Monthly Archives: April 2011

From the place he loved, in memory of Vittorio.

Vittorio's tattoo on his arm: moqawama (resistance)

Vittorio: (Vik, Victor, Victorio. Full name: Vittorio Utopia Arrigoni) a Palestinian martyr, only a bit braver, who was abducted and gruesomely killed at the hands of an Israeli-salafist gang on 14 April 2011. Later it happened that he was not dead: he was still living in the hearts of all Palestinians.

‎”Ween?” (the Arabic for “where”) was the first thing Vittorio ever asked me. He was looking for my phone number and sent me a FB message titled, “ween”. Today I ask him the same question: “ween?”

I can’t think of one reason that would make a “Palestinian” kill someone like Vittorio. A man who dedicated his life to fight injustice. A man who abandoned the luxury of Rome and came to one of the most turbulent regions in the world in order to expose Israeli atrocities committed against Palestinians. A man on whose right arm, the Arabic word for resistance “Moqawama” was brilliantly tattooed in big words. A hero in whose eyes there was a whole lot of unmistakable meanings of profound love, loyalty, hope, sacrifice, truth and courage. Vittorio has done for Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank more than those who killed him. He was more Palestinian than many other Palestinians. Vittorio would have competed with Hamas rockets about who’s done more damage to Israel. He was such a nightmare for them that needed to be eliminated. Vittorio is a great disheartening loss to Palestinians, and Friday, 15 April is such an overwhelmingly melancholic day in the history of Palestine.

Vittorio is a man who loved Gaza, he loved Gaza’s land, its sea, and its sky. Two things Vittorio obviously loved to do: to wave the Palestinian flag, and to sing “Onadikum” (I call upon you!). Wholeheartedly, Vittorio sang, “Onadikum” time and again. He poured his heart out as he sang it. It’s probably the only thing he could say so fluently in Arabic.

Today, we took to the streets to tell the world how grieved we are at the loss of Vittorio, to convey a message to Vittorio’s family in Italy that in Gaza we are all Vittorio’s family. That We condemn in the strongest terms the shameful and outrageous act of abducting and murdering Vittorio by a bunch of criminals whom we disavowed the moment they had that vicious thought in their minds. We will not forgive those who betrayed Vittorio in the place he loved, the place where he felt most secure, where he would be angry to be treated like a foreigner. He warmly embraced our cause, so we will never stab him in the back. We’ll give him a warmer hug.

Today, though ridiculous I only wished Vittorio were alive to live this very day with us and see with his own eyes how much we all love him. We are all Vittorios.

Now that you moved to live in our hearts, we’ll become stronger and fiercer in the battle against occupation, humiliation and injustice. Vittorio. Such an inspiration to all of us. You taught us that life isn’t worth living if one isn’t ready to fight against its injustice, and that’s what gives it a meaning, that’s what makes it all beautiful. Now, empowered by your “memory”, we’ll carry on the fight together.

Vittorio wanted to fight injustice, but life was too unjust for him to fight.

‎”The injustice of it [life] is almost perfect! The wrong people going hungry, the wrong people being loved, the wrong people dying!” John Osborne.

Vittorio is one of the wrong people.

In memory of Vittorio Utopia Arrigoni
15 April 2011

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Yes for a no-fly zone over Gaza!

I, for one, hate to study with company. It’s 3:05am. I’ll be tested on American literature at 11:00am. Less than eight hours separate me from the exam, and yet I have plenty to cram into my mind but…

As usual, I got company. Company that is like no company. Company that I can’t even think of ridding myself of. Bullying company. Though American-made, they don’t seem to have the same interest to study American Literature. Indispensable company. Fucking company!

Yes, I got company.

In the presence of this company, I have to double my efforts as I attempt to memorize (I mean “memorise”, that one seems to be American-made) a line or a paragraph. I have to elicit a few parts of this anarchy surrounding me, block these parts out of my mind, elicit a few parts of the same anarchy, memorise them, and then cram them into my mind…etc.

But I am not a loon to do that crazy stuff. To hell with another “A”!

However…

I still demand a no-fly zone over Gaza.

Because why should my little sister (though I have no little sisters, so you can think of any little girl living in this part of the world) know such a word like “qasf” (shelling)? Why should this word be part of her early vocabulary along with “Mama”, “Mayya”, and “T’at’a” (meaning potato)? If you still insist on teaching her that word, I can do the job without her having to experience an actual animated presentation of the word meaning each time she wanted to pronounce it.

I, therefore, demand a no-fly zone over Gaza.

I am not in the money, and I simply hate the fact that my cousin’s wedding party in the open should be accompanied with such a grand military airshow in celebration of his marriage. Yes, sure we can do without an airshow. It is just ridiculous, we cannot have Apaches and F-16s flying over Gaza each time someone is having a wedding party. No need for that. We do appreciate it, but my cousin can definitely get married without military airshows. So we demand a no-fly zone over Gaza.

My father loves to watch Al-Jazeera, my mother loves the Turkish series al-Ard al-Tayyiba (the good land) and I love Barcelona. We love watching T.V. Why should you fly your drones above my house and obstruct the transmission of signals by my satellite, leaving me struggling with another anarchy inside my T.V. screen. You can’t do that to me each time I wanted to watch T.V. I am human, and I have feelings. I want to support my favorite team. You can’t go on violating basic human rights like that.

For that reason, I demand a no-fly zone over Gaza.

We, Arabs, are obsessed with music. It’s probably the only thing we can do without someone else’s help. I love the Oud. But each time I come to listen to my favorite music, you just send your planes flying over Gaza, playing me symphonies of various kinds. Worse yet, once in a while you send a whole orchestra of drones, Apaches, and F-16s all playing their music synchronously. Yes, a party! I appreciate that help, but I really never loved your sort of music. You can’t tell me what sort of music I should listen to. Please, you should stop violating my personal freedoms, else…(just saying!)

Finally, it is not necessary that each time you want to kill a Palestinian, they have to be torn to pieces, beheaded, or whoops…VAPORIZED! The paramedics would be grateful if the body remained in one spot instead of spending several hours collecting tiny pieces of flesh, remnants, signs of (once) a human being!

Why on earth should we have a yes-fly zone over Gaza. We demand a no-fly zone over Gaza because there is no fucking reason whatsoever that we have a yes-fly zone over Gaza!

Don’t keep BUZZING…I wanna FINISH reading this dirty American-made stuff!