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Rediff.com  » News » 'They killed my mum and dad'

'They killed my mum and dad'

By REDIFF NEWS
October 30, 2023 11:41 IST
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'2,665 children killed. 2,665 cheeky smiles, 2,665 dreams of tomorrow, 2,665 favourite cartoon characters, 2,665 favourite meals, 2,665 someone's everything.'

IMAGE: A displaced Palestinian boy, who fled with his family from their house amid Israeli strikes, looks after his twin siblings as they take shelter at Nasser hospital in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip. Photograph: Mohammed Salem/ Reuters

Pictures of suffering, blood and death is colouring social media ever since Hamas attacked Israel on October 7.

Ever since that day, when Israel retaliated, it has been a blood bath in Palestine.

Thousands of Palestinians have dies, most of them children.

These voices from Gaza give us a picture of the situation on ground.

 

IMAGE: Plumes of smoke rise during Israeli strikes in Gaza. Photograph: Yasser Qudih/Reuters

Omar Ghraieb pins this tweet:

'For those who tell us to stay safe, I truly appreciate your support but:
1. Gaza has no shelters.
2. I'm staying at home, what else can I do to stay safe?
3. Gaza is a highly populated condensed little space.
4. Most of us are unarmed.
What else can we do?'

IMAGE: Displaced Palestinians, who fled their homes amid Israeli strikes, take shelter at the Nasser hospital in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, October 29, 2023. Photograph: Mohammed Salem/Reuters

He goes on to describe the present-day Gaza:
'Toughest, bloodiest, longest and darkest night in Gaza. Heavy bombings everywhere, too many killed. I don't know why we post or tweet when the world clearly doesn't care. It's been 17 days and counting.
'People with mental health issues, bipolar, Autism, PTSD etc are already compromised and vulnerable going through extreme conditions, crowding and lack of access to basic needs and mental health support which is detrimental. Most of Gaza's children and adults already suffer mentally.
'I can't keep up with the news, so many people I know either got killed or had family friends that got killed.
'No water, no electricity, no safety, nowhere to go, no food, we left our home to the south nearly over a week ago, bombing everywhere. I'm just tired.
'Everyone else I know was forced to leave their homes and we are now all displaced for 2 weeks.'

IMAGE: Rescue workers search in the rubble at the site of Israeli strikes on houses in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, October 29, 2023. Photograph: Mohammed Salem/Reuters

Plastic and reconstructive surgeon Ghassan Abu Sitta's tweets give us a sense of the medical situation in Gaza.

  • The UN has a major fuel depot in Rafah, in south Gaza. The Israelis are threatening to bomb any convoy it sends to Shifa hospital even though they can easily monitor it from the air. Shifa hospital is 36 hours away from running out of fuel for the generators.
  • I have just been told by the chief of surgery at Shifa that the number of active ambulances on the road is decreasing because of the fuel crisis.
  • Intense bombing around the hospital. Buildings are shaken to the core.

Sitta goes on to describe his young patients:

  • 2,665 children killed. 2,665 cheeky smiles, 2,665 dreams of tomorrow, 2,665 favourite cartoon characters, 2,665 favourite meals, 2,665 someone's everything.
  • I was consoling 13-year-old Halla as she woke up from the anaesthetic. I said, 'It will be right, the surgery is finished.' She said to me, 'It will never ever be alright. They killed my mum and dad.'
  • Last night a 16 year old with extensive upper and lower limb and facial burns described how immediately after having dinner with his parents, their house was hit. He described how his father sitting next to him was killed outright and how his mother suffocated in the smoke.
  • Malek is a beautiful 1-year-old boy with life altering facial injuries. His parents were not injured. Their pain and anguish is indescribable.
  • 2 brothers in their 20s with extensive burns. One succumbed to his wounds 2 days ago. Since them his brother gave up trying. He passed away this morning.
  • 13-year-old boy with full thickness burns in all of his face and his upper limbs. His older brothers were trying to keep him calm by telling him that all he needed were some creams and he will be alright. He will not be alright.

 

IMAGE: A Palestinian man sits amidst the rubble at the site of Israeli strikes in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, October 29, 2023. Photograph: Mohammed Salem/Reuters

Eman Basher, a mother of four, recounts her heart-breaking daily routine.

'I feel heavy with all this pain inside and outside. Had to leave the kids with a stranger today to try and bring them some food bcz walking to the nearest markets takes so long. No cars available. Shelling didn't stop all the way. Couldn't stop thinking that I'll come back to find them dead. My walking trip went in vain and I couldn't find anything because it ran out.
'I came back to find that some aid supply association gave them one set of clothes. So we accept charity now. I am in a place where I know nobody. I don't even have a place to hide in and cry my f****** eyes out away from the kids. Go ahead Israeli **, get this over with.

'Didn't sleep in 3 days. Went to my aunt's house. They bombed the neighbours and her house was partly damaged. We came back to schools. We share the room with 34 members. We sleep on the floor. Have to get up as early as possible to provide bread and water before it runs out. I get humiliated daily in bathroom queues because my kids need it constantly. I go into fights daily over simple life basics. And moving with three kids is f****** difficult. I queue with men sometimes bcz my husband is not here.

'Writing and shaking. I feel broke. I have failed my kids. I have failed my husband. I don't want to be there in the aftermath.'

IMAGE: Palestinian woman Kholoud Qdeih, who fled her house that is located near the border with Israel and now lives with 20 members of her extended family in the basement of a building in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip. Photograph: Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters

Jason Shaw, an Arabic/English translator from Gaza, has been giving regular updates.

'We are still alive. Registered deaths in the Strip has surpassed 7,000. Bombardment from air and sea unrelenting. All 22 children in our group are very edgy and want to go home. Some of them don't know they have no homes to go back to.'

Maha Hussaini, human rights activist and journalist, gives us an honest picture.

'With 22 deadly missiles fired per sq km, Israel directly bombs markets, bakeries and residential buildings, killing unprecedential numbers of civilians in the Gaza Strip.'

IMAGE: Palestinians check the damage at the site of Israeli strikes on houses in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, October 29, 2023. Photograph: Mohammed Salem/Reuters

Asmaa AbuMezied, who describes herself as 'a person with a spirit for justice with a focus on feminist economics and a Palestinian gardener from Gaza', pens down her situation.

'Tens of Israeli tanks are approaching the borders of BeitLahia and Beit Hanon in Gaza. How can this freaking world continue its daily routine with the ethnic cleansing happening in Gaza? We are a background noise to this messed up work and three hours ago, Israel silenced us.

'We no longer send messages of 'How are you?' to our family and friends in Gaza. We just tell them how much we love them.'

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