Palestinian youth tell the human stories behind the numbers in the news

Palestinian youth tell the human stories behind the numbers in the news

Mohammed Arafat | 19-02-2019

Israeli police evicted a Palestinian family this week from their home in the Muslim Quarter of Jerusalem's Old City after the occupying government’s supreme court ruled illegal Jewish settlers were the rightful owners. Rania and Hatem Abu Assab, Hatem’s aunt and their children were forced outside the as the settlers raised the Israeli flag on their roof.

I look around me,
with my sleepless eyes.
I see beauty, love and peace—
but only inside the places of worship,
and between the worshipper and God;
only inside the hearts of righteous.
I also smell hate and resentment
in the occupied city of Jerusalem.

Checkpoints,
IDs of the unwanted,
threats,
demolition orders,
high walls,
watchtowers,
settlers with hostile stares,
and soldiers with helmets and M16s—
all make it so hard for me to live,
along with my family,
in my city.
Yet I live because I love
the old city of Jerusalem.
Most Palestinians in my area are gone.
It is only my family and lots of settlers
around me.
I accept that
because I want peace,
I want Jerusalem,
But they do not.

Protected with shields, heavy weapons
and the chants of settlers,
they evict me, my kids and wife
from our home,
on which they plant their flag,
while media watch and photograph.

They arrested me and I know not why.
This house is mine.
It was my father’s,
my grandfather’s
and my great grandfather’s.
It was built before their court appeared!
Yet they will live here instead of me.
They will eat our food,
sit on our sofa,
watch our T.V.,
sleep in our beds.

I weep
for the first time in my life,
I weep…
like a little kid.
I weep
like a father his lost son.
None have made me weep like this
but them and their hate.

Posted: February 19, 2019


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