there with me.
- 607. You're crazy.
- 608. You're obsessed.
- 609. Beach? What are you talking about?
Who was on the beach that night?
- 610. What beach?
- 611. I've reached a dead end.
- 612. I can't find anyone
who was with me at the massacre.
- 613. No one who was with me...
- 614. has any solid memories
of the days of the massacre.
- 615. I only have this one vision.
- 616. And Carmi, the only person in my
vision, denies being there with me.
- 617. - It's still real.
- it's a vision.
- 618. - But it's yours. Shall I explain?
- 619. What does the sea symbolize
in dreams? Fear. Feelings.
- 620. The massacre frightens you, makes
you uneasy. You were close to it.
- 621. That doesn't help me much.
- 622. Your interest in the massacre
developed long before it happened.
- 623. Your interest in the massacre
stems from another massacre.
- 624. Your interest in those camps
is actually about the other camps.
- 625. - Were your parents in camps?
- 626. - Auschwitz?
- 627. So the massacre has been with you
since you were 6.
- 628. You lived through the massacre
and those camps.
- 629. Your only solution
is to find out what really happened...
- 630. in Sabra and Shatila.
Seek out people.
- 631. Find out what really happened,
ask who was there.
- 632. Get details and more details.
- 633. Then maybe you can find out
where you were exactly...
- 634. and what role you played.
- 635. On that day, we were sent
to a certain post.
- 636. It was actually on a hill.
- 637. was opposite the western sector
of the refugee camp.
- 638. From where I was,
I could see the settlement houses.
- 639. There was occasional shooting.
We tried to locate them...
- 640. and retaliate.
- 641. The Christian Phalangist forces
began to arrive.
- 642. In full kit,
soldiers in Israeli uniforms...
- 643. took position behind tanks.
- 644. I was called for a briefing.
It was in English.
- 645. What was it about?
- 646. They told us that the Christians...
- 647. would enter the camp
and we would give them cover.
- 648. Once they had purged the camps...
- 649. we would seize control.
- 650. - Purged of what?
- Palestinian terrorists.
- 651. The next morning,
they began to bring out civilians.
- 652. The civilians were led
out of the camps...
- 653. in a long line.
- 654. The Phalangists watched on,
constantly shouting at them...
- 655. and occasionally firing into the air.
- 656. There were women, old people...
- 657. and children walking in a line
towards the stadium.
- 658. From inside the tank, did you
wonder where they were taking them?
- 659. Did you think about it?
- 660. Not really,
because wherever we went...
- 661. an announcement was made
upon entering a camp.
- 662. Civilians were ordered out. Those
remaining were considered rebels.
- 663. It seemed quite natural
to say to the residents:
- 664. "if you don't want to get hurt,
then come out."
- 665. On that day I drove to Docha,
a city on the coast.
- 666. It had an Israel Defense Forces
- 667. On the way...
- 668. many Phalangist
half-track vehicles appeared.
- 669. They shouted with joy
as they headed towards the airfield.
- 670. At the airfield, I met a colonel friend.
- 671. He told me:
- 672. "Have you heard what's happening
in the refugee camps?"
- 673. He had pointed to Sabra and Shatila.
- 674. "What's happening?" I asked.
- 675. "I didn't witness it myself, but they
say there was a terrible massacre."
- 676. Palestinians were slaughtered.
I heard they put them on trucks.
- 677. I was told that crucifixes
were carved on their chests.
- 678. There were wounded,
some in critical condition.
- 679. They were put on trucks
and taken to an unknown destination.
- 680. We saw a Phalangist soldier...
- 681. taking an old man away.
- 682. At some point, we heard shots.
- 683. We heard shots.
- 684. Then the soldier came out alone.
- 685. We asked him what happened.
- 686. We couldn't hear him,
but his gestures meant "boom!"
- 687. We understood that he'd told the man
to kneel down before him.
- 688. When he refused, he shot his knees.
When he refused again...
- 689. he shot him
in the stomach and head.
- 690. Didn't you ever realize...
- 691. that trucks were going in empty
and coming out full?
- 692. Women and children were brought out
and bulldozers went in?
- 693. That maybe
a massacre is taking place?
- 694. Did you wonder
why you didn't realize earlier?
- 695. Yes, of course.
- 696. I realized something was happening
only when my men told me.
- 697. From the top of their tanks...
- 698. they started shouting,
"They are shooting people!"
- 699. They claim that people were lined up
against the wall and shot.
- 700. So I called my commanding officer.
- 701. I told him what I heard
was going on in the camps.
- 702. He said, "We know about it.
It's under control. We reported it."
- 703. As far as I was concerned,
the army was handling it.
- 704. Where was the operations room,
- 705. About 100 yards away.
On top of a very tall building.
- 706. - HOW tall?
- Tall enough to see everything.
- 707. They surely had a better view
than I did.
- 708. I didn't want to walk around at night,
so I drove...
- 709. to my place in Baabda.
I had an apartment in Beirut.
- 710. Micha Friedman was with me.
We decided to make dinner.
- 711. Micha invited the guys from
the regiment of the 211th Brigade.
- 712. During the meal, the regiment
commander took me aside.
- 713. He said, "Ron...
- 714. my men say there's a massacre
going on in the camps."
- 715. He mentioned one or two incidents...
- 716. saying a family was seen shot.
- 717. I asked him again,
"Did you see it yourself?"
- 718. "I didn't," he said,
"but my soldiers told me about it.
- 719. The officers sitting here did too."
We talked about it over dinner later.
- 720. As soon as they left at 11:30 p.m...
- 721. I knocked back a whiskey and
phoned Defense Minister Arik Sharon.
- 722. At his ranch.
- 723. Arik was half asleep.
- 724. I said, "I've heard
there's a massacre going on, Arik.
- 725. They are slaughtering Palestinians.
We have to put a stop to it."
- 726. He asked me,
"Did you see it yourself?"
- 727. "No", I said, "but there are
several witnesses who saw it."
- 728. "Okay," he said.
- 729. "Thanks for bringing it
to my attention." That was all.
- 730. You'd normally say, "I'll check it out,
I'll look into it." But no!
- 731. He said, "Thanks for bringing it
to my attention. Happy New Year."
- 732. Well, something along those lines.
Then back to sleep.
- 733. It's amazing.
A massacre took place...
- 734. it was carried out by
- 735. All around were several circles
of our soldiers.
- 736. Every circle had some information.
- 737. The first one had the most.
- 738. the penny didn't drop.
- 739. They didn't realize
they were witnessing a genocide.
- 740. What circle were you in?
- 741. In the second or third.
- 742. What did you do?
- 743. We stood on a roof
and saw the sky was lit up.
- 744. - With what?
- 745. Flares that must have helped them
do what they were doing.
- 746. Did you fire the flares?
- 747. Is that important?
- 748. Does it make any difference
if I fired them...
- 749. or if I just saw the flares
that helped people shoot others?
- 750. In your state of mind at that time,
it didn't really make a difference.
- 751. You can't remember the massacre
because in your opinion...
- 752. the murderers and those
around them are the same circle.
- 753. You felt guilty at the age of 19.
- 754. Unwillingly,
you took on the role of the Nazi.
- 755. You were there firing flares,
but you didn't carry out the massacre.
- 756. I woke up at 5 or 5:30,
and I woke everyone up...
- 757. the whole team.
- 758. Then I drove to Sabra and Shatila.
- 759. When I arrived there...
- 760. What a mess.
- 761. You know that picture
from the Warsaw ghetto?
- 762. The one with the kid
holding his hands in the air?
- 763. That's just how
the long line of women...
- 764. old people and children looked.
- 765. I thought about going to
Brigadier Amos' headquarters...
- 766. but as I was leaving,
Amos suddenly turned up.
- 767. He drove to the head of the convoy.
- 768. His angry gestures
forced them to stop.
- 769. And that was the end of it.
- 770. Stop the shooting.
- 771. Stop the shooting immediately.
- 772. It's an order. Stop the shooting...
- 773. immediately. Everybody, go home.
- 774. Go home, now.
- 775. The Phalangists
withdrew back up the street.
- 776. The women and children
returned to the camp.
- 777. - The Palestinians?
- 778. I said to my men,
"We're going in with them.
- 779. With those women and children.
- 780. We'll see what happened in there."
- 781. Inside the camp, we saw
a huge amount of rubble.
- 782. My eye caught...
- 783. a hand, a small hand.
- 784. A child's hand
stuck out from the rubble.
- 785. I looked a bit closer and saw curls.
- 786. A head of curls covered in dust.
It was hard to make out.
- 787. But it was a head,
exposed up to the nose.
- 788. A hand and a head.
- 789. My own daughter was the same age
as that little girl...
- 790. and she had curly hair too.
- 791. The Palestinians in refugee camps
have houses with courtyards.
- 792. These courtyards were full
of bodies of women and children.
- 793. The young men had been shot first.
- 794. Then the rest of the family
was dealt with.
- 795. We entered one alley,
a very narrow alley...
- 796. the width of a man and a half.
- 797. That alley was full...
- 798. Piled up to the height
of a man's chest...
- 799. with the bodies of young men.
- 800. That's when I became aware
of the results of the massacre.