What the Guardian won’t report: Disabled and abandoned Palestinian child cared for by Israel

A Palestinian boy named Mohammed Al-Farra, now 3 1/2, was born in  Khan Younis, Gaza with a genetic disease which led to amputations of his feet and hands, and left him with a compromised immune system and other debilitating conditions. 

Though the boy naturally became completely dependent on others, his parents abandoned him and the Palestinian government refused to pay for his medical care.  So, he now lives at Safra Children’s Hospital, in the Israeli city of Ramat Gan, where doctors began treating him when he was just an infant.


Mohammed spends his days undergoing treatment, getting around in a tiny wheelchair and learning how to use prosthetic limbs – and is cared for by his 55-year-old grandfather, Hamouda.  The Israeli doctors have reportedly grown quite attached to the boy, and fundraise to cover the cost of his care, and which also allows him and his grandfather to live in the pediatric ward.


Hamouda Al-Farra puts his grandson Mohammed in a wheelchair in the Tel Hashomer Hospital

A recent report on the young disabled Palestinian boy in AP noted the following, which, though quite moving, wouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone who has spent any time in Israeli hospitals.

On a recent day at the children’s hospital, patients and medics chatted in Hebrew and Arabic. Women in Muslim headscarves strolled in a corridor. An Orthodox Jewish woman affectionately patted Mohammed on his head. She nodded kindly at al-Farra.


Hamouda Al-Farra holds his grandson Mohammed as they speak with Israeli doctor Raz Somech

In 2012, Israeli authorities approved 91.5 percent of applications from Gaza to receive medical care in Israel, a year in which a total of 219,469 Palestinian patients from the West Bank and Gaza received treatment in Israeli hospitals – a number which includes over 20,000 children.

13 replies »

  1. I love Israel, my “apartheid” country. Of course, the libero-fascists will just cynically say that Israel approves 91.5% of applications for medical treatment in Israel as PR.

    • It is the Liberal mind that encourages Openness towards and Understanding of Others. Liberals hug trees as well as disabled Palestinian babies.

      Anyway, first time I’ve seen Liberal and Fascist come together outside of the Right Whiner retort that Hitler was a vegetarian. Whatever.

  2. As a I said on the previous thread – if the Guardian reported this story it would be under the heading: Israelis make medical experiments on Palestinian children – sub head line: Gaza Arabs are used as non paid slaves in Israeli hospitals. The report will be accompanied by a letter from Baroness Tonge demanding an international inquiry plus an article by Seth Freedmann inventing the new fashion-word – invalid-washing.

    • The pictures of the child are all over the international media and the web so blurring it wouldn’t reverse anything.

  3. Its a good story but one point of clarification. The COGAT report says “219,469 healthcare permits were issued for people in need of medical care and their companions” therefore it is incorrect to say “219,469 Palestinian patients received treatment in Israeli hospitals”.

    • Who on earth voted down Michael’s comment? It’s a perfectly valid one, and he made his point respectfully.

  4. Mohammed’s was born with a genetic disorder as a result of inter family marriage which is a common thing in tribal parts of Gaza to date. His father left him almost straight away. He then forced his wife to abandon the child or he’ll remarry. The grand father was the only one who never gave up on the child. Mohammed couldn’t find a bone marrow donor so he has to remain on meds which lower his immune system and this is how he lost his limbs. After a severe infection the Dr had to amputate him.
    The donor his an American Jew. Reading this article on ynet in Hebrew many israelis were willing to donate arguing fiercely with those who said that many are sick in the world and we can’t help everyone.
    I guess this is what makes israelis who they are. We do not shut our hearts. We’re Jews.

    • Forgot to mention that many comments were made about the granddad and how strong and wonderful he is. His spirit of not giving up on life is what the people of Gaza need.