It is a clear-cut case…. it doesn’t need political or social or military “analysts”, it doesn’t need “middle east experts” or experts on the “Palestinian Israeli conflict”…. it is a clear-cut case, a case of eternal love; a pure love that defies time, a love that is inherited, that is transferred from one generation to the next, a love that moves in our veins, feeds the mind and enriches the soul, a love that keeps the heart pumping, a love that keeps us alive, a love that is life itself… it is the love of Palestine.
When you travel along Palestinian villages, you hear the houses whispering; beautiful houses, with their white stone darkened with the years, old houses with their green yards, arched balconies and domed roofs, with the jasmine flowers climbing the staircase and the poppies and the daisies decorating the threshold…. Beautiful houses, old houses, new houses, mixing the traditional with the modern, with their black water tanks, solar panels and satellite dishes, gathered in clusters, hugging one another, protecting one another, extending over hilltops and across valleys…. when you pass by these beautiful houses, you hear them whispering words of love to the olive field in the distance, and to the cactus walls defining the road to Safad and Bisan.
When you pass the men and women; young and strong, old and wise, working in the land, caring for the trees, digging water canals, planting seedlings, harvesting the fields…. some playing the flute over the hilltop while the sheep graze the pastures, some singing of love, of parting and yearning…. others telling tales of monsters roaming the land and heroes protecting the land; when you pass the men and women, you hear songs of love to the apple tree in the front yard that awaits the day of return, you hear love songs to the olive tree uprooted from its home and waiting to rise again, you hear tales of an ancient people watering the land with their blood, defeating the monsters and keeping the land alive.
When you pass the women and men harvesting the olive trees, a woman stands up; the colours of Palestine decorating her thob, the tales of the land imprinted in her eyes, tired but bright, smiles and waves at you, invites you to share their breakfast of olives, olive oil, taboun bread and hot mint tea… When you pass the green hilltops, an elderly man lying beneath an ancient olive tree, the kuffiyeh embracing him, taking in the scent of the land with every breath, watching his grandson running behind the goats…. he waves at you and invites you to join him, to watch the sunset over Al-Jalil in the horizon, and to hear the tale of a courageous warrior buried beneath the olive tree…
When you walk along the narrow streets of a refugee camp, you hear the joyous voices of children rising loud with revolutionary songs, familiar to the mind and close to the soul… you watch elderly women sitting on the threshold in front of their houses, lamenting the old days, discussing the celebration of return… stop near a window, any window in the refugee camp, lean on the rough wall and listen to a woman singing about her lover who sold her golden bracelet and bought a gun to fight the occupiers, join them in a verse or two…. pass a grandfather clutching the hands of his grandchildren as they walk along the narrow alleys of the refugee camp, listen carefully to his words of love and wisdom, listen carefully to his promise of return, listen to him say the land is dignity and dignity is life….
When you take a walk in Palestine; be it in a village in Bisan, along the beach in Gaza, up the hill in Hebron, or in the forest in Jerusalem; the stone speaks to you, the tree speaks to you, the wind speaks to you, the wave speaks to you, the bird speaks to you… they speak to you about the hands that plant the trees, about the souls that sing to the sea, about the hearts that build the houses, about the blood that waters the land and keeps her alive… they narrate to you the words of a lover, they sing you a love song; about a land that is alive, a land that never dies, a land where every stone has a tale and every tree has a tale, a land where life is precious, where life is sacred, where land is as sacred as life itself, and where the land is protected with lives and blood….
It is a clear-cut case….
It is a love the Zionists will never comprehend… a love they will never know….
It is the beautiful villages, with their houses, yards and cactus barriers, reminiscent of Jrash, Lubia and Saforia… it is the green hills overlooking the olive fields and the vineyards…. it is the 3ala dal3ona, Mejana and 3ataba…. it is Mish3al, Jafra and Zarif Il-Toul … it is Lina, Dalal and Ghassan… it is every Palestinian elderly safekeeping the culture of the land… it is every Palestinian man and woman walking the path of resistance towards the liberation of Palestine, all of Palestine … it is every Palestinian child carrying Palestine in their hearts and the key of Return in their hands.
The Zionists might think, they and their loyal slaves in the region, that they have killed us, broken our spirit, killed our will to resist. They might think, they and the heads of the “village leagues” appointed by them under invented names and titles, that they have shackled and enslaved us with the monthly salaries and with bank credits. They might think, they and their new “Lahd forces”, that they have extinguished the flame of resistance within us. They might think, together with their loyal slaves and servants, that they have created a “new Palestinian”, a new “species” that believes Palestine is Al-Muqata’a, that believes treason is a matter of opinion, that believes negotiations are a way of life, that believes that resistance is lighting a candle and handing a flower to an occupation soldier. They might think they have erased Palestine, buried its villages and towns under Zionist colonies, subdued the Palestinian people and wiped out their collective memory and national identity…
But Zionists and co don’t comprehend that it is a hopeless case of eternal love. They don’t comprehend that with every Palestinian they murder, a million Palestinians are born. They don’t comprehend that with every resistance fighter they bury alive in their death dungeons, a million fighters carry the gun to continue on the path of liberation. They don’t comprehend that with every house they demolish, a million Shaja’iya, Deir Yasin, and Lifta arise. They don’t comprehend that with every tree they uproot, a million olive, almond, carob and apple trees blossom. They don’t comprehend that with every tunnel they bomb, a million tunnels connect Rafah with Al-Naqurah, and connect Al-Nuseirat with Jerusalem. They don’t comprehend that with every inch of Palestinian land they steal, our roots clutch harder and deeper into the land and we become one with Palestine.
They don’t comprehend what Palestine is, who Palestine is; she is not a “piece of land” or a “lump of stones” or a “mere place”. Palestine is our mother, our father, our beginning, our end, our protector, our sanctuary, our all and everything. Palestine is our dignity, our soul, our existence. How could they understand? They who live on stolen land, erect colonies with stolen names, claim for themselves a stolen culture and existence, they who live a stolen time. How could they understand? They who kill the olive tree and the poppies, poison the land, strangle the sky and besiege the sea. How could they understand? They who kill the very same land they claim as their “promised land”.
No, they don’t comprehend …. They will never comprehend….
It is a clear-cut case, a hopeless case: it is a case of eternal love, of an unbreakable bond…. It is a case of a people, a land, an identity… it is a case of Palestine, her culture and her people…. It is a case of being Palestinian.
It is a case of being Palestinian… a case of being born Palestinian, growing up witnessing daily zionist crimes committed against Palestine and her children, growing up yearning for justice and return, growing up fighting for a free Palestine; free from zionist colonization, free from the river to the sea.
Palestinian children grow up seeing their houses bombed, their parents killed, their siblings maimed…. they lie on makeshift beds in over-crowded hospitals, wrapped in home-made bandages that have become red with blood, they search in vain for a familiar face to tell them that it is all nothing but a nightmare and that everything is going to be fine…. they stand outside the hospital mortuary, one carrying his baby sister while tears running down his cheeks, another sitting on the ground, clothes torn, speechless and staring at a world only he can see, a third clutching the hands of her younger sister and brother, holding back the tears and watching her father standing in the corner, trying to hide his tears…. They stand outside the door to the mortuary, and know that behind that cold iron door lies a mother whose body was ripped apart by an Israeli shell, behind that door lies a baby sister hugging her mother, behind that door lie parents, siblings, grandparents, uncles and aunts, comrades, friends and classmates….. and when they find refuge at a school or at a hospital before the next round of shelling begins, they play in the over-crowded rooms, they play mothers singing for their children before they sleep, they play fathers taking their children to the zoo, they play a grandfather gathering the children around him to tell them a story, they play the neighbour running after them with a stick for climbing his almond tree…. they imitate family members that have long gone, they recall days empty of bombs and F16s’ and navy bombardment, they play an endless spring with birds, flowers and sunshine… they play their mothers coming back to hug them, to tell them that it was all but a nightmare…
Their villages are raided, their homes demolished, they are kidnapped in the middle of the night, they are beaten by armed soldiers, left alone in dark interrogation cells, they are threatened with death… but in the darkened cells, they dream of running after the goats on the hilltops of Palestine…. and during interrogation, they close their eyes and smell the almond blossoms in the spring… and when they are beaten, the taste of blood in their mouths changes to the taste of zaatar and zeit… and when they are left standing for hours in the cold, shivering, they think of their mother making bread, their father sipping mint tea after a hard day’s work, their siblings playing in front of the houses, running and shouting in the alleys… and when they are free, they run to their siblings and friends, and they play their heroes; they cover their faces with their blouses and pretend they are freedom fighters, they carry tree twigs and pretend they are guns, and they run and jump and pretend they are carrying out a resistance operation against the occupation soldiers.
Their schools are bombed, they feel the classroom walls shaking around them, they feel the stings of the shattered glass as it cuts throw their young flesh, they try to breath amidst the suffocating clouds of smoke and burning books and desks, they see their classmates scattered across the classrooms, some bleeding, some crying faintly, others sleeping the eternal sleep… and when they return to school, they place poppies and daisies where martyred comrades once sat, they sing to them songs about Palestine, love and longing, they write them short letters of pride, and honour, they tell them about the sun shining over Jerusalem, about the rain drops over Nazareth, about the olive harvest in Nablus, about fishing in Gaza… and when they play, they fight amongst themselves who will be the “martyr”, they re-enact the funeral of their friends and classmates, they who win play the heroes, and they who lose play the terrorist soldiers… they carry the “martyr” on their shoulders, they promise him never to forget him, never to forget his killers, never to forget and never to forgive, and to fight till Palestine is liberated, to fight till no more Palestinian children are killed, till all Palestinian children can play in safety, till all Palestinian children are free, till all Palestinian mothers can laugh again, till all Palestine is free.
From Shaja’iya to Shu’fat, from Al-Khalil to Yafa, from Dheisheh refugee camp to Jrash, from Silwad to Al-‘Araqeeb, from Wadi Fuqin to Lifta, from Al-Quds to Safad, from Ras il Naqura to Im Il-Rishrash…. they run in the streets, in the narrow alleys, in the fields, along the beach, masked with their torn blouses, red, black, green and white… they wave their plastic toy guns and their home-made twig guns… they remember their martyred friends… they imitate their heroes; the heroes of resistance, the heroes of Palestine. It is not the love of death, as Zionists portray it to justify killing them… it is not the lack of parental care, as Zionists often describe it to give themselves a higher moral standard… zionists and co will never comprehend that it is the love of life that drives these children, drives every Palestinian… it is the yearn for freedom that makes them rise more determined after every Israeli aggression, it is the love of the land that makes them water the olive tree with their blood so future generation can sit under these trees, and enjoy a free Palestine
Zionists and co will never comprehend….
They will never comprehend that it’s a clear-cut case, a hopeless case: it is a case of eternal love, of an unbreakable bond…. It is a case of a people, a land, an identity… it is a case of Palestine, her culture and people…. It is a case of being Palestinian. zionists and co will never comprehend that it is a hopeless case of eternal love because Palestine is us and we are Palestine.