Based on testimonies taken by Noor Khairiyati Mohd Ali
Edited by: Alijah Gordon
Year of Publishing: 2001
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The words were clear there was no mistaking them. Alijah Gordon looked again: “I painted the snow black because we’re afraid of the days.”
It was a card scribbled with a child’s handwriting. Wissam Daoud, a young Palestinian boy from Nahr al-Barid refugee camp near Tripoli, had sent his Malaysian sponsor a postcard.
The mail had to go through the Malaysian Sociological Research Institute for distribution. And that is when its founder, Alijah Gordon, came across the card.
“I was shocked that a small child would write this,” she says.
Seven years later, Gordon better know simply as “Dr. Alijah” is in Beirut launching a book about the Palestinian exodus and their experiences in Lebanon.
Titled Palestinians Speak: I Painted The Snow Black, the 197-page book is made up of over 20 testimonies and historical background.
“It is the Palestinians who are speaking,” says Gordon. “It is a way of giving them a voice.”
The book concentrates on survivor testimonies from Tal al-Zaatar massacre, the Israeli invasion, the Sabra and Shatila massacre, the war of the camps, and Khiam detention center issues Gordon feels strongly about.