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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Gaza war - 3rd anniversary: We moved on

Gaza war - 3rd anniversary: We moved on 

Gaza, December 27, Today we mark the 3rd anniversary of Israel’s vicious war on Gaza. Three years have passed. Wow. Three years ago today, at 12:30 pm, I was playing with my nephew in the living room when the whole ground shook. Israeli F16s, Apaches and drones suddenly filled the air and bombings were happening. We never guessed it was the start of a vicious war that will leave us with no water, electricity, food or movement for 24 days. 

I remember running to my nephew and trying to cover him with my body. And then hell opened. Hundreds of Gazans were killed in cold blood while thousands got injured. Neighbor hoods were wiped out and death filled the air.

Three years after, here we are. Gaza is stronger, brighter, better and life springs from every corner of it. We have moved on. You see now many new buildings and many others under construction. Psychological and physical wounds are healing well.

We honor the martyrs, injured and medics today for giving their life to Gaza and by keeping the land moist with their pure blood. Life goes on and people thrive for life even more now. I will steal Rafeef Ziadeh’s sentence and say, “In Gaza, we teach life Sir”. Maya Angelou said: “When you know better, you do better”, and boy she is right. We know better know, we have seen better and we are doing much better.

Yes, three years have passed and now its time for us to make a vow: “We promise ourselves and the world to make Gaza a better stronger place; we will make our society better by starting bettering ourselves from within”. “What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger”. I remember one day during the war in Gaza, I felt so dark inside that I doubted I would ever see the dawn of tomorrow but when I woke up the next day I saw the sun lighting up every grain of sand in Gaza. I believe in tomorrow now thanks to Gaza.

I went out today to shop for books and the weather was very warm and beautiful. I walked through Gaza’s streets holding my head up high, looking at the sky and smiling. We survived. We made it. I believe that we made it for a reason; we survived just to make Gaza a monumental place that the world will never forget.

Three years passed and we still demand the prosecution of Israel’s war criminals and we will never stop demanding our right to see those cold blooded monsters behind bars. I will not remind Gazans of this day because we will never forget what we went through, I will not remind the world because the world never gave a crap.

Believe it or not but I am grateful today, we are overwhelmed with the support and love that we indulge in coming from people around the whole world. And we have also witnessed recently allot of BDS successes. Palestinians are now stronger in Palestine and around the world. We have a cause that makes us stronger and makes us wanna fight till the last breath to gain our freedom.

We are more determined and focused now. We are more aware and we have made people around the world more aware too. Gaza’s light has touched hearts around the globe, why shouldn’t I be grateful?
Today I feel a pinch of freedom, today I feel happy and proud.

I will post here a picture of a Palestinian child that lost his family and his house during the vicious war in Gaza; he was standing near his completely-demolished house looking frightened and lost. He didn’t understand what happened and what did he do to deserve such a tragedy. Those of you who are my friends already know how many times I have shared this picture and I will never stop. I wish I can turn the time back so I can be there for that innocent child, I wish I was there to hug him and tell him everything will be alright. I wish I was there to tell him that after three years things would be much better and people would be healing and moving on. I will never ever forget this little boy’s picture in my life, its carved in my head and heart:

Finally, I would kindly ask you to help Gaza, Palestine and Gazans move on instead of reminding them of the tragedies they will never forget. We don’t want to dwell on the past, we want to move forward. We will never forget but we have the right to move forward and live and make our country better. Help us heal. We appreciate all the support. Believe it or not, we are the land of love and abundance and we send you all our love and gratitude.

All my love,

Omar from Gaza

Monday, December 26, 2011

Revealing "The Guardian" lies: Hamas didnt stop Christmas in Gaz

Revealing "The Guardian" lies: Hamas didnt stop Christmas in Gaza

Gaza, December 26, I can’t help but share my fury after reading “The Guardian” and seeing their false and misleading article and how its full of mistakes. Let’s dissect their mistakes one by one:

1-      Their headline: Gaza Christians long for days before Hamas canceled Christmas. Correction: Hamas didn’t cancel Christmas and Christians celebrate it every year. In fact, last night Latin Patriarchate Church held a mass celebrating Christmas and flocks of Christians attended it.

2-      They published the article on 23rd of December. Correction: Christmas in on the 25th.

3-      They mentioned that over 1.5 million of Gazans live in Gaza. Correction: According to Statistics centers in Gaza, over 1.8 million Gazans live in Gaza

4-      Christians are fewer than 1,400. Correction: Christians in Gaza are between 2,000 and 3,000 according to Al and Wikipedia.

5-      Hamas attacks Christians in Gaza. Correction: Attacks on Christians in Gaza were carried out by individuals or extremist groups not by Hamas or the regular people of Gaza.

6-      The Guardian mentioned in an indirect way that racism is carried out against Christians in Gaza. Correction: Christians in Gaza live and pray freely, they are treated with equality.

7-      The Guardian wanted to show how the Palestinian division affected Christians mostly. Correction: The Palestinian division affected all Palestinians.

8-      The Guardian failed to mention the repercussions of the Israeli unjust illegal siege on Gaza and chose to blame Hamas for everything.

9-      They blamed the bad economy in Gaza on Hamas not on the Israeli illegal blockade.

10  They didn’t mention that Israel puts age limitation for Gaza’s Christians. They let those who are under 16 and over 40 only visit Bethlehem.

Need I right more?
If you aren’t convinced yet, I wrote an article for the media line about Christmas in Gaza and how Christians celebrated it, check it here: