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Not exotic enough for a zoo, and so nobody comes. Credit: Eva Bartlett
September 12, 2010

MIDEAST: Gazans Desert Their Donkey-Zebra

"We haven't had a single visit yet through Ramadan, what kind of zoo doesn't get visitors during holidays?" asks Mahmoud Barghoud, 22, co-creator of the Marha zoo.
Cooking over felled trees by a demolished home in Johr al-Dik. Credit: Eva Bartlett
September 4, 2010

MIDEAST: Ramadan Goes Down Under Rubble

With power cuts up to 16 hours to full days, a soaring heat wave and unbearable humidity, the Israeli-led siege on Gaza is but one of many factors leaving Ramadan miserable for the majority of Palestinians in Gaza.
At the math school in Gaza. Credit: Emad Badwan/IPS
August 24, 2010

MIDEAST: This Math Class May Figure Out Israel

In a bright and spacious classroom, with plants overflowing in the courtyard outside, six students lean forward at their desks looking at the 10-digit addition they are asked to make. One student stands before the numbers on the chalkboard and a red and yellow-beaded abacus. But her attention is on the abacus she visualises in her mind.
Gaza is running out of drinking water.  Credit: Eva Bartlett/IPS
August 22, 2010

MIDEAST: Darkness Dawns at Ramadan

"It's been days without electricity and water. We can't do anything, and it's unbearably hot now." Abu Fouad, 83, speaks of the power cuts plaguing all of the Gaza Strip.
Mohammed Zidan lost his right leg to Israeli shelling during the 2008-2009 Israeli war on Gaza. Credit: Eva Bartlett/IPS
August 9, 2010

MIDEAST: Injured Workers Man Battered Services

Outside the battered Civil Defence station in northern Gaza's Jabalia region, Mohammed Zidan, a seven-year veteran of fire-fighting and rescue services, stands on crutches in front of battered Civil Defence vehicles.
Bees too feel the impact of the Israeli assault. Credit: Eva Bartlett/IPS
July 19, 2010

Bees Get Stung by Israel

Sa'id Hillis, 60, has kept bees since he was a boy. Until the Israeli attacks changed his business.
Dealing with the bombs that remain. Credit: Eva Bartlett/IPS
July 7, 2010

MIDEAST: These Explosions Are Saviours

At precisely 12 noon on a Thursday afternoon, among the rolling sandy hills in southern Gaza, a controlled explosion destroys another round of white phosphorous shells left in Gaza following the 2008-2009 Israeli war on Gaza.
At work in a tunnel. Credit: Eva Bartlett/IPS
May 30, 2010

Difficult Times Call for Dangerous Jobs

Life can be hard working in these tunnels, and it is always at risk. But many have no choice but to work in them, particularly since mid-2007, when Israel and Egypt, with the help of the international community, imposed a siege of staggering severity on the 1.5 million humans in the Gaza Strip.
Mohammed Tooman and Hammad Awadallah, Nakba survivors from Isdud, share memories of their destroyed village. Credit: Eva Bartlett/IPS
May 23, 2010

MIDEAST: May Is About Memories

This is the month for Palestinians to remember their Nakba, or "catastrophe", in which more than 700,000 women, men and children were pushed off their land and rendered homeless refugees by the Zionist attacks before, during and after the founding of Israel in 1948.
The Gazan skyline reveals a particular need to link with the outside world. Credit: Emad Badwan/IPS.
May 19, 2010

MIDEAST: These Virtual Connections Are for Real

"I've learned most of what I know about photo editing and graphic design via the Internet," says Emad, 27-year-old film-maker and editor. In Gaza, this sort of thing has become usual in a different way.
Rita, 9, learning the basics of the violin. Credit: Emad Badwan
May 13, 2010

MIDEAST: Children Fight Off Israel With Music

"Why are you rushing? Isn't it nicer like this?" Mohammed Omer, oud teacher (an oud is similar to a lute) at the Gaza Music School, asks his student. Omer takes the oud and demonstrates, playing the song slowly, gracefully, with the ornamentations that are key to Arab music.
Sheep search desperately for grass. Credit: Eva Bartlett
April 23, 2010

Israel Winning its War on Goats

Nine-year-old Ismail spends every afternoon herding his family's flock of sheep and goats, a scraggly group of roughly 20 animals. They live in a shanty house district near Tel el Howa in Gaza City, where growth is sparse to non-existent.
Gathering gravel for a living. Credit: Eva Bartlett
March 2, 2010

MIDEAST: Picking Pebbles to Live Somehow

They come by the hundreds every day to sand dunes and rubble sites to sift for pebbles, stones and sand that can be used in making concrete blocks. They lean into trash bins across the Strip, and wade through piles of rubbish scavenging for plastics, metals, and any bits worth reselling.
Wedding graffiti in Gaza. Credit: Eva Bartlett
January 14, 2010

MIDEAST: Will You Marry Poor Me

"If we had money we'd get married right away," says Samir*, 23. He has found his bride, but not the money to hold the wedding.
December 30, 2009

MIDEAST: New Year Reopens Wounds of the Old

For many survivors of the last Israeli war on Gaza, time has not healed their wounds, physical or emotional.
October 30, 2009

MIDEAST: Harvesting in Death Zone, With a Song

On a quiet October morning, Fida Zaneen, 19, sings a traditional love song as she pulls olives from trees in Beit Hanoun's border region during the annual olive harvest.
The new police station being built with mud. Credit: Eva Bartlett
October 13, 2009

MIDEAST: Gaza Gets Ambitious With Mud

On a searing summer morning, workers are adding layers to the mud-brick police station being constructed in Sheikh Zayed, northern Gaza.
September 21, 2009

MIDEAST: Widows and Children Begin to Beg

There are few parks and green spaces in Gaza, and those that exist are crowded with people hungry for nature. Day and night, people of all ages flock to the Joondi, or the park of the Unknown Soldier, in central Gaza City.
September 12, 2009

MIDEAST: To Rap Is to Resist

In a backstreet open-air café in Gaza late at night, Khaled Harara from the Black Unit Band starts to talk about rap.
All that remains of Al-Habil's fishing trawler. Credit: Eva Bartlett
September 3, 2009

MIDEAST: Israelis Destroy Boats, and Lives

Until Monday, Omar and Khaled Al-Habil were the owners of a 20m fishing trawler staffed by five or six fishermen at a time, but employing around 18 in cycles. But that morning the vessel came under heavy Israeli navy machine-gun fire, and then shelling. The trawler caught fire.
Mangoes rot before they reach the market. Credit: Eva Bartlett
August 29, 2009

MIDEAST: In a Rotten State

Abu Abed can't make a profit, and although 54 years old, he still has not married. "I can't pay my rent, I can't afford a wedding."
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