I switch off the small table lamp next to my bed. The obscurity is total. A thick black curtain envelops the room.
I close my eyes, the darkness gets even thicker, like a heavy thick veil...
I plunge my head into the pillow. I hear myself breathe. I feel my heartbeat. I hear the obscurity.
I am wide awake in the darkness.
My body says "am tired, let me go"...and my mind replays those images, waking my body up, every time it dozes off...
I get up, turn on the computer, my mind is very alert, my body drudging behind...
I want to chase the pictures away. But I can’t. They have followed me into the darkness of my room, tugging at my sleeve, shouting “Wake up, wake up, you can’t go to sleep.” And here I am.
A boy not older than 12, paralyzed and totally dependent on a breathing machine.
The machine has stopped. No electricity. A total blackout.
The whole family takes turns pumping air manually to keep him alive. A vigil of artificial air.
Hospitals in total darkness. Children, adults, the elderly, anyone relying on a life saving machine is right now, as am typing this, in his/her agonizing moments...
The place – Gaza.
The people – The Palestinians.
My mind takes me to other images.
Sudan - A gathering strongly condemning. “Where is your democracy?“ shouts one. “This is criminal” shouts the other...
Egypt – “Open the Rafah border now.” “We don’t need Bush’s democracy.” “Enough”...
Jordan – Many holding a candle vigil sitting on the cold grounds, in the heart of the night. A spontaneous gathering of protest. Several kids holding the Palestinian flag, and a picture of SADDAM HUSSEIN right next to it. They gathered from Baqa'a, Al-Wahdat, East Amman, West Amman, Zarqa... and carrying his picture? Why do you think this is so?
“Why are you here?” asks the TV anchorman.
“I want people to become aware and stop this carnage” replies a 10 year old.
“I am here because I support the children of Gaza” says another 12 years old.
It is very cold out there, it is well past midnight.
Compare those kids to yours – can you do that? There is no comparison.
A few politicians appear, they talk the usual nonsense. They say “the Arab governments have to intervene in this humanitarian crisis.”
Did the Arab governments intervene when 500’000 Iraqi children died due to 13 years of the most brutal sanctions ever?
Did the Arab governments intervene when Iraq was bombed senseless and left with no electricity and no water for over 5 years now?
Did anyone apart from a few voices here and there, utter anything against the squeezing into death of the Iraqi population?
Until today, we get one hour max of electricity per day. If you have the means you buy fuel for a generator and you get 4 hours of electricity per day. And even that is considered too much by some. Like the asshole who wrote to me and said. "Well you have 3 to 4 hours, why are you complaining?"
We have been in a blackout for over 5 years...
I remember every time we could find candles to buy or those cheap kerosene lamps that suffocate you in the night, we felt we found a treasure.
Batteries for flashlights were like diamonds.
Did anyone ask after the thousands of Iraqis young and old dying in hospitals with no electricity?
Did anyone care about the kidney patient relying on dialysis, or the crippled relying on a breathing machine?
NO ONE gave a fuck.
And NO ONE gives a fuck today.
Because today was like yesterday and is like tomorrow.
17 years of genocide, a slow sure genocide and no Arab government gave a damn. No Muslim government gave a damn.
A population that went down from 25 million or so to 20 million, 5 million less and no one still gives a damn.
No, quite the contrary.
You found Egypt, Syria, Saudi Arabia and the rest... rushing to its further annihilation.
You found so-called Muslim countries like Iran and its thug proxies like the Hezbollahs of this world, not only keeping a total silence about it but worse, training more of them in the art of killing.
You found the international community shrouded into deafness.
And you found the so-called left snoozing away, resting their heads on tombs and dead bodies...into a deep sleep.
What happened to Iraq is happening to Gaza and to the whole of the Palestinian cause.
What happened to Iraq WILL happen again in Lebanon, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia...
Enough of your slogans, vile people.
Enough of your theories and your analysis.
Enough of your buying into clichés, banners and false flags.
Wake up. Wake up!
Wake up just like am awake right now.
Wake up like those 10 years old, fully awake in Sudan, Egypt and Jordan...
Wake up from the blackout you have fallen into, like some drinker who can’t hold his drink. Wake up from your amnesia, your indifference, your apathy, your complacency...wake up!
How many more Palestinians and Iraqis will it take for you to nudge you out from your slumber?
How much more blood and wasted innocent lives will it take you before your alarm bell rings?
How many more Iraqs and Palestines do you need?
How much more inter-cleansing does it take ?
You run like sheep after more banners and more slogans...
Look at the REALITY you bastards.
Look, look, look...
Why do you think I am still up writing ?
I want to slap with you this REALITY.
But as usual, you prefer slogans...easy made slogans, handy solutions made of WORDS.
You carry them like a key around your neck, but you can't open the fucking door.
And the door stares at you. And you can’t. You are paralyzed in the obscurity.
The darkness of a blacked out DEAD BRAIN.
You still hope that someone else will deliver or save...
You still hope that Mubarak, Abdallah, Khaddafi, Assad, Nasrallah, Ahmadinajad, Abbas, Hanieh, and God knows who else will deliver...and save.
You are fucking dumb.
You are worse than fucking dumb. You are a lazy, treacherous lot.
Stay in the obscurity.
But the little ones carrying the flag and the picture know it better than all of you put together.
They are sitting in the darkness, in the heart of the night, but they see.
Whilst you are not only deaf, but also blind.
Gaza, Baghdad, are in darkness.
Yes they are blacked-out.
Blacked out from your minds and hearts
You only allude to them when convenient, when it pays off...
The Enemy , we know who he is, who they are...
But do you see the rest ?
Do you see You ?
Do you see how your mimicking like monkeys, got us to where we are at ?
Of course you don’t. And you hardly ever will.
Gaza, Baghdad are in darkness.
And you are in total obscurity.
Stay asleep. Do stay asleep.
Your presence is like your absence.
Black, pitch black.
Painting : Iraqi artist, Sina Atta.