Six-day diary Six-day War

Vijftig jaar geleden vond de Zesdaagse Oorlog plaats. Een Israëlisch meisje van 10 jaar oud hield een dagboek bij (geïnspireerd op het dagboek van Anne Frank dat zij tijdens de Holocaustherdenking leerde kennen) . We volgen ook de herinneringen van een Palestijnse Bedoeïen die in het Israëlische leger vocht. Van 5 t/m 10 juni plaatsen we dagelijks fragmenten uit de dagboeken en kruipen we daarmee in de huid van het Israëlische meisje en de Palestijnse Bedoeïen. De dagboeken en herinneringen zijn echt, maar om privacyredenen noemen we de namen van de schrijvers niet. De illustraties boven de tekstfragmenten zijn getekend door Aastha Prasad.

DAY 1 - Six-day War

10 year old Israeli girl during the Six-Day War, Jerusalem
"We were released early from school so I was early at home. My sister had to stay longer and my father had to return with her. We were waiting for all the children and everyone arrived safely. My mother barely made it from her work, we were worried about her. My father went to the army. My neighbor and her father made it safely, and finally everyone got home safe."

Diary day 1 - Israeli girl
Diary day 1 - Israeli girl

Negev Bedouin soldier during the Six-Day War, Be'er Sheva
"I have decided to participate as a soldier for the state of Israel. Many will not understand, because I am Palestinian, I am Arab, I am a Bedouin. They do not realize I have 8 children and a wife to feed. I need to take care of them. If I join the army, afterwards, I will be given land, free healthcare and education for my family. This is why I do it."


DAY 2 - Six-day War

10 year old Israeli girl during the Six-Day War, Jerusalem
"The second day, we were happy, we did not notice the rockets. Next to our house fell one of those, but luckily it did not hurt us, and that was good for us. Because next to our house, there is a camp, full of weapons and the Arabs know it, and that is why the shells are falling here." 
Diary day 2 - Israeli girl
Diary day 2 - Israeli girl

Negev Bedouin soldier during the Six-Day War, Be'er Sheva
"I am stationed on the border with Egypt, in the Sinai region. I am terrified. I will be fighting against other Arabs - but I have to do it, for the sake of my own family. I will try not to hurt too many of them. It is a hard time."


DAY 3 - Six-day War

10 year old Israeli girl during the Six-Day War, Jerusalem
"In the third day, we stayed in the shelter, we had a small dog his name was Mickey. With Mickey we played and it was very pleasant and we slept with him. He was very scared to hear the shells." 

Diary day 3 - Israeli girl
Diary day 3 - Israeli girl

Negev Bedouin soldier during the Six-Day War, Be'er Sheva
"I have been drafted to be part of an elitist Bedouin intelligence and trafficking unit, as I speak Arabic fluently. This unit comprises Druze and Bedouin, and I feel much better now. Now I am with people who understand me better and with whom I can speak Arabic all time. I know Hebrew, but I prefer to speak my own language because I can express myself better this way. The Bedouins in the unit were all having the same internal struggle I have, but now, we are struggling together." 


DAY 4 - Six-day War

10 year old Israeli girl during the Six-Day War, Jerusalem
"In the fourth day of the war, we felt like nothing is going on, but when the jets and the shells passed by, we were afraid." 

Diary day 4 - Israeli girl
Diary day 4 - Israeli girl

Negev Bedouin soldier during the Six-Day War, Be'er Sheva
"My Jewish peers have been shot by the Egyptian soldiers. I have grown more attached to them than I thought I would be. Most of them accept me fully as their compagnon, but some still do not trust me because I am a Bedouin, and they do not understand why I would fight with them. I do not understand it either, sometimes. However, they are many more of us than people might think or know - we, as Bedouins of the Negev, are not in the same position as the Palestinians of the West Bank. Most of us have Israeli citizenship - we are also Israelis in fact. But not completely. It is very complicated." 


DAY 5 - Six-day War

10 year old Israeli girl during the Six-Day War, Jerusalem
"The fifth day of the war, it was the end of the war. But in Jerusalem you could hear the bombardements and jets. We stuck our hands out, and here suddenly was air that we did not feel for a long time." 

Negev Bedouin soldier during the Six-Day War, Be'er Sheva
"Although it is only day 5, it feels like it is day 100. The war is intense, it is asking a lot from us, it is impacting us tremendously. We try to keep our heads cool, tell ourselves that we do this out of duty as men, out of our duty to protect and provide for our families and the Bedouin Negev people. I hope this is over soon." 


DAY 6 - Six-day War

10 year old Israeli girl during the Six-Day War, Jerusalem
"The End of the War
In the sixth day, there was still a lot of noise. Me and my neighbor went to walk with Mickey, and we went to see my friend. Suddenly the six days of battle seem like months and years."

Negev Bedouin soldier during the Six-Day War, Be'er Sheva
"The Egyptians surrendered, and so did the other Arab nations. We won. We are glad that it is over, and that we managed to keep the citizen casualties as low as possible, but, we in the Bedouin unit cannot celebrate as much as the others. We feel a bit like traitors, but at the same time, Israel is our home now. I wonder if we ever get over it, and if we can ever find peace within ourselves."