Thursday,19 July, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1169, (24 - 30 October 2013)
Thursday,19 July, 2018
Issue 1169, (24 - 30 October 2013)

Ahram Weekly

What Israel calls minor injuries

A man shot and paralysed in routine Israeli army raids on Palestinian refugee camps barely warranted remark from the IDF, writes Tamar Fleishman

Al-Ahram Weekly

I don’t know his name. But I know the clear gaze of his eyes through which deep desperation was reflected, and the time that passed hasn’t dissolved or dulled the memory of the shadow of grief that was cast upon him and his mother.

I know it is my duty to write and present those who are not represented, to tell and spread the story and shout out that a human being is not a statistic, that a human being is a human being, that he is the sum of all his expectations, hopes and dreams, and that he too, that young and handsome man, must have had expectations, hopes, wishes and dreams.

Perhaps he was a good man and perhaps he wasn’t, but he was a human being, and he had his life and he had his youth. And now, all these have been lost, since one bitter instant that turned him into a soul in a shell, without hopes, aspirations or dreams, bound to the nightmares he must have regarding his future.

This story begins on the night of 20 August when Israeli soldiers from the Kfir Unit invaded the refugee camp in Jenin, on what they call “Operational Activity” which resulted in “one dead and several suffering from minor injuries”, as reported by Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) spokesman Yoav (Poli) Mordehai.

The resistance of the residents of Jenin to the frequent invasions of their homes was defined by Mordehai as “terrorism” and he also added that: “The Forces’ activity was part of the nightly arrests, and such arrests are a critical instrument that enables them to put a stop to terror before it develops. Such arrests are a daily procedure that makes it possible for the residents of the state of Israel and the residents of Judea and Samaria to live in peace.”

One of the people who, according to the IDF spokesman, had sustained “minor injuries” arrived by ambulance at Qalandiya checkpoint on his way back home from a hospital in Jerusalem, where he had received treatment the previous night. The doctors managed to save the life of the young man who sustained an injury to his pelvis by a live bullet, but they couldn’t save his movement. He is paralysed from the waist down and is now incontinent.

With her face looking down, his mother stood beside her son’s headboard. She saw him in need of the assistance of strangers and knew that this was the reality that was forced upon him for the rest of his life, and upon the rest of hers.

Only the soldiers, who swarmed the ambulance with pointing rifles, looked through packages and stared at what was going on, didn’t think they were witnessing something that was so wrong it should not have taken place. They did what was demanded of them, they fulfilled orders, they made sure everything happened according to regulations and maintained the daily routine, and doing so their faces conveyed no emotion and their gestures indicated no discomfort.


The writer is a member of the Israeli Coalition of Women for Peace and volunteers in Breaking the Silence.


add comment

  • follow us on