Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Personal Story of Life and Death in Gaza Tunnel

It is best to go to the website at: as this story is written in a prose that may be hard for some to follow. I have edited the article in an attempt to be helpful to my readers who may have a hard time I did.

Student killed working in tunnel

Deprived of basic human needs, a student was student killed working in tunnel, I went into her house (Mothers house), the children were in front of the door... what door?! there was no door!

Rami, my friend also an ex-political prisoner released after the massacre, guided me into the modest space. Umm Mohammad was standing before me. As she looked into my eyes"ahlan wa sahlan" (welcome), she said...comrade George & I went in...

I sat close to Umm Mohammad, as i listened to her speak about her son. Mohammadmohammad abu m'aammar is the eldest of 9 children. He is 20 years old, & is a student at a college in khan younes. "He was obliged to go work in the tunnels, we are deprived of basic human needs...

"Umm mohammad insisted she was against this work from the start... "i told him not to go there! not to join the tunnels, it is a dangerous thing to go into... but, he couldn't see it that his sisters & brothers not be able to wear decent clothes, & eat healthy food"she pointed to a man, shorter than her, who looked as if he was in his late 30s. "this is abu mohammad. he suffered from schizophrenia ever since he was released from the Israeli prisons.

" abu mohammad comes close, his face grim, years of torture inscribed on his expressionless face... umm mohammad, & mohammad's grandmother, began talking to me about mohammad & this young man's insistence to work despite all danger threatening his life" he was not supposed to go in the tunnels. he was supposed to receive things from the opening & take them to respective clients."it was mohammad's first week, last week... & the day the IOF bombed a nearby tunnel was the day he had decided to go through to bring in some goods...

on the 30th of May, 2009Umm Mohammad spoke to me about an incident she encountered with the UNRWA"after the massacre, i went to get a coupon for food. the person managing the information about my household insisted that i had only 9 children & that one was killed during the attacks. but, i insisted otherwise. so, we have been receiving goods for only 9 children with two adults since the attacks... when, there were actually 10 children. mohammad tried his best with them. but, they insisted otherwise, & said they were too busy to check for themselves the accuracy of our sayings. the day mohammad was killed, the UNRWA guy changed our coupon from 9 to 10... how ironic... the day he was killed, when i had to get used to the number 9, he added mohammad in.

"Umm Mohammad's house is but an average room sized block. as you enter, there is no actual threshold, as it coincides with the ground level outside it. she told me how much she suffered from the flooding of the house each time it rained...her ceiling is not a cement ceiling, it is iron plated block tied into the concrete walls perpendicular to it..."

i pleaded with international organizations in the strip to give me a blanket... i was out of blankets during the attacks... i received no blankets! i didn't want money, i wanted to cover my children with a blanket! i found no blanket!"

this family is but a case of many in the extremely poverty stricken strip where around 80% of its inhabitants live under the poverty line according to the ministry of social affairs as a direct result of the siege..."lift up the siege, & the level will go down to below half that number!" an official at the ministry stressed.

the farmers in the strip are shot at as they harvest their crop & the fishermen are subject to IOF gunboats targeting them whilst at sea, fishing (please follow ISM gaza website for regular reportage

no export is allowed for surplus to be sold in export operation as export is not allowed due to the siege & the only export operation allowed druing the siege was in february on valentine's day where over twenty five thousand flower carnations were allowed out as farmers alongside the dutch government applied pressure on the israeli side (I wrote about this here)After twenty two days of intensive attacks on the inhabitants of the strip, over 1400 have been killed & over 5000 wounded accroding to the Palestinian Centre of Human Rights.

However, if you keep noting down the numbers of those who are killed after the attacks in human rights reports, local NGOs & local news agencies, you will notice that the slow motion genocide continues... with minimal mainstream media attention...

We need to build on the solidarity that occured during the attacks into long-term action plans, starting with having civil society organizations, movements & groups begin to endorse the Palestinian call for the boycotting of the state of Israel Also, calls for solidarity & NOT charity with the Palestinians.

Please sign the petition below, have your voice heard if you believe in the right of return & a one secular democratic state for ALL of its citizens disregarding race, colour, religion, gender & ethnicity on the historic land of palestine:

For NGOs & movements to endorse the Boycott Divestments and Sanctions global movement please email endorsements[at]

Thanks to: Natalie and Nader at

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