I’m travelling through the Middle East with two young children and it’s hard enough. I’m in airplanes, while Gazans are being bombed by them. We’re regularly given food and water, while Gazans have supplies cut off or bombed. My heart breaks when I think of the Palestinian people, bombed and besieged by modern militaries, and being slandered by mass media. I don’t just hope they survive this, I hope they fucking win.
I feel such an impotent fury, watching an open genocide. It hits me in my most intimate moments. When I’m giving my children water, when I feed them, when I tuck them into bed at night. These are precisely the moments denied to Palestinians, indeed, these are the moments the White Empire actively destroys.
This is the horror that the White Empire is making the world witness — locking over 2 million people in a cage, cutting off food, water, and medicine, and then bombing it with more force than their other war crime, Hiroshima. I experience their terrorism as a parent, but it is no less terrifying to imagine as a completely able-bodied man who still doesn’t want his body painfully destroyed, nor to witness his family and friends killed all around him. I just feel the unrelenting trauma-television as a father, every time I care for my own children. That’s where they get you with their imperial terrorism, it literally hits so close to home.
Every time I give my children water I think of the children in Gaza dying thirsty. To not be able to give your child water when they’re thirsty; I cannot imagine such torment, but imagine it I must. I think of the Gazan Dr. Ghassan Abu Sitta. He said, “After his last surgery Annas was thirsty. I got him some water and helped him drink. That will be my lasting memory of him. The boy was thirsty in his last moments.” The water in Gaza was unhealthy before, during the regular Israeli siege, but now Israel has cut off water supplies and is bombing entire water tanks. It’s a genocidal massacre. Israel’s War Minister called Palestinian’s animals, but who would even do this to animals? This is not some anomaly, some isolated war crime. This is what Israel — White Empire’s most violent and atavistic colony — has done since its founding. As an old inscription on a water fountain reads:
In memory of my grandmother
Who died alone and thirsty
After we were forced out of Lydd [Palestine] On July 13, 1948
The genocide of Palestinians didn’t come out of nowhere. History didn’t start on October 7th. It started years ago, Israel has been perpetrating a continuous, ongoing Nakba, a catastrophe, reaching fever pitch in the absolute massacre of Palestinians in Gaza in 2023. Water is life and — to the Palestinian people — water has always been actively destroyed and denied. It’s not just the killing. It’s the denial of life.
Whenever my children eat or, worse, don’t eat, I think of the children of Gaza who are starving right now. I think of the fathers waiting in line for bread, as warplanes bomb the bakeries. As Abdalhadi Alijla said:
I just called my family. They haven’t eaten since yesterday. My six-week-old nephew is crying because there is no milk( his mother trying to survive him as long as possible); his mother only has enough for three more days. People are desperately crying out for just bread. This is happening in 2023, in full view of the civilized world.
Israel is openly starving people to death, in front of the whole world. They bomb bakery after bakery. They stain the bread with blood or martyrs. As Ahmed Alnaouq said, “This is Sami Ashour. He went out with his son Abdullah to find food. Israel killed both of them. They died hungry.”
As the journalist Bisan, via One Ummah United said:
Even if we survive the white phosphorus, even if we survive the bombing, in the schools, in the hospitals, in our homes, there’s no food! There’s no water. There’s no clean food, there’s no clean water to drink. All what we have is the salty water from the sea! Now the sea is all what we have. They are trying to kill people by hunger. By making them thirsty and sick. They are trying to kill a million people by hunger. We do not have anything to eat… We are dying because of hunger. There is no aid. There is zero aid that enters the north. A million people are in the north! There is no food, no water.
What is this? This is a medieval siege using modern weapons, openly supported by mass media. It is pure, historical evil and the future will not absolve those who support or even bothsides it. Israel and America are starving people before our eyes, and we can hear their cries in real time. And let me be clear about ‘they’, let me use the active voice. The colony Israel and American and European are doing this, as they have done across the world for centuries. That is the entity I collectively call White Empire. Their wretched colonialism never stopped and they never repented. These are Nazis that won, only we don’t call their holocausts holocausts, because they do them to colored people. These unrepentant colonizers use the most modern weapons and to do the most brutal things and, as always, they call their victims savages and their victory ‘civilization’. The mask is off now and we can see what murderous liars they really are.
They are starving people to death in a concentration camp. As Euro-Med Monitor reports, “As part of its ongoing war for the fifth week in a row, Israel has sharply increased in recent hours what can only be described as a war of starvation against civilians in the Gaza Strip… the Israeli war of starvation has taken very dangerous turns, including cutting off all food supplies to the Northern half and bombing and destroying factories, bakeries, food stores, water stations, and tanks throughout the entire enclave.”
This campaign of mass starvation is happening while the whole world watches. I see what the people I follow are eating, and it’s nothing now. This is actual terrorism, and it’s premeditated murder. In a November 2021 UN vote on the human right to food, only two countries in the whole world voted against it. America and Israel. These ghouls do use food as a weapon of war, and now they’re doing it in front of everyone. It’s premeditated genocide. I see the horror reflected every time I look at my own gene pool. Oh, to be a father that cannot feed their hungry child. There are things worse than dying.
When I put my kids to bed they’re annoying sometimes, but I have to remind myself how lucky I am. I am here to put them to bed, and they will stir from under these shrouds in the morning. I am not a father screaming through rubble for his children, or holding my child’s body in front of cameras to prove that they died. My children are not shivering alone on a hospital floor where no one knows their name, because their whole family has been murdered. There’s a medical acronym for this now, WCNSF. As Medicines Sans Frontiers Dr. Tanya Haj-Hassan explains:
There’s an acronym in the Gaza Strip right now, you know, I’m a pediatric intensive care doctor, I’ve seen a lot of suffering in my career. There’s an acronym that’s unique to the Gaza Strip and it’s WCNSF. Wounded Child, No Surviving Family. And it is used not infrequently in the last three weeks. It was coined in the last three weeks. One physician told me a few days ago that a little girl came in wounded, and she had a piece of paper in her pocket that she handed to him. He sent me a picture of the piece of paper. It had 27 names on it. She said, “these are the members of my family that were with me in my home. Please look for them. Please look for them under the rubble.” Don’t look for this one,” and she points to the name of her sister. “I know she’s already dead.” This is a 10-year-old little girl. Wounded Child, No Surviving Family should not exist as an acronym.
This is hard to write. This is hard to transcribe. Imagine how hard it is to live? Imagine how hard it is to die this way. Imagine how hard it is for the doctors, trying to stitch together a population that greater powers are trying to physically tear to shreds? I think about this every night as I put my kids to bed and I want to cry. My children are not traumatized by the constant, constant bombing, they are not burnt to the bone with white phosphorus, they are not covered in dust and blood with no water to wash it off, they have not known such death from such a young age. They are not forever traumatized. I look up and know that the roof won’t fall in on them, that they won’t die slowly over many hours, while the people trying to rescue them are bombed, and while the ambulances that come are bombed as well. Palestine is a place where even grave-diggers are bombed. This is the craven depth of Israeli war crimes. My kids sleep peacefully at night, but this is the nightmare they have unleashed as I doom-scroll through the night. I watch a little girl being pulled out of rubble and asking “Are you taking me to the cemetery?!" The man saving her replies, “No my dearest, you are alive, and beautiful as the moon.”
Israel has destroyed 50% of the houses in Gaza and they’re not stopping. They have said they want to destroy Gaza and cleanse the population, and they’re doing it. As much as the western press lies about ‘they wouldn’t possibly do these terrible things’, Israelis openly and officially says terrible things and do them in plain sight. They have talked about making Gaza uninhabitable and forcing Palestinians out, and that’s precisely what they’re doing. All the stuff about freeing hostages and killing Hamas is bullshit. They killed their own hostages on October 7th and are doing it now. And they’re not degrading Hamas’s military capability at all (thankfully). Even the US Pentagon says that “operations so far have not come close to destroying Hamas’s senior and middle leadership ranks.” Because that’s not what Israel is doing. They’re targeting civilians on purpose. They’re doing genocide.
Israel controls the Gaza Strip’s population registrar and knows where everyone lives. They are targeting and killing journalists, doctors, and their entire families. They are bombing entire apartment complexes, refugee camps, schools, hospitals, universities, absolutely everything. They are trying to kill as many Palestinians as possible and make entire concentration camp uninhabitable. While they hand out guns and pogrom people in the West Bank. Israel is doing what Israel does, destroying and stealing people’s homes. They are doing what colonizers do, genociding natives and stealing their land. There’s nothing new about this carnage besides the technology used to incite and carry it out. As the detested Israeli Prime Minister said,
“You must remember what Amalek has done to you, says our Holy Bible. 1 Samuel 15:3 ‘Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass’,” Netanyahu said.
Israel is trying to destroy Palestine forever and steal their land. They don’t care about hostages and they don’t care about civilians. That’s precisely who they’re bombing.
The Impossibility Of Caring
I think of this as I fly over the warzone, though occupied Qatar. We miss our connecting flight and it’s hard enough. It’s hard enough taking care of children in a situation where everyone is trying to help. How much harder when the most violent powers in the world are trying to hurt? I think about Palestine as I try to keep my own kids constantly fed and watered, find them safe places to rest, and keep them entertained and happy as much as possible. I think how this is impossible for every father in Gaza right now, and in occupied Palestine as a whole. It’s heartbreaking on so many levels, but I think about it as a father.
Our children don’t ask to be here on Earth. The least we can do is make things comfortable. But then I think about the lament of Ahmed Abu Artema, mourning his son murdered by Israel. He said:
My beloved angel, Abdullah. Perhaps God knew that your innocence, your kindness, your tenderness, your mercy, your soul overflowing with goodness, and your sensitive feelings would not bear to grow any longer until you realized the extent of the ugliness, evil, and corruption that has spread in the world, so He preferred you to what He had in a house of safety and peace in which there was no fear or worry. I have nothing but contentment and submission, for God is more merciful to you than to me.
I cannot imagine horror like this, I yet I must imagine it. The genocide of Gaza is being relentlessly broadcast across the world. It’s really like they want us to see. This is how they communicate power, through murdering the powerless, and making us feel powerless to stop it. That’s how they let us know our place in their world. And this is why the answer is not simply ‘why can’t both sides get along’.No. Israel should not and cannot exist. Just look at it. Israel doesn’t commit war crimes, it is a war crime. Palestine must be free, from the river to the sea, and the American Empire too must fall. Just look at what they do. This cannot just go on, and it won’t just stopped. It has to be resisted and revolted against, as the brave Palestinians are doing.
Self-Defense For Palestinians
Now you might want to stop reading here, because I’m about to get radical.
I’m not one of those people who condemns ‘both sides’, thus preserving the status quo. On one side we’ve got the most violent Empire in world history and its most violent colony. On the other, we’ve got fighters running around in track bottoms with homemade bombs, taking out tanks with their bare hands.I’m with the tracky bottoms.If you’re wondering whether this means I support Hamas, then yes, I do.I support all the groups fighting for the liberation of Palestine, and I support the anti-colonial revolt of the Al Aqsa Flood.Just look at what they’re up against. Just look at what they’re fighting for. These freedom fighters have been more than proportional. They hit primarily military targets, and oppressed groups have the right to armed resistance according to the UN.Israel, as an occupying power, hasno right to self-defense at all. In fact, they have the duty of care, but they offer only carnage. Palestine needs armed defenders against these colonizers, and thank God they have some.
All the lies about Hamas’s rape and brutality are just lies, the same lies that have been leveled at slave rebellions and revolts throughout all colonialism. All these lies are really confessions, as Israeli kills thousands of babies, holds millions of people hostage, and continues all the rape and torture they usually do in their prisons. Why would I condemn the people fighting these bastard colonizers? I’m colonized too. They’re fighting for me also.
It’s not on me to tell the Palestinians to liberate themselves more politely. I’m not going to wring my hands and offer pointless hopes and prayers to Palestinians, while condemning the people actually fighting. I offer my support to their liberation forces, and I hope they fucking win.
Too many people bemoan the state of Palestinian people, and then condemn them trying to defend themselves. I won’t. I won’t condemn the violence of people born into a concentration camp turned extermination. The Palestinian people have the right to self-defense, and they’re fighting an evil empire that’s an offense to humans, gods, animals, land, and the entire planet. While Jews certainly have the right to live in Palestine, Zionists have no right to colonize the entire land and kill and oppress the native population. And Americans and Europeans have no right to be involved here at all. Palestine will be free, from the river to the sea, inshallah. The colonizers can fuck right off.
That’s my fervent hope and the Palestinians have my fervent support, but I know it’s cold comfort. As I give my children water, as I feed them, as I put them to sleep, that’s all that matters, and that’s precisely what Palestinian parents cannot do. The only relief right now is martyrdom. So many precious children just like my own children are simply gone. Every single child that lives in Gaza is traumatized.
Again, this is not to lessen the death and suffering of adults and adult men, not to mention the wanton Israeli destruction of the natural world. It’s just that I feel all this ‘civilized’ terrorism as a father. It gets me in my intimate moments of caring, and it cuts so deep. In this never-ending moment of suffering and injustice, we are all Palestinian. So I wish them water, I wish them food, I wish them shelter, and I wish their fighters victory and protection against the great evil that has colonized their land, poisoned their water, and brought death from the air. If not now, then someday, Palestine will be free. The great White Empire and all of its illusions of military and moral power are crumbling in front of our eyes. At great human sacrifice, all the illusions of ‘western civilization’ are being washed away and all that’s left is greed, guile, and genocide, as it always was. It’s all getting washed away, following the great Al Aqsa Flood.