Who Killed Watan?

[Ha'aretz] Lorenzo Cremonesi - "Who killed Watan?" cried the dozens of youngsters on the stage of the Shawah, the largest theater in Gaza, as they pointed accusing fingers at a group of older actors waving the flags of the Palestinian resistance movements: Fatah, Hamas, Iz a-Din al-Qassam, the Al-Quds Brigade and Islamic Jihad. This time there were none of the usual anti-Israel slogans. The play, "Watan," sends a new, revolutionary message. "Enough of always blaming the Israelis for our problems. The time has come for a reckoning, and to condemn those among us who are bringing catastrophe down upon our people," says poet-director Saed Swerky, 37, the author of the play. Watan, which means "homeland" in Arabic, was a 12-year-old boy who was killed during the Fatah-Hamas clashes that engulfed Gaza in June. The play premiered on Aug. 13. Thousands of people sat mesmerized for more than two hours, applauding during the most dramatic scenes: prisoners thrown from the roofs of 15-story buildings; people shot in the knees; militants who used to be on the same side exchanging insults. This article first appeared in the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera.

2007-09-19 01:00:00

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