This is a story which appeared in the New York Times on January 8 2009
It speaks for itself
GAZA CITY The emergency room in Shifa Hospital is often a place of gore and despair. On Thursday, it was also a lesson in the way ordinary people are squeezed between suicidal fighters and a military behemoth.
Dr. Awni al-Jaru, 37, a surgeon at the hospital, rushed in from his home here, dressed in his scrubs. But he came not to work. His head was bleeding, and his daughters jaw was broken.
He said Hamas militants next to his apartment building had fired mortar and rocket rounds. Israel fired back with force, and his apartment was hit. His wife, Albina, originally from Ukraine, and his 1-year-old son were killed.
My son has been turned into pieces, he cried. My wife was cut in half. I had to leave her body at home. Because Albina was a foreigner, she could have left Gaza with her children. But, Dr. Jaru lamented, she would not leave him behind.
A car arrived with more patients. One was a 21-year-old man with shrapnel in his left leg who demanded quick treatment. He turned out to be a militant with Islamic Jihad. He was smiling a big smile.
Hurry, I must get back so I can keep fighting, he told the doctors.
He was told that there were more serious cases than his, that he needed to wait. But he insisted. We are fighting the Israelis, he said. When we fire we run, but they hit back so fast. We run into the houses to get away. He continued smiling.
Why are you so happy? this reporter asked. Look around you.
A girl who looked about 18 screamed as a surgeon removed shrapnel from her leg. An elderly man was soaked in blood. A baby a few weeks old and slightly wounded looked around helplessly. A man lay with parts of his brain coming out. His family wailed at his side.
Dont you see that these people are hurting? the militant was asked.
But I am from the people, too, he said, his smile incandescent. They lost their loved ones as martyrs. They should be happy. I want to be a martyr, too.