Safe in the West Bank
My partner Mohammed and I are safe in the West Bank. I know a lot of people are concerned because of what is happening in Gaza and Israel. It is a very sad time for us and a challenge to continue with our schedule while a lot of people of being killed. I am a guest and it is painful for me, but for Mohammed, this is very personal. Yet we are moving forward with our story and are prepared to adapt as the destruction of Gaza has a very big impact on everyone in Palestine.
What I can offer right now is a window into our work as we navigate the increase in tensions and checkpoints in the West Bank.
On Wednesday we were following the X Games in a parade for the National Week for the Youth. However we were unable to leave Qalqilya because over a dozen Israeli military vehicles, dozens of armed soldiers and a wall of barbed wire prevented us from leaving. On one side was a fully armed platoon, and on the other were kids with bicycles, skates and running shoes - all accompanied by teachers, firemen, ministers and a governor. So the X Games responded with their own form of resistance. Check out the photo below.
We did not understand the context of the blockade until we discovered the news about the assassination in Gaza afterwards. I do not support violence of any kind and wish for peace right now. But the imbalance of power here and in Gaza is absolutely staggering. People should understand this first hand before they use words like defense and security to justify the occupation, humiliation and destruction of an entire people.