Thursday, 14 May 2015

I Was Born on the Nakba's 50th Anniversary

This following piece of writing was written few months ago, as part of my book of memoirs "Tomorrow's Never Coming", before you read it, I would like to inform you that for the very first time ever since I can remember my friend decided to throw me a birthday party which is going to be happening in the next few days - but now, allow me to ask you to read this post about what's it like to be born on the day of the Great Forced Human-Made Catasatrophe, The Nakba.

In the Nakbah’s 50th ‘anniversary’ a twin were born in a hospital in Jerusalem, ‘East Jerusalem’ as some of you would like to call it. Me and my twin sister were born. Mohammed & Muna… or should I say Muna & Mohammed? She was born 10 minutes before me. She also knew how to crawl before me. She knew how to walk before me. She knew how to run before me. While I on the other hand was expected to be born with Dawn Syndrome and my mother was advised to abort me (but this is common for any Palestinian mother-to-be. When one is told she is going to deliver a male baby she is told that her baby has a mental/physical illness/disability. This is a strategy used be Israelis to stop the men population from growing. –as if Palestinian women are not strong enough to fight the occupation. Ever heard of Dalal Moghraby, Leila Khaled & Hind El-Hussieni?.... in fact, have you ever heard of Palestinian women?) and I was born with a hole in my very own heart, literally. So, this was a sign that getting out of the womb was a pretty bad idea.

It meant a great deal being born in Israel’s 50th ‘independence’ month. I don’t like to think of it as a sad thing, I’d rather think of it as maybe it was a sign that I was going to be a person with such an urge for change and such a rebellion nature. Plus I get to make jokes about it (that sounds terrible) but for my last birthday I went to a demonstration for the Nakbah’s 66th anniversary. They had music, and so, so many black balloons. They kind of made the sky look black, so it felt like a birthday party to me. I even posted a picture of the manifestation on Facebook with the caption “Aw, they’re so sweet they threw me a surprise party.” So that’s pretty the bright side of the dark side of being born on the day when hundreds of thousands of Palestinians lost their lives, their children, their homes & their saftey… funny right?
I never really got to celebrate my birthday… because why would I? Do you expect me to light a candle, put it on a cupcake and march through a manifestation? Every birthday of mine I’ve spent either in a manifestation or on the couch watching documentaries about the Nakbah or watching the manifestations (that my father wouldn’t let me go to) being reported on TV and tear gas and rubber bullets and all of that mess. So the situation was exactly: my family and friends saying Happy Birthday to me and to my sister, the whole world saying Happy Birthday to the so-called ‘Israel’.

   I was born into a life where everything which is normal in the world is abnormal here. Example: sleeping with a police car next to your window: normal. Sleeping with a bird singing on your window and having sweet dreams (abnormal). Having to cross many checkpoint to go from city to city to visit relatives or even from village to village (normal) going from village to village easily without it taking hours of sweat and humiliation (abnormal) Thinking the police man is the evilest person you’ll ever meet (Normal) The police person being a person that want to help you and not demolish your house (abnormal) Going to school having 50 blank pages in your school book because they talk about fighting back and resistance (normal) going to school and actually learning to love your country and fight back for it (abnormal). Not being able to enter Al Aqsa mosque to pray because you’re still under 65 (normal) having access to your church/mosque/temple (abnormal). Knowing that at least one member of your family had died because of the occupation (normal) everyone’s safe & sound (abnormal). Seeing your big brother whose in jail as a hero (normal). Actual criminals who did actual crimes going to jail (abnormal). So when I finally saw the world and realized that the life that me and every other Palestinian are living is so unfair, I was furious. I wanted to slap the world, again. I deserve to sleep with no siren. I deserve to go see my aunt in Nablus without having to spend 3 hours on the checkpoint. I deserve a police man that doesn’t want to arrest my father for his denied identity; being Palestinian. I deserve an educational system that waters the seeds of resistance inside of me. I deserve my right to pray and practice my beliefs. I deserve a picture of my family tree to stay the way it is for a while. I deserve knowing that the heroes are outside while the real criminals are inside prison and not the other way around. I deserve to live actual logic, justice & freedom. I deserve life.
 But at what price? Blood? We’ve had enough martyrs and victims. Money? What do you do when you’re fighting a country who’s supported financially but mostly the whole world? Law? Do we need law to win this case? I think not, because as the Palestinian saying say: “If your enemy is the judge and the jury to whom do you complain?” it seems like there’s no way out of this circle called Israel. It really drives us back to the concept of Tomorrow’s Never Coming: there’s no light in the end of this tunnel. The grass is not greener on the other side. All the laws are against us. So is destiny. So unless we fight this damned destiny and break those laws, we’ll go nowhere.

Let’s get back to subject: being born on the day of The Great Catastrophe is like a scar, everyday there’s a reminder that The Great Catastrophe is still ongoing. There’s a new Nakbah every day, people see it as a memory that happened in 1948, but it’s not a memory. It is our everyday reality… it never stopped. If you look at it that way; everyone is born on the day of The Catastrophe (sigh, the only thing that made me feel special is now in public use). Look at your life, everyday people die because of this ugly military occupation. Every day they suffocate the air we breathe, they kill the spirit we inhale and they deceive our eyes into think that going back home might be impossible. Everyday Israel commits another crime and is not punished for it. The great catastrophe was never over, the oppression, the ethnic cleansing and the hatred is still around, in big amounts. 

Sunday, 5 April 2015

I Experience Sexism: an insight about sexism in the Arab World

       I think sexism is one of the most unproductive, destructive, and threatening ideologies, not only because it separates humans into two narrow ‘genders’, but because it also is abortive: for centuries we’ve been seeing the same samples of men and women give birth to very similar samples of men and women, so we became a herd, of a one man/one woman. We have a stereotype for the man: strong, insensitive, ambitious etc., and a stereotype for the woman: irrational, vulnerable, incomplete, limited, weak, etc. it was only few men and women who’ve managed to escape this stigma, and have their own independent personalities, and they have been fought, brought down, and soaked with hatred. But, most of the people are a part of the big mass: the one man/one woman situation that we witness today, and since there is no renewing diversity, there is no progress: we remain were we are. If humans had been more of a tessellate than a two-brick building, we would have seen a much different present. Whereas, different personalities, different ideas, different actions, offer different results…

      There are slight differences between every person and another, but the fundamental qualities remain the same, which is so dangerous because we become numbers, continuous versions of those who lived before us, thus we see the same consequences and outcomes, and thus we face the same problems.

   And it is not a coincidence, the Arab World has been providing thoughtless controlled robots to the world not out of the blue, but out of culture (and I know I will be understood wrong so, disclaimer: I am talking about the psychological culture not the heritage). The way we raise our kids, turns them exactly into what we want them to be, so as long as we keep telling our boys to have fun, and our girls to be safe, nothing will change. As long as we ask girls to ‘prevent’ and boys to be ‘prevented’ nothing will change. As long as we tell our boys to walk with pride and tell our girls to shrink themselves, nothing will change. As long as we laugh at our crying boys and gasp for our physically strong girls, nothing will change. The bottom line is that boys and girls must be raised the same, both can have fun and be safe, both can prevent other from hurting them and be prevented from hurting others, both can walk tall and proud, both can be shy and awkward, both can cry and both can be strong (not saying ‘cry’ is an opposite of ‘strong’), and most importantly both are humans, who are allowed to do whatever they feel like doing.
    Gender diversity –which might seem ‘immoral’ to many- has been known in most of ancient civilizations (Greeks, Pharos, Japanese…etc.), and that beautiful mixture of humans provided the world with so many revolting, influential, constructive, and most importantly untamed philosophies, theories, practices, lifestyles, values, viewpoints which basically built the world, and manufactured the humanitarian intellect, which developed the arts and sciences. But now, in a world of copies, absolutions, and cultural habits we became dead, and diseased with intellectual paralysis, therefore we are walking towards yesterday, and sometimes I think we’re not walking at all.

 I think the word ‘man’ is very fluid and very flexible, not because anyone had said so before, but because I said so, for I am not defined, I define.

   In history there hasn’t been any accurate definition of what is ‘okay’ and what is ‘not okay’ for a man to do, matter of fact, nobody cared about it. But now, there seems to be a little how-to-be-a-man guide book that every parent gives to their child, there’s a path to be walked, there’s an anthem to be sang, there’s a rule to follow, there’s a vow to make, and there’s a frame to fit. So, boys like me suffer, boys who fail the how-to-be-a-man test, boys who walk crooked, boys who sing their own anthems, boys who break the vicious lifeless rules, boys who betray the taming thoughtless vows, boys who don’t fit in the frame, nor do they fit in the mold, boys who are the frame and who are the picture, boys who are being themselves boys who are who they want to be not who they’re ‘supposed’ to be… We get stoned, by people’s eyes, people’s tongues, people’s ears, people’s thoughts… and sometimes people’s actual stones, because we break a taboo, or because we don’t fear it anymore. I became who I am due to those who are stoning me, those who try to abort me, but I’ve learned to vitalizes myself every time I am murdered, and once you’re ready to tell your kid that the world is a goddamn hellhole, but being himself despite the stony consequences is better than wearing a mask and walking along the masses, you’ve helped make the world a tiny bit less of a hellhole.

For I am a man, and my gender is my mind, and my mind is my leader, and my leader is I, I shall be uniquely continuous, and an outstanding number of an original human being.

Friday, 23 January 2015

A King Fallen: My Thoughts

   I woke up to the news that the King of Saudi Arabia is dead. This was a guilty pleasure of mine: a smile was unintentionally and systematically drawn on my unsatisfied morning-face (did I feel bad after it?). I felt the exact same feeling I felt when comedienne Joan Rivers died few weeks after she has said that the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip ‘deserved to die’ and had ‘low IQ’, I believed in Karma for few hours. Wishing death upon others is so horrible, but since I am a ‘wannabe writer’, words matter to me, especially horrible words that cut like blades, words that are so hurtful and leave wounds unhealable, words that wander one’s memory like a thundery December night. (Folks told me that it was terrible to ‘poke fun at one’s death’, while they absolutely forgot that, firstly, she was the one making fun of children’s death, and secondly I was not making fun of her death, I was just bringing out the fact that Karma is around), I mean can you merge her voice telling that ‘joke’ with a picture of a Gazan child tortured?

   Anyway, let’s get back to subject: why was that –bitchy- smile drawn on my face anyway? Because it occurred to me, that this rich, powerful and glorious King will be buried under the dry soil of Saudi Arabia, and his soul will only beg for the dessert skies to rain and water his thirsty tomb. Not even the oil that the powerful ones killed other people for can fulfill the King’s throat anticipations. In the past few years, children of Palestine, Syria, Sudan, Somalia etc. have been dying because of hatred, hunger, terrorism, corruption and extremism, and their bodies are either left to rot on the burning concrete, or buried under the destructions of mosques, churches, governmental offices, etc. (the buildings that never helped them). Exactly like the King Abdul Aziz, their buried under humble mud, with no money, power, or leverage. What did Mr. Abdul Aziz do the Arab World? In fact, what did he do to his people? I feel sorry for those who are brainwashed and taught who and how to love. His legacy was officially, and ‘legally’ oppressing Saudi women, cuffing freedom and silencing liberated voices, forbidding freedom of expression (then sending an ambassador to rally for freedom of expression in Paris), corruption in governmental institutions, being silent about the children dying of hatred and hunger… not to mention him having so called peace agreements with Israel and witnessing Palestinians die every single day because of Israel… I could go on and on. 

In the Arab world we say ‘you can only wish mercy upon the dead’ well, shall I wish for mercy upon Sharon? Need I pray for Hitler to rest in peace? Should I wish for mercy for Netanyahu (when he dies –soon hopefully)? Should I? Not at all, and I do not desire to put on a phony face of sorrow to mourn those who killed and continue to kill to this very day with their ongoing oppressing legacy. What they take with them? Wealth? Money? What?! Now they’re equally death under some sad-looking soil, like any other child who the world didn’t give a damn about.

My condolences to the ones who died, and are forgotten, my condolences to the ones who are mourned in masses and numbers. My condolences the ones whose souls fade in decay and obliviousness. My condolences to children who were victims of hatred and didn’t know yet what they were fighting for. My condolences to the ones who didn’t know any wealth or fame, my condolences who didn’t have the world wake to pretend he cares about them and to pretend that they were good people. My condolences to those who we’ll never know, who are unwritten and untold.

My condolences to those who didn’t live to see a king who witnessed them dying, die.  

Thursday, 15 January 2015

My Thoughts on the Rally in Paris

    In Paris, they walked in crowds. Suited up in black, and I smelled the pretention all the way from Jerusalem, walking superheroes were ambitious to support freedom of choice, and to protest against terrorism. The leaders of the world were walking and walking. Alongside of them were the Prime Minister of Israel, the President of Palestine, and the King of Jordan. What really disgusts me, is the hypocrisy of it all- all of these three apply to seriously nothing to freedom of speech. Let me start.

    Benjamin Netanyahu, whose government is arresting people based on their political views and even because of their Facebook posts and comments on social networks. It was sick to see him march through that rally (some British politician said this and was pinned), because seriously?! “Netanyahu protesting against terrorism” the irony is frustrated- Where was he when extremist settlers burnt a Palestinian boy alive and made him drink gasoline? Where was he when a bride-to-be was shot (and died) at a checkpoint for no reason on her way to get the wedding stuff? Where was he when 5-year-old Inas Dar Khaleel was run over by a heartless settler in the West Bank? Where was he (and his nice terrorism-loathing conscience) when war was being violated in the Gaza Strip? it seems like some worn out joke to see him there. I mean if we compare Israel with any terrorist group, (let’s take ISIS as an example), there wouldn’t be any difference: Israel and ISIS were both illegally established, were both established based on religion, and they are both committing inhuman crimes against the other (Palestinians/Non-Muslims), only Israel is putting on a mask of Democracy. Netanyahu’s government who allegedly supports ‘freedom of speech and expression’ jailed a Palestinian cartoonist for some cartoons that were described as ‘anti-Israel’.

     Mahmoud Abbas who’s our president, and who seems to mix up between the two words ‘surrender’ and ‘peace’, marched along as well. I wonder, what did he do when Gaza was under terrorist attack? I do not understand the hypocrisy of all of this. There are priorities, especially to our president. Palestine has been under occupation for more than 67 years, and the so called freedom of speech is banned for us Palestinians. Why hasn’t Mahmoud Abbas been demonstrating against the terrorism of Israel? Why hasn’t the world been demonstrating against the terrorism of Israel?! It’s actually the same thing when Arabs united to fight and to ‘erase’ ISIS (little do they know ISIS lies in their minds), why hadn’t they united to ‘erase’ Israel which was viciously established?

The King of Jordan was also there, supporting freedom of choice, dear goodness, what is this sick joke? In a country such as Jordan where there is absolutely no space for freedom of choice or freedom of expression, where people go to jail for ‘disrespecting’ his majesty, where novels get banned for their ‘blasphemous’ content, where people are silenced, cuffed and taught what to say, what is this fake freedom of speech is he fighting for?
   In the Arab World lies more and more hypocrisy and double-standards with each and every new king or president that shines above our gloomy heads. My argument here is: Why is it when the terrorists attack the West the whole world is supporting the West (and it’s not even the West it’s just one damn magazine), but when such racist terrorist government such as Israel attacks a whole nation nobody does anything? Why the double-standards?!

  The country of freedom which is France (which was fascist not so long ago), supports alleged freedom of speech, if so, then why did it arrest that comedian for his comments on the Charlie Hebdo incident? More and more hypocrisy…

   Now, Jews in Europe are asking for privilege to carry weapons, and Netanyahu is persuading them into immigrating to Israel which only means more settlements on Palestinian lands, and more homeless Palestinians.
My call for the hypocritical world is to walk an equal road towards freedom of speech and despairing terrorism. When you fight against terrorism you must fight against all kinds of terrorism: ISIS, Al Qaeda, and Israel etc. because frankly terrorism is not linked to some faith, I mean, civilized France was terrorizing in the Arab world and had killed more than a million and a half Algerians, so get over the labels.

    It’s time to take the mask off earthly-heavens the world leaders are creating, after all, terrorism marched through a demonstration against terrorism, freedom of speech is cuffed and silenced in the Arab world and even in the countries of freedom, and according to the world I am a 16 years old terrorist.

I was totally against the killing that happened in France, but seriously I am also fully against the tens of the killings that happens to us Palestinians every day. Je Suis Palestine.