Shattered dreams for Gaza girl
Six months since Israel’s military onslaught, Gazans are still reeling from the shock as many descend further into poverty, struggling to rebuild their lives.
Dreams that will never come true
Those six months have been a nightmare for Mona. Each morning when she wakes up to her new reality she realizes yet again these are horrors from which she cannot escape. Her dreams evaporated the day Israeli bombs fell near her home and left her paralyzed.
Ever since she was a little girl Mona had dreamed of becoming a school teacher and having a family
Anywhere else in the world this would still be possible, but not in Gaza. Mona says her life changed in a moment:
“My life changed in a moment. Before I was injured I could walk, now I can’t. I used to type, now I can’t. I loved hanging out with my friends but now I can’t. I'm at home all the time. I still dream of becoming a teacher of the Koran, but I don’t know how.”
“I prayed for her to die” – motherRT met Mona six months ago when war came to Gaza. She was suffering from shock at El Shifa hospital which at the time was running desperately short of medicine and staff.
Her mother Sohayla Abu Thaher said then she’d prayed for her daughter to die as she shuddered at the life she’d lead in one of the world’s poorest cities.
“We Palestinians, we suffer as a nation,” she said.
“But my family paid a huge price. We lost everything in the war, even our clothes. My mother is more than a hundred years old and I have to take care of her and my daughter now. My heart is so sore. What future can Mona have?”
Question of war crimes still unanswered
Six months after Israel’s war with Gaza people are still trying to come to terms with their loss. For some, like Mona, it’s physical, but for many others it’s material. Most of the destroyed buildings have still not been rebuilt.
One of the questions still unanswered is whether or not Israel committed war crimes in Gaza. The UN says it did. An internal Israeli investigation conducted in May says its army did not. Israeli officials refuse to accept the UN version.
Political analyst Dr Mohsen Abu Ramadan says nothing has changed in Gaza since the war. The economy remains practically nonexistent and many people continue to live below the breadline.
“Nothing has changed in terms of development issues. Palestinians still depend on charity, activities provided by international and local organizations. Israelis still impose this hard economic situation. It’s now deteriorated because of the continuation of the siege.”
Just six months on, Hamas is back in control and their message is clear: they won’t shy away from another war with Israel, despite the destruction and devastated dreams it left in its wake.