Thursday, May 24, 2007
Palestinians inspecting the damage to a grocery store hit in an Israeli air strike in Gaza City, early on Thursday. (AP)
And we sleep
"......But this time, the "target" wasn't some distant building or family gathering hall in Shija3iya or Jabaliya, it was a money changer on my very street, Omar al-Mukhtar, in Gaza's Remal neighbourhood. And the supermarket next door.
After things calmed down, I dozed off, only to be shocked out of bed at around 3am by a thunderous explosion, another attack. It shook us from our insides. My mother became hysterical, flailing her arms and screaming uncontrablly. We hugged each other, I tried to calm her down. "Its ok, its nothing, maybe an F-16..its ok".
But it was not ok. This explosion was closer than ever before. At first we thought maybe the "target" was a store in our building. It turned out to be another money changer only a few shops down from our house, no more than 50 metres. The store was leveled.
And then there was nothign left to do but sleep. But there was a horrible, sinking feeling in my stomach, the result of panic and fear and ugly certainty of it all. It took a few hours for the knots in my stomach to slowly unwind and settle. I felt nauseous.
What exactly the Israeli army is "targeting" is a mystery. But of course the media machine spins it as "Hamas targets". This is how it read the next morning in Haaretz-including a note on how the attacks resulted in "no damage or casualities". I thought, maybe the author shoudl come to Gaza.
The popular thinking seems to hold that they have simply run out of "legitimate" targets-whatever the hell that is anyway (MPS? Homes?)-and so have now resorted to bombing things like moneychangers and supermarkets. This is according to an Israeli army general himself in the radio, who said his army really did not know what else to strike.
And there is nothing left to do but sleep."