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Intifada diary: Hana Hazboun

Contributed by Terra Sancta School For Girls on 11.03.2006:

Hana Hazboun

8 September 2001

On Tuesday morning, at about one o’clock in the morning, the Israeli soldiers occupied Beit Jala. Most of the people didn’t sleep except my sister and I. We were sleeping like there was nothing; suddenly I woke up because I heard the phone ringing. I looked at the time and it was about three in the morning, then I slept till 8:00 I heard my parents talking about Beit Jala, so I asked my mother what happened, and she told me everything. During the day, I watched television to see if there are any changes. After one day, on Thursday morning, my parents woke us up and said that the Israeli soldiers went out of Beit Jala. I was happy because now I can go out after two days of curfew and staying at home.

15 September 2001

The last vacation was more beautiful than this year because last year we were able to go to Jerusalem and to parties, birthday parties,… and we can return home late at 9:30 or 10:00 in the night. When we go to parties we can leave at 11:00 or even 12:00 midnight, but nowadays we can’t stay out more than eight o’clock.

My life has changed completely; I became very sad. We just watch television to see what is happening and when school would begin. I hope we can live a peaceful life and go wherever we want.

11 September 2001

While I was watching Television, I saw that the Twin Tower buildings in New York were attacked by hijackers. I felt sorry because I imagined how many innocent people were there working. How many victims were there, but a few seconds later I realized that we should be happy because we suffered many months and years.

As a Palestinian I feel happy ‘cause America is helping the Israeli soldiers by giving them some arms and weapons to attack us, now it is her turn to suffer like we did.

6 October 2001

On this day I was born in 1984. It is my birthday. what do you think we do on a special day like this? Should we be happy because we get one year older? Or should we be sad because we lost one year of our life?

Last year I decided to have a party before the Intifada began but when it began, I thought of inviting some girls to my house. So on the 5th of October I invited a few girls to my birthday party by phone to come to my house the next day. But while I was telephoning the last girl it was announced that there is a martyr, so I cancelled everything because he is living near our house. They buried him on my birthday and I won’t ever forget this day. I became angry, and I went to my grandmother’s house. There was no one in the street and this year I won’t do anything to celebrate my birthday because of the situation.

9 November 2001

I want to speak about the ten days that I spent at home:

On Thursday I went to the cinema. There I saw something strange; there aren’t many people and I heard the sound of the ambulances, so I asked what was happening and I knew, then the man in charge of the Peace Center told us that there wouldn’t be a film tonight. Every one should go home. I didn’t feel comfortable; I felt afraid. We went to my grandmother’s house, and on the way, I was very afraid because a few people were walking in the street, and the cars were very fast. When we arrived, I called my father to come and take us home. The next day when I woke up in the morning I heard that Israel occupied Bethlehem. I felt afraid. Days passed and my fear grew more and more. After these ten days I began to feel afraid whenever I hear the sound of guns even if it’s not the Israelis’.

25 December 2001

I want to share with you what I did on 23rd, 24th of December:

9:00 o’clock of 23rd /12, my two sisters and I prepared ourselves to go to church at 11:00. At 3:00 we went with our neighbors’ children to the “Catholic Action” club in Bethlehem. There was a festival and many children were there between (3-12) years old with their mothers. Santa Clause came and the children had fun and they got their gifts. When we left I couldn’t go anywhere because our neighbors’ children were with us, so we headed home.

On 24th/12, I went with my mother and sisters to see the scouts’ parade. I saw some friends and we stayed about half an hour waiting for the Patriarch to pass. At 6:00 we went to the “Salesian” club to play Bingo. At 9:30 it was over and we went to the Nativity Church Square to listen to the Choirs. There were many people so we decided to leave. We arrived home and I went directly to watch what I had recorded on the video, I fell asleep at 11:00. I thanked God for this beautiful day but it was hard.

MERRY CHRISTMAS.

28 December 2001

In 2001 I used to be a lazy girl, doing nothing at home. In the morning I used to wake up, take my breakfast and watch T.V till 12:00, then take my lunch, come back to watch TV. I began to change myself, I started to make my bed, clean the tables, etc. Also I used to be jealous, and sometimes selfish. I hope in the year 2002 that I will be better than this past year, and I hope to do better in my exams. I’ll be in Tawjihi class, so I ask God to help me, and not to live in war, bombing, or shooting like 2001. I need peace. I usually let the day’s work till the next day or not do the thing on time. I hope I’ll change.

1 January 2002

On the 31st of December (the last day in 2001): I woke up full of energy. My mother went shopping and one of my two sisters went to work and the other went to the university, so I stayed home alone. When I finished taking my breakfast I made the beds, I washed the dishes after that I watched TV. There was nothing else to do so I played a computer game, then my mother came back home. After a few hours, my two sisters came back, then we helped my mother in preparing dinner. It’s the same every year. We watched TV and talked with each other, saying some jokes. At midnight we wished each other a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. For me these are the perfect moments of my life. I stayed with my sisters till 1:00 am, then I went to sleep.

Enjoy this year, I hope it will be full of fun, joy and peace.

3 January 2002

A week ago I heard my father saying that on Sunday night there will be snow; so I became happy. He also said that it will stay more than a day, I felt happy cause there will be no school on Wednesday. On Monday morning, my father woke me up and opened the door when he saw that there was no snow. He woke my sister up so as to go to work. I wasn’t in deep asleep so I heard him saying that. I was upset because there will be school on Wednesday, but later when he turned the radio on, I heard on the news that it will rain hard from afternoon till night then the snow will fall. When I heard this I didn’t believe it, but then I saw on TV that the temperatures dropped to –1. At that moment I realized that there will be snow. I woke up and noticed that the weather was cold and strong winds were blowing. Then I waited for snow to come in the afternoon as they said in the news, and it did. The streets, the trees were full of snow but unfortunately it rained. I didn’t feel angry or upset because rain is good. In the morning there was nothing on the streets as if nothing happened.

Snow is something nice but it has positive and negative things.

From: The Wall Cannot Stop Our Stories: A Palestinian Diary Project 2000-2004

Terra Sancta School for Girls/Sisters of St Joseph, Bethlehem, 2004

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