Monday, July 21, 2014

Al-Shijaiyya Massacre

Under the darkness and the non-stop bombing, I gather with my family around the radio listening to the 
news.  News of bombing and murdering keeps coming to an extent that we can't keep up with any more. It is Sunday night; artillery shelling from the north and the east haven't stopped for even a minute.  I decided to escape news and seek a book to read instead. I looked at the small library in my room, and I picked "The 
Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine".

I started reading while the radio is still on reporting the news of massacres being committed against more victims, F16s targeting places every now and then from the very south to the very north of the Gaza Strip, the Israeli Occupation navy shelling towards people's houses across the beach, Tank fire and shells being shelled towards people houses across the border line with the so-called 'Israel'. The sound is too loud that the whole house shakes once a new bombardment happen. I jump to the window every time a missile falls to check if its near. If it is not, I go on reading.  I try my best to concentrate. I. However, fail.  So, I went back to join the family who was gathering around the radio, listening to the horrible news.

Reports from Al-Shejaiyya are still flowing intensively. Non-stop. Reports say that Al-Shejaiyya is under intensive bombardment both from the land and the sea. "It is under fire. Houses are burning and being totally destroyed upon their residents. Nakba-like scene can be seen among the traumatized people who are running to safer shelter while shells are chasing them," a witness said. I am in utter shock, unable to move, unable to imagine thousands of innocent people being under fire, under genocide. "The ambulances can't reach the neighborhood, hundreds are injured. Dozens of bodies are still stuck under the rubble." the reporter says.

I looked from the window, the sky is full of war-planes, and it flashes red every now and then. I hear some blasts from a distance, some sound very near. Death seems hovering closer. I shut the window.

News from Al-Shejaiyya is still coming. Some of the neighborhood's inhabitants manage to call the radio to ask for urgent help to rescue them.  "They bombed our house.  They are bombing houses randomly, tens are injured, ambulances haven't reached our area," A person living in Al-Shijaiyya on radio says while out of breath. I heard cries in the background; the same person screams in horror" Help us, the wall is falling, it is falling on us."  He then hanged up. No one knows if he survived or he has gone, to immortality.

He hanged up to leave me wondering what happened to him and to his family. The scene of them all gathering in one room, terrified and helpless, keeps flashing in my mind like a nightmare. I imagine the father trying his best to calm his children down, I imagine them looking in horror, smelling death everywhere, their little bodies sitting next to each other wishing their life won't end under that wall, wishing to survive.

Morning comes out. It's 5 am now, no one knows yet how many are injured, how many are murdered in Al-
Shejaeyya. Ambulances are still banned to go there. I try very hard to sleep.

Electricity came back at 1 pm. I rush to go on the internet, to see what has become of Al-Shejayyah.  "62 are killed, hundreds are injured." I read. Images start conquering my head, I think of the 62 people including 26 children who were killed. The last minutes of their life, their last wish, their battle to survive under inevitable death, the terror they had to go through. I feel helpless, powerless, as I sat just writing this article to document another atrocious massacre, "Al-Shijaiyya Massacre". I just stare at the number of the dead and burst crying. 


  1. Dear Sarah, thank you for writing to us, to the world! we listen and watch the news about Palestine with deep sorrow in our heart.
    From the other side of the world, from Ecuador, we are praying with you Palestinians. Stay strong Gaza, there will be justice.

  2. Sarah i feel so guilty and responsible for the silence of my government
    I cant find a word to explain how responsability as italian to this genocide
    You are not alone we go on the street to aak the end of this
    I cant find words to support you
    But we dont forget gaza
    Keep write if is possible

  3. See this

  4. it is like Fallujah, using thermo-baric bombs, awful, the worst.

  5. Salamalaikum, Dear Sarah..reading your writing made me cry, I couldn't imagine how hard to be you and how scare palestinian are right now, everyday people are being killed, and no powerful country trying to stop it..this is really unfair and too hurtful..human rights are just a writing...I'm sorry I can't do much to help but prays..may Allah help us all...Indonesian prayers is with you always in Palestine..