Diary: Living in Gaza, Under Starlight and Bomb Blasts

A diary entry by Safa Joudeh, a Palestinian journalist in Gaza.

Living in Gaza, Under Starlight and Bomb Blasts:

Thousands of other families in Gaza have already been subjected to the horrors of destruction and displacement. We have seen the results of the vicious slaughter of scores of children after the Israelis hit the United Nations school where they had sought refuge. A few broken bones are far better than having skulls smashed or chests torn open. That’s how we see it. That’s our logic.

 My 11-year old sister laughs as she imagines how people all over the world watch the horrific events taking place in the Gaza Strip. “Its like we are a scary movie. I’m sure people eat popcorn as they watch,” she says.

Before returning to our building, I couldn’t help but stare at it for a moment and think that our homes might not always be safe places. But, still, they give us a sense of warmth, security and protection that are worth fighting for til the very end. I also couldn’t help staring at the sky. The stars were beautiful and seemed to shine brighter than ever. I could make out several constellations and I counted five Israeli warplanes.

No. No we don’t. Our hearts are bleeding for you. But that is not enough, is it? Because our hearts don’t actually bleed. And if they do hurt, they do so for a little while in the time it takes to watch the news and read your diaries. And then we turn away, to eat and sleep and laugh. To live. And you lie, bleeding and broken. Ya Allah!!



Filed under Israel, News, Palestine

5 responses to “Diary: Living in Gaza, Under Starlight and Bomb Blasts

  1. Ayesha

    la hawla wa la quwwata illa billah

  2. Yes indeed, we do feel for them. We pray for them a lot. I don’t think me and my family or friends ever thought of this unfortunate event as a ‘scary movie’.

    This isn’t easy for any sensible and caring human being to just ignore or take lightly. But we can’t also neglect our duties and everyday responsibilities.

    So after watching the news and praying for peace, we continue on with life – but only to pause every now and then and pray that the bloodshed would stop.

  3. Unfortunately, the whole business does seem like a scary movie for those of us sitting warm, safe and comfortable in our homes here in America. People do, indeed, eat popcorn as they watch. Even we who have a sense of the reality of war cannot totally appreciate the extent of the destruction, and if we do, how can we help stop it? We cannot, except by prayer, and has that worked, so far? Astaghfirullah!

    When will it end? Will it end at all? What will become of Gaza and its people? Allah knows, not us.

  4. hfm

    Reading this makes me feel guilty, I feel bad for simply just praying and hoping, but that’s what can be done.I always think, I bet the Gazans think the rest of the world doesn’t care, I wish there was a way to let know they’re not forgotton, the images horrify us and bring tears of sympathy for our brothers and sisters across the land.

    Oh Allah, bring ease with this difficulty.

  5. Ayesha – Wa ne3ma bilah!

    Nadia – You’re right of course. My ‘real’ life has suffered. I haven’t studied at all since that first day, and I have exams this week. I can’t do anything without thinking: while I’m doing this someone is dying. It’s stupid of course, because really, what good is it doing them? If I fail or starve or discontinue my life, will it make theirs better? I read Omar’s post, Not a Life for Children, and he said his children need professional help – something unavailable to them. I’m studying psychology, alhamdulilah, and had been toying with the idea of developmental psych. InshAllah I’m trying to pick up the pieces right now.

    Marahm – It really is a sad state =( Allahu a3lam. We should pray, of course, but the feeling of helpless impotency that comes along with it is suffocating! What else can we do? I don’t know, but I recently seen this on another blog “Verily, God does not change the condition of a people until they change themselves.” Maybe the solution lies therein? After all, none of us can deny the corruption and immorality that run rampant through our Ummah, right?

    hfm – I feel you. They sometimes come on TV, women in blood-stained clothing, demanding to know where the world is. Why they are watching silently. I don’t know how I’ll be able to look them in their eyes one day, and tell them that while they watched their children die I was here, living life. Ya Allah! Yet as Nadia said, we can’t turn our backs on our lives. What good would that do? Ameen to your dua’a is all I can say.

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