Four years after working on the feature documentary project “Gaza,” Mondoweiss’ Walaa Ghussein interviews directors Andrew McConnell and Garry Keane. McConnell tells her, “we both agreed that the best way to tell people about Gaza is to let the people of Gaza tell the story for themselves because we rarely see that.”
Tag Archives: Gaza
On December 3rd Abdalhadi Alijla woke up to learn over social media that his father had passed away. Alijla had not seen him in 12 years due to Israeli restrictions: “Since I left Gaza in 2007, Israel has denied my entry back into Gaza and has revoked my registry for no obvious reason, other than my being from Gaza. My father died with sorrow and pain because of the actions of Israel and I myself will live with sorrow and pain, forever remembering how the settler colonial Israel inflicted this pain on myself, my father and my people by building virtual and physical walls between loved ones.”
At 11:15 p.m. on Nov. 13, Hamoud Abu Amra got a call from Israeli security warning him to evacuate his house in Gaza, the Israeli army was about to bomb it. He lives 500 meters from the Israel border, and this has now happened to him four times. He vows to rebuild. A refugee from Dimona, nothing will make him leave his land.
“I am convinced that the loss of legitimacy of the Zionist idea, of the idea of a special state for a special people, is irreversible, that that cannot be resurrected in the 21st century, a time when we at least preach if not practice universal rights and equality,” the writer Ali Abunimah said in a landmark speech ten years ago, and his remarks have proved to be prophetic in describing the anti-Zionist movement inside progressive life.
Roger Waters on the importance of international solidarity with Palestinians: “The aim … is to focus world attention on the plight of the Palestinian people in Gaza in the hope that the scales will fall from the eyes of all, ordinary, decent people round the world, that they may see the enormity of the crimes that have been committed, and demand that their governments bring all possible pressure to bear on Israel to lift the siege.”
The Israeli army has come up with story after story to explain away the “mistaken” massacre of a family of nine in Gaza Nov. 14th. Now the army chief of staff sends a pep-talk letter to all soldiers about the two-day assault on Gaza that leaves out the family’s names but assures that the matter is being investigated.
Israeli mistaken attack on Gaza November 14 killed Yusra Sawarka and her sons Moath and Waseem, and seriously injured daughters Reem, Nermin, Noor, and Salem, the father of the children, Mohammad Salama Sawarka, 40, has succumbed to injuries. In all 9 members of the extended family were killed in the attack.
Western media has rationalized the recent Israeli attacks on Gaza by focusing on on Israel’s fears. Denijal Jegic writes these “fears” are a reflection of the structure that underlies the relationship between the settler-colonial state and the indigenous population.
Haidar Eid writes, images of an entire family killed in an airstrike in Gaza while they slept will haunt Palestinians for generations to come. “We will tell our remaining children about this heinous massacre the same way our parents and grandparents told us about the Deir Yassin massacre.”
Gaza has always been the exception throughout history. Starting from mighty Samson, to the Intifadas, Gaza was always there, regardless of the challenges, leaving its own mark on history and reminding everyone it in no way could be bypassed.
Opportunities to visit Gaza come rarely. Harry Gunkel writes, “A place so inaccessible and so compelling deserves our full attention and our best intentions, but as we learned in our recent visit, getting lost in the tedium of the permit process and then the rush to pack the time with meetings and briefings could have caused us to miss the glory that is Gaza.”
Earlier this month Yehya Karaja, a homeless Palestinian living in Gaza City who set himself on fire in September near a crowded public park in an apparent protest over dire living conditions, died from his wounds. He was 26.
While the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reports that the killing of an entire family in Gaza was a “mistake,” the New York Times allows the Israeli military to explain that “civilian casualties are unavoidable in Gaza’s teeming neighborhoods.” And, hammering home the propaganda point, the paper says Israel “takes numerous precautions to prevent unnecessary civilian casualties.”
“What investigation could raise the dead?” Abdullah al-Sawarka, 45, asks, while standing distraught at the edge of a 50-foot-wide crater where his cousin’s tin shack stood. Israelis bombed the house in Gaza on Thursday killing eight family members. They now say it was a mistake but Gazans scoff at the idea that there will be any accountability for the crime. The file will be thrown in the trash, says an aunt of the children killed.
Mohammed Zaanoun shares the trauma of being a photojournalist in Gaza, as his work inspires artists around the world by humanizing the Palestinian struggle.
Nada Elia says that once again she is reading the statistics about casualties in Gaza and is deeply disturbed by the emphasis on the number of women and children. “This does not do the Palestinians any favor,” Elia writes, “as it inadvertently reinforces the racist Zionist narrative that treats every Palestinian man as a fighter, a militant, a terrorist.”
“On Monday night I told myself I needed to sleep early in order to get up the next day to head to work as usual. I sat the alarm for 5:00 a.m. However, it was not the phone alarm that woke me. It was an Israeli airstrike targeting the home of Islamic Jihad senior commander Bahaa Abu al-Ata,” Aya Al Ghazzawi writes.
A ceasefire has been reached between Israel and groups in Gaza, after two days of violence that left 34 Palestinians dead. Many of the Democratic candidates have tweeted about the events, defending Israel’s actions while condemning rocket fire from Palestine. Senator Elizabeth Warren and Senator Bernie Sanders have not mentioned the situation at all.
Despite a reported truce agreement between Islamic Jihad and Israel, Palestinians in Gaza are still afraid go out in the streets and return to normal life.
Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI) revealed in late October that members of Congress are planning another delegation to Palestine and this time “the permission has to include Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar.” Pocan’s remarks introducing Palestinian writer Yousef Aljamal show that support for the rights of all Palestinians is growing within the 98-member-strong Congressional Progressive Caucus.
Israel has vigorously escalated its aggression in the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza in the past several week and the timing could not be better for Netanyahu and his allies. Netanyahu is employing a tactic he has used time after time, with near consistent results, to stay in power: start a war in Gaza.
South Bend Mayor and Democratic presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg has tweeted his support for Israel’s attacks on Gaza and a condemned the returning rocket fire from Palestinians. EI’s Tamara Nassar responds on Twitter, “Buttigieg’s position is clear: Palestinian lives don’t matter.”
Netanyahu’s political calculations in attacking Gaza are no secret in Israel. So why do they hardly get mentioned in the American mainstream media?
As Israel continues to launch dozens of missile strikes into Gaza, so far having killed at least 20 Palestinians, including children, and injuring 70 more, former vice president and current Democratic frontrunner Joe Biden took to Twitter to declare that he supports the country’s actions.
Tensions are high in Gaza after Israel’s targeted assassination of an Islamic Jihad leader. More than 20 Palestinians have been killed so far in Israeli attacks, and 70 more injured.