The case of the German mother Meryem Elasawi searching for her toddler Jamil in Palestine: Who takes responsibility for the deprivation of a child from his mother? What explains the “shy” German government intervention?
Since last October, the Palestinian public opinion has been stirred in the case of the German-Iraqi young mother- Meryem- whose screams for help knocked every human heart. At the beginning it felt even more close to what should be a nostalgia to the heart, the woman was crying out in Arabic with a familiar Iraqi dialect. It felt more than just a case of a woman who is pleading for help to hug her toddler again, it was an Iraqi woman in Hebron. It was an Iraqi woman who is pleading for the Palestinian conscience reminding us of those times when Iraqi people will respond to such a call with all their men and women to stand up for such a case.
I admit, I felt Meryem’s voice shredding in echoes to an empty sky. So much has happened to make us become a society that we cannot even recognize now. A society where tribal ties are stronger than a human plea for what seems to be naturally a basic right. A right of a child to be with his mother. A right of a mother to embrace her child.
When I later learnt that Meryem is not only Iraqi, but a German citizen, I thought well, maybe she is safe. At least Germany is a country that respects basic rights. On top of it all, Germany definitely will stand up for its citizens. After all Meryem is a German citizen. The toddler Jamil is a German citizen.
And again, it was just a matter of time to realize, that not all German citizens are equally Germans. I could only allow myself to imagine how the German government would have responded, have this woman and her child were “pure” Germans.
From one side, the standpoint of the PA did not surprise me much, so is the result and the consequence of where things are standing today. The PA has lost its control ever since it allowed tribal governance over the rule of law. In a normal situation, the moment the mother got the custody order in hand, the child would have been in her lap. But it was no surprise to see how horrible things turned, a case as such in Hebron is by all means harder than any place elsewhere. This mother fell in the heart of patriarchal dominance. It becomes a matter of power, dominance, defending to the macho ego of all males. Hebron is the first city that endorsed tribal practice as a substitute to the rule of law and the PA watched with coordination most of the times. The rule of law lost all its significance but tot the titles and the offices it consumes, and to the less advantaged people, and of course to those who criticize the PA.
I would also assume no intervention from the Israeli side, at the end the man is in Hebron. However, when the news came out to confirm or to suggest that the man escaped to the Israeli side, Israel could get involved and prove its system to be effective. But alas… they are watching waiting for a call to intervene.
But where is the German intervention and role in all this?
Following on the case from the beginning, it was obvious that the missing piece of a serious intervention is that of the German government.
It is true that the German representative office is following the case, as much the German government is standing by its “required” support to the mother, by providing a lawyer in Germany, but other than that there is a lot more that the German government can do.
My question remains, would the German government act upon this case in the same way has the mother and the child were “pure” Germans?
In the meantime, there is a mother who is yearning , crying, heartbroken waiting to see her child. And a child in the unknown, with a runaway father, who decided to teach the disobedient woman who dared to divorce him the lesson of taking her child away from her. Ripping a part of her heart and leave her bleeding tears and roam with sorrow and despair.
If only Meryem was Maria…… and Jamil was Beau..