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Occupation magazine - Activism

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Warden, I am a free and you are in captivity
Prison warden !
I am a free and you are in captivity

Brothers and sisters, friends and my beloved family

On the 25th of October 2013 I sent a letter to the Israeli Prime Minister and
Defence Minister, declaring my rejection to be recruited to the Israeli army, by
the imposed law on the Druze, for reasons of conscience and patriotism. And I
refuse to be part of this Israeli army and body that killed and displaced my
Palestinian people, demolished our homes, robbed our land, and I repeated my
slogan again and again : `I will not be the fuel of your war and will not be a
soldier in your army.`

This message was spread around the world and met with great interest by the
media, and with universal support, as well as some attacks by some quarters, and
news blackout in the Israeli media, with the determination of the Israeli
military authorities of ignoring my humanity, and insisting to recruit me. They
sent me the date of recruitment on the 4th of December 2014

And on the recruitment command date (before 196 days from now) you my comrades
and partners accompanied me , body and soul, to the recruiting office in
Tiberias, where I began my rejection battle to be recruited into the Israeli
army, by the imposed law on the Druze, hoping to obtain a certificate of
exemption from Israeli service military, preferring prison on taking up arms
against my Palestinian people.

I was not surprised by their order to put me in prison, and they prisoned me
again and again, trying to break my spirit and change my decision, until they
reached a point where they tried to kill me by not providing me with the needed
medical treatment while I was in dire need of it, but to no avail, and reached
the hospital at the last minute between life and death.

I was sentenced 7 times for a period of 150 days, and 46 days ago between home
and hospital, and every time before sending me out to prison, they ask me the
same question: `Why you refuse to serve in the IDF?? Eventually named the` Army
of defence. `

My answer was always the same: `I refuse because I am an integral part of the
Palestinian Arab people. Refuse because your army is an army of occupation.
Refuse because I am the owner of principle and conscience. I make peace with my
musical instrument and I refuse to replace it with a weapon that generates
death, and does not differentiate between a child , a woman, a man and an old
man. So how can you ask me to kill, occupy and arrest my people? my weapon is my
musical instrument and will not be replaced by any another weapon. `

My brothers and sisters
During the period when I was in prison I touched and was so affected by the
great support. I was touched by the children - musicians who raised slogans and
pictures, along with their musical instruments, demanding for my freedom.
I was touched by each word or article or comment you all sent via social
network/ media.
I was touched by the embrace of all forces of peace and democracy in the world
and in our country. Affected by the logos and drawing I received. Affected to
see children, youth and elders standing up at the Mountain of Prisoners (name
given by the demonstrators on a hill overlooking the Atlit military prison. This
name was given in a demonstration to demand my release and the release of those
who rejected to serve for reasons of conscience). They were chanting against the
occupation and sang for joy and peace.

I was also affected by the honoured I received from the Palestinian freedom
fighters and prisoners, while they are the ones to be honoured. They are the
light and brightness for each freedom demand.

I was overwhelmed by the love of my people in our besieged country - Palestine.
I was affected when I found Jewish students who call for freedom and justice
demonstrating in support of my case and chanting against Israeli occupation.

I was imprisoned, and today I know the meaning putting a person in prison
without any right, because he believes in a just case.
Today I know what the administrative detention is. This arrest that disables all
the foundations of democracy and justice, otherwise any democratic or a man of
law should answer: What does it mean to detain a person and renewed his period
without showing reasons for the detention, without any charge, and without
having the right to prosecute or defend himself? Is not this exactly the work of
obscurantism systems ? Is this not the approach dictatorships?

Today, I join all the honourable forces in the world: free captives
administrative detainees who are on a legendary hunger strike , preferring death
to humiliation. We do not want to receive them as martyrs. Peace cannot be
achieved if we have one freedom fighter inside prison, as there can be no peace
and the killing machine is continuing to reap the youth. You cannot achieve
peace and settlements are built and deployed as a cancer which will eliminate
any possibility to live.

In prison, I had some time to read, have rejoiced to read the novel `The time of
white horses` by the very well-known writer Ibrahim Nasrallah, and the novel
`Algshawh` for a friend from Mughar village uncle Radi Shehadeh, and that taught
me about the reality of Palestine and the meaning of how to dance between the
beads of rain, and what to be a Palestinian par excellence. . These novels
taught me how to kill time in useful ways and gave me strength.

My brothers and sisters
Will not have the space to mention all who supported me and stood by my side,
but let me mention in particular the initiative committee of Arab Druze, my
school and my home, which most of the refusal came out from since more than 40
years, without waiting for a word of thanks or few minutes on the big screen.

Let me mention the author Mohammed Nafa, and the poets Sameh Al Qasem, and Nayef
Salim and Martyrs Assem al-Khatib and the late Sheikh Farhood Farhood and all
the brothers who started to refuse to serve in the Israeli army, and I hope we
do not stop at the small things, but to work on writing our honour history,
which the competition is.

Let me thank `Profil Hadash` for his moral and legal support and lawyer Rowan
Aghbarieh, which has made great efforts in spite of the obstacles such as
banning her of visiting me, as well as the lawyers from the Office of Attorney
`Smadar Ben-Natan,` the intern `Adi Lerner, and lawyer `Mikhail Sparad` which
we consulted in different legal topics. And my gratitude goes to Adalahand
Amnesty and all human rights organizations that stood by my side.

My thanks goes to the movement `there is limit` and all organizations and
political parties that demonstrated and released statements to support my
release, and special mention goes to the Communist Youth and the Democratic
Front.

Special thanks to all the local and foreign media, which covered my case.
I thank the members of Parliament who supported my case from all over the world
and in our region.

And last but not least, thanks to those who refused to serve in the Israeli
army, all who have preceded me and who were with me and those who came after me,
whom I have learned the meaning of patience and struggle.
Thank you all and I wish I will not disappoint your, and I can give you back
some of your kindness, your love and your sympathy and generosity.

Omar Saad

Special thanks to all the local and foreign media, which covered my case.
I thank the members of Parliament who supported my case from all over the world
and in our region.

And last but not least, thanks to those who refused to serve in the Israeli
army, all who have preceded me and who were with me and those who came after me,
whom I have learned the meaning of patience and struggle.
Thank you all and I wish I will not disappoint your, and I can give you back
some of your kindness, your love and your sympathy and generosity.

Omar Zaheralden Mhammad Saad
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