January 8, 2009

Oxfam in Gaza

Oxfam's Mohammed Ali lives and works in Gaza and he's been posting on the situation there through the Oxfam newsfeed.  This, depressingly, from yesterday:
We have one day left of food and the nappies I bought two weeks ago are nearly gone. They are not good quality as little has been able to enter this strip of land since the blockade was imposed on us eighteen months ago. Bad quality nappies means unpleasant leakages, and for the last few days the little ones have had to be bathed in freezing cold water.
My sister who was with us the last time I wrote decided to return home in spite of our protests. She feared that with food reserves running out we might have to eat one meal a day rather than the two we have been having of late. At home she has a little food left, enough to keep her and her family going for a while longer.
We are now eleven, huddled together in my parents’ dining room. My brother and I and our families moved there, thinking that the first floor may be the safest option. There is a saying in Arabic, which says, ‘ death in a group is a mercy’, I guess if we die together maybe just maybe we will feel less of the pain than in doing so alone.
I have had 8 hours sleep since the beginning of this conflict; we can hear attacks almost every minute.
Strangely, as technology enables us to make the waging of war more and more impersonal it also makes the victims and casualties of war more and more intimate.   

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