Israel’s military response to the brutality of the Hamas attack on Oct. 7, which has claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 people in Gaza and displaced hundreds of thousands, has evoked every Palestinian’s worst nightmare.

In 1948, roughly 750,000 Palestinians — including my father, uncle and grandmother — fled their homes to escape the violence that followed the declaration of Israel and the violence by the Jewish underground against many Palestinian villages and towns.

My uncle, who stayed behind in Jerusalem’s Musrara neighborhood until April 1948, assured my father and grandmother that the house would remain safe until they could go back once the fighting ended. He had locked it by turning the key twice, believing that they would return soon. They never did.