The work of a journalist is to document reality without interference. To objectively standby and record without the luxury of looking away or forgetting what was seen. After documenting the war in Gaza for over 2 months, since it began on October 7th, the 24-year-old journalist, Motaz Azaiza, now dawns grey hairs and more weathered features. Leaving no room for doubt as to the effect of war on man.
For the first time in history, the chaos of war is held and displayed on social media in real time. Although not what the platforms were intended for, they have evolved into becoming the primary hosts for many individuals’ sources of current news. Making Azaiza’s once more light-hearted and artistic Instagram, into a primary source and time capsule of the first 108 days of the war in Gaza. His posts bare it all from beneath the rubble, to the beds in hospitals, and beneath the rubble of hospitals. Every person was documented and heard and every person was captured, and seen.
Azaiza maintained his dedication to reporting despite the multitude of internet and WiFi outages. Running towards exploded buildings, capturing on video the drones buzzing overhead, and comforting hospital patients. He has also showcased the blazing orange Gazan sunsets, the sandy outlook into the Mediterranean Sea, and his love for the people of his country.
It is the continued dedication to inform the international community of the plight of the Palestinian people that has impacted how we view this war.
“We could talk about being strong forever but even your talk is not meant for this situation,” Azaiza said. “This never happened to anyone. Even the guy who told you to stay strong. He hasn’t been through this ever!”
Over 22,000 Palestinians – mostly women and children – have been killed in Israeli strikes on Gaza since the war began on October 7 following Hamas’ attack on Israel, according to Gaza’s Hamas-run health ministry.