Code Words to Represent Captivity 

Stand for Israel  |  February 6, 2024

Hamas, hostages, teddy bear
People protest demanding the release of Israelis held hostage by Hamas terrorists in Gaza, in the southern Israeli city of Kiryat Malakhi, October 28, 2023. (Photo: Flash90)

Thomas Hand says his daughter, Emily Hand, who was kidnapped and brought to Gaza on October 7, is doing “pretty good” and making progress in her recovery. She’s able to use code words to describe the frightening experience and the terrorists that held her captive for 50 days, reports The Times of Israel:

Emily, who turned 9 while in captivity, still feels insecure, insisting that her father stay close to her even when they are at home. Her mother died of cancer several years ago.

She has also invented a series of codewords that she uses to represent things related to her abduction: olives instead of terrorists; box instead of Gaza; cheese instead of hostages; watermelon instead of blood. All are words for foods she doesn’t like to eat. Her father showed a color-coded “dictionary” written on a whiteboard at home.

Emily explained to Kan she uses the codes “because sometimes it is unpleasant for me to say those words.”

…He also provided an update on Emily, explaining that she is “pretty good, making progress, recovering. But the rest of us are broken now.”