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Entry 31: I nominate Furkan Dogan, inspired by Gaza

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Entry 31 in the Mondo Awards end-of-the-year Inspire-us contest is a nomination of Furkan Dogan, an American-Turkish citizen killed on the Mavi Marmara on Mary 31, 2010. The author, who lives in Turkey, wishes to use only his first name.

Gaza can horrify, sadden and anger people. More than a million people – including more than 500,000 children under the age of 18 – are forced to live in desperate lives essentially cut off from the rest of the world in what can be called the largest open-air prison in the world.

Gaza can make some people feel smug. After all they’re only getting what they deserve because Gaza is governed by Hamas, and Gaza threatens Israel’s existence with their rockets, these people say.

Gaza can also inspire.

Furkan Dogan was inspired by Gaza. He was an 18 year old young man in his senior year in high school. He wanted to be an eye doctor. He wanted to go to university in the country he was born in – the U.S.A. – and become as good an eye doctor as he could become because he wanted to treat the poor, the oppressed and the dispossessed who needed eye care or eye surgery but had no access to it.

Furkan Dogan was inspired by Gaza. He wanted to go to Gaza on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla of May, 2010 to help the people of Gaza. He hoped that going there would at least show the people of Gaza that they were not forgotten. He knew that he couldn’t do much this year, and he hoped that the people of Gaza would be free by the time he finished medical school, but the desperate situation in Gaza inspired him to prepare himself so that he would be able to help people in the future.

Furkan Dogan was inspired by Gaza. He wanted to go to Gaza because it would give him invaluable practical and emotional experience which would help him become an eye doctor who was prepared and trained to work in extreme conditions helping people who were in desperate conditions. In Gaza he could see and learn firsthand what he would need to concentrate on during his long studies in medical school.

Furkan Dogan was inspired by Gaza. He was willing to participate in the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, he was willing to study for many, many years, and he was willing to devote his life and his skills to helping others because he knew that even though the people in Gaza were being starved, bombed, killed, maimed and imprisoned they never gave up their dream of and struggle for freedom.

Furkan Dogan felt, acknowledged and acted on the inspiration Gaza gave him.

For me and for many others around the world the inspiration which Gaza has been trying to awaken in us to be more involved in working to make the world a better and more just place has lain dormant in the backs of our hearts and minds for too long.

Furkan Dogan was inspired by Gaza.

Furkan Dogan was brutally killed by Israel.

Furkan Dogan’s inspiration has become my inspiration.

crossposted @ Furkan

Update from Robert :

After Furkan’s family read the text they told me about something that happened one day soon after Furkan was killed.

While trying to comfort Furkan’s father, one man said with great sorrow in his voice “Furkan wanted to be an eye doctor so much, and now he will never be able to become an eye doctor.”

Then the man paused for a few seconds before he added with great emotion “… but … No! … He did! … He did become an eye doctor … He is helping people to see … He’s helping them to see the truth!”

About Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is Editor at Large for Mondoweiss, a mother, a human rights activist and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani

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