I seriously do not know how to start. I am full of anger and distress. Being a Palestinian means that you will never pass a day without hearing bad news, or even experiencing some. I waited 12 hours to start writing this piece as the power was off almost half of the day. I do not want to talk about the electricity crisis in Gaza or the serious consequences of this crisis on us because there is something far more important to talk about.
The detainees cause has always been a main one in the Palestinian cause in general. Palestinian detainees suffer harsh conditions of detention behind the Israeli jail bars, they are subjected to injustice, oppression, and they are subjected to the ugliest methods of torture by the Israeli occupation.
Hunger-striking has always been used by Palestinian detainees as a non-violent method to fight the prolonged Israeli occupation and his barbaric policy adopted at prisons. The first hunger strike was in 1969 and it lasted for 19 days. There were many other hunger strikes which followed the first one. The Palestinian detainees start hunger strikes to protest Israel injustice and to force the Israeli occupation into applying their just demands.
As I am writing this I suppose you already learned about Khader Adnan's cause.
Khader Adnan, A Palestinian detainee in the Israeli jails, has been hunger striking for 61 days in protest of his illegal detention and Israel cruelty and injustice against the Palestinian detainees in the Israeli prisons all over the occupied Palestine. Khader Adnan was detained on December 17/2011 from his own home outside Jenin, Israel Occupation forces (IOF) broke into his house and arrested him aggressively in front of his two young children and his mother. Khader was handcuffed and blindfolded. IOF drove him to a military jeep and they started beating him ferociously and slapping him on the face.
On Khader's first day under arrest, he started a hunger strike to protest against his illegal detention. Khader Adnan is held in prison without charge or trial. This is the administrative detention where people are held in prison for political reasons rather than criminal reasons. Israel violates the international laws and standards of fair trials by detaining Palestinians without charge and without giving any evidence against them. Palestinian detainees are often arrested because they fight for their freedom and dignity; they are not criminals nor terrorists.
Khader Adnan's health condition is deteriorating and his life is at risk. He has had nothing other than water since December 17th. His wife says that he is always dizzy and his condition is getting worse and worse. Even though his life is at risk, Israel keeps him shackled to a bed . A doctor from Physicians for Human Rights said
"He has lost 30kg and weighs 60kg. He suffers from stomach aches, vomiting, sometimes with blood, and headaches … His general condition is pale and very weak, his tongue is smooth, he has slight bleeding from the gums, dry skin, loss of hair, and significant muscular atrophy. His pulse is weak, blood pressure 100/75. He is permanently connected to a heart monitor."
As I am writing this, a hash-tag on Twitter about Khader Adnan (#Khader61Days) has trended worldwide, I felt a little bit relieved after I saw people from different countries talking and tweeting about Khader Adnan. However, I am too disheartened that the mainstream media has said a little regarding Khader's cause. One wonders what if Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier who was arrested by Hamas and released months ago, was the one who is hunger striking for more that 60 days? I assure you that the whole world would start talking about that and accuse Palestinians of terrorism.
Khader Adnan's cause reveals the inhumane face of the Israeli occupation. Israel who claims to be the only democracy in the Middle East has been breaking the international laws since the year it came into being sixty years ago. The entire world is watching the suffering of the Palestinian people but has decided to keep their mouths shut and their eyes closed. Khader Adnan, with his strong determination will spread awareness about the Palestinian detainees cause and he will never stay silent.
Khader Adnan is the new Palestinian legend of the non-violent resistance. He's the Palestinian Gandhi. His only weapon is his empty stomach; his only food is his dignity. We all stand in solidarity with you and all the Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons.