The Israeli offensive in Gaza reached its 18th day with Israel continuing to block access to the region for foreign journalists. But bloggers in Gaza are chronicling the conflict with firsthand accounts of their experiences, giving outsiders a look at the unfolding humanitarian crisis.
Safa Joudeh, blogging at Lamentations - Gaza, described the effect that living amid the conflict has had on her family.
Our entire lives [are] now one long chaotic stream of existence: waiting in line each morning to fill up containers with water from the only working tap on the ground floor of our building, baking homemade bread from the depleting supply of flour we managed to obtain a few days into the offensive, turning on the power generator for 30 to 50 minutes in the evening to charge phones and watch the news....
We are now unable to distinguish joy from fear. My 11-year old sister laughs as she imagines how people all over the world watch the horrific events taking place in the Gaza Strip. "[It's] like we are a scary movie. I'm sure people eat popcorn as they watch," she says. My 12- and 14-year old brothers act out scenes from our reality while quoting ... their favorite video game, and we laugh hysterically at their performance. Moments later we tense up at the sound of a violent, close by earthquake-like explosion, and resume our laughter when the building stops shaking.