GAZA Day 3: Hearing the Stories

email sent Tue, Aug 19, 2014

Dear Friends,

Walking the narrow streets of Bait Hanoon, one of the eradicated neighborhoods of Gaza.. looking at whatever left of the people’s furniture or personal belongings under the ruins of their homes… maybe I can know something about what happened to them.. this is where I met Haja Rawiheiah. (around 70 yrs old). She greeted me with a smile and invited me to sit with her on what is left from a couch on the wreckage of her home and apologized for not being able to offer me coffee! She lived in this home with 13 of her children and grandchildren. They fled and made it to UNRWA school minutes before the Israelis destroy her home .. her husband and two of her grandchildren did not make it!. She comes every day to stay in her then goes back to the shelter at the end of the day to eat and spend the night. Haja Aida and Um Tarek joined us… they showed me what used to be their homes too! Um Tarek had 7 kids, now 6. Haja Aida was not married but lived with 17 members of her family. They all now in the same room in the shelter!

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Today I went with the Palestinian Medical Relief team to round on the injured people in their homes. Many people were discharged from the hospital prematurely to accommodate the thousands of injured people..their care was continued by the relief teams. I saw the patients who ended up with a neurological problem as a result of their injury. Fahed (25) was where the Israeli army killed 5 children playing on the beach. “They sent the first missile .. we all ran to help the kids… they shot the second missile !”¬† He has 5 shells in his body .. one in the spine but luckily didn’t reach the cord. Maysarah (21), a taxi driver; he was transporting the elderly and kids from their homes to the shelters ..finally it was time for him to go home. Just as he was pulling into the garage, the Israelis fired on his car. We didn’t have local anesthetic to use while cleaning the wound and change dressing… patients were screaming from pain, but not Maysarah, he was cracking jokes! Three wounded young men from Al-Shajaeieh massacre.. all told me the same story: the Israelis fired a missile on Silik family home to kill 9 people (3 children).. people rushed to help the family.. the Israelis showered their missiles to kill 17 more and injure 250!! A Journalist died but his camera continued filming in the hands of a teenage boy!

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Don’t know.. Should I go on? and … on ? maybe I will just leave you with the pictures to tell the stories. Haja Rawiheiah does not want the resistance to stop “we want to live with dignity”. The Israeli army can certainly kill children and innocent civilians, capable of destroying homes, factories, hospitals, mosques and power plants but can not break the spirit of the Palestinian and their love for life.

Till my next email.

Warmest regards from Falasteen

Rand

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