International

'Words Escape Me...': An Account Of Everyday Sightings In Gaza

An unnamed Palestinian person's difficult testimonial of the everyday sight in war-torn Gaza.

An injured woman cries near a lifeless body after Israeli airstrikes hit Ridwan area in Gaza City.
info_icon

I have been silent for days. I cannot find words to speak. Words escape me. Why?! Maybe because of the horror we are living in, because early this morning, my family and I miraculously survived a crazy missile that destroyed our neighbour’s house and all the rubble fell into our house. Or because I feel that the pictures I see are more eloquent than all the words? Or maybe I am no longer convinced of the usefulness of talking, especially since we are talking about the justice of our cause, in the midst of the daily killing, siege, starvation and state terrorism which we have been subjected to for 75 years with no answers. 

Yesterday, the Israeli occupation forces bombed the Baptist Hospital in Gaza and so far more than 500 people have been martyred. They were cut into pieces and became a pile of meat.   

As playwrights, we know that one of the cruellest theatrical tragedies is the play Antigone, in which King Creon refuses to bury Antigone's brother. From here the dialogue between them revolves around what it means to be human, which is dignity, value and rights even after death. Antigone sees the body of her brother in front of her and cannot bear leaving him unburied. The bodies which we saw after the Baptist Hospital massacre without heads, hands or feet, are the new tragedy of our era.   

An old woman standing by the rubble of the hospital recognised a hand lying underneath it by the ring on her finger and asked a nurse to return it to her. It was the hand she had leaned on in the morning when her daughter helped her sit up to watch the news, which had turned on the TV for her. She had greeted and kissed the old lady before leaving. It was the hand that always embraced the old lady and patted her shoulder. It was the hand that combed her hair and cut her nails. That hand, said the old lady, was the source of her strength in the last days. Let me give the hand my last kiss, so that it will spare me the need to have more of my daughter’s body, the old lady had said.   

I do not know what to say, I do not have the words to speak. I want my friends to read this and I want to give them my appreciation because I know that free people with big hearts, human attitudes and principles have become very few these days.

We will meet one day when I am free like the rest of the inhabitants of this earth. 

(As told to Haima Deshpande)

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement