An Iftar meal with Palestine’s future

Sorry for the lack of posts, but I’m busy doing mundane things.  I’m still fixing fire trucks and ambulances and now I’m teaching.  It’s a sign of how short Gaza is of internationalists, when I’m asked to teach a conversational English class!

So it is Ramadan.  Everyone is fasting, nor drinking or smoking, dawn to dusk, for a month (until Aug 8th).  Out of respect, this includes non Muslims while in public.  The idea is that all Muslims do this in order to appreciate the situation of the poor, who have no option but to fast at times.

But with the daily fast, comes the wonderful fast breaking meal at sundown, the “Iftar meal”.  Everyone gathers in front of a table or floor mat, covered with food and drink.  They patiently wait until we all hear the Imam’s announcement of the setting of the Sun, at which point we all partake in this huge meal.  I have been privileged to have been invited to several Iftars. At some, with poorer folks, we bring a big gift of food, which is the basis of the meal.  At Iftars with better off families, everything that is available in besieged Gaza is offered to us.  Though at the very “best” Iftar meal so far, they only offered a basic box lunch of chicken and rice, but it was with about 100 kids from the Maghazi refugee camp North of Gaza City.  These are kids of refugees from the Israeli ethnic cleanzings of 1948, who are still waiting for the various UN resolutions to be enforced to let them go home.

So here are a bunch of photos of these kids.

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A Czech internationalist, Petra, introducing herself.  Foreigners are not common around here.

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A fine group of “shabab”, the “boys”.

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And the girls.  I think you can see in some of their eyes, that they have grown up in hurry.

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There were several war wounded and handicapped kids, who were front and center and honoured.

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Petra with Palestine’s future, which appears to me to be in good hands.

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Even with the fasting, the kids were still full of spit and vinegar.

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Ditto…

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Many kids and few bikes, leads to much sharing of rides.

Well that’s it from Palestine for now.  The only recent event of note was that at 2 am this morning, while a few of us drank tea on the beach, the sky lite up with a bright flash and an explosion just to the North of us.  Then something, a rocket or a drone, slowly burned and spiraled to the earth.  This might have something to do with the Israeli’s recent loss of two of their killer drones near the border, as well as an F-16 crashing into the sea off of Gaza.

If you want to help perhaps check out our International Solidarity Movement (ISM) website at http://www.palsolidarity.org.  Please do remember our ISM martyrs Rachel Corrie, Tom Hurndall and Vittorio Aragoni.

Goodnight from Gaza City

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