Israel's 'Ground Zero:' The Be'eri Kibbutz was among the bloodiest scenes of the Hamas attack
Security video captured Hamas militants lying in wait at the gate.
It is being described by locals as "Ground Zero" of Saturday's surprise Hamas attack on Israel, a once placid kibbutz near the Gaza border full of families and tidy houses that was turned into a killing field.
ABC News anchor David Muir toured the horrific scene left behind at the Be'eri Kibbutz, finding blood-stained and shattered homes, where Israeli military officials discovered unspeakable atrocities.
"They massacred everybody here, 112 residents of this kibbutz were murdered. We can see just the level of the destruction of what happened here," Maj. Libby Weiss of the Israel Defense Forces told Muir. "People were asleep. They surprised them in their homes. Some were butchered in their beds."
The slaughter began around sunrise on Saturday, as many residents were just waking up.
Chilling surveillance video from the locked security gate at the front of the kibbutz's main entrance captured two heavily armed Hamas militants in camo gear lying in wait. One of them is seen in the footage, running up to a guard post and breaking in.
The video, posted online, recorded a car pulling up at about 6:30 a.m. and pausing until the automatic gate began to slide open. A second terrorist was seen emerging from the shadows beside the gate and opening fire with an assault-type weapon on the unsuspecting occupants of the vehicle, killing them. Their car was later found still parked at the entrance gate, torched.
As the video continued, the two gunmen were seen rushing through the now open gate, one ripping down the surveillance camera as he ran into the sleepy enclave. But other cameras stationed nearby recorded the militants headed into the community to join other Hamas fighters who entered from four or five directions as they went about hunting down victims, military officials said.
"It's no word for it," Maj. Gen. Itai Veruv of the Israel Defense Force told Muir of the gruesome brutality the terrorists exacted on the residents of the community. "It's something between ISIS and the Pogam," he said referring to the Islamic terrorist group that filmed members decapitating hostages in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks and the Nazi Germany death squads that exterminated Jewish people during World War II.
Veruv said residents of Be'eri were "killed by knife, by hand grenade, by fire." He said children were killed in front of their mothers, and mothers in front of their children.
In one home ABC News came upon, 14 people, according to IDF officials, were held hostage for hours.
Other videos posted online, showed the Hamas fighters rounding up residents of the kibbutz, binding their hands behind their backs, marching them out of their homes and leaving them executed in the streets.
In all directions of the community were evidence of the over-the-top massacre. Car after car were reduced to burnt shells, home after home reduced to ruins by explosions and rockets that rained down on the kibbutz. The facades of other homes were bullet-riddled by gunfire.
Many of the homes were ransacked and the personal belongings of the besieged residents were removed and strewn across the lawns.
In one pile, ABC News observed family photos, including wedding photos and a portrait of a father and his son, children's bookbags and pages from a child's dictionary torn and crumpled on the ground.
Bodies of militants killed in firefights with Israeli soldiers lay wrapped in plastic outside some of the homes. ABC News observed one of the bodies on the ground with the word "terrorists" written on the plastic wrapped around it.
As night fell, the lights remained on in some of the homes, eerily illuminating a scene frozen in time. A carton of milk was left on a kitchen counter, a table nearby was set for breakfast. A woman's purse and hats still hung from a wall.
"It's heartbreaking. I have never seen anything like this," Weiss said. "As we walk through the streets, we can see homes and family photos. We're seeing remnants of regular life and just unbelievable destruction and a massacre."
In dozens of other towns and kibbutzim along the border, similar grisly scenes were found, according to Israel Defense Forces officials. On Tuesday, an ABC News crew toured the kibbutz Kfar Aza, where the stench of death was so overwhelming, that an Israeli soldier easing the body of a slain civilian out the window of a bullet-shredded home stuffed earplugs in his nose. Among the lanes of trees heavy with fruit and the tidy lawns of Kfar Aza, a basketball court was turned into a temporary morgue where gurneys holding those slaughtered were laid.
More than 100 people were killed in Kfar Aza and Israeli military officials told ABC News, they found babies butchered among the dead.
In an address from the White House on Tuesday, President Joe Biden described the sickening images as evidence of the "bloodthirstiness" of the Hamas terrorists.
"Parents [were] butchered using their bodies to try to protect their children," said Biden, who also cited "stomach-turning reports of babies being killed, entire families slain."
Biden said he supports Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's decision to declare war on Hamas, saying, "Let there be no doubt, the United States has Israel's back."
On Thursday, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken traveled to Israel to reinforce the United States' support for the country. During a joint news conference with Netanyahu, Blinken described gruesome photos and videos he reviewed depicting victims of Hamas' terrorist attack on Israeli civilians.
"It's hard to find the right words," Blinken said. "It's beyond what anyone would ever want to imagine, much less, God forbid, experience. A baby, an infant, riddled with bullets. Soldiers beheaded. Young people burned alive. I could go on, but it's simply depravity in the worst imaginable way."