As a young child up until 1948 Mohammed Hammuda lived an idyllic life in Yaffa and Lydda, Palestine. In this series which covers the individual stories of the lives of Palestinians in the Diaspora, he talks of the tragic events on the day in 1948 when the Israel solidiers came to Ethnically cleanse Lydda.
Mohammed’s father was shot and died that day in 1948 and his family suffered such hardship as refugees first in Ramallah then in Gaza. The family are now scattered between Gaza, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Britain. I had the pleasure of travelling with one of this man’s Grandaughters on the first Viva Palestina convoy to Gaza in February/March 2009 after “Cast Lead”, the young lady really impressed us older ones with her wisdom and caring attitude about fellow travellers on the convoy also with her ability to calm down the frayed nerves of stressed convoyers.
Now I can clearly see where these beautiful character traits came from as I watch her Grandfather. Last night I called this Grandaughter of Mohammed Hammuda and apart from the joy of catching up with such a special young lady again, she sadly told me that her Grandfather had died on the 12th of December 2011, of course without his wish of seeing his homeland again, and she has so far been unable to bring herself to watch the video.
So, here we see the tragedy of a family exiled and scattered, every member longing to return home to Palestine, a right which is theirs under International Law as refugees, but one which International governments are unwilling to create pressure on Israel to see granted to the exiled Palestinians. My friend told me that her Grandfather was such a kind and caring man, somehow I feel that we all share the burden of responsibility to ensure that these dignified people are given their full rights.