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Ittaf, Palestinian failed suicide bombings after many years in prison

(Note: The article is mostly machine-translated from Norwegian by Gtranslate)

- Why did you decide on a militant suicide operation?

- You can expect a complicated answer. But isn't Israel's occupation – which is destroying us as human beings – a big enough reason and motivation to do such a thing? We Palestinians have a great pride and longing for freedom in us, enough to become martyrs.

- So what happened?

The plan was to gather enough information so that I could get to the president's headquarters and then detonate the car bomb with myself in the car. I'm not a suicide bomber, I'm a martyr.

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- Really, to kill yourself?

- People love life, but a life without freedom is like being dead. As a young politically active person, I went to Lebanon and received military training, based on the fact that I was going to take action against Israel.

- Does not the Qur'an say anything about not killing oneself?

- Yes, Islam explains that one should not kill oneself, but there are exceptions, as in battle. We have the phrase "Seek death to be given life." I did not care about being killed, the important thing was to achieve my goal. And death is not the goal, but only a method of achieving freedom. This operation was actually planned before the intifada, I was going to be a personal time bomb.

- Do you believe in an afterlife?

- According to our concepts, life in this world is just a stage we live. We also have a stage in the grave, where the spirit lives on, where you are aware of what is happening around you, even if you can not do much about it. Then comes the afterlife on the day of judgment, the final life.

- What is life like now, after all the years in prison?

- We see a lot when we dream. For example, when I dream about when the Jews came and took me, and I tried to escape. But then I experience that next to me, my husband actually dreams of something funny (he spent 14 years in prison) and wakes up refreshed, while I am depressed – even though we slept in the same bed.

- What do you think when you hear the word "freedom"?

- An inner emotional joy. The two years I prepared for the bombing, it was like I was not here in this life. First I felt great happiness, then that worldly things no longer concerned me, such as money or social relationships. Nothing should take that feeling away from me.

- You were arrested?

- Yes, they discovered me. I was interrogated in every way for 40 days. They tore off my hijab, snapped my nose and fingers, and threatened to undress me. Finally, I went on a hunger strike. The prison cell was always dark, so my eyes are somewhat damaged by it today.

- When I was released in 1997, I started an association of the prisoners' wives and released women, to visit and support the inmates.

- What would you think if your daughter chose the same path as you?

- She has her freedom to choose what she wants to do with life. But with my motherly feelings, I would be happy if she chose to go the right way – there is nothing greater than the way to freedom.

- Islam is important to you, also for how you dress?

- I started wearing the hijab at the age of 14, without being influenced by the family. I wore the niqab in prison when I was about 20 years old in 1989. My religion was not forced on me. And even though Islam asks you to teach your children to pray from the age of seven, and beat them if they do not do so when they are 10 years old, we did not. My daughter is very happy today to have the prayer. Religion speaks to people who have reason – such people prefer to believe in their consciousness, before believing in rituals and traditions.

- The more I read the Qur'an, the greater my love for God. Especially when I was in solitary confinement for four years, God was important. When I do not pray, I feel that I cannot breathe.

Excerpts from previously unpublished film interviews. Retrieved from MODERN TIMES 'Palestine Appendix 2020.


Truls Liehttp: /www.moderntimes.review/truls-lie
Editor-in-chief in MODERN TIMES. See previous articles by Lie i Le Monde diplomatique (2003–2013) and Morgenbladet (1993-2003) See also part video work by Lie here.
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