Thursday, October 31, 2013

Dia de Los Muertos, Aida refugee camp

Today in Colorado they are celebrating Dia de Los Muertos, the Day of the dead, when families remember their loved one and friends, creating memorials to them, often elaborate altars, with objects and even food that the dead loved in life.

Many of the Palestinian men I have met, especially those who have grown up in the refugee camps, have told me about being arrested and imprisoned. Mohammad, our guide in the camp, told us that he had also spent time in prison as a young man. Then he told about the men who are killed by the soldiers and then arrested. These dead are arrested, tried and imprisoned. The bodies are given numbers and when the bodies are convicted, they serve out the sentence - they call it "the graveyard of numbers." After they have served their sentence, the "bodies" are released to the families for burial. 

I thought about the mothers, wives, fathers, sisters and brothers who must wait out the sentence before they can lay their loved ones to rest. Daily torture. 

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