Since I was sitting on my praying mat, let me hold that position as I reach back in time to six years earlier, in the 2008-2009 Gaza Massacre – that moment when I was in the exact same posture, on my knees, on the floor, praying. That time, my mother, my siblings and I were all repeating after my dad’s supplication for Allah to save and protect us from that hard situation we were going through.
That day when our building was surrounded with more than twenty ‘Israeli’ bulldozers, spending nearly twenty-three hours in the corridor in our apartment not knowing whether we will be able to see each other again or not because of the huge number of rockets, airstrikes and bombs thrown directly on our building!! And remembering that time during the 2012 ‘Israeli’ aggression on Gaza, when my family returned back to our house to find that ‘Israel’ has attacked the house by an air strike and it was partly damaged! I was thinking how the situation would be if we stayed at the house?!
One of my friends abroad once asked me why we don’t leave our house as it’s near the buffer zone and the place we live is dangerous. To which I can only reply: “The only thing more unthinkable than leaving was staying; the only thing more impossible than staying was leaving.”
Today, I’m trying to convince myself that the situation will soon come to an end and life will continue from the time the ‘Israeli’ aggression started, even after the huge damage and loss in Gaza. But what if it was a different end this time; what if it was the end of our lives?!
This loss upon loss amongst our people in Gaza has left me feeling sad and brittle. Not to mention that I have arrived to a situation where one starts waiting for his/her death, which becomes much closer than anyone can imagine every time I hear in the news that ‘Israel’ has targeted X family’s house and destroyed it over the people inside. And the only question that comes to your mind is that: Who will be the next family…?!
Then imagine, what’s the first thing you will do if you received a threat message from ‘Israel’ saying that your house will be destroyed in about ten minutes?! What will you take? Who will you carry? What if your grandmother lives with you and she can’t walk due to her old age? Or, what will you do when you see your parents or siblings or both are injured?!
Who will you help first? Or even worse, what will your first reaction be when you see most of your family members DEAD in front of you?!! At that moment, you will never forget that once upon a time, you had a house you used to live in and a family who you used to live with!!
The reality is much more painful than these typed words. The tears of a young child who lost his/her mother are enough to tell that the story of humanity is very very over.
What should Palestinians do then? Imagine, if thousands of rockets were fired into your community every day and every night? And imagine that the Israeli occupation continues the rockets’ attacks and deliberately fires rockets into civilian’s houses. What would your country do?
Doesn’t Palestine have the duty to protect its citizens? Palestinians has no choice but to react in self-defense. Palestine, just like any other country, has a right to defend its citizens!
The following verses besides resistance are the two things, at least for me, which makes it endurable: “You, who believe, seek help through steadfastness and prayer, for God is with the steadfast. Do not say that those who are killed in God’s cause are dead; they are alive, though you don’t realize it. We shall certainly test you with fear and hunger, and loss of property, lives, and crops. But [Prophet], give good news to those who steadfast, those who say, when afflicted with a calamity, ‘We belong to God and to Him we shall return.’ These will be given blessings and mercy from their Lord, and it is they who are rightly guided.” Quran 2:153-157
“Those whose faith only increased when people said to them, ‘People have gathered against you, so fear them,’ and who replied, ‘God is enough for us: He is the best protector,’ returned with grace and bounty from God; no harm befell them. They pursued God’s good pleasure. God’s favour is great indeed.” Qur’an 3:173-174
In the end, maybe it’s wiser to say alhamdullilah – all praises due to Allah – for everything for as long as we are living. For the jihad, patience and satisfaction He provided us with, may Allah sustain these very precious bounties upon us. May He (SAW) strengthen us to face all difficulties and may He support the Mujahdeen with more power, patience and tranquility. I also ask Allah the Almighty to help those who got their houses damaged and compensate them with a better life.