i would like to share this with you , it was written last autumn , but it still reflect my feelings , while writing from Gaza
with love , truth , justice and solidariy
Gaza - writing within the storm
Mona Elfarra and Hilary Nelson
Mona Elfarra is a doctor at the Al-Awda hospital in Jabalia Refugee
>> in northern Gaza. Hilary Nelson is active in the Palestine Solidarity
>> Campaign in Sheffield. They wrote to each other last autumn as Israel
>> escalated its military assault on Beit Hanoun, next door to Jabalia.
>> Mona Elfarra
>> hello Hilary
>> While life goes from one day to another, worsening everyday for all of
>> living in this big prison named Gaza, I try to keep myself together. The
>> community is suffering and needs all my efforts so that we all do not
>> collapse but continue struggling against this ugly occupation.
>> Last month I could not write. I have two different feelings. When I
>> I feel it is important to spread the word and to satisfy the eagerness
>> all my friends abroad to know the truth of what is happening inside
>> which the mainstream media do not cover fairly.
>> On the other hand I feel it is a luxury to write while others are
>> suffering everyday from hunger, illnesses that could be cured easily if
>> there were no closures or sanctions imposed on us. Others are dying
>> because they did have not the right treatment at the right time. Many
>> cancer patients died.
>> I also felt that I report and write about the same things, the same
>> suffering again and again, but the world is silent and Israel goes ahead
>> with its pre-planned agenda against the Palestinian people.
>> I felt helpless, so I focused on my people and how I could assist their
>> daily needs in practical ways.
>> I know very well that writing is extremely important, especially since
>> news is not covered in the mainstream media. I also know very well that
>> this is a phase I am going through. I feel guilty too because of those
>> feelings, and that I should stay strong and not lose hope and faith.
>> I will never lose it, my life under occupation and my resistance will
>> continue until this occupation is over. My cause is not only to resist
>> this occupation, it is fighting against imperialism and its new
>> globalisation of injustice all over the world.
>> There is a big scale operation in the north, 14 were killed and at least
>> 100 were injured. Many were women and children, the village of Beit
>> is under siege. Nobody is allowed in or out of the village, children
>> cannot get milk, any moving body is shot, all the men over 16 were
>> to gather inside one of the village schools and we do not know their
>> Health teams are not allowed inside Beit Hanoun, one woman (Maysoon
>> Hweehy) was shot dead while trying to defend her family from the
>> Hilary please write to me, I miss you. How are Paul and Mischca?
>> Love to all of you
>> p. s. The 4 girls received their scholarship for their tuition. I wish
>> were there to see the happiness on their young faces. There are some
>> photos. They all came from poor socioeconomic backgrounds in Rafah camp,
>> Khan Yunis, Nusseirat, Jabalia – and have a good promising future with
>> this scholarship and our support in general.
>> Hilary Nelson
>> Dearest Mona
>> How are you? We are really missing you and would love to see you. I was
>> hoping you were coming early in the New Year, but now I am wondering if
>> you have changed your plans.
>> It was lovely to hear from you and to hear your thoughts and feelings
>> about writing / not writing. How different times make you feel
>> differently. Sometimes the writing is therapeutic and sometimes it makes
>> you feel worse when you realise that writing isn't defeating the
>> occupation. It feels futile, or worse - indulgent.
>> I know what you mean. You have to do what you feel you can at the time.
>> Sometimes you want to be there doing practical things with the people,
>> maybe other times you need the writing as an outlet for your own
>> frustrations or grief.
>> All I can say is that what you are doing is very important for us.
>> or not writing, we feel whatever communication we get from you is good
>> us and good for Palestine. But we also understand when you feel too
>> to satisfy our hunger. Just keep on being you and doing what you can.
>> don't ever feel that your efforts are useless. You are a star to us, and
>> am sure a star for so many others who are suffering.
>> I am sure the people also give you your own reason for surviving and
>> continuing with your unending fight. They give you a reason to be there,
>> and you should take what courage you can from them, and what they can
>> to you.
>> How are the girls? I hope they are OK. Give them my love.
>> We are having a women's social evening to raise money for the women's
>> scholarship fund this Saturday. I have attached the flyer so you can see
>> what we are doing. We had a big debate about whether to cancel it or not
>> because of the awful killings of women and children last week. We didn't
>> feel it was appropriate to do any partying after such a dreadful
>> However, we decided to go ahead with it because people seem so
>> enthusiastic about this women's project. We have had quite a lot of
>> positive response.
>> Catherine Gaze gave me a cheque for £240 (almost $500) yesterday for the
>> fund. She said it was to celebrate her 60th birthday. She wrote a little
>> note stating that she would have had a very different life without free
>> education. It made me realise how important this project is, and how it
>> has captured a spirit of support and hope for many women here.
>> We wondered if you would be able to send a message to the social
>> just telling us something about the women or the project or just about
>> life in Gaza and explaining what it means for women there to have an
>> We thought if we could read something out to the party about life in
>> it would be good to put things in context. We don't want women to be sad
>> all night, but to remember why we are doing it, and to realise that
>> singing and dancing is also part of life which goes on in the face of
>> horrible tragedies - just like in Gaza and Iraq. I hope you can
>> our decision, and you will be able to send us a message by Saturday
>> we can read out.
>> We all think about you a lot. Your presence in March has made a
>> to so many women here in Sheffield who would have thought so differently
>> about events in Palestine if they hadn't met and heard you speak.
>> We had a visitor from Al Haq yesterday. An Irish man called Gareth Gleed
>> and a young woman called Mays. She is an amazingly confident young
>> and spoke very well at the meeting about Human Rights in Palestine,
>> international law and Gaza. It made me start dreaming again about
>> women's conference. I would love to get you and her together with some
>> other women and organise another women's workshop. What do you think?
>> Lots of love to you and your family. Don't forget to visit us soon.
>> Love Hilary