free stats Carmen's Web: Collateral Damage
Monday, July 24, 2006
Collateral Damage
My alarm is set to NPR in the mornings and this is the story I woke up to about 20 minutes ago:

TYRE, Lebanon -- The Srour family's dream of evacuating to Germany died yesterday afternoon on a south Lebanon road when an Israeli bomb struck their car, killing the head of the family and one of his sons.

Like many of the 400,000 Lebanese who live south of the Litani River, they were following Israel's order to leave their home or be considered targets.

The Srour family displayed a white cloth from the window of their car as they approached Tyre, but it was not enough to save them from an Israeli strike; their car was one of a three-car convoy hit yesterday on the road into Tyre from the south.
The attack took place in sight of Najem Hospital, on the road between the regional capital, Tyre, and the nearly abandoned, bomb-cratered suburb of Hosh.

The Srour family left their village in south Lebanon yesterday morning sick of the bombing and convinced they'd be on a boat to Cyprus by evening.

An Israeli bomb struck Mahmoud Srour, 8, and his family a few hundred yards from the Najem hospital. They were hoping to reach the safety of central Lebanon from the village of El Mansouri, 7 1/2 miles from Tyre.

They were on the way to the Rest House Hotel in Tyre, the seafront resort where refugees from the south gather to plan moves to safer towns farther north.

Their car was engulfed in flames. The boy's father, Mohammed, and one of his brothers died, and an older brother was in surgery. Mahmoud and his little sister Mariam, 8 months old, sustained severe burns.

Their mother, deaf from the blasts, paced , prayed silently, wept, and pulled a towel over her veil to cover her face.

Mahmoud's entire torso and face were blistered. His lips were peeled back in what looked like a suspended scream, and the raw flesh around his eyes had swollen them shut.

"Don't cry," Dr. Jawad Najem said.

"My eyes! My eyes!" the boy screamed, his lips trembling.

"I'll bandage them," Najem said as he applied cream to the child's face.

At the next bed, another doctor leaned over Mariam. He leaned over, kissing the fingers of her left hand and blowing gently on her face to relieve the sting of the burn. His head was almost the size of her entire body, and he made shushing noises to try to reassure her as she sobbed .

The Zabad family drove past the Srour family's burning car. Ahmed Zein El Abdin Zabad, 45, saw what looked like a missile crash into the car in front of him. But he was rushing his crowded Nissan minivan toward the hospital, because he had picked up three wounded strangers already along the road.

He had almost made it to the hospital when another bomb or shell hit his car.

"There was fire everywhere," he said, beginning to cry in his hospital bed. "I can't describe it."

Miraculously, he said, no one in the car was killed, and the three already wounded passengers escaped further injury.

Bombs have fallen daily in the vicinity of the hospital, according to the staff.

"They are crazy, striking everything, not just Hezbollah, but kids, civilians," said Nada Kouayess Najem, who is volunteering to help her husband, Dr. Najem, at the understaffed hospital.

Israel fought in this part of south Lebanon before, including during a punishing campaign against Hezbollah in 1996. "This is different," Nada Najem said. "This time they are bombing everywhere."
Thoughts shared by Carmen at 6:55 AM
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Who: Carmen

xx-something egyptia-yorker who's spent over half her life stuck in two worlds not of her own making. unable and unwilling to fully embrace one identity over the other, she created (is trying to create) her own place in the world where people love each other unconditionally, irrespective of artificial boundaries, and where dancing merengue is as necessary to life as breathing air.

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