Humanity Voice - After the war on Gaza, what about the psychological damage?



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  After the war on Gaza, what about the psychological damage?
Gaza, Yaser Abu Hain, Humanityvoice - 2009-05-17

Perhaps some will say that its a type of unnecessary luxury to talk about the mental anguish and psychological scars left by the war, especially when compared to the much reported, documented, and surveyed physical destruction after the war.

Perhaps many were involved in documenting and surveying the devastation left by the Israeli war machine, some haphazardly, perhaps randomly, while others recorded every small detail, but the majority appeared to have ignored some aspects that, even though less visible, are not less important, such as the mental and psychological well being that required counseling and support.

Some may argue that such programs will not be necessary especially since the people in Gaza had gotten accustomed to death and destruction. After all, they have been through two intifadas in 1987 and 2000, and have witnessed many wars and a brutal occupation since 1967. However, the studies and statistics coming from Gaza seem to indicate very troubling numbers of psychological scars on its victims, especially among women and children given the brutal scenes of death, destruction, burnings and mutilation they have witnessed. So far, it seems that only some local civil society organizations have been alarmed enough to direct random programs to deal with this problem. It is clear that local NGOs would not be able to cope with this problem without coordination and support from outside donors.

Specialists whom Humanityvoice had interviewed earlier confirmed the emergence of new psychological disorders among Gaza's residents after the war, and that thousands were affected after witnessing disturbing scenes.

After the war ended, Gaza received tens of foreign delegations, activists, and solidarity convoys, but they all lacked experts in psychological crises. Our worst fear may soon be realized when the students sit for the final and matriculation exams at the end of May and middle of June, then, God forbids, we may discover that we are looking at a real crisis face to face.

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