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Monday, December 29, 2008

Shadows

It is hard for me sometimes, when reflecting on the past, to believe that all the hassle I’ve been through in my life actually happened. Very rarely I am contemplating on things like this but when it happens it never fails to amaze me. A war survivor, an alcohol addiction survivor, a marriage breakdown survivor and another million and zillion things – that’s all me. As a war survivor for sure I could say something about what does it mean to live a life plagued by bombing, shelling and with unspeakable atrocities all around the place.

That is why – when I see what is happening now in Gaza area, in Palestine, a cold shiver rushes down my spine. If anybody is not familiar about the place let's just say that it is the most densely crowded area in the world. In other words, people are living there literally next to each other, living in the place that is busier than the Times Square during the rush hour. And imagine now that such a tiny place, of a size of a smaller city has been bombed viciously with heavy artillery and still is, this very moment it is happening. A few days ago the Israeli strikes begun. A couple of days later we have the report of about 300 people who are already dead. So, from the Christmas time up to the present moment these people are not breathing the air with us any more.

The Srebrenica massacre happened in the summer of 1995 in a small city in Bosnia. I remember exactly those days. Just at the time when I was walking down the street in my city, together with a friend of mine something extraordinary happened. Me and my friend were just teenagers at the time, and while walking down that street during the dusk, unusual and vivid shadows were dancing their ghostly dance on the walls of the houses we were passing by. And they were not seen by me. My friend saw them and screamed, not out of horror, but out of sudden sadness. I thought that a few beers we had some minutes ago were to blame for his unusual and strange behavior. He told me that he had seen the people on the walls. Their faces. And their agony. The next day we both saw the news – about 8000 people were slaughtered in Srebrenica that day.

I also recall about the dream that my sister told me about. She was just 14 years old. One morning she said that she had a strange dream: it was about her best friend from elementary school. My sister dreamed her friend was falling and speaking to her in a strange way.Next day she had found out that her friend, a beautiful girl whose name was Alma – was dead. A piece of shelling got through her heart.

What I am saying here is that there are people who are able to see certain things intuitively. I am not one of them. Only I wonder how many people are out there who saw the faces of the Gaza people like gentle shadows of the night.

7 comments:

Bobbysaid...

Hi J.C., I have tried in the past to understand the Palestinian/Israel conflict from reading and watching news reports, but since most news these days is biased opinion, I cannot understand it. I cannot understand war of any kind.

Some friends of mine support Israel 100% and would follow them into hell believing they can do no wrong--often basing their beliefs on the holocaust and biblical scripture. Other friends are anti-Zionists believing Israel should be annihilated once and for all. I don't subscribe to either position.

A good friend of mine worships Alexander the Great and his favorite book is the Art of War--he is in the military and believes somehow that killing the enemy is good, though he has never actually killed anyone . . . yet. I told him that Alexander the Great was a piece if human garbage, a psychotic mass murderer and far worse than Hitler. The Art of War is an oxymoron because war is not art--no matter what anyone thinks. Killing people is not art. War is not art--it is a disease. Since that day, he doesn't like me anymore because I said his heroes were what I consider murderous fools and he would be better off worshiping Satan--which is equally ridiculous.

I have no idea what it's like to live in a war torn country, I can only wonder.

Dave Kingsaid...

Very well said. Your words should be writ large for all to see.

J. C.said...

Hi Bobby and Dave. Here is an article that I have found with the good explanation of what is going on: http://www.johannhari.com/archive/article.php?id=1423

Bil Stankussaid...

The differences between people and their governments - not always, perhaps rarely, the same. It seems psychopathic to kill.

J. C.said...

I couldn't agree more Bill.

Sarah Francosaid...

This is a very moving post...

elvedina2006said...

I think of Srebrenica every day and still cannot comprehend it.

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