I am happy to have survived. One day, I know we will be free

Ramallah diary
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The Independent Online

I am no longer confined to my apartment. I am now confined to parts of one single city: Ramallah. The army is still present in those other parts, in those other cities, in those other roads surrounding every Palestinian town.

I am no longer confined to my apartment. I am now confined to parts of one single city: Ramallah. The army is still present in those other parts, in those other cities, in those other roads surrounding every Palestinian town.

But, for now, I can go to work every day. I am employed again. Logically, therefore, my short-lived writing career must come to an abrupt end.

I asked myself how to end the "under siege" soliloquy. Maybe an emotional outburst would set a dramatic finish. Or how about a suave political analysis? I know. I'll end with a final plea for the international community to come to our rescue.

No, no, no. All those sentiments are far too abundant, especially on the al-Jazeera satellite channel.

So, I believe, the best way to end is to communicate what I learnt from this experience. I learnt that my mother is God's most valuable gift. I learnt that I work with great people. I learnt that wetting the candle doesn't make it burn any slower.

I learnt that resilience is Palestine's most precious asset. I learnt that dignity can never be forced out of the Palestinian psyche. I learnt that Palestinians and Israelis are each other's predicament.

I learnt that we Arabs still lack the freedom to create, the will to democratise and the courage to be critical of our way of life.

I learnt that only war brings the Israelis together. I learnt that Israelis, unfortunately, still believe that killing civilians is something that is "forced" upon them.

But the most genuine lesson I learnt is that life is good. I am happy to be alive, I am happy still to be able to breathe, still to be able to walk and still to be able to love.

Life in Palestine is not dead. We shall overcome. And yes indeed, I know we will be free. We will be free.

The writer is the general manager of the Palestinian mobile phone company Jawwal.

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