Friday, May 16, 2014

You want Return? Then MOVE

I couldn’t write about Nakba yesterday, I couldn’t bring myself to share the hopes a lot of people here –specially in the Ramallah bubble- have shared; hopes of Return. I don’t believe in it, at least not like this. Not when it’s little individual actions that are trying to do what a collective effort SHOULD do. Not when Nadeem Nowarrah and Muhammed Odeh are carrying that responsibility on their 17 and 15 year old shoulders.

“Nadeem Nowarrah and Muhammed Odeh were shot dead by Israeli snipers while they were protesting Israeli Occupation at Ofer Prison during their commemoration of Nakba.”

Return will not be implemented like this. Not with 15 and 17 year old kids throwing rocks in protest of the 66-year-old occupation at Ofer Israeli Prison.

And it sure isn’t by “celebrating” Nakba Day at al-Manara Square, while dancing Dabkeh joyfully to it, as if it was more of a celebration rather than mourning.

And sure as hell it’s not with the PA’s negotiations and stupid UN Resolutions.

Return requires an action, and this action requires a movement. There are almost 12 million Palestinians on this GLOBE. Almost half of them are scattered in different areas in Palestine (and what is now called Israel); in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Jerusalem, Palestine 1948 areas. And the other half are scattered around the world.

So, if I’m going to picture the action of Return implemented, it’s going to be these 6 million Palestinians scattered around the world united with the 6 million Palestinians here. Return requires all of us, here, abroad, dead, and alive.

It’s not Nadeem’s responsibility to implement what our ancestors and ourselves have failed to make happen. It’s not Muhammed’s responsibility either, nor Saji, nor Mu’taz.
It’s all of us.

This year we’ve lost our chance. And we’ve lost two young implementers of the near reality (calling it a dream will only make it harder to reach).

Next year should be a different story.

I don’t want to hear the words “celebrating Nakba” or “Happy Nakba (catastrophe) Day” or “Celebration of Return Festival”, or bringing a bunch of kids, put them together, and make them chant “We will return” in some Open Day activity.  That’s bullshit.

You want to return? Get off your ass, put on your Kuffieyeh, and forget about throwing rocks at Ofer Prison, we need you alive not dead, get all your family and friends and march down to any boarder holding you back from Return.

Physical, psychological, imagined, or any kind of boarder keeping you from coming back.

Whether they were the physical boarders between Palestine and Lebanon, or Egypt, or Jordan ...  cross them, smash them, break them.

Or if they were the disgusting hell points of the Israeli Occupation, keeping you away from Jerusalem, from your loved ones; torch it down, destroy it, don’t walk through it peacefully, but pierce through it, eliminate it.

I haven’t lived for long, almost 22 years, but if we’re going to keep crawling towards Return like this, and along the way lose lives that didn’t deserve to be lost, we’re never going to Return.

Return is an action that requires movement, so …  freaking MOVE!

Spreading awareness is okay, making a video about how incredibly innocent and nice Palestinian people are is cute, making a silent demonstration in a well-known American university is nice, but still it’s not movement.  We’re still standing still.

We need movement, you want Al-Awda\Return? Then take the ACTION of Return.

If you’re in Toronto, New York, London, Cairo, Damascus … book your flight ticket and mark it May 15th 2015.

Till then, the words of Mahmoud Darwish “on this land that which makes life worth living” shouldn’t even dare to be uttered by anyone. At the moment, it’s a land of death. It has nothing that is worth living for.

You want it to be worth something, come back to it, make it alive. Because at the moment, the only thing keeping it alive, is the blood of its young martyrs. The blood of Nadeem, Muhammed, Saji, Mu’taz … and the others that have been feeding this futile land for the past 66 years.

And it’s about time that those who are alive start making this land worth living. No more dead teenagers who didn't even have the chance to live life. 

Sitting comfortably behind your screens, microphones, and even the words –like the ones I’m writing right now- won’t bring you back here. It won’t implement Return.

The day when I -among million others- am going to witness thousands and millions of Palestinians marching and bringing life back to Palestine will come. I can see it, taste it, and hear it loud and clear.
But it won’t happen till we actually MOVE!

So set the date, May,15th, 2015.
It’s my, your, OUR day of Return.

May your beautiful souls rest in peace Nadeem and Muhammed,
and I’m sorry we let that happen to you, you shouldn’t have become martyrs, not now, not ever.

                                                             "Nadeem, 17, to the left. Muhammed, 15, to the right"

P.S. this might be another childish dream or outlet, but the need to hold on to something, anything; demands it violently.

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