Emotional video shows Syrians, displaced Palestinians crossing into the occupied Golan Heights

// Credit to Ali Abunimah for reporting on this video in a blog post on Electronic Intifada

It is during this time of the year when many friends and activists, including myself, begin to question why we do what we do. The horrific news stories and distressing images take a toll on us and it becomes easy to doubt whether our work or at least our aspirations are effective by any means. As disappointing as this might seem, at least it shows that we haven’t become hardened to the oppression, that we still maintain the passion, the drive, and the ethical morality that compels each and every one of us to continue pushing for justice and Palestinian self-determination.

But then we realize how selfish we can sometimes be. We realize that although we face this depressing situation every time we surf the internet or read a newspaper, there are others out there who are forced to live it.

I am proud to be a part of this community of solidarity activists, educators, grassroots campaigners, and conscience individuals. We’ve all found our niches, but the actions of this particular sign of solidarity (shown in the video above) are inspirational to say the least. Amidst the depression of having to tack on another year of oppression and dispossession, it is this kind of activism, both symbolic and concrete, that makes it all worth it.

This video shows upwards of one thousand Syrians and Palestinian refugees making their way over a fence and into the occupied Golan Heights, illegally annexed by Israel in 1981. With the video published on YouTube just hours ago, Ali Abunimah writes:

The video, which appears to be taken from the Israeli-occupied side shows a group of hundreds or perhaps thousands of marchers carrying Palestinian flags heading toward the boundary fence. Spectators on the Israeli-occupied side – apparently worried about the safety of the marchers – call on them to go back because of the danger of land mines.

However, undeterred, the marchers continue, and break through the border fence as people on both sides call for the liberation of Palestine. As the marchers break through there are scenes of joy, high emotion and embraces with those on the Israeli-occupied side. One man is heard to say, “This is how liberation is.”

This really is how liberation is, or at least it’s the first stepping stone toward it.

Sami Kishawi

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