Scene no. 3
On June 14, 2007, Palestinian medical sources reported the death of five Palestinian children and the injury of a number of children from one family – the family of Abu Matrood -- in an Israeli artillery bombardment of Ash-Shawka region east of Rafah, southern Gaza Strip. They arrived at Abu Yoosuf An-Najjaar Hospital with their body parts blown to bits due to the severity of the blast.
Scene no. 4
A few days before that blast, two children, Ahmad Abu Zubaydah and Zaahir Al-Majdalaawi, were killed by bullets from an Israeli special force unit in the former settlement of Dugit in the town of Beit Lahiya in northern Gaza Strip. Eye-witnesses said that the two 12-year-old children were hunting birds in the area.
Scene no. 5
Al-Jazeera Channel aired a live broadcast documenting one of the most savage Israeli crimes, when it shot live footage of Israeli snipers hunting a number of Palestinian children one by one. This happened on Saturday night in mid-January 2005, when a sniper stationed near Saladin Gate on the Egyptian-Palestinian border hunted an innocent and unarmed Palestinian child stripped of everything save the innocence of childhood. He was shot dead over the stone rubble of a house destroyed by a tank shell or perhaps a helicopter missile or a tank or a giant bulldozer. Perhaps the child's name was Haazim, Jamaal, or ‘Alaa’.
Another Palestinian boy rushed to him, bearing nothing but courage, chivalry and a feeling of oppression. Perhaps his name was Salaam, Baraa’ or Fidaa’. He was met by another Israeli sniper who surprised him with a treacherous bullet that hit him in the neck, chest or heart, so that he dropped in a heap over the body of the first child. The scene did not stop here. A third child jumped in boldly and attempted to rescue the second wounded child, carrying with him no bomb or gun or even a stone ; yet, he did not succeed. A third Israeli sniper shot him dead with a poisoned bullet causing him to collapse over the first two children. The Al-Jazeera camera provided us with live footage to show the whole world the savagery of the daily killings committed by the Israeli ambushes of death, that are done deliberately and with unparalleled premeditation.
Scene no. 6
Children once again, but in an even more bloody and brutal scene -- five Gazan children were killed. Three of them were mentioned in passing on page 11 of the newspaper "Yedioth Ahronoth" -- a matter which in itself evokes disgust. Lack of public awareness regarding their murder cannot obscure the fact that the Israeli army is waging a war on children. The children were guilty of nothing except the fact that they were playing their usual game of "hide-and-seek" before fatal bullets from Israeli snipers snatched their life away. The other two children were simply collecting carob.
Scene no. 7
An incident in Tulkarm provides clear cut evidence of the brutality and barbarism of Israeli soldiers who opened heavy fire on a boy named Mahmood Ibraaheem Al-Qarnaawi (11 years), causing him to drop down from a fig tree from which he was collecting fruit. He was left bleeding on the ground and was given no treatment even as he was writhing in pain. When his mother asked one of the soldiers, "Is my son alive?" he replied scornfully in Arabic, "Perhaps he is still breathing." What was even more difficult to bear was that the boy's sister Ruqayyah says that the soldiers asked her to drag her brother away from the fig tree, but she refused. As they threatened to kill her if she did not do it, she dragged him away from the fig tree where his head was open and his brain was on the ground. This horrific scene is real, not a fictitious film produced in Hollywood.
Scene no. 8
Two babies were banned from seeing the light of day in the prisons of the Israeli occupation. The Israeli prison administration poured its wrath on two babies who are the youngest inmates of Israeli prisons. The prison administration decided to prevent two babies under the age of two from seeing sunlight during the so-called "release" granted to the prisoners for two hours every day.
Seema ‘Anbas, coordinator of the prisoners' portfolio in the Committee of the prisoners' families, indicated that Israel had issued a decision preventing a 10-month-old girl Ghaadah Jaasir Abu ‘Umar, daughter of the prisoner Khawlah Zaytaawi, and a one and a half year-old boy Baraa’ Subayh, son of the prisoner Samar Subayh, from leaving their mothers' cells. They did so under the pretext that the punishment of "troublemaking" mothers applies to their children who might make trouble in the future, and that the Israeli security establishment does not leave anything to chance and taking precautions is necessary.
Scene no. 9
Palestinian citizen and an expectant mother, Maha Muhammad Ibraaheem Qaatooni (30 years) rushed to her children's room in the morning after she heard them screaming from the sound of shooting. She wanted to comfort them, but an Israeli sniper's bullet pierced her back, passed through the fetus, and exited from her abdomen.
Scene no. 10
While recalling the victims of Israeli atrocities, no one can forget the mother who was killed in Al-Fawaaghrah Street in Bethlehem, while her children stayed next to her for three days. Who can forget ‘Eesa Zikri when he was murdered in cold blood in his home and his daughter, who was not yet two years old, was coddling him and playing with his blood? Who can forget the 10-year-old girl Maariyya Abu Sirees who was shot dead by Israeli bullets while she was playing in her room? Who can forget the 12-year-old girl Rihaam Ward when she was killed in her class in Jenin?
Scene no. 11
An ambulance officer in Palestine's Red Crescent Society at Tulkarm tells us about another scene near the Barrier. He said, "I saw a girl bleeding but the occupation soldiers prevented me from giving her first aid despite a dangerous wound in her hand after she was struck by a bullet that had cut her artery."
The girl Du‘aa’ Abdul-Qaadir, who was under the age of thirteen in the eighth grade, left her class desk vacant at Al-Khawaaja School after she left it for the last time to see the apartheid wall and returned dead.
Scene no. 12
On the afternoon of Friday, June 9, 2006, Israel committed the worst massacre when it wiped out the Palestinian family of Ghaaliyah from the face of the earth, including the father, the mother, and the children. Only Huda, an injured girl, remained alive. The sight of Huda trying to make her father's dead body get up and her search for someone to respond to her screams and weeping among the bodies of her family members shocked the world and exposed the series of crimes and genocide perpetrated by the soldiers and leaders of the so-called "oasis of democracy".
Israeli writer Yigal Serna in the house of Huda Ghaaliyah
The Israeli writer who was taken to the place of the massacre by Huda's cousins said in his article, "I wandered among the sites of the Israeli and Palestinian tragedies and stumbled over extensive grief and sorrow in the house of Ghaaliyah the like of which I have not seen anywhere else. It seemed that the devil that existed in the place wanted to accumulate this quantum of sadness until it covered the place. Thus, every Jew or Arab person must stop for a moment and say: "Enough! For how long and to what extent will we plunge into the swamp of this crazy war?"
The last scene: Yasmeen Ghassaan Shamlaawi
She is a writer who emerged from the suffering of a usurped homeland – from the old suburb of Al-Qasabah in Nablus, where tumultuous scenes have continued unabated for over thirteen years. This period constitutes the lifespan of the writer, as she traces the story of a sad homeland and deprived childhood that does not know more than pain in her life. Suffering developed the spirit of creativity and responsibility in Yasmeen Shamlaawi enabling her to become a writer and brilliant presenter. We find her amidst large audiences, escorting a martyr or commemorating a Palestinian event as a presenter on the occasion. Later, we might watch her on television screens accompanying children, sharing their concerns, and looking for new and useful things, as if life is born anew. Yasmeen successfully combines all these elements in her weekly television show as the youngest female television presenter in Palestine.
As life goes ahead with all its difficult facets, hope always sneaks in to spark ambitions for a bright tomorrow and a different life for the children of Palestine. A life in which the dignity of a child would be reflected in the ground reality, just like the rest of the children in the free world.