Light of Palestine – Anonymous sister from South Africa
Alhamdulillah. Praise and thanks to Allah. I was blessed with a trip to Palestine this Ramadaan.
Allah introduced me to the people of Palestine.
I came from Johannesburg, South Africa to Palestine to read salaah in Masjid Ul Aqsa.
Israel! You made me wait for 8 hours at the border to enter Palestine. You searched me and you questioned me.
What is your dad’s name? Did you come alone? What do you do? Do you know anyone in gaza? What is your mum’s name? Why did you come? What work do you do? Do you have friends in Gaza? What is your mum’s name? Where do you work? Do you know anyone here? Do you come alone? How many siblings do you have? Are you the oldest? Where is the group you came with? What work do you do at home? Where are your friends? Is your brother older than you? What work does he do? Which countries have you been to? Are your friends here? What is your grandfather’s name? Are you the oldest child in your family? Who is in Gaza that you know?
Ok! I’ve answered all your questions. Please may I have my visa. Just wait a few minutes… After two hours of waiting.. Where is my visa? Wait a few more minutes… An hour later… I’m waiting for my visa… Wait a few more minutes… Three hours later… Please may I have my visa.. Wait another few minutes. Another hour and a half later… I’m waiting for my visa… Wait few more minutes. Another half an hour… It’s Ramadaan, I have to break my fast. My visa please. Oh here it is. It’s been on the desk…
Israel! Eight hours!
Noor means divine light in Arabic.
I am so lucky that Allah blessed me with a trip to Palestine. The Palestinian people are the warmest, kindest, friendliest people I’ve ever met in all my travels around the world. Allah has illuminated the hearts of the Palestinian people with Noor.
Out of suffering has emerged the strongest souls. The adversity and hardship that you put them through, Israel, has made their hearts as warm as gold and full of hope.
The Palestinian people are peaceful. Inspiring. Smiling. Beautiful.
Every evening at iftaar, breaking fast time, a Palestinian next to me asked me to share her food. “My sister, please eat my food with me.” During my short stay I ate half a chicken roll, half a falafel, half an apple, half a date and half a cucumber.
Every mum that I came across had sons that were either still in prison or just out of prison. Sons! Educated sons! Doctors, engineers, accountants, dentists. Sons imprisoned! And tortured!
Johannesburg is a city 9711 kilometres from Jerusalem. Nablus is a city only 49 kilometres away from Jerusalem. I was allowed to enter Jerusalem and read salaah at Masjid Ul Aqsa on a Thursday. Palestinian women from Nablus are only allowed to visit Masjid ul Aqsa on a Friday in Ramadaan.
Only women! Only on a Friday! And only in Ramadaan!
The Israeli Defence Force soldiers are on every corner with guns. Guns! Each city has walls built around it with barbed wire. A holocaust.
I was stopped at inspection points to show my passport. Inspection points=harassment of Palestinian people points. And they asked me, “Do you have a weapon on you.”
In Hebron, the Israeli settlers have stolen the Palestinian’s homes. They have closed down their shops and have stolen half our mosque. Israel! In the stolen part of the mosque are the tombs of our dearest prophets Yusuf (AS) and his dad Yaqoob (AS). You did not allow me to visit them because I am muslim. Muslim!
Israel! Allah has illuminated the hearts of the Palestinian people with His Noor. Every millisecond of your oppression makes their spirit, their hearts brighter and Brighter and BRIGHTER. Brilliance.
Israel! You can’t dim their light that shines from within.
Imagine! The day will come when the apartheid in Palestine will end and the Palestinians will be free. Just like me. An educated black South African human who travels the world to read salaah in the mosques