Letter from Bethlehem

I truly lost count of how many incursions we have been exposed to accompanied by curfews since March 2002. We have lived through many hardships in our lives under occupation, but never this cruel. 

Letter from Bethlehem

Since a week the recurrent hope that the siege of the Church of Nativity and the curfew would be lifted, is dashed each time, but on Friday a real end comes to the almost six-week long affair. 

Bethlehem after the siege

Today, I went into Bethlehem; I interviewed the Parish Priest, Amjad Sabbara, who was inside the Church compound for 40 days. I think to myself, why 40 days? What an interesting number: Jesus fasted for 40 days, the Israelis wondered through the wilderness for 40 years. Didn’t something else happen for 40 days? I wonder. 

Letter from Bethlehem

Jara and I play in the neighbour’s garden under the pleasant Mediterranean sun. ‘Do you have everything?’ she asks the neighbour. It is one of those routine questions which people now ask each other and which she has picked up as a normal way of showing concern.