“Can You Be Normal In An Abnormal Reality?”

The Palestinian cause has the highest priority among the international community decades ago, but what are the actual and tangible achievements on its behalf politically?

For me, the answer is simply “NOTHING”.

The Palestinian cause is not only a political issue, it is also a humanitarian issue, so what are the actual and tangible achievements in this regard?

Let’s see .. We can’t ignore the different vital humanitarian aid has been flowing into Palestine since the beginning of the Palestinian crisis through the different international organizations, but did it help the Palestinian people to be independent? Or did it help in the recovery of the Palestinian economy?

For me, the answer is simple “Unfortunately, NO”.

All these humanitarian aid helped the Palestinians only to pass their days, it didn’t help in building a good future and a reliable independent country.

Let’s move to another different area.. We all had studied or read about Maslow’s hierarchy of the physiological needs.

These needs are physiological needs, safety needs, social belonging, esteem, self-actualization and self-transcendence.

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Maslow’s hierarchy of the physiological needs

The question now, to what extent the Palestinian individual had fulfilled these physiological needs?

For me, the answer is “Most of Palestinian individuals now didn’t fulfill these needs”

Logically, I believe now that we reached a point where we realized that the Palestinian people live in an abnormal conditions, these conditions consequently affected their behavior.

So, I may repeat it. “Can you be normal in an abnormal reality?”*

The answer is simply “NO”

Che Guevara once said that if you imposed inhuman conditions over a man  and if he didn’t rebel against it he will lose his humanity gradually. This simply means that the Palestinian people have two options here; they may keep being rebels or they may become individuals with inhuman behaviors.

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Young men rebeling against Iraeli Soldiers 

No one is thinking of how much the Israeli occupation and the unstable internal condition affected the humans of Palestine.

Throughout the history of all the occupied countries, the occupation’s main role was to destroy the people of the occupied countries by killing them, destroying their historical and cultural heritage and injecting its ideas within the new generations. So, the pressure experienced by the Palestinian people is not easy to be handled and of course, these pressures will be reflected in unacceptable behaviors.

Now, regarding the unstable internal conditions. Once I was discussing these issues with a friend and I said “ If the politicians disagreed, they will kill the people and if they agreed, they will steal them”. Unfortunately, the people will lose in all conditions.

So, who is responsible for the state of depression and disappointment among the people now? Will they work on solving these problems?

I don’t think so.

I’m trying to say here that both the international community and the local authority are in charge and must pay attention to the psychological state of the occupied Palestinian.

It is not a joke when we say that every Palestinian individual needs a therapist.

The Palestinian people now are like time bombs that will not simply go away if the international community and the local authority ignored them.

*Mahmoud Darwish, Palestinian poet and author.

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Dramatic Increase In Crime Rates In The Gaza Strip

 

Every time I want to write any topic about living in Gaza, I find myself compelled to talk about the political situation and how it affected our lives’ conditions and this bla bla bla, which I myself got sick of. We may escape from thinking in all this complicated situation, but we cannot escape from facing this reality every single day.

I believe our society is living challenging period with many new issues and problems, the one I’m writing about here is the high rate of crimes ( including murder crimes, theft crimes and rape crimes) and suicide cases, which could rarely happened in the past or to be precise before 2007 such accidents were uncommon in Gaza society to this extent.

I as a member in this society just can’t turn a blind eye for the degeneration in the kind of the social life and manners happened in Gaza Strip in this period due to the poverty, unemployment, siege, and the lack in everything needed for the basics of the daily life which caused from my own point of view the condition of  deep depression and desperate among the people. The latest report I had read was published in 2015, it showed that the rate of unemployment in Gaza Strip is 60% and I’m sure now it had exceeded this percentage.

What we are expecting now?

Actually, No expectations , we just have hopes.

By reference to what I mentioned above about the high rates of crime and suicide cases, unfortunately I couldn’t find any updated statistics or published reports showing any clear numbers, but you know what is the most interesting thing about the Gaza Strip?

The most interesting thing about the Gaza Strip community, is that all of the people know each other, it is a small area in comparison to other cities in the world and that Gaza Strip is indeed a closed area with people have a lot of free time to talk about each other’s news and events. So that, when a crime happens in the southernmost, in less than one hour people living in the far north will know about it.

In average, personally I can tell that one murder crime happens every 2 months and of course this is an objectionable matter when comparing this to the period before 2007 as almost we could hear about one or two murder crimes in the whole year.

This situation is simply frustrating as this kind of crimes is raising every day and it is really out of control, even applying execution judgments on murderers didn’t  stop such crimes because we must note that in addition to the high rate of crime there is also a high rate of addiction to different types of drugs too. It was proved too that almost all the murderers, thieves and other criminals were addicted to drugs as announced in few police reports here in Gaza.

This article is addressed to the local government in Gaza Strip as they approved their failure in controlling the situation for reasons might be in or out their control, but undoubtedly they must create new methods in fighting crime depending on psychology as I believe the non-ended circle of violence the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip are living in since 2007 affected them badly.

My hopes for Fateh and Hamas may seem naive and childish, but I really hope they may put an end for their political conflicts and think about the people here in Gaza, who are living in an inhuman conditions due to their conflicts.

Finally, I have hopes that the international community  and human rights organizations may contribute in showing the real truths about the reality in Gaza Strip and help in reforming this inhuman situation in Gaza Strip.

 

 

 

 

Stuck In Gaza

Sometimes I feel curious about certain historical events; it came to my mind to search about the longest blockade in history, the information tell that the siege of Heraklion ( city in Greece) is the longest as it lasted 21 years. Some historians determined this point according to the kind of siege as there is a theory divided the siege into direct siege and indirect siege. Hence they  considered the longest siege is the Israeli siege for Palestine depending on considering it indirect siege, as the Israeli side controls the internal and external movement of the Palestinian people since 1948, so it is a 68 years siege and it is still remain up to date.

Now Gaza city in particular in a blockade condition since 2007 up to date, which is according to modern history specialists, political analysts and humanitarian considerations is the longest.

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In April 2014 it was published in news that Israel’s seven-year blockade of the Gaza Strip is the “longest in history,” according to the newly-appointed United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) Commissioner-General Pierre Krahenbuhl.

The main goal of this blockade was to punish Gaza or to be exact to punish Hamas party for controlling Gaza city not taking in consideration that Gaza people are not all Hamas members, but it doesn’t matter as Israel considered Gaza people as ” Hamas’s victims”.

Living in a blockade condition is not an easy thing for any people indeed, as there is an apparent suffer in all fields of the daily life and there is always a mass shortage in people’s needs.

Lately I’ve received messages from two different persons; one is an Arab and the second was European, they asked about the situation in Gaza and ended their speeches by asking ” why don’t you just travel from Gaza?” . This question stopped me to write this article and made the previous detailed introduction to clear this point. Almost all news websites write many details about the condition of Gaza, but it is clear that it is still ambiguous for many people too.

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Diagram shows Gaza Strip crossings and their use

To travel from or to Gaza for me is the most oppressive and exhausting thing you might experience ever. There are two borders for travelers; the Egyptian borders “Rafah crossing” which open every months for only three or four days and sometimes it is just ” closed until further notice” and the borders with Israel “Erez crossing” which opens almost permanently, but only certain people can get permission to go through it such as sick people, businessmen, foreigners with international organizations, journalists and students having visas to study outside Gaza.

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Palestinian passing through Erez crossing
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Palestinian passing through Erez crossing

To go through Rafah borders you have to register your name and to be put on the waiting list knowing that you may wait for years. There are rules too in order to register as you must be a student having a visa and register in a university outside Gaza, sick in a need for receiving treatment outside, have residency in another country, have a non-Palestinian passport, other urgent needs and no place luxuries for example traveling for tourism reasons. To be honest, sometimes you must bribe someone here in Gaza or in the Egyptian side  in order to ease your pass.

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Palestinians waiting to pass through Rafah borders
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Palestinians waiting to pass through Rafah borders

And therefore, we are just stuck in Gaza until a political miracle takes place.