A wall

Israel/Palestine
on 24 Comments
wall
Separation wall

It’s funny there’s a sidewalk here. I walked with my finger tips touching the huge blocks of the great, made-to-scare-me wall. I didn’t look at the graffiti; I know it very well. The sky was halfway eaten by the wall, and the sun was no better. I stumbled with a stone, which was probably thrown by some of my friends yesterday. I sat down where I stumbled and grabbed the stone, stared at it for a minute, and threw it to the other side of the wall. I listened for an aw, a curse word, footsteps , a call, a whisper, or a gun shot. Nothing. I kept on walking. It didn’t seem to end. My finger tips were now colored with all dry paint colors. I stopped. Turned my face to the wall. Put both my hands on it. I pushed. I kept pushing, my arms straight, my teeth stressed, my legs rooted to the ground, the paint of the graffiti’s smell going through my lungs, the man on the other sidewalk stopping to see what will come out of this. My feet started backing the other way. A sound from inside me broke out to a scream. I collapsed to the ground crying. And, the man on the other sidewalk giggled and went on walking.

(Crossposted at Rawan Yaghi’s blog We Resist)

About Rawan Yaghi

Rawan Yaghi is an English Literature student, blogger, and writer, living in Gaza. She is from Masmeyya- Palestine. Her blog is http://wresist.wordpress.com/

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24 Responses

  1. American
    April 5, 2012, 12:30 pm

    The wall always strikes me as so ironic. Jews out of the WWII ghettos, built themselves another ghetto in Israel.

    • DICKERSON3870
      April 5, 2012, 4:51 pm

      RE: “Jews out of the WWII ghettos, built themselves another ghetto in Israel.” ~ American

      MY REPLY: I guess they decided that they did not want to be “beyond the pale”* .

      * JPEG IMAGE – link to facebook.com

      “BEYOND THE PALE”, phrases.org.uk:

      (excerpt). . . This ‘pale’ is the noun meaning ‘a stake or pointed piece of wood’. That meaning is virtually obsolete now except as used in this phrase, but is still in use in the associated words ‘paling’ (as in paling fence) and ‘impale’ (as in Dracula movies).
      The paling fence is significant as the term pale became to mean the area enclosed by such a fence and later just the figurative meaning of ‘the area that is enclosed and safe’. So, to be ‘beyond the pale’ was to be outside the area accepted as ‘home’.
      Catherine the Great created the Pale of Settlement in Russia in 1791. This was the name given to the western border region of the country, in which Jews were allowed to live. The motivation behind this was to restrict trade between Jews and native Russians. Some Jews were allowed to live, as a concession, ‘beyond the pale’.
      Pales were enforced in various other European countries for similar political reasons, notably in Ireland (the Pale of Dublin) and France (the Pale of Calais, which was formed as early as 1360). . .

      SOURCE – link to phrases.org.uk

      • DICKERSON3870
        April 5, 2012, 5:17 pm

        RE: “JPEG IMAGE – link to facebook.com” – me, above

        ELABORATION: This capture (of medieval Sweden) is from the following film.
        Arn: The Knight Templar (Arn: Tempelriddaren), 2007, R, 133 minutes [a very good, but not great, film – J.L.D.]
        Based on Jan Guillou’s Crusades trilogy about Swedish Knight Templar Arn Magnusson (Joakim Nätterqvist), this adventure saga follows the son of nobility from his monastic education to his return to the family to help fight for the crown of Sweden. That mission is interrupted, however, when Arn impregnates his lover and is sent to the Holy Land, where as penance he must become a warrior for Christ in the battles of the Crusades [with an interesting segment regarding Saladin*].
        Language: Swedish (English subtitles) DVD/Blu-ray has English audio option.
        Netflix Availability: Streaming, DVD and Blu-ray
        NETFLIX LISTING – link to movies.netflix.com
        Arn: The Knight Templar, Movie Trailer – link to youtube.com

        * P.S. So much for the power of the “True Cross”!

  2. Kathleen
    April 5, 2012, 12:38 pm

    The wall used to confiscate more Palestinian land.

    link to icj-cij.org

  3. LanceThruster
    April 5, 2012, 2:21 pm

    Moving piece. The mention of the grafitti reminds me of this story about street artist Banksy.

    see: link to briansewell.com

    [be sure to check out the pictures in the link if you haven’t already seen them]

    Banksy’s site offers two snippets of conversations with an Israeli soldier and a Palestinian who happened upon him while he was in the process of creating the series of nine pieces on the Wall, in Bethlehem, Abu Dis, and Ramallah.

    Soldier: What the fuck are you doing?

    Me: You’ll have to wait til it’s finished

    Soldier (to colleagues): Safety’s off

    Banksy is the anti-Leni Riefenstahl and anti-Richard Wagner, reclaiming public spaces as a space for public imagination and enlightenment where they have become propagandistic barriers to thought and awareness, as is the very terminology for Israel’s West Bank barrier itself. Banksy’s summer project on Israel’s Wall stands out as one of the most pertinent artistic and political commentaries in recent memory.

    Perhaps the last word, perhaps the clearest answer to the Nathan Edelsons of this world who wish to whitewash all that is ugly rather than change its basic nature, should come from another conversation Banksy reports having with an old Palestinian man:

    Old man: You paint the wall, you make it look beautiful.

    Me: Thanks

    Old man: We don’t want it to be beautiful, we hate this wall, go home.

  4. Yousef M. Aljamal
    April 5, 2012, 2:56 pm

    Throughout Rawan’s writing, one can find the deep narrative of Palestine.

    Keep telling the story.

  5. Refaat
    April 5, 2012, 3:37 pm

    Mainly due to israel, Gaza is living a hell, the siege, the aggression, the murder, the crimes, the lack of almost everything (except dignity; Gaza has plenty of that). However, we I think of the miserable conditions of the West Bank. I come to believe that the situation there is much much worse than it is in Gaza, the Wall, the checkpoints, the daily night raids & arrests, the settlements, the jews-only highways, land grab, human rights violation and (mom insists I add this) PA (which means minus dignity) make life in the West Bank a living hell. My heart bleeds for the West Bank.

    Rawan is another story, one of dignity, of a little body insisting on carrying on the toughest project of all, the project of living.

  6. yourstruly
    April 5, 2012, 4:42 pm

    dem walls

    anything more hateful than a wall of separation?
    a concentration camp?
    what’s that but a place with a wall surrounding it?
    like at the warsaw ghetto?
    like in gaza and the west bank

  7. Annie Robbins
    April 5, 2012, 5:03 pm

    i love everything Rawan writes. everything everything everything.

  8. Bumblebye
    April 5, 2012, 7:36 pm

    “It’s funny…”
    Yes. One pipsqueak of a girl, mebbe a hundred and not very many pounds, attempting to push over tons of concrete wall. Of course the fellow on the other side of the street couldn’t suppress a giggle! The sheer absurdity of it. Wonderful! Every little push helps.

    • Annie Robbins
      April 5, 2012, 10:16 pm

      i know, she is a little pipsqueak too..but she packs a powerful punch with her writing.

  9. Mayhem
    April 5, 2012, 7:55 pm

    It is so convenient to forget why this wall was built. Ten years ago Israel had endured a barrage of terrorist attacks including the Passover massacre in Netanya. Sadly it had no choice if it was to not succumb to these blatant attempts to destroy it.

    • elephantine
      April 6, 2012, 3:53 am

      Too bad it doesn’t serve as protection for Palestinians against IDF terrorist attacks. You’d think that’s the least they could have done…you know, given whose land they built it on. Poor, poor Israel. Maybe the next attack, massacre, assassination, administrative detention, humiliation, Jew-only road, etc.. will be the one that will finally make Israel really safe for good. Gotta keep working at it, right?

      • Mayhem
        April 6, 2012, 10:40 am

        @elephantine: Seems like you cannot get enough of the propaganda shtick about Jewish-only roads.
        Check here link to israelmatzav.blogspot.com.au before you try to fool us with your fakery.
        And try the roads in Saudi Arabia next time you get a chance if you want a real good taste of apartheid.

      • Woody Tanaka
        April 6, 2012, 11:01 am

        LMAO. Oh, okay, so these roads, built on occupied land, by occupying forces which are virtually all Jews, are only not permitted to be used by the people being occupied, which in this context is non-Jews, are only “de facto Jew-only roads.” And this is supposed to make your Judeo-supremacist fantasy land look good?? What a depraved people you zionists are.

      • Shingo
        April 8, 2012, 4:14 pm

        Seems like you cannot get enough of the propaganda shtick about Jewish-only roads.

        They are Jewish-only roads. Theoretically, Israeli Arabs can use them, but those Arabs are not allowed to live in the illegal settlements, so in reality, they are Jewish-only roads.

        And try the roads in Saudi Arabia next time you get a chance if you want a real good taste of apartheid.

        I’m sorry that you think so little of Israel that you use one of the world’s more vile tirranies as a yard stick. I do love how you hasbrats are so quick to compare Israel with the dictatorships in the region, yet when the question of Israel’s nukes is beough up in the media, Israeli leaders are quick to denounce such moral equivalnce as an outrage.

        You people are a joke.

    • Shingo
      April 6, 2012, 9:23 am

      It is so convenient to forget why this wall was built. Ten years ago Israel had endured a barrage of terrorist attacks including the Passover massacre in Netanya.

      Yeah, what a putty the Palesrinians dudn’t build one of these along the borders laid out by UNGAR181. That would have prevented terror attacks by both sides and stopped Israel building it’s own, which serves no purpose but ro grab land.

      This abomination does nothing to stop terror attacks. 1,500 Palesrinians manage to climb over, around and through this monument to Ziofascim every week. A suicide bomber would have no problem getting into Israel.

      The only reason suicide attacks ended was because Hamas called an end to them.

    • Woody Tanaka
      April 6, 2012, 9:58 am

      That’s a load of crap. If the wall were built behind the green line, the lame zio excuse would be facially plausible. But the way that it was routed simply demonstrates that it was further theft, oppression and Nakba.

      “Ten years ago Israel had endured a barrage of terrorist attacks including the Passover massacre in Netanya.”

      And the Palestinians have suffered worse for longer. So bag your excuses.

    • eljay
      April 6, 2012, 11:15 am

      >> It is so convenient to forget why this wall was built.

      It is so convenient to forget that the religion-supremacist Jewish state was born of terrorism and ethnic cleansing.

      It is so convenient to forget that the religion-supremacist Jewish state remains engaged in a 60+ years, ON-GOING and offensive (i.e., not defensive) campaign of aggression, oppression, theft, colonization, destruction and murder.

      It is so convenient to forget that the religion-supremacist Jewish state refuses to halt this campaign immediately and completely, despite having the power to do so.

      It is so convenient to forget that the religion-supremacist Jewish state refuses to enter into sincere negotiations for a just and mutually-beneficial peace.

      But, yeah, it’s all the Palestinians’ fault. Poor little religion-supremacist Jewish state… :-(

      • Mayhem
        April 9, 2012, 2:23 am

        @eljay: which alternative do you subscribe to? The one-state democratic fantasy which Israeli Jews would never accept unless they lost all sanity and became suicidal or another religion-supremacist Islamic state of which there are all too many repressive examples dotted across the Middle East.

      • eljay
        April 9, 2012, 10:50 am

        >> @eljay: which alternative do you subscribe to?

        I’ve stated on several occasions that I support the idea of two secular, egalitarian and democratic states: Israel, the nation state of and for all Israelis equally; and Palestine (or whatever it is to be called), the nation state of and for all Palestinians equally.

        This post generally sums it up.

      • eljay
        April 9, 2012, 2:33 pm

        >> This post generally sums it up.

        I messed up the link, so let me try again: This post generally sums it up.

  10. kalithea
    April 6, 2012, 7:38 am

    It’s a crime against nature, an eyesore representing a crime against humanity. Zionist Jews are destroying the Holy Land with settlements, walls and gulags. They’re destroying the Holy Land with their inhumanity.

    • yourstruly
      April 7, 2012, 10:04 am

      and they got their sights on destroying the world. it’s called revisiting the masada end times.

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