Chilling Pictures of Gaza Children Holding Guns

Chilling Pictures of Gaza Children Holding Guns

Palestinian children hold guns as they celebrate with others following a ceasefire in Gaza on August 26. (Reuters)

Gaza:  Amid celebration, cameras captured the harsh reality of the war that battered Gaza for seven weeks in one chilling image. Two small boys, mouths open wide, hold up guns, not toys, one with an empty magazine.

They are in a car on a street in Gaza City celebrating along with other Palestinians after a deal was reached between Hamas and Israel over a long-term end to 50 days of the deadliest violence in a decade.

To many children, guns and explosions became a way of life for those weeks. “Thank God the war is ended. I can’t believe I’m still alive with my kids!” 32-year-old Maha Khaled said.

Displaced families who sought shelter in schools begun returning home on Tuesday.

Large crowds gathered in Gaza City after the truce took effect at dusk, as celebratory gunfire and fireworks erupted across the territory.

Chanting and clapping revelers surged through the streets, bellowing songs of victory as a man swathed in a huge green Hamas flag threw handfuls of sweets into the air.

Mosques used their loudspeakers to broadcast celebratory chants of “God is greatest” as the war-torn enclave hailed the apparent end to the violence that has seen a quarter of the territory’s 1.8 million people flee their homes. More than 2,200 people were killed.

Cars jammed the streets, their horns honking incessantly, as beaming women and children flashed victory signs and crowds of young men bounced up and down on rooftops, waving flags.

As night fell, there was no letup in the celebrations as the rhythmic thud of drums beat a celebratory pulse and a performer breathed fire to entertain the ecstatic crowd.

“Today Gaza showed the world that it is resisting and that it is stronger than Israel,” said Tamer al-Madqa, 23.

There was no sign of celebration in Israel as citizens absorbed the news of two people killed when mortar shells hit a kibbutz in the south. “This time we hope the cease-fire will stick,” said Israeli government spokesman Mark Regev. He portrayed the deal as one Hamas had rejected in previous rounds of negotiations.

The truce is an uneasy deal that halts the deadliest war the sides have fought in years, but puts off the most difficult issues.

In the end, both sides settled for an ambiguous interim agreement in exchange for a period of calm. Hamas, though badly battered, remains in control of Gaza with part of its military arsenal intact. Israel and Egypt will continue to control access to blockaded Gaza, despite Hamas’ long-running demand that the border closures imposed in 2007 be lifted.

Hamas declared victory, even though it had little to show for a war that killed 2,143 Palestinians, wounded more than 11,000 and left some 100,000 homeless. On the Israeli side, 64 soldiers and six civilians were killed, including the two killed by Palestinian mortar fire shortly before the cease-fire was announced.

1 thought on “Chilling Pictures of Gaza Children Holding Guns

  1. And the world calls Israel barbaric… The evil one knows his time is about over when he uses the innocents of youth, and the degradation of the family unit.
    Be weary when “peace” is proclaimed…all one has to do is look around to see how false that statement truly is.

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