Tuesday, January 6, 2009

At Age 14, She Died of Fear

Al Quds Newspaper, January 4, 2009 - In a phone conversation today, from Gaza the Latin Patriarchate Church priest, Father Manaweil Musallam, clearly shaken, said, "her name is Christine, a tenth grade student. Her father is a doctor and she lived near the YMCA in Al-Remal area [in Gaza]. She died of fear. Since the war started she felt apprehensive of the danger. She suffered from neurotic disorder and a hysteric situation just as many children are suffering. On Friday, during the shooting of F-16 missiles, she fell on the ground due to the dreadful sound. Her father tried to help, but he couldn't. Then he held her in his arms hoping to rescue her in the hospital, but she died before reaching there."

He continued, "the Latin Patriarchate school [where Christine attended] did not face any damages, however, the Rosary Sisters School did face physical damages, since it is located near to the Preventive Security building. Today, no one attended Sunday Mass, no one was able to reach the church...we tried to find an alternative place in the school to do the prayers...I tried to gather the nuns with my own car. Today, the area in which the church is located was shelled, we cannot go there." Being part of the Greek Orthodox Church, the other congregation in Gaza, means that Christine and her family were looking forward to celebrating their Christmas on January 7th. Instead, they will bury Christine at a time where funerals are a rare commodity, for Gazans cannot keep pace with the mounting dead.

This is one child. One story. There are hundreds more and yet hundreds more about to happen tonight, and tomorrow, and the next day...until this madness ends. When the dust settles and the all the dead are buried, some in mass graves, Gazan's children will return to their overly crowded classrooms to find many empty seats. Another Palestinian generation is being destroyed by Israel's killing machine. The US cares less. The UN cares less. The EU care less. The Arab League cares less....

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