Brave Israeli Woman Mia Schem Shares Scary Story: Held Hostage in Gaza
Survivor's Tale: Mia Schem Recounts Terrifying Hostage Ordeal in Gaza, Revealing Fears and Struggles
Mia Schem, a 21-year-old Israeli-French woman, talked about her frightening experience being captured by Hamas militants in Gaza. She was let go in late November when there was a break in fighting between Israel and Hamas. While she was captured, a video showed her getting treated for a bullet wound to her arm.
Speaking on Israeli TV, Mia remembered dancing at a party near Gaza's border on October 7. Suddenly, Hamas fighters attacked, and many people were killed. When she tried to escape, her car was shot at and caught fire. Hurt and surrounded by flames, she had to make a quick decision.
"I had to choose - stay and burn or go with him," she said, talking about the gunman who took her as she came out of the burning car.
Taken to Gaza in a truck, Mia was kept in a room for three days while her arm was fixed with a simple splint. After that, she was taken to the house of a Hamas fighter, and he stayed close to her all the time.
"I was kept in a dark room, not allowed to talk or be seen, like I was hiding. A man was watching me all the time, making me feel uncomfortable and scared," she shared.
Mia admitted she was scared of being attacked or even dying during this tough time. She mentioned that the presence of the gunman's wife in the house made her feel a bit safer, even though the woman was unfriendly.
"The only reason he didn't hurt me was because his wife and kids were in the next room," Mia explained.
Hamas has denied any claims of mistreating Israeli hostages.
When Mia was released on November 30, still in Gaza, she said she was treated okay, but now she's saying that because she felt she had to. During her 54 days as a hostage, she had a hard time with the captor's wife, who teased her and didn't give her enough food.
Talking about the captor's wife, Mia said, "She was so mean. I just wanted a hug, you know, some support. But she was unfriendly and seemed like a bad person."
Even with the shelling going on and broken windows causing temporary deafness, Mia trusted the Israeli military. Sadly, her best friend Elia Toledano, who was also taken but to a different place, didn't make it. He was killed in what Hamas said was an Israeli air attack. The Israeli military is now investigating how Toledano and four others died.