Source: elmundo.es / The Dawn / October 23, 2015-. They are young women, they are tired of sterile negotiations with Israel and, in their own words, they decided to “help the brave fighters against the Israeli soldiers”.
They are college students who alternate between classrooms and violent clashes, in the escalade that yesterday sealed its third week. Born in the hopeful years of the Oslo Agreements, their generation does not dream of peace. Like many Israelis of their age, they see it as an hopeless pursuit.
Some are covered with traditional Palestinian scarves, others aren’t. They take a step forward and actively participate in “the struggle against the occupation,” as they tell El Mundo in a meeting in the West Bank. Earlier, they had been in yet another riot.
“Afraid? None of the ones who go there are afraid to die. We want our land back”, sentences Aya Fowad Hijazi Shobaki (21), student of Communication and Political Science at the Al Quds University (Jerusalem). When I hinted that facing the soldiers at the ‘checkpoint’ of Beit El, near Ramallah, will not result in the recovery of land but in wounded and perhaps dead, she replies: “I know, but we have no choice. Negotiations do not work. Everytime, they change the reasons and the situation worsens”.
A girl who asks not to be photographed or identified reveals: “I throw stones and whatever is at hand to hurt the Israelis”. Aya has a more “modest” function. “I’m not in the front line but behind, collecting stones, rocks and everything I can find to give to the others”, she says.
They don’t fear becoming Shahida (Martyrs). Some of the women who have attacked Israelis this month have left a written request to be Shahida.
“My brothers are very worried, but it is something that I carry within me. They know I can’t help it. I have to help my people and I feel I must do it for my father,” she adds as she looks at the portrait of a bearded man and a long gaze. It is his father, a veteran of Al Fatah who has been in an Israeli prison for 10 years for his connection with the shipment of weapons from Iran to Palestinian President Yasser Arafat during the Second Intifada.
While Aya supports the two-state solution, Asthma Mizher (22) opposes it. “These lands are ours. The Jews have to leave here and go back where they came from in 1920” Information demands this Computer Science student born in Ramallah.
A youth without confidence in the future
70% of the inhabitants of the West Bank and Gaza are under 30 years. They see no future ahead. They have seen Israel’s inhumanity and they see divided Palestinian groups. “Since I was born, all I have known is the occupation. I saw what happened and decided to take action, for the martyrs. I have participated in demonstrations, but I think I have to do much more”, says Asma, of Al Fatah.
“The Israelis think that we are all terrorists, but it is not true. We struggle to end the occupation” says Asma, who defends the attacks. “All actions are a response.Soldiers and settlers attack us all the time, even in peaceful demonstrations”.