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Those Who Remained

  • Butress Dalah

Extract

In 1947, as I wandered the streets of my village after a day of school, what excitement the next day promised. I wore a k'fiah and, on my head, in a very grown-up way, the traditional Arab agahl. I shouldered a rifle of wood and rubber and became one of the fighters for a free and independent Palestine, my birthplace and national home. From among the boys of the neighborhood I raised a regiment of brave fighting children, and we took upon ourselves the burden of protecting and defending our village against the Jews, our enemies.

In the end we fought neither with wood-and-rubber weapons nor with the weapons of our parents because our local council decided there was no sense in fighting. So the Jews, the Jewish army, took the village with peace talks, without firing a shot.

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