NETZER HAZANI, Gaza Strip — Under heavy military guard, families in this Jewish settlement gathered Saturday for their Passover seder, the last time they and thousands of other settlers are likely to celebrate the holiday in the Gaza Strip.
Some said they tried not to think about the Israeli government's plan to remove them from their homes this summer, focusing instead on the holiday that commemorates the delivery of the Israelites from bondage in Egypt. Most Gaza settlers say they will put up at least passive resistance to the planned withdrawal, although some settler leaders have begun negotiating compensation deals with the government.
Anita Tucker, 59, a vegetable farmer in Netzer Hazani, part of the Gush Katif block of settlements, said she had been going on with her life as if no pullout were planned.
"It's our way of dealing with it," Tucker said as she prepared a seder for her five children and their families. Tucker immigrated to Israel from Brooklyn, N.Y., in 1967 and settled in Netzer Hazani in southern Gaza almost a decade later.