“When I had my final and complete disillusionment with my country (Israel)”

by Alon Mizrahi

When some things end in your life, often there is a certain moment, a certain episode, where you know you cannot do it any longer. You know it’s over.

I had my final and complete disillusionment with my country the summer they shot and killed 223 and wounded thousands of demonstrators using live fire during the ‘The Great March of Return’.

Every weekend, from March 2018 until December 2019, Gazans would gather along the border with Israel, with thousands and thousands in attendance. They wanted to break the siege and attract the world’s attention to their plight and oppression under so many years of brutal occupation, with no end in sight.

They were quiet demonstrations: no Israeli soldier was hurt in any of them (there may have been one case of counter-violence by Palestinians, and maybe not even that).

Israel’s murderous overreaction that time was placing tens, or maybe even hundreds of snipers in positions overlooking the border and the adjacent Gaza lands. Those snipers shot and shot and shot people in unbelievable numbers. on May 14th, 2018, 52 Palestinians were killed in one demonstration.

Rouzan al-Najjar, a 20-year-old nurse, was sniped to death two weeks later, on the 1st of June. She was hundreds if meters away from the fence. Her death may have been what broke me.

Or maybe it was the complete obedience of everyone in the IDF. No one said: we cannot do that. This is insane. No one felt bad about it. I felt like I was losing my mind.

Or maybe it was the big live concert at the center of Tel Aviv that very summer, given by Israel’s fresh Eurovision winner, a day or two after one of the bloodiest weekends in The Great March of Return. It was a big deal, and everyone was happy and celebrating and proud.

On Local Call, the Hebrew version of +972 Magazine, I wrote an article titled “Accept that it is over”. In that article, I also wrote that I was not going to vote in Israeli elections again, as there was no point, particularly as so many people who are ruled by Israel cannot vote.

2018 seems like so long ago now. It was before Covid, before October 7th, before the genocide. But it was that summer, that year, that I knew I lost my country.

And the absolutely beautiful, angelic face of Rouzan al-Najjar brings tears to my eyes to this day. To this moment. It is such a heartache. Such a loss to this world. Such a stupid, monstrous crime.

There has to be justice for Palestine someday. There simply must be.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Follow us on Twitter


Follow us on Twitter