Steve Adler and Butch Brody were on the Machon leMadrichim 1958/59. They were in Amatzia Jan-Feb. 1959. The pix shows them below the sign to Amatzia on the Kiryat Gat-Bet Jubrin road. From that sign to Amatzia was a 7KM (About4 Mile) dirt road. Amatzia at that time had about 20 members and 2 Machoniks.
That winter was very rainy and the road became impassable for non-4 wheel drive vehicles. Supplies were low and we ate mainly can goods and Matzos that were left over from Pesach. Once in a while an army half-track would bring in some supplies. Amatzia had a large herd of cattle. The fields were very muddy and the herd towards the end of a 18 day period of rain could not taken out to pasture as the cattle sunk into the mud.The main problem was how to feed the cattle as hay and other types of feed could not be brought in.
The one in charge of the cattle (I cannot remember his name) had an ingenious idea. Around the perimeter of Amatzia were many sabra trees. We cut the leaves of the sabra trees after using a flamethrower to burn off the thorns and then dragged then through the mud to the cow sheds. Some of the cows died from gases due to eating the sabra leaves and others who refused to eat the sabras died from starvation but the majority of the heard was saved.
A day before it started raining the head of security caught a Bedouin on one of the fields of Amatzia. While interrogating him he said that starting the next day it will begin raining and the rain will last for 18 days.He claimed that he did not come to do any harm to the settlers or the property of Amatzia and he begged to let him go so that he could get back to his tribe before the rain begins. Of cause no one believed him at that time. He was turned over to the army for further interrogation.
The Bedouin's prediction came true.