Thursday, May 26, 2005

RafahNews -Death and Disappointment

The latest from Mohammed is discouraging:

Ahmed Robin Barhoom, 24, was shot by an Israeli Army sniper close to the place in Yebna Camp near the border where Thomas Hurndall, the British photojournalist, was shot by an Israeli sniper while trying to bring two small children out of the line of fire back in May of 2003.

Details were initially sketchy, but Ahmed's neighbors couldn't believe this young man had come under Israeli fire. There was enough shooting that the ambulances couldn't reach him for a long time. The Israeli press, predictably, is calling Barhoom a militant. There are also reports of Palestinians wounded in clashes in Khan Younis and firings of rockets at Gush Katif, with heavy fire returned by the Israeli army. The Palestinian Cabinet issued an official protest of this violation of the truce by Israel and urged the militant factions to withhold retaliation. Spokesmen for Hamas and other militant groups urged their members to maintain the cease-fire despite the Israeli violations.

This same week, the famous Brazilian soccer player Ronaldo visited Ramallah in the West Bank and Tel Aviv on a mission to promote peace and sports. His plans to visit Gaza as well were aborted by the Israeli military closure. Few realize what a passion soccer is in Palestine—it requires nothing more than a soccer ball, a little open ground. A Rafah 12-year-old, Hamad al Nairib, wrote to the sports star urging him to visit the children of Rafah "where all the people love you."

Some might call Hamad lucky; he was present at the peaceful demonstration in Rafah a year ago which the Israelis shelled. A number of Hamad's friends were killed that day; he himself lost his left leg. Hamad had been a fervent soccer player with dreams of becoming "the Ronaldo of Palestine." Maybe it isn't fair to expect a brilliant athlete also to be a diplomat, politician, and PR expert—we'll never know how much or little of an effort Ronaldo made to persuade the Israeli army to let him into Gaza. But Hamad and his friends were disappointed yet again.

photos at http://www.rafahtoday.org

4 Comments:

At 10:28 PM, Blogger Erik Mann said...

great topic, keep up the great posts, MMA

 
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