In Gaza, every step, every potential action taken, alliance built, poem written, essay published, word spoken feels significant. Important. Needed. The desperation is palpable, & therefore contagious.
Now, I question every step that I intend to take. What will have an impact? What matters? How can we really confront Israeli Apartheid? What is the purpose of sharing these stories? Does anyone want to listen? Will anyone hear?
I’ve been crying every day since I returned and I chastise myself for the time I waste in tears.
Then, I come across a website like this:
And I remember: people aren’t strategy. It doesn’t matter whether or not it’s strategic or useful to mourn- it’s respectful.
And when the all powerful US-Media-Government-Military-Industrial-Etc-Complex tries to deny a People’s humanity, they deserve a little extra respect from us (regular people) to make up for it.
So maybe crying isn’t strategic. Maybe returning, time and time again, to the look in Farah’s eyes, the sight of her mother’s blood splattered on the wall, the words of the old woman who told us that taking pictures wasn’t enough & asked for food, water, and for their homes to be rebuilt, the grafitti in Hebrew on the wall of the home that warned “next time will hurt more”- all these images & more- maybe returning to them is not strategic.
That doesn’t mean it’s not important.
So yes, let’s take action, build alliances, write poems, publish essays (okay, I don’t know how to do that, but I still think it’s a good idea), and speak words and REMEMBER, whether we’ve met them or not, the stories of the people of Gaza. And let’s do so in a context of strategy & impact. AND also- let’s not forget about respect. Let’s not forget that people are not statistics. Everyone has a name. Everyone has a story.
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5 years ago