I almost feel as if I’m in a twilight zone. I just got through watching Snapchats #TelAviv Live’s feature, in which users submitted short clips of their fantabulous amazeballs days strolling through Tel Aviv, drinking Mai Tai’s, riding roller coasters, eating shawarma on a “typical Tuesday” (isn’t shawarma Arab?). We got to see weddings, birthdays, concerts. We heard a man exclaim, with open arms in jubilee: “We have EVERYTHING in Tel Aviv!” We saw a bikini-clad girl writing “Tel Aviv” in a big heart she made in the sand at the beach.
I remember these little boys playing football in the sand, killed by an Israeli pilot who claimed he mistook them for Hamas.
Syed, 12, and his brother Mohamed, 11, along with six cousins were those targeted. Mohamed and 3 cousins were murdered.
“For the son I lost, my tears will never dry,” says Syed’s mother.
“Those left behind are lost like those who died.”
Syed cannot sleep. Syed cannot go to school, because the other children remind him of his brother. His cousins who survived have attempted suicide and lash out violently, experiencing nightmares and bed-wetting.
The 2014 war in Gaza killed more Palestinians than any other year since the Israeli occupation began in 1967.
According to UN figures, 2,314 Palestinians were killed in 2014 and 17,125 were injured. 551 Gazan children were murdered. At least 3,436 Gazan children were injured – 10 percent of whom suffered a permanent disability as a result. 400,000 children need counseling. 20,000 homes are destroyed. 100,000 people remain displaced.
Up to 89 percent of Gazan parents told Save The Children UK that their children “suffer consistent feelings of fear” while more than 70 percent of children in Gaza worst-affected areas “worry about another war.” More than half of the children are afraid to go to school.
“Some explained that they are afraid to leave their homes; others feel unsafe in school buildings, some of which were damaged or destroyed in the conflict. Some children who have had to move to new areas after their homes were destroyed feel too anxious to try and make new friends,” according to the study.
It seems Snapchat forgot to feature any of this.
It’s great that Israelis are celebrating weddings – how many Palestinian widows did their government create? Their children get to scream in joy on roller coasters – how many Palestinian children are screaming on emotional roller coasters of their own? So much leisure time in Tel Aviv! I’m sure the Palestinians would like to rebuild their homes in their free time – except no cement has been allowed in Gaza since the attacks.
I should hope that no one living in Palestine watch this feed. Exactly one year after the assault, I cannot imagine the feelings of pain a Palestinian might experience, watching their occupiers living such a care-free life, as they continue to suffer the consequences of war-crimes.
I am absolutely disgusted. What a distasteful move on the part of Snapchat.
I ask my readers, Jewish, Muslim, Christian, man, woman, Republican, Democrat…where is our humanity? What happened to us? When did it become okay to turn a blind eye to injustice? Why in God’s name did this happen? What kind of heartless people are running Snapchat? Seriously, politics aside, this is gross.
Snapchat should feature Gaza:
Because it’s only fair, right?
IF WE WASH OUR HANDS OF THE CONFLICT BETWEEN THE POWERFUL AND THE POWERLESS, WE SIDE WITH THE POWERFUL – WE DON’T REMAIN NEUTRAL.