“We Teach Life, Sir”

“Gaza isn’t the most beautiful city. Its shore isn’t blue like some Arab cities. Gaza’s oranges aren’t the most delicious in the Mediterranean! Gaza isn’t the richest city. It isn’t the most elegant nor the biggest but it holds the vast history of a large nation even though, in the eyes of the enemy, Gaza is miserable and ugly.” — Mahmoud Darwish of Gaza.

In Gaza we lose souls day and night! Gaza is the land of Martyrs! Gaza is bleeding because the world believes in the power of Israel’s propaganda. Gaza resists in order to exist. Gaza simply asks to live in peace and Israel violates international law over and over again while continues to justify its hideous war crimes.

When Israel kills the men, women and children of Gaza, they proclaim these killings as military achievements. Israel doesn’t care if the people they kill are civilians or not. Israel doesn’t hesitate to use the most powerful weapons in the world, (including illegal weaponry) to exterminate the people of Gaza.

In every home in Gaza there is at least one martyr or a family member who has been severely injured, there is no home left at all. In every home there is a mother trying to stay strong, fighting the tears in her eyes, while saying, “My son is a martyr, my son is a hero.”

Haya is studying engineering at the Islamic University of Gaza. She lives in Farheen City, in Southern Gaza. Haya and her family have been evacuated from their home five times, they are not militants, they are civilians. Their home was devastated by Israeli artillery shelling. After their home was destroyed they moved to a place they thought was safe from Israeli attacks.

Yesterday, Haya’s father asked her to come and eat a meal but she replied that she had no appetite to eat or do anything, she went to sleep, hours later, she was awoken by a loud explosion, when the smoke cleared up she found her brothers and sisters completely covered with rubble and dust. Haya couldn’t hear anything but the sounds of the Israeli missiles as they shook her house and her body causing more debris to come crashing down around her and her family.

Haya’s mother is pregnant and could not get evacuate easily, she screamed at Haya, “Go, go, go!” then, she proceeded to throw down the balcony each of her children, her home was being targeted, she had no time to react and just wanted to save their lives.

The sky turned black, Haya’s father and brother were severely injured. She screamed at her father, “Dad you are bleeding! Don’t you see the blood?” and her father replied “Count your brothers and sisters, check if they are all here!” Haya screamed, in despair “My family is being sacrificed!”.

Israel has now destroyed most of Gaza. Families have gathered at the UN school in Gaza City, where they feel the safest, but there is no safe place is Gaza. Israel targets houses randomly. Families stay awake each and every night waiting for their turn to be bombed. It’s nearly impossible to sleep. We stay awake with our clothes and our shoes on because we know the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) will target any home at any time.

Since the most recent escalation of the Israeli genocide in Gaza, the IDF has destroyed most of Gaza’s infrastructure and has killed over 2,070 martyrs, including 533 children and 293 women. According the Euro-Mid, the number of injured has risen to 10,221, including 3,103 children and 2,014 women. A third of the injured children that have survived the attacks will suffer permanent disabilities.

“Never forget, never forgive” That is what the Israelis have taught us. No unilateral truce will be accepted, yes, you kill my people but we will never bow to you or the ones who support you. Gaza will survive, and Palestine will be free.