Rory Myles Byrne – Ireland
Inspiring, amazing, sad, traumatic, overwhelming, fun – the adjectives to describe this experience could fill a dictionary. Putting to paper such an experience is possibly the hardest task I’ve faced on this trip – it will take months for it all to sink in and become clear in my mind. Years of studying the conflict from afar do not compare to a single day in this amazing and contradictory land. The suffering, humiliation and daily oppression of these proud people (of which we experienced only a minute amount) are a sad condemnation of the state of the world and international community of today.
The people here, both local and international, have been inspiring and the extent, length, and context of our long debates and late night talks have been without parallel in my life. The nature and way everyone here has a story of tragedy as a result of the oppression is unbelievable unless you’ve taken the decision to come here. People with bullet holes from childhood injuries, regular middle-class people with no connections to the resistance who’ve been subjected to the torture, both physical and mental of holding their innocent parents and best friends dying in their hands – murdered and now just another unnoticed statistic for the world to ignore.
As internationals we have received the benefits of the strongest form of resistance the Palestinian people have possessed – the will to positively continue to find and spread joy, thanks to their determination to live every day to the full: an inspiration for all.
Palestine is an extraordinary place where every day is a new adventure. I feel as though I’ve only scratched the surface of this land and undoubtedly this will be the first of many visits here. I only hope I and us all can repay even a small fraction of what we have received and spread the word in our respective countries about what is happening here… thank you Zajel.