My friend Alona Cohen was arrested during Kufr Qaddum weekly demonstration last week and was released after spending a night in jail; I gather my thoughts from the time she was jailed into one piece.
Dearest Alona. Thank you for bringing us pride. I am proud to have a friend like you, both courageous and dignified. I know that you hate glorifying the arrests, and despise the perception that arrests of Israeli activists are heroic and should be admired. I know that you disapprove the use of the arrests for secondary benefits, for self promotion and media attention. Even so, I know that in the particular case of your arrest there was no primary provocation from your side that prompted the detention. The way I see it, IOF arrested you simply because you are recurring face in Kufr Qaddum weekly protests. You were arrested because your determination, your resilience and persistence challenge and threatens consensual concepts of the occupiers that are the framework of their criminal actions.
The thought of you spending a night in prison terrifies me. I feel that if it was me forced to stay overnight in custody I would go insane, The thought of having my freedom taken away from me is horrifying. I panic when I think about walls closing on me, of not being able to come and leave at my will. I imagine you being a small cell, walls closing on you, and the horrible smell of bad sanitation getting under your skin. I am thinking about how degrading and humiliating it is to be under surveillance of the occupiers, of being subjected to their "mercy" , of being handcuffed. I think it is a price you pay for being in true solidarity, and if you like it or not, the price you pay, this traumatic experience serves as a voucher to your honesty and true solidarity and therefore, your suffering is not in vain.
I cannot end this letter without bringing in mind thousands of Palestinian prisoners who face harsh conditions and cruel living in the Zionist jail. We do not forget their suffering and pain of young men and women whose best years are being sacrificed on the altar of liberation struggle, in the name of the occupiers.