With Israel’s invasion of Gaza intensifying, terrorised Palestinians are facing the grimmest choice imaginable. It’s a choice that most of us couldn’t even begin to imagine:
My colleague in Gaza whose brother was just killed by Israel’s bombs says the hardest choice is to stay as a group so everyone will die together, or split up so there’s a chance someone from the family can live to carry on their name & tell their stories. Devastating pic.twitter.com/PZUvUOFJYI
— Abby Martin (@AbbyMartin) October 25, 2023
Die together or die apart
Abby Martin is a documentarian best known for The Empire Files. The message sent to her reads:
Our Lord, some people in other countries differ in opinion about whether they will have a break today or what they will eat. I will tell you about the ordeals where we differ in opinion about what. Some of us want us all to stay in one place, and if a bombing hits us, there is no doubt that it will destroy us all from the severity of the bombs. Thus, we do not succeed in losing the other, so we all die together
Read on...Support us and go ad-free
The other opinion is that we separate, so that the harm becomes less and the tragedy becomes less, so that someone remains carrying the family name and telling their story to people
It’s a situation beyond the imagining of most of us. Sadly, for the Palestinians this is far from the first time they’ve faced this choice.
The grim decision being made by countless Palestinian families was actually discussed on the BBC. Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran said the following:
"The question they are now asking is 'where do we want to be when we die?'"
— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) October 29, 2023
Additionally, Moran also addressed the idea that Palestinians can simply extract themselves from the hell they find themselves in:
Layla Moran exposes Government minister Michelle Donelan's lies that Hamas is forcing people to stay in Gaza.
She says her family cannot move from Gaza City because there are three generations, including frail relatives. #bbclaurak
— Andrew Fisher (@FisherAndrew79) October 29, 2023
As communications networks started working again in Gaza, messages from Palestinians themselves revealed the heartbreaking consequences of these decisions:
One of my favorite friends was killed by the Israeli warplanes.
My friend, my dentist, my brother.
We will miss you @AbdallahBaghda7 💔
I can’t stop crying.
I lost 5 dear friends in 22 days. pic.twitter.com/YlX4rgJvYp
— Hind Khoudary (@Hind_Gaza) October 29, 2023
— Karl Schembri / ابو سلمان (@Karl_Schembri) October 30, 2023
"My neighborhood was destroyed. One single rocket hit a neighbour's home without warning and totally destroyed it. At least ten were killed including children."
"My neighborhood is full of the colour grey. I hate the colour grey now."
– My colleague Mahmoud this morning#Gaza
— Rohan Talbot (@rohantalbot) October 29, 2023
Furthermore, as one human rights activist in Gaza pointed out, many people now don’t even have a choice about where they might die:
Israel has separated the different areas of the #Gaza Strip from each others by bombing roads.
This means that we, residents of Gaza who are displaced in the south of the strip, cannot now reach our homes in Gaza City.
— Maha Hussaini (@MahaGaza) October 30, 2023
The British media
While historically the plight of the Palestinians has not been honestly considered by the British media, this time the gravity of the situation seems to have become too grave to ignore completely. Predictably, those who want to go back to the status quo have put the smear machine into overdrive:
What a disgusting & shameful front page.
100,000s march peacefully. Only 9 arrests. And you call it a "jihadi hate mob".
Worse you talk about a call to act because protestors shout the religious phrase "Allahu Akbar"
This type of racist headline incites violence. Unacceptable pic.twitter.com/6Vg2ECbcmk
— Miqdaad Versi (@miqdaad) October 28, 2023
The BBC, meanwhile, published an article on how to “spot disinformation”. A community note on the tweet points out that “The BBC itself recently had to apologise for airing misinformation over a pro-Palestinian protest”, and it provides a link to read more about that:
Israel-Gaza war: How to spot disinformation on social media https://t.co/KJ1FeQk3KI
— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) October 21, 2023
No choice at all
The Palestinians face the most horrendous choice, but for those of us in the West there should be no difficulty in how we choose to support them.
We need a situation in which Palestinians can live freely, and aren’t trapped under what the UN has referred to as “apartheid”, and in conditions similar to an “open-air prison”. Palestinians do not have the ability to make this happen, but Israel – and its supporters in the West – do. As such, we need to use our voices to make Palestinians’ demands clear. The invasion must end; the bloodshed must stop, and Palestinians must be free.
Featured image via Wafa (cropped to 770 x 403)
We know everyone is suffering under the Tories - but the Canary is a vital weapon in our fight back, and we need your support
The Canary Workers’ Co-op knows life is hard. The Tories are waging a class war against us we’re all having to fight. But like trade unions and community organising, truly independent working-class media is a vital weapon in our armoury.
The Canary doesn’t have the budget of the corporate media. In fact, our income is over 1,000 times less than the Guardian’s. What we do have is a radical agenda that disrupts power and amplifies marginalised communities. But we can only do this with our readers’ support.
So please, help us continue to spread messages of resistance and hope. Even the smallest donation would mean the world to us.