Festival for the Palestinian cause [Archives:2007/1031/Reportage]

March 8 2007
(from left to right)  Mohammed Iz al-deen al-sheikh Khleal is fond of the martyrs sight, Hiba; his sister, is proud of being a martyrs daughter.
(from left to right) Mohammed Iz al-deen al-sheikh Khleal is fond of the martyrs sight, Hiba; his sister, is proud of being a martyrs daughter.
The attendees as well as Palestinian children swear not to forfeit even single sand of the holy land.
The attendees as well as Palestinian children swear not to forfeit even single sand of the holy land.
By: Nisreen Shadad
Landmarks divided and dignity trampled, mosques destroyed and sisters, as well as children, abused and tortured. From the bombardment of Iraq and Lebanon, to Afghanistan and mass graves in Bosnia and Kosovo, to human rights abuses in Kashmir – if these don't anger Muslims, then what will?

The Palestinian Women's Union inaugurated the seventh “Palestinian Children Awakening the Ummah” festival on March.1, attended by many legal and political activists, as well as Deputy Council members, mosque imams and the family of Waleed Khalid Mesha'al (Khalid Mesha'al is the Head of Hamas Political Bureau, lived in Syria). The festival was held under the auspices of Sheikh Abdullah bin Hussein Al-Ahmar, in coordination with the Ministry of Culture.

The festival reflects the insistence of Palestinian children. “We've reached the conviction not to cede our rights. We'll go on, whether to win the victory or be martyred,” declared Umm Abdulrahman Muneer, organizer of the celebration.

The event included several songs reflecting the zeal of Palestinian children's hearts, although Israel kills them by undertaking massacres without sparing women and children. Even when the bullets, missiles and bombs destroy their homes, it never breaks their spirits.

“I'm without an identity, a home or a father – just as my enemy wants me to be. However, I will say as my martyred father said, 'We will obtain the victory. We are returning to you, Palestine,'” Hiba Al-Sheikh Khalil declared came with her mother and little brother and sister from Syria, adding, “My father taught me to be proud of being a martyr's daughter.”

Iz al-deen al-shaikh Khaleel was one of the unique Mujahedeen in Palestine,”My father was a mujahed in Palestine. He contacted Ahmed Yaseen; the previous leader of Hamas group, in a clever manner by having my mother sent letters in the form of capsules. She then sent them with one of the youths into the dead places because nobody knows who sent the letter or the information inside such capsules except the leaders at that time, Yaseen and Yahya Ayash; was a member and chief bombmaker of the Hamas organization.

“Occupation forces arrested my father in 1992 and sent him to Marj Al-Zuhoor in Lebanon. He tried to return to Palestine, but he couldn't, so he traveled to Syria. I was born in 1994 and we all lived all there. However, my father was far from his homeland and his heart was there with Yaseen and the other mujahedeen. They contacted each other, but I don't know how. In 2004, Zionists foisted a bomb into his car, and when assured that he was inside, they detonated it.”

“What I like the best during this festival is when the boys carry the martyr,” 10-year-old Mohammed Izadeen Al-Sheikh Khalil commented.

Mesha'al noted, “All of us gather under Palestine's shade to renew the conviction before Allah not to forfeit a single grain of sand because it is the prophets' dwelling and the fondness of the saints' hearts. It is Al-Faruq's [second caliph Omar bin Al-Khattab] conviction to us that we save it and keep it Islamic. All Muslims should gather in support of this holy land. We should moan when it moans until it is returned to Muslims.”

“Even children aren't protected, as they are killed and tortured. Palestinian children are suffering and living under severe emotional strains. Although they live in such pain, they stand firmly, without fear, hesitation or retreating,” he added

“Al-Aqsa Mosque faces several plans to destroy it and build the temple. The issue isn't only ours, but it's an issue for every Muslim in the world,” he urged.

He concluded, “Palestine will never be returned unless we as Muslims come back to our religion and apply Islamic instructions. Not only this, we need to feel the pain of others. As much you are late in coming back, the Muslim victory will be late. We won't relinquish the right to prostrate in Al-Aqsa's mihrab.”

A play also was performed to talk about confronting the occupation. A little girl played the role of the mother's daintee. She explained the feelings of a mother when her son is arrested and tortured, displaying the strong faith of a Palestinian woman who encourages her child, as well as adults, to fight bravely and never return unless he achieves victory and brings back their homeland.

Another play reflected the irony Palestinians live in as they await international legitimacy to return their homeland. “Leave the delusions of peace because we are dealing with those who only know how to transgress,” one player said before saying goodbye to her child and going to fight.

A third play explained Palestine's value to all Muslims, declaring, “It's a holy land concerning the night the Prophet Mohammed(pbuh) ascended to the seven heavens, so when will you get angry?”

At the end of the festival, Hussein Abdullah bin Hussein Al-Ahmar, noted, “Children's stones represent a unique picture of heroism. With their small stones and greater than normal steadfastness, Palestinian children make their enemy afraid to face such children with their small stones.”