Yousef Dawas, Palestinian Writer: RIP

Who will pay for the 20 years we lost?” is an essay written by the Palestinian writer Yousef Dawas. Here, he recalls the destruction of his family’s orchard by an Israeli missile strike in May 2022. The orchard was his family’s history and heritage with olives, orange, lemons, guavas, and pomegranates. For a Palestinian, the destruction of trees and orchards can be more painful that the destruction of one’s home because these things are often tied to one’s family history and heritage.

The essay was published on 14 January 2023 at

On 14 October 2023, Yousef was killed with his family by an Israeli missile strike on his family home in the northern town of Beit Lahia in Gaza.

A tribute piece can be found at

Yousef Dawas

 from the Dawas family farmland.

 The writer in one of his family’s loquat trees…. THEN

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Filed under accountability, atrocities, ethnicity, governance, historical interpretation, human rights, life stories, Middle Eastern Politics, politIcal discourse, self-reflexivity, trauma, unusual people

One response to “Yousef Dawas, Palestinian Writer: RIP

  1. Camel Rider

    On 13 October, the day before Yousef and his family were slaughtered by the Israelis, the 39-year-old Palestinian visual artist and educator Heba Zagout was also killed along with two of her four children – Adam and Mahmoud. Heba dedicated her short life to her children and her students and spent her time using art to help them cope with the extreme hardships of living in Gaza, as victims of constant Israeli oppression.


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