Philistine…70 years of Palestinian Nakba: Let Freedom Ring
By: Leila Diab/Arab America Contributing Writer
The Palestinian flag (Arabic: علم فلسطين) is a tricolor of three equal horizontal stripes (black, white, and green from top to bottom) overlaid by a red triangle issuing from the hoist. This flag is derived from the Pan-Arab colors and it is used to represent the State of Palestine and the Palestinian people.
Dammi Palestine (my blood is Palestinian) by: Mohammed Assaf
May 15, Palestine Day, signifies the longing for freedom of the Palestinian homeland. On May 15, 1948, the state of Israel was created on Palestinian land owned by Palestinians. This day has become known by Palestinians as the Nakba (the catastrophe).
It was on May 15, 1948, that hundreds of thousands of Palestinians’ homes were taken care over by Israelis. They left their homes because they got frightened by the attackers; they fled with the hope to return when it calms down. Unfortunately, they lost their homes forever because Israel did not allow them to get back to their homes whose keys are still preserved for the day of return. Since May 15, 1948, they became permanent refugees in Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan. Over 800,000 of them were displaced, dispossessed, and suffered under the consequences of unimplemented United Nations resolutions, and international human rights laws.
For the last 70 years, always longed for the right to return to their homes in Palestine, and live in peace with their Israeli neighbors. They have only witnessed an Israeli military apartheid regime that builds miles and miles of walls which cages in Palestinian children and their families, kills and maims Palestinian men, women, and children in the Gaza Strip as they peacefully protest to live in freedom and end the occupation of their land, water siege, and the economic and medical strangulation of the human spirit.
According to UN article 7, “All are equal before the law and are entitled without discrimination to equal protection against discrimination violations of the UN Declaration and any incitement to such discrimination.”
For centuries, Palestine, the land of the Philistines, including Jerusalem, also known as the Holy Land has been held sacred to Christians, Muslims, and Jews, which is a pronouncement accordance throughout the world.
Today, 70 years later, Palestinians continue to blaze the freedom trail and raise their voices to be heard by world leaders to put an end to the ongoing deadly drone and sniper attacks against Palestinians of all ages in Gaza and the occupied territories of Palestine.
Palestinians will not be alone this May 2018. Many Palestinian cultural events, protest demonstrations, and marches will be held throughout the world to voice their concerns and solidarity that echoes: give peace a chance, end the occupation of Palestine and all crimes against humanity.
Many songs of Palestinian freedom, their existence, and their right to return home will rise to the undaunting 70-year Nakba occasion of human atrocities, with a wall advocating justice and freedom, not a wall of suffering.
Palestinian reliance and existence will remain stronger with hope for a better future for generations to come. Long live Palestine with its capital, Jerusalem!
Michael Heart, “Freedom”
The following poem dedicated to all Palestinians inside and outside Palestine:
After the Rainbow
By Leila Diab/Arab America Contributing Writer
Nebulous clouds, rain, sunlight,
Cloudy myopic visions,
Raindrops of sadness, and belonging,
Cleansed, washed away into the prism of life.
Yellow, gold, green, blue,
Colorful prism with equal archers,
A rainbow of inalienable human rights,
A Palestine Day utopian society,
A dream, a vision.
White, red, black and green, a Palestinian flag of karma (dignity).
A rainbow of divine intervention of peace,
A reflective path filled with sunlight,
Life’s beam of sustainable growth,
No occupation, no walls of separation,
Harvesting orchards of henna,
Planting the fruits of life,
Olive trees, lemon trees, and fig trees.
Palestine Day after the rainbow,
A ray of light, a ray of hope, a beam of light on a Palestinian homeland.
A vivid field of red poppy seed flowers blooming ever so brightly.
A ray of invincible Palestinian life.
We were born this way.
A ray of justice with peace,
A human prism,
Immersed in a colorful array of hope and joy.
A Palestinian rainbow after the storm,
The vast stratosphere of Life.
After the rainbow,
How many colors from a distance ray….
Red, green, black and white.
The colors of the Palestinian prism of life.
We were born this way.
Days of rainbows after the storm,
Without tears on a rainy or cloudy day.
Who shall paint the colors of our rainbows, the serene dreams of life,
After the storm?
The shining light of freedom,
The colorful prism rays on Palestine Day.
Because we were born this way, before and after the rainbows edge.