Home > activism, israel, Palestine, peace, politics > Fight War Not Wars. Rachel Corrie – the American girl killed defending a Palestinian home.

Fight War Not Wars. Rachel Corrie – the American girl killed defending a Palestinian home.

The world, my world, narrowed to a single point. The war, the wars, that had filled my thoughts raged on around. The Iraq war buildup, occupation of Palestine, the assaults on Gaza, the poverty and inequality and sexism that for most exacerbated their desperate situation evaporated from my consciousness. The brutality of the occupation that for the past two months had crowded all else from my head, with its desperate importance – all that blurred to non existence.

“My back is broken.” The last words Rachel Corrie ever said. I dropped my mobile phone in the middle of dialling for an ambulance and took her head in my hands to stabilise her spine. Nearby the bulldozers and tanks were driving – normally impossible to ignore massive, armoured, roaring, military machines. Another international with incredible foresight took photo after photo.

We were in the Philadelphia Corridor. Land scraped clean of Palestinian homes over the past few years and made into a militarised buffer zone between the Israeli army’s newly erected steel wall and the half of Rafah that fell on the Gaza side of the border with Egypt. Even in overcrowded, desperate for space Gaza, this area was to be avoided. The only movement would be the frequent passage of tanks and APCs and armoured bulldozers and even then, even the Israelis wouldn’t tarry.

The world comprised of 4 people. I held Rachel’s head. On her right and left Greg and Will knelt beside her, focusing all they could to will her to survive. Four friends, one of whom’s life force was leaking out as we held her, told her we loved her and how awesome she was and how she was going to be ok. How she was going to do these awesome talks back in the states about how she’d survived being run over by an IDF bulldozer. As we desperately tried to keep our dying friend with us, while her body was breaking apart and there was nothing we could do. Helplessly I observed the thin skin around her eyes and ears blackened with blood from the bleeding in her brain. The depth and regularity fading from her breathing.

In less than an hour she would be declared dead and this tiny world would be the centre of global attention, as multinational media filled with news of an American girl killed defending a Palestinian home. Suddenly my world would be talking live on TV channels from every continent, confronting head on the USA and Israeli states when they tried to force us to hand over Rachel’s body to the IDF, the institution that had killed her. I would be on a call with a USA congressman. Emails and phone calls would flood in from around the world. We would give a packed out press conference to local and global media.

But at that moment there were just four of us in the world, and one was dying as we held her. Four kids from USA and UK whose life paths had happened to intersect in Palestine. Four kids in the most dangerous place in the Gaza Strip, and one of us was fading fast and there was nothing the rest of us could do about it.

This is what War means. This is the detail in every casualty statistic. People holding their loved ones as their soft flesh disintegrates from the sudden penetration of the hard metals of war; tanks, guns, bombs, shrapnel. Bodies and lives broken. For what?

Each war death is a unique human being, just like your mother, father, sister, brother and child. Communities deemed “war zones” by too powerful others living remote lives moving infantry pieces over plans of “strategic areas”. A little to the left and suddenly that village is ground underneath the caterpillar tracks of War. The tanks roll through. The fighter jets race overhead. Communities and lives are wrecked.

What possible question can this be the right answer to? How can destruction this brutal birth anything worthwhile? What dehumanising of other human beings, what racism must we hold to ever justify such slaughter?

Rachel was an incredible person. Please read from her own words. And know that the millions of others murdered for War are as unique and precious and their deaths as tragic and wrong.

Fight War Not Wars.

  1. Jeff Nguyen
    March 23, 2014 at 2:22 am

    Thank you, fleabite, for what you and your comrades have done and for what you have shared with the world.

  2. Johnk341
    July 17, 2014 at 3:01 am

    Thanks for sharing it egadabcdaeac

  3. Enough Debating
    August 8, 2014 at 10:28 am

    Special Message to ISM members from Rachel Corrie:

    Dearest Comrades:
    Just wanted to check in with you and let you know how I am doing. I would like to invite you all to follow my lead and go to Gaza to commit suicide in protecting the Hamas’ terror tunnels. You can then join me down here. There is still lots of room in the new Diablo Boulevard housing project. Heat is so high that American flags burn all by themselves. No need for matches. Come move in with me!

    Your comrade,
    Rachel Corrie
    32 South Hades Ave.

    • December 31, 2016 at 1:47 am

      leaving this here so folks can see how lovely the zionists are. in the past i had personal messages to my email, to my mobile phone etc as they were publicised by zionist orgs and i was labeled a self-hating jew. these comments don’t upset me at all, i just think they’re silly and the fact that the writer was clearly trying to distress is kinda playground childish.

  4. October 10, 2015 at 9:42 pm

    Thank you so much for writing about what happened to you and rachel in gaza. I commemorate her every year,my friend wrote a song about her and i recently saw a play about her in edinburgh. Thank you to you and your comrades for what you have done

  5. Paul O'Hanlon
    December 12, 2015 at 3:05 pm

    Very moving piece Alice.

  6. December 31, 2016 at 1:48 am

    thanks to everyone else for your comments.

  1. March 21, 2014 at 10:17 pm
  2. March 23, 2014 at 1:39 am
  3. March 23, 2014 at 2:51 pm
  4. March 14, 2015 at 10:05 pm
  5. March 15, 2017 at 5:16 pm
  6. January 10, 2019 at 2:32 pm

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