RAMALLAH, June 19 (JMCC) - In Gaza's Juhr al-Dik, in a swathe of land under constant Israeli military surveillance and bombardment, the Abu Sa'ad family struggles to maintain normalcy. In this account
, a reporter visits the family and their damaged home.
Nasr shows me what remains of his house. He carefully tidies the rubble as we stumbled through, as though he was straightening a pillow. The bedroom, which used to contain all of his wife’s possessions, is utterly destroyed. All that remains, aside from the shards of splintered mirror and unusable furniture, is a dusty Quran. All evidence that she ever existed has been obliterated.
There’s no longer a roof. The staircase is cluttered with unidentifiable pieces of house corpse and the central wall to the house has so many bullet holes that it looks like a sieve. It seems voyeuristic, as though I’m witnessing a vulnerability that is taboo. I reach the upstairs and I’m greeted by half-walls in every direction. This should be a landing, with rooms separated by walls. But I can view the inside of each room simultaneously, through the innumerable rifts in the walls. I see right into the decimated bedroom through a hole taller than me and out to the garden, through another. I am overcome with such a sense of paradox that my brain physically begins to ache. Through the bomb-hole to the outside, I can see red flowers and cucumber plants. I see a freshly-harvested wheat field and a grazing cow. The juxtaposition does not make any sense and I will never, ever be able to reconcile the two images with one another.