Hard luck, ‘the forty’ checkpoint

8

It is the eighth anniversary of their marriage. Hoping to return her smile and to bring back gloss and sheen to her withered eyes, he thought of getting her a gift as a kind of surprise. His wife used to spend time watching her neighborhood kids playing and having fun. While her eyes had been staring, her heart was full of sadness and sorrow praying and entreating God to give her a kid who can bring in delight and hope to her heart and her husband’s as well. Heading to the market, her husband intended to buy her a silver ring and a shirt which she had seen and liked. Staring at her eyes when he once went to the market with her, he could see that she’d felt in love with that shirt but she didn’t say; she knew her husband couldn’t afford it. His dream had been to see her cheerful again ever since she lost the last hope of getting pregnant after the continuous failure of artificial insemination procedures they’d desperately tried.

Alas, he couldn’t realize that his dream would never come true. Coming back from the market, he’d been stopped by one of the military checkpoints. It wasn’t a standard check; rather they ended his dream and actually his life. They brutally killed him, disassembled his body and limbs and shed his blood all over the place. They took his personal belongings including his mobile phone; they went through his messages. The last received message was from his wife ‘where are you sweetheart? I’ve been worried about you, why aren’t you taking my calls? Are you ok? Just let me know once you get this dear. Love you’.

At the moment of death a series of thoughts and wonders comes to mind, one can wonder whether this husband ever felt that his dream will be crushed,whether he ever doubted that his wife will wear that ring or try on that shirt she’d dreamed of a day not far off! Or whether he ever suspected to see the joy back to on his wife’s eyes again! Did he ever fear missing his eighth anniversary with his beloved? Or was he aware that this great day will turn into a catastrophic memory?

A call coming to the wife’s mobile phone, she took the call; it’s her husband number but not his voice! Her voice started to tremble, a moment of a  great fear came when she heard someone saying ‘ Hello, Ms Samira?!, we noticed that you called this number several times! Who are you?’ when she told them that this number is her husband’s, they proudly replied ‘congratulations madam! Your husband had the honor of becoming a martyr; the armed terrorists have killed him, and thrown his body at ‘the forty’ checkpoint!’

‘The forty’ is one of the most terrifying and brutal military checkpoints of Al Assad’s gangs. It is located in the middle of a road which connects central Damascus to the west suburbs of Damascus including Assoumariyah, a neighborhood populated by Assad thugs. . This point has been filled of military tanks and a large number of heavily armed security forces with their equipment. Yet terrorists – as Al Assad’s thugs claimed- managed to cross that road, pass all the barriers throw the husband’s dismembered body at the checkpoint.

”then, the series of my pain had been continued It was most hurtful when they sent me his body with the gifts he’d bought for me and a note saying ‘hard luck’ ”  the wife said.

‘The forty’ checkpoint remains to be a fear and a worry for displaced Darayans in neighboring towns. For more than seven months, security forces at that checkpoint have field-executed many innocent civilians, and detained a large number of the city’s youth.

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