Mon 27-May-2024

Gaza’s Eid Al-Fitr: Pain, suffering, and vanished joy

Friday 12-April-2024


From the heart of displacement tents, among the demolished buildings, atop the rubble of homes, and as far as the eye can see towards the landmarks of Gaza, of which only memories remain, the people of the Gaza Strip are celebrating Eid Al-Fitr this year with a mixture of sadness and sorrow for the destruction, killing, and genocide caused by the Zionist war machine, which has transformed Gaza into a place unfamiliar to its people.

In a scene where a sense of resilience merged with the overwhelming grief of the people of the enclave, the roar of aircraft in the sky and explosions on the ground mingled with the sounds of Eid takbeer (reciting Allahu Akbar) in the mosques that were established near the ruins of destroyed mosques or near shelter centers, amid a rainy atmosphere where the atmosphere of joy and decorations vanished, and children were deprived of new clothes and signs of happiness.

Takbeer (reciting Allahu Akbar) amid bombardment

The people of Gaza insist on asserting their right to prove their existence, as the Zionist enemy sought to eradicate them and displace them from their land. Therefore, they chanted the takbeer after bidding farewell to more than half a year of bombardment, killing, and direct targeting of humans, trees, and stones in Gaza, resulting in over 120,000 martyrs, wounded, and missing.

The rituals that used to accompany the celebrations of the people of Gaza, such as preparing “feseekh” (a traditional fish dish), “ka’ak” (a type of dates-stuffed biscuit), buying sweets and new clothes, were absent from the Strip. However, what the Zionist enemy could not achieve in this insane war, despite all the destruction, is the people’s determination to cling to their land and their right to resist the occupation until its defeat.

Greetings to the martyrs

According to our correspondent, the visits exchanged by Gazans every Eid had a different aspect this year. It was noticed in various areas of Gaza that people were going to cemeteries to visit the graves of martyrs, to pray for those they lost among relatives, neighbors, and friends. The pain is evident with the presence of thousands of missing individuals under the rubble, causing the hearts of their loved ones to ache, waiting for their recovery.

Citizen Bilal Atta says, “We performed the prayers, and our Eid is the day of our return to our homes, the day of defeating the occupation and stopping the genocide.” He adds, after taking his children to the Eid prayer, that joy is absent and Eid clothes are missing due to the occupation’s prohibition. People also lack the funds to meet their children’s basic needs, affirming that “there is no room for joy!”

As for citizen Mahmoud Arhim, he confirms that the pain of separation is renewed on this day. While he remained in Gaza City, part of his family was displaced to the southern area of the Strip. He struggles to communicate with his family through the phone.

Visiting relatives during this Eid seems difficult, as 90% of the population lives outside their homes, displaced in refugee camps.

Solidarity and compassion

Hamas, on its part, called for the days of Eid Al-Fitr to be an occasion for enhancing solidarity, compassion, resilience, and resistance until the defeat and eradication of the occupation. They extend their blessings to our people and our resistance in the Gaza Strip, acknowledging their steadfastness and sacrifices.

In a statement, Hamas said, “On this blessed Eid al-Fitr, our Palestinian people and our heroic resistance have written an epic saga of resilience, steadfastness, and continuous sacrifices over the past six months. They confronted a Zionist aggression and a genocidal war committed by a Nazi occupation with full partnership from the US administration, and with international silence and complacency in condemning and stopping it. This constitutes a flagrant violation of all human values, customs, international conventions, and divine laws.”

The Hamas Movement also expressed its condolences to “the convoys of martyrs of our people and nation, who ascended in the heroic Al-Aqsa Flood battle and on the path of liberating Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa.” It prayed to Allah for the swift recovery of the wounded and the ill, the “freedom of prisoners and detainees in the Zionist enemy’s prisons, and for our people and resistance throughout the homeland to soon witness near relief and clear victory, by the will and strength of Allah.”

Efforts to reach a ceasefire during the month of Ramadan or even during the days of Eid have failed due to Israel’s obstinacy and its disregard for all calls to stop the genocidal war, which has led to the martyrdom of more than 33,360 people and the injury of 75,993, in addition to thousands of missing individuals since October 7th of last year.

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