The Terror Journal

A Journal on Terrorism and Genocide

Tell them who my children were – Dr. Abuelish

Of all the tragedies to befall the Palestinians, few have been as utterly, utterly and utterly heartbreaking as the story of a Palestinian doctor who lost three of his daughters in an apparent Israeli strike in Gaza on Friday. A niece of the doctor was also killed, and another daughter and another niece were seriously wounded.

Dr. Ezzeldeen Abu al-Aish has been speaking movingly on Israeli television of the loss of his daughters, Bisan, 20, a business student who had participated in a peace camp with Israeli youth in the U.S., Mayar, 15, and Aya, 14, and his niece, Nur, 17.

Fluent in Hebrew, Abu al-Aish had spent many years working with Israeli hospitals. During the three-week Gaza war, he has frequently been interviewed on Israeli TV about the conditions on the ground in Gaza. Abu al-Aish’s home is in the Jabaliya refugee camp, north of Gaza City and near the border. An Israeli army spokesman said that IDF solidiers had apparently been returning fire from Palestinian fighters who had fired on them from the area.

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Israeli TV viewers witnessed a phone call from Abu al-Aish to a television journalist Friday night in which he wailed, “My daughters have been killed!” Visibly moved, the journalists proceeded to assist Abu al-Aish in getting injured family members across the Gaza border for emergency medical assistance in Israel.

Adding to Abu al-Aish’s grief, however, he was jeered by several angry Israelis on Saturday while talking to reporters at the Chaim Sheba medical center in Tel Hashomer after making an emotional plea to Israelis “to live together” with Palestinians. The confrontation occurred hours before Israeli PM Ehud Olmert announced a unilateral Israeli ceasefire in Gaza, possibly bringing an end to the conflict.

Israel’s Y-Net news site identified one of the jeering Israelis as the mother of three IDF soldiers serving in Gaza, and quoted her yelling, “Why is he engaging in propaganda? He’s talking against Israel at the Sheba hospital. You should all be ashamed. All my children are serving in Gaza. Who knows what he had at his home? What’s wrong with you, have you all gone crazy? My son is in the paratroopers, who knows what you had inside your home, nobody is talking about that. Nobody is talking. Who knows what kind of weapons were in your house. So what if he’s a doctor? The soldiers knew exactly. They had weapons inside the home, you should be ashamed. I have three soldiers, why are they firing at them? All of you should be ashamed.”

Afterwards, Abu al-Aish continued speaking about his daughters, according to Y-Net:

“They participated in peace camps everywhere. Were they armed when they were killed? They were not armed with weapons, but rather, with love, love for others. They planned to travel to Canada. I got a job in Canada and they wanted to come with me. Why did they ruin my hopes? My children.

“I turn to all of you, to the entire world, so you know that my children were the ultimate price, and I don’t want anyone to taste what I suffered. I want them to be the ultimate price for a ceasefire, that’s what I want. The Israeli government should tell the truth. I want my children to be the victims of peace…I am armed with love and peace. This is what I’m armed with. My children were armed with love and peace.”

Abu al-Aish, 52, reportedly lost his wife to Leukemia four months earlier.

Source: Time/JTA

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