To My Unborn Children

To my unborn children,

I know you probably won’t be there to read this. Maybe I would be dead before you see the light. Or rather, witness how very inhumane and so unjust this world has become. I’ll just write anyway, maybe at least your elder brother or sister witnesses all that and read this.

Ever since I came to Gaza, I’ve been dreaming of a better life. Peaceful and quiet. No explosions or blood. No injuries or martyrs. Nothing but a regular peaceful life each and every one of us would wish for.

In Gaza, everything is different. In Gaza, Israeli F16s substitute birds. In Gaza, we sleep on the continuous buzzing coming from the ever-existent drones. We wake up to find that there’s no electricity. In Gaza, explosions are the sunshine and the smell of ash is the scent of the city.

Electricity barely comes in Gaza, where it’s very dangerous to live in. Every moment you live is considered a new life because it’s very dangerous and Israelis bring their toys over to Gaza and play with us the hard way.

My beloved unborn children, being a Gazan means that you’re strong willed, courageous, and like no other. As you grow up, you’ll learn all about the different kinds of weapons and arms both allowed and internationally forbidden. What’s different in Gaza is that Israel doesn’t distinguish its targets. Meaning, they kill anything that moves with a smile. Frankly, they would kill us more than once if possible.

Growing up in Gaza isn’t easy. Growing up in Gaza is a challenge. A quest. And the reward is a strong courageous personality. So brave to the point that you’d stand in front of a tank with a bare chest and a rock. Daring it to move forward yelling ‘over my dead body’. More like mashed if you want to know.

Another thing you’ll gain as a Gazan is that you’ll be able to distinguish the sounds of whatever that kills. Be a M-16, AK-47, .50 Cal, Shells from the Israeli warships in the sea, warplanes in the sky, tank shells, and the list goes on forever. Living in Gaza is a challenge of patience. Only the strong and the brave can survive. By survive, I mean living yet another day of struggle and a million hardships a day.

Last but not least, don’t leave Palestine. It’s where you belong. It’s where everything counts and where whatever little will make a huge change. Don’t leave Palestine because it’s my motherland. Your motherland. Don’t leave Palestine because at the end of the day, it’s all you’ve got left. Don’t leave Palestine even if you’ll be living on olive oil and thyme all your life.

PS: tell your mother that I love her so much. Kiss her cheeks and forehead for me.

With all my love,
Papa.

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About Nader Elkhuzundar

Nader Elkhuzundar is a commentator on Palestinian affairs and Co-founder of Beyond Compromise (www.beyondcompromise.com). Elkhuzundar occasionally freelances for The Guardian, International Business Times, and others. He's a social media enthusiast and tech savvy with particular interest in new technologies and analytics, and enjoys reading over Arabic coffee and dark chocolate.
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49 Responses to To My Unborn Children

  1. Modather Abo.zaid says:

    this is unspeakable .. 🙂
    one of the best posts i’ve ever read ..
    and B2zn Allah u’ll live to tell ur son all about it and to watch him growing to be “strong willed, courageous, and like no other.”
    u’ll live to teach him B2zn Allah all about Palestine and Palestinian land and to show him how hard we fought to free it from the “Zionist Occupy” ..

    3asht Falasten 7ora .. w Almagd ll Sohada2

  2. Follonier says:

    No words… just tears… tears for now and hope for tomorrow!!!!
    <3

  3. Widget says:

    <3 (no words)

  4. evanov says:

    Allah will always be with Gazan and my prayers too..

  5. walt kovacs says:

    wow. how did you get all that training in the worlds largest outdoor prison?

    and forget computers, you should be a writer of fiction

    • Nader K. says:

      Online courses and exams. Received the certificates by mail (took 4 months to arrive). I’d like to keep my main interest in computers (since I can make money out of it) and write in my free time 🙂

  6. Mohammed says:

    We the muslims of britain
    will never forget you and your martyrs gazans we support you forever in our hearts and minds keep blogging we r listening,watching and reading. GO GAZA PS beautiful poem should get published mashallah Nader.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Hey Nader my generation has left the world to ruins. We don’t care about what’s happening in the world and even worse we don’t care. We find more appeal in watching jersey shore than we do helping people. We allow propaganda and ignorance to fill our minds. The truth is that my generation is changing slowly but surely they are changing. Getting more active, starting to read more, starting realize that the bubble we live in(USA) isn’t reality. That more than half the word is starving and that our problems are so small. I’m sure its so hard to pick which million dollar home you want to live in. Point is I sincererly believe the world your children will live in we will be better. In fact I know it will its inevitable, because its in human nature to help one another that’s how Allah created us… Allah Bless Asalamu Alaikum

  8. andyp says:

    keep strong the west will soon wake up israels days are running out

  9. Wow!
    Just…wow!
    This is definitely the best piece I have ever read. May Allah gift you with the pleasure of seeing your child grow, and live like a true Palestinian.

    Stay strong akhi.
    🙂

  10. This beautiful, heartbreaking letter is “an eye” into the Heart of Our World in 2012, a cruel, brutal world where profiteers get rich selling the tools of war to both sides of every world conflict. DON’T ASK AGAIN why there are OCCUPY MOVEMENTS all over the World today. A new generation of people on this Planet WANT A DIFFERENT WORLD — ONE FIRST WITH JUSTICE AND SECOND WITH PEACE.

  11. John says:

    Greetings and very best wishes from another computer programmer, living in Ireland. Your writing is a strong weapon against the guns, planes, warships and propaganda that Israel uses to try to dehumanize all Palestinians. Stay strong!

  12. Jehad says:

    Allah ye7meekom o yonsorkom yaaa rab, you seem to be strong enough o inshallah PALESTINE WILL BE FREE 🙂

  13. Zeshan says:

    I’m from Pakistan. I’m living in United Kingdom but my heart beats for Palestine. You guys are the bravest of brave. No matter what there is no better than you people. I love Palestine and I love the people of Palestine. Great article brought tear to my eye.

  14. Elder says:

    I wrote my own letter to Nader’s children from a Zionist perspective.
    http://elderofziyon.blogspot.com/2012/03/to-naders-unborn-children.html

    Dear children,

    You don’t know me. And there are many people who want to make sure that you never will know me.

    Because there are many people – your leaders, your teachers, your journalists – who have much at stake in painting me and all Zionists as evil, genocidal murderers.

    In 2005, after much agonizing and soul-searching, Israel decided to uproot hundreds of Jewish, Zionist families from Gaza. Gazans were chafing under Israeli rule, and Israelis there were living in fear of terror attacks from Gazans. While the Jewish residents who lived there did not want to go, the Israeli government – led by the most right-wing prime minister in Israeli history – decided to forcibly remove them. Perhaps you can appreciate how much it hurts to lose one’s home.

    The reason Israel decided to do this was simple: it was hoped that such a move would help bring peace to the region. Without the Israeli presence there, people thought that Gaza could turn into a Singapore on the Mediterranean. There would be no more reason for rocket attacks on Jewish communities. The Palestinians could build their own paradise.

    Some wealthy American Zionists even paid millions of dollars to buy the greenhouses the Israelis were leaving behind, as a gift to help Gaza’s economy and to help jump start the metamorphosis of the sector into an oasis of peace. No one wanted peace more that Israel, and no one sacrificed more for peace than Israel. The lies you are being fed in school – that Israel is an expansionist state dedicated to stealing land from Arabs – were shown to be false, because Israel left Gaza for only one reason: in the hopes of bringing peace to the region.

    Things did not turn out that way.

    Militant groups in Gaza continued to shoot rockets at Israel. Hamas ended up taking over the area, killing hundreds of fellow Palestinians in the process. An Israeli soldier was kidnapped and hidden in Gaza.

    The leaders of Gaza – your leaders – never dismantled a single refugee camp. They imported thousands of weapons. They allied with Iran. They continued to threaten Israel and they continued to attack Israel.

    You may not believe this, but no one would be happier with a peaceful Gaza than Israel would. No Zionist wants to see anyone in Gaza suffer. Nothing would thrill Zionists more than to see a Gaza where both sides can freely cross the border to buy goods or work without fear of being murdered by the other. The IDF does not kill innocent people on purpose – ever. No Israeli celebrates when innocents are, invariably, killed. And, as much as you are taught otherwise, Israel spends tens of millions of dollars to ensure that innocent civilians would not be hurt in Gaza when it defends itself.

    Yes, Israel defends itself. And it will continue to do so. It is maddening that after the painful withdrawal from Gaza – a land that Jews have lived in, on and off, for over two thousand years – the peace that they yearned for never came. On the contrary, the rocket attacks on innocent Negev communities increased. Israel is a sovereign nation and it will not tolerate attacks on its citizens. And you know quite well that the thousands of rockets that come from Gaza are aimed squarely at Israeli civilians. Israel will defend itself, and she will not apologize for it.

    But she wishes she wouldn’t have to.

    Once upon a time, not long ago, there was the Erez Industrial Zone, where thousands of Gazans were employed and were able to support their families in dignity. It is no longer there, and the reason is because the terrorists that Gaza hosts and often celebrates would keep attacking it. The idea of co-existence and peace is not what Hamas or Islamic Jihad want.

    Once upon a time, after the 2008-9 Gaza war – the war that your leaders started with a barrage of rockets similar to those seen this past weekend, in what they called Operation Oil Stain, a full three days before Israel attacked – Israel built a field hospital to help those injured in the war at Erez. Your leadership forbade anyone from coming and being helped.

    Even today, while Israel is under fire – on the same day that your leaders shot mortars directly at the crossing where aid goes into Gaza – Israel did not close the crossing and sent hundreds of trucks over, because Israel does not want to hurt the innocent people of Gaza.

    The only people who are aiming their weapons at civilians, on purpose, are the terrorists that your leaders are supporting. The only people who celebrate the deaths of innocent civilians are those on your side.

    If you are willing to open your eyes, just a little, you will see what your leaders have done – that they have cynically hidden weapons in your mosques and neighbors’ homes, that they have created an electricity crisis and power shortage because they are placing their own political goals above your welfare, that they have raised entire generations on hate rather than wishes for peace.

    Israel wants peace, a real, lasting peace with all her neighbors. Your leaders have said, quite clearly and explicitly, that this is not what they want – they want to see the end of Israel.

    So here we are. Do you want Gaza to become a Singapore or an Afghanistan? Whichever you choose, it will come true, sooner than you think. And if you choose the right one, your own children will never need to hear machine guns or rockets or warplanes and they will be able to grow up in peace and prosperity.

    I wish you would get to know me. I don’t hate you. And I would prefer to be friends.

    Wishing you all long and peaceful lives where friendship can replace enmity and cooperation can replace hate,

    A Zionist

    • hosam says:

      open your eyes .. call things by its right name
      Israel does not defend itself .. Israel practices state terrorism
      Stop lying .. stop killing
      read few numbers and facts before ..
      in 2008
      after the end of the truce as long as six months had been reached between the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) on one side and Israel on the other sponsored by Egypt in June 2008 and broke the truce by the Israeli side.
      israel began operation on Saturday, December 27, 2008 at 11:30 am local time, 9:30 am GMT, and resulted in the death of 1,417 Palestinians, at least (including 926 civilians and 412 children and 111 women) and injuring 4336 others !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      isreal lost just 10 soldiers, Israeli soldiers and 3 civilians !!!!!!!!!!!!

      the first day of the attack , has the largest number of Palestinian victims in a single day since 1948; Israeli air strikes killed more than 200 Palestinians and wounded more than 700 others, which led to rename the events of the day the bloody massacre of Black Saturday

      the only one here who need to open his eyes is YOU ??!!
      if you want live in peace and love … why you live in other people’s land
      why you destroy there buildings …. why you destroy our mosques ??!!!

      really i don’t know if all the zionists are liars or you just still believe in the package of lies that carried from zionist generation to the followings

      finally ..
      Number of Palestinian children and civilians killed by Israel more than the number of Jews who died in gas chambers

      Israel is the biggest criminals of history
      Stop lying .. stop killing

    • Sarah Lith says:

      Israel confirms Hamas fired NO rockets (Cast Lead) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ixrYv5pUzps

      Israel decided to uproot hundreds of Jewish, Zionist families from Gaza so they could make of a concentration camp out of Gaza. Be happy that your beloved Zionists acted differently this time than in Jaffa.

      Beautifully written Nader… thank you and shalom!

  15. Nazzy says:

    Felistine will one day be free InshaAllah!
    Our thoughts and duas from all the activists in South Africa are with you!
    Damn ISRAHELL!!!

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  17. Martyr says:

    Our hearts, minds, hands and bodies support Occupied Palestine till Death!
    A fellow Lebanese brother 🙂

  18. Saji says:

    Beautiful!

  19. bowlerpie says:

    When I look at the world around me, sometimes I can’t forgive the world for what it does to my (and our) children. I wish your post could have a wider circulation – it says so much that needs to be said in a moving way.

  20. Najua Zainal says:

    Peace be unto you and so may the mercy of Allah S.W.T. and his blessings, brother Nader, family, and fellow Palestinians.
    Do accept my humble remarks and praise. Very well written, deserve praise and recognition. “In Gaza, explosions are the sunshine and the smell of ash is the scent of the city.” – Powerful handling of words formed, intense and vivid. Bless you for sharing what the rest can only vaguely imagine.
    The rest of the world is witnessing this continuance of atrocities, we’re praying hard. My dearest brother, every beginning and every ending is written in Al-Quran, have faith. Inshallah, Allah S.W.T. will hear us.

    Salam from Malaysia.
    Allahu Akbar! Allahu Akbar! Allahu Akbar!

  21. Noor says:

    Beautiful words, Allah bless you and all the people of Gaza, the bravest people on earth! Keep up being strong brother, and never forget that many people love Gaza, and you are all in our prayers, Inshaa’ALLAH the justice will come. With all my love from Iceland!

  22. Margaret says:

    Hi Nadz,I’ve read this now 3 times,so powerfully heartbreaking,inshallah,one day you can tell your children instead of writing to them.I hope to meet you one day in a free Palestine.xx

  23. Perla Ósk Kjartansdóttir says:

    Just beautiful! Peace and love from Iceland <3

  24. naazneen says:

    أسسلام عليكم ورحمةالله وبركات
    Nadar your blog brings tears to my eyes. I make dua that inshallah u will be able to tell this to your child yourself one day. I really admired the part where you told you child not to leave palestine that take a lot of courage and I must say I admire how brave you are. Nafdeeq ya filesteen. I will be coming to palestine in june with my parents and siblings my parents want us to feel what our brother and sisters are going through in palestine unfortunately I will only be spending 6 days. Wish I could meet you to learn more on Palestine want to get more involved in palestane awareness so that our children can one day live in peace inshallah.

  25. Lama says:

    While I sleep in my quite room, you are sleeping wondering where will the next bomb fall.
    While I go to work and enjoy it, you are wondering if you will ever find a job.
    While I move freely and travel, you wonder what can you do differently this day.
    While I listen to the sound of nature, you cover your ears to stop the sound of explosions.
    While I enjoy watching the cute smiling children going to school, you wait for the situation to calm down, to send yours.
    While our children draw flowers and birds, yours draw tears.
    While I dream of my children, you’re wondering if you will have enough days to see them.

    While I lie down and respond to you, I wonder if you will be alive to read it.

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  27. Bilha says:

    Beautiful, moving post. Truly touching

  28. Maria Almeida says:

    Thanks Nader for not cooperating with silence.

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  31. Mohammad says:

    Don’t leave palestine .

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