By Ted Scouten

FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Jewish school children from all over Broward prayed for those in Israel, as airstrikes continue and tension mounts between Israelis and Palestinians.

Lital Donner lives in Fort Lauderdale. Her family lives in Israel.

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“It’s so frightening. It’s a nightmare,” she said.

She’s been watching intently as this unfolds, and keeping in close contact with those at home.

“Every single time that there’s an alarm, siren goes off, we have a family group chat. Those seconds waiting, ‘Mom, please respond. Where’s our brother?’ It’s nerve racking,” she said.

Maya Rokni is Donner’s sister.  She lives between Tel Aviv and Gaza.

“It looks like fireworks, but it’s not,” she said. “It’s very dangerous. And then the Iron Dome, the Israel Iron Dome, sends missiles to explode with the missiles from Hamas.”

Rokni and her husband have two children. It’s frightening for the family as they shelter in a room, unable to see what’s going on around them.

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“We hear big noises, big bombs. Sometimes the rockets fall near our house. Today and yesterday we saw a few parts from the missiles fell near our building, and near the playground where my kids used to play,” she said.

Sujod Bdaiwi is Palestinian. She’s a student at Nova Southeastern University.

“When you’re on the phone with them, you hear the screaming, the shouting the sirens, things like that,” she said.

Her family is in the West Bank where they’re seeing increased protesting. While she’s here in South Florida, she too is worried about those at home.

“Trying to communicate with them is very difficult. Even if you get a phone all or a text, it might drop.  You’re not sure if someone’s listening to you. You’re not sure if this is the last phone call you’re going to get. It’s really scary,” she said.

She told CBS4 it’s difficult to watch from so far away and painful to see so much death and destruction.

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“If you’ve seen pictures of like the actual live missile, airstrikes on one of those buildings, your heart shakes, your heart drops,” Bdaiwi said. “You see it and you see the building get obliterated in seconds and you think, ‘Oh my gosh, my family could live there.’”

Ted Scouten