Month: August 2009

age-old co-existence: Gaza Ramadan day 8


I heard it all the time in the occupied West Bank back in 2007, and I hear it here in besieged Gaza also: ‘we used to live with the Jews, side by side. We worked together, lived as neighbours.’

The theme of coexistence is bastardized by the Zionist media which likes to spin the ‘conflict’ in Palestine as an ‘age-old’ war between religions, instead of reporting the reality: the occupation of Palestinian land in Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza under military occupation; the denial of Palestinian refugees right to return to their homeland; the imprisonment of over 10,000 Palestinian prisoners, many of whom are minors; the expansion of the illegal (all) Jewish settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank…

But anyway, here in Gaza, another thing to be bastardized by the Zionist media is the relationship between Christians and Muslims. post continues

In a Rotten State: Israel’s siege killed Gaza’s economy


*Mangoes rot before they reach the market.

(IPS) By Eva Bartlett– Abu Abed can’t make a profit, and although 54 years old, he still has not married. “I can’t pay my rent, I can’t afford a wedding.”

His shop, roughly 3m by 4m, costs him more than 3,500 dollars a year in rent alone.

His wares are laid out on tables on a busy pedestrian street in the Saha market area in Gaza City. The goods, plastic toys and running shoes imported from China, were brought in via the tunnels between Gaza and Egypt, at a high price. post continues

still bleeding after all these days


Mas’oud was in great pain today. The nurse had been explaining how two large tubes inserted into his chest were still draining blood from the internal bleeding caused by his bullet wound injury. In a hospital context, things like marker-sized tubes protruding from a chest can seem normal somehow.

But Amin, the nurse, emphasized that it wasn’t easy to push those tubes in, and it was certainly not easy for Mas’oud to bear them. “Every time he moves, every time we even shift the container attached to the tubes, he can feel it. It’s exceptionally painful.”

Mas’oud’s screams were testimony enough of his agony. He tried lying down, sitting up, sitting sideways, but the pain just worsened, his screams louder. The worst of it lasted 10 minutes, subsiding only slowly after a pain killer injection.

Sharing his room, a youngish man with good English and many questions and observations. And the young Sari, paralyzed for life after Israeli soldiers shot he and his cousin repeatedly three years ago.

Amazingly, as I repeatedly see here in Palestine, what began as a morose visit, disheartened by Mas’oud pain and the crushed life of Sari, ended in conversation and laughter, temporarily distracting all from worries always present.

Two pleasant elderly women and their comments led to a more light-heartened, hek iddinya (that’s life), saber (patience) feel.

Amidst the grinding, Israeli siege and attacks (both of which have devastated Gaza’s industries)-manufactured poverty of Palestinians in Gaza, to the life-changing disabilities and amputations inflicted by Israeli acts of terrorism, the will to live is strong, even if happiness is on hold.


The Israeli shooting left me paralyzed


I’ve had more operations than I can remember. My most recent operations are on the bedsores on my backside; doctors have given up any hope of surgery to allow me to walk again.

Three years ago, I was visiting an aunt in Bureij, central Gaza. She lives in the eastern area. Her house is about 500m from the border (Green Line) fence.

A cousin and I were outside, on land next to her home. We often sat out there.

Israeli soldiers started shooting at us, from the other side of the fence on the border. I was hit twice, with live ammunition. post continues

welcome, sit down, share our meal: Gaza Ramadan day 6


I wandered along near-empty streets, taking advantage of the immediately pre-maghreb quiet to appreciate the sea and sky without many people around.

The sun almost down, I continued walking, streets even emptier except for the odd, mad taxi rushing to wherever their iftaar meal would take place. post continues

what to believe when reading the BBC

dear bbc


BBC does it again… not that I expected any better from the corporate news agency which has made a point of convoluting the truth about what happens in occupied Palestine.

apparently, BBC didn’t have a reporter in Gaza to get the wounded Palestinian’s story –the one shot through the chest in the incident; the one who happens to be an extremely poor farm labourer with 15 siblings and who was shot while working among vegetables. post continues

shot in the chest: Gaza Ramadan day 5


On the 5th day of Ramadan, I meet a young man who has been shot through the chest. His has great difficulty breathing, let alone speaking, and has a tube running from his chest, draining the blood from internal bleeding.

Mas’oud (20) is a farm-labourer, was working on land in the northwest of Gaza two days ago when, around 3pm, he was shot by Israeli soldiers at the Green Line border.

The youth he was working with at the time, Said (16), died right away from his bullets to the chest. The two had been working on a vegetable plot. post continues

scavenging to live: Gaza Ramadan day 4


As maghreb (sunset) nears, I speed through Saha market en route to Mohammed and Mariam Kahawish, in Tuffah district but walking distance from the market. As I pass the sweet shop I’d been in days before, Ahmed leans out and calls me inside: “you are coming to have iftaar with us soon, right?” he asks.

Yes, yes, of course, I couldn’t pass it up, I assure him, and decide to buy sweets for the Kahawish family. On my first visit to this shop, Ahmed advised me of holiday favourites, so I take a kilo between two items: Kanafe Nablusi and Kanafe Arabi. The kilo costs 20 shekels and I’m sure Mohammed will not have been able to buy any. post continues