No Massacre Can Stop The Palestinian Right Of Return

gaza land day massacre

My name is Falasteen,

I am the land from the Mediterranean Sea to the Jordan River. I am the home and only home to my children the Palestinians. Poets celebrate my beauty, my culture and the courage of my children… I tell the world that all your might, all your weapons and all your injustice will not be able to stop the march of my returning children. I tell the world that the day when my children return is the day when I am free, is the day when justice will finally prevail in this world. Reham Alhelsi

Suffocation from teargas is nothing  in comparison to the suffocation of grief for her fallen that is crushing Gaza. On Good Friday, Land Day 2018 was commemorated with a non- violent protest in Gaza which was turned into a bloody Land Day Massacre by 100 Jewish snipers; clones of psychopath, Elon Azaria, an Israeli  military, wait for it, medic who strolled over to unarmed and wounded Abdel Fatah al-Sharif and cooly extrajudicially executed him point blank.*

Surely, on that Good Friday morning the 30,000 Palestinians, young and old, either put up a brave front assuring anxious parents, “Don’t worry, I’ll be all right” or  silently spoke their last prayers as they stepped through the doorways of their homes  to join the  swelling stream of fellow unarmed patriots surging in an a mass act of honour for their Right of Return to

Al-Quds is my beating heart. Haifa is my pearl on the Mediterranean. Yafa is my heaven of oranges and Jasmines. Acca is my haven of white domes. Beer Is-Sabe’ is my princess of A-Naqab. Nablus is my mountain of revolution. Gaza is my dignity, my courage and my steadfastness. Jenin is my resistance, my home of legends. Safad is my daughter reaching out and embracing the sun. Al-Khalil is my guardian of glory. Beesan is my home of history, my roots reaching deep in time. Beit Lahim is my oasis of tranquillity. Ar-Ramlah is my endless love of the olive tree. Tabaria is my home of revolution against oppression. Tulkarim is my sea of green and golden meadows.   Reham Alhelsi

Males made up the vast majority but women too joined the protest like, “Umm Hussein Al-Aydi, in her 90s , was determined to be among the demonstrators on truce line on Land’s Day. She is a mother of two martyrs and all her kids were prisoners of war in Israeli jails! All respect and appreciation. She is an example of the Palestinian woman fighting for Palestine.” (posted on FB by Prof.  Abdelwahed)

Later in the day, 16 young protestors came home to be washed by mothers and wives for the last time, and to be carried by fathers, brothers, friends for the very last time on flag-draped funeral biers;

Wahid Nasrallah Abu Sammour, 27, Khan Younis, southern Gaza. (farmer killed before dawn on his land)

Mohammad Kamal Najjar, 25, Jabalia, northern Gaza.

Mohammad Naim Abu Amro, 27, Sheja’eyya, Gaza city.

Amin Mansour Abu Moammar, Rafah, southern Gaza.

Ibrahim Abu Sha’ar, 22, Rafah.

Abdul-Fattah Bahjat Abdul-Nabi, 18, Beit Lahia, northern Gaza.

Mahmoud Sa’adi Rohmi, 33, Gaza.

Sari Waleed Abu Odah, Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza.

Hamdan Ismael Abu Amsha.

Jihad Ahmad Freina, 34, east of Gaza city.

Ahmad Ibrahim Ashour Odah, 16, northern Gaza.

Abdul-Qader Merdhi al-Hawajri, 42, Nusseirat refugee camp, central Gaza.

Jihad Zoheir Abu Jamous, 30, Khan Younis.

Bader Faeq as-Sabagh, 21, Jabalia.

Naji Abdullah Abu Hjeir, 25, al-Boreij, central Gaza.

Mosab Zohair Salloul (still unconfirmed, his body has not been recovered)

Faris al Raqib, 29,  died of abdominal wounds in hospital.

Ahmad Arafa, 25 killed 3-4-18.

Gaza’s hospitals, already deprived for months by Israel and the Palestinian Authority of crucial medicines and equipment were overwhelmed by the tsunami of horrific injuries that 1500 protestors suffered by explosive bullets that in a nano second possibly created 500 amputees.

You can be certain that when Gazan doctors state they have never seen such wounds before, that the Jewish infiltrators are testing new weaponry which will boost the profits of its armament industry.

The Jewish sharpshooters and tank crews remained unscathed and boasted of their murderous precision,

“Yesterday we saw 30,000 people; we arrived prepared and with precise reinforcements. Nothing was carried out uncontrolled; everything was accurate and measured, and we know where every bullet landed.” tweet IDF Spokesperson.

For the Jewish state of Israel, the carnage is viewed as a PR nightmare, not an ethical nightmare. Never mind that the deliberate slaughter of civilians is a war crime under international law, Israeli PR hasbara (fake news) was automatically spurted throughout domestic and pro-Israel international media,

  • The ‘clashes’ reported did not occur: “They are not clashes when one side is shooting and the other is getting shot. Snipers are shooting protestors from hundreds of meters away. The only thing clashing are Israeli bullets into Palestinian bodies.’ Yousef Munayyer


  • The victims belonged to terror groups: Gazans protested as a united people. Besides, Hamas is not a terrorist organisation, it legitimately resists the Jewish Israeli illegal occupation of its land and the cruel illegal blockade of Gaza. The labelling of terrorists is the privilege of the powerful. However, all Jews in Israel, apart from a religious minority, from age18 must do compulsory military service to execute daily acts of State Terrorism against Palestinians.


  • Hamas is to blame for organising the protest to cynically use, according to Horowitz’ and Weiser’s  tourette attacks on truth, “Gazans as the human shields for its aggression” and “Hamas strived for as many Palestinian deaths as possible, believing that every death was a public relations victory for them.”


  • The outright evil of the massacre was airbrushed away by reminders of the Jewish state’s 2005 ‘total’ disengagement from Gaza even though Israel controls Gaza’s land, sea and airspace, even tough Israel has impoverished Gazan families with its illegal 11 year blockade that restricts the  exit and entrance of people and goods, and although Israel has traumatised Gazan families by three major military assaults targeting essential infrastructure, hospitals, schools, homes and unarmed civilians.


  • The Jewish soldiers were just defending the border; the Jewish state has no officially recognised borders allowing Palestinians to be executed by Jews anywhere in historic Palestine.


  • The poor Jewish soldiers, armed to the high-tech hilt and backed by drones, tanks and fighter planes  were in fear of their lives: Israeli reports of molotov cocktails, plastic explosives and shots fired by Hamas militants were inevitable. For every crime against humanity, war crime, extrajudicial execution, the Jewish state releases a statement blaming the victim(s) though evidence to the contrary eventually forces a retraction. One is reminded of the official cover-ups and lies that come with massacre territory, like those of  the British military after the Bloody Sunday Massacre, Northern Ireland 30 January in 1972.


On cue and unrepentant, Israel’s military cult of death asserted it would maintain its open-fire policy, a defiant Defense Minister Lieberman ruled out any investigation announcing his soldiers ‘deserve a medal’ while Netanyahu regurgitated the old chestnut about “the most moral army in the world.”

No engineering by Israel’s propaganda can justify its massacre of  Gaza’s peaceful protesters. Under international law there are UN resolutions and declarations such as ‘The promotion and protection of human rights in the context of peaceful protests.’ that ensures and “Affirms that nothing can ever justify the indiscriminate use of lethal force against a crowd, which is unlawful under international human rights law.

Outside of Gaza ironies and hypocrisies abound.

In March, British Jews hit London streets protesting, on false grounds, so-called antisemitism (based mainly on  criticism of Israel) in the Labour Party – not one shot was fired. But when Palestinians peacefully asserted, on valid grounds, their Right of Return guaranteed under international law- their protest was met by lethal fire from Jewish soldiers.

There is the political hypocrisy of  27  states expelling Russian diplomats in response to the alleged unproven Russian nerve-agent attack on an ex-Russian spy in England, yet none of those states have called for the expulsion of Israeli diplomats for the proven war crime massacre of 18 defenceless Palestinians.

Then there is the religious irony of an Easter massacre in the Holy Land. On Good Friday, thousands of foreign ‘Christians’ trod the Via Dolorosa kilometres away in Al Quds ( Jerusalem). Will they, on returning to their countries speak out for the young men crucified that day kilometres away in Gaza or will they do a St Peter and deny Palestinians justice? Even worse, millions of Jews, throughout occupied  historic Palestine and around the world celebrated Passover ritualising liberation from captivity the same time that Israel played Pharaoh with premeditated conviction in Gaza.

One also wonders if, on that tragic Land Day, there had even been 1000 Palestinians in the Western diaspora who, in solidarity with Palestine, stepped out of the doors of their safe privileged lives and  took to the streets  or raised their voice to protest Israel’s denial of their Right of Return and the relentless, violent Jewish theft of their homeland for which the 18 young martyrs died?

In contrast, we are witnessing something sublime  – spiritually ineffable – that is  both symbiotic with and transcends the tragedy of the Land Day Massacre – it is that ‘something’, even greater than ‘sumoud’,  that compelled men women and children who knew that snipers and tanks were waiting as they always are, to face them in the kill zone of fate.

That undaunted ‘something’, back in December, impelled paraplegic Ibrahim Abu Turaya’s last act to raise the Palestinian flag  and that spirit is echoed by,

Back at al-Shifa hospital, Mohammad Hilles struggles to recover from a bullet that shattered his leg.

The 27-year-old was shot above his knee joint while protesting with his friends about 100 metres away from the border fence.

He has had to undergo a 13-hour surgery to treat the damage to his veins and the severe bleeding that ensued.

When asked whether he regretted going to the march, he did not hesitate.

“I will return back to the demonstrations if I recover soon.” Aljazeera

That ‘something’ was forged and  galvanised by 70 years of Jewish terrorism and is the final nemesis of the Jewish state:

I tell the Zionist usurper entity that your terrorism, your massacres, your bullets, your bulldozers, your walls and your bombs will not break the will of my children, will not kill me, for I will continue to resist, I will continue to exist, I am here to stay because this land is me. I am Palestine from the River to the Sea, from Ras In-Naqourah to Im-Ir-Rishrash. Ana Falsteen min il bahar lal nahr, min Ras In-Naqourah la Im-Ir-Rishrash. Reham Alhelsi


*Reducing the 14 month sentence imprisonment, Israeli justice (an oxymoron) is releasing the remorseless Azaria in May.

Dr. Vacy Vlazna is Coordinator of Justice for Palestine Matters and editor of a volume of Palestinian poetry, I remember my name.  She was Human Rights Advisor to the GAM team in the second round of the Acheh peace talks, Helsinki, February 2005 then withdrew on principle. Vacy was convenor of  Australia East Timor Association and coordinator of the East Timor Justice Lobby as well as serving in East Timor with UNAMET and UNTAET from 1999-2001.




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