Juliano Mer-Khamis, the 54-year old founder of The Freedom Theater in Jenin, was murdered five years ago today by unknown assailants.
The murder remains unsolved to this day but his memory lives on as does his dream for a Free Palestine.
Presented here is a post I wrote at the time of his assassination …
A PART OF ALL OF US WAS MURDERED IN JENIN
Yesterday I reposted a piece from Mondoweiss thinking it was real and true …. (Click on link)
Apparently it seems it was meant as an April Fool’s joke. This was the opinion of most of the comments to the post, but I was sure it was the real thing. Turns out I was the fool for believing it.
For this I apologize to my readers … zionism is definitely not a laughing matter and I hope the usually honest site it came from will issue the same apology that I am posting here.
NOOOOOOOOO! This is not an endorsement of the man’s candidacy …. far from it!
My personal hatred for him and his father goes back over fifty years as can be seen in THIS post from the archives.
To claim and condemn him for the following is utterly ridiculous. This is NOT a nazi salute …
The righteous supporters in the Clinton camp were way too quick to jump on the condemnation wagon, which prompted me to write this.
When an Abe Foxman says the following, one really has to look at the situation with open eyes and mind ….
Abe Foxman calls episode ‘about as offensive, obnoxious and disgusting as anything I thought I would ever witness in the United States of America’; says Republican candidate knew exactly what he was doing
(Click on link to see full report)
Once again I stress that this is NOT an endorsement of Donald Trump. Hopefully he will be defeated in the primary because of his racist policies, but not because of fabricated ones such as the one above.
I must add …. where were the Foxman’s condemnations when this photo was taken?
Do you see a difference here? I don’t.
“That which is hateful to you, do not do to your neighbour.
That is the whole Torah, the rest is commentary.”
Going through the archives I found some must reads … some that may have been missed over the years.
This one was written 10 years ago .. but it could have been written today;
A MESSAGE TO MY FELLOW JEWS
IF YOU LOVE ISRAEL SPEAK UP FOR PEACE AND JUSTICE!
I have often said that it is very difficult to remain objective towards something when the subjective circumstances seem to be stronger.
The case of Israel and Jews is one of the cases that comes to mind. Many Jews outside of Israel support Israel blindly. The attitude is very similar to the American attitude during the Vietnam War… “My country right or wrong”..
That concept alone is wrong. If you really love something than you let it know when it is wrong… this is not happening in the case of Israel. If you really love Israel then you must treat it as you would treat your own child. Not to do so will only make a very bad situation that much worse. As a result, Israel will think it has a ‘green light’ to pursue its policies of occupation, apartheid and most recently, brutal aggression towards its neighbours. Since the war started in Lebanon, the aggression against the Palestinians in Gaza has not subsided. Do not let our brothers in Palestine think we have forgotten them..
If you support these policies and actions, then you do not love Israel as you claim you do. You are, in effect, helping Israel self destruct.
In order to survive and flourish, Israel needs peace. There is no other way. The Torah is the Law that governs the lives of observant Jews. Rabbi Hillel said the following regarding the Torah…
“That which is hateful to you, do not do to your neighbour.
That is the whole Torah, the rest is commentary.”
Answer the following questions….
DO YOU BELIEVE THAT…
*Peace in the Middle East will only come about with mutual recognition and respect and must be seen as just by both sides.
*Peace requires the end of illegal occupation and settlement.
*Violence against civilians is unacceptable.
*Israel’s policies in the West Bank and Gaza are breeding hatred and resentment.
*It is crucial that Jews speak out for Palestinians’ human rights.
*The values of Israeli society have been corrupted by the Israeli State’s human-rights abuses.
*A lasting peace must be seen as just by both sides.
*Britain, the EU, the USA, Russia and the UN must be persuaded to implement UN resolutions on Palestine.
If you answered yes to all or most of the above questions then you must act on the situation. To remain silent is to be as guilty as the government of Israel is. To remain silent is to witness the very destruction of the State of Israel… from within.
Show your support for justice by speaking out against the wall of apartheid.
Speak out against the occupation of Palestine.
Speak out against the war in Lebanon.
Boycott Israeli goods until Israel becomes a State worthy of your support.
Show that you truly love israel and fight for PEACE and JUSTICE… nothing else will do!
Some more must reads from the past ….
(click on links)
and finally ….
Supporting the BDS Movement , boycotting Israeli products, specifically those from the illegal settlements in the Occupied Territories is a great way to help the growing economy of Palestine and showing your solidarity with its people.
But now, thanks to the initiatives of the Northern California branch of the International Solidarity Movement, you can purchase products made in Palestine itself. They created a ‘shopping site’ called PALBOX.
Ordering from them is one of the greatest ways of showing solidarity with the people of Palestine, especially its farmers and those involved in cultural activities.
Palestine is literally across the road from where I live, but the infamous wall and checkpoints make it impossible for me to go on a shopping spree there, so I ordered from PALBOX and my treasures arrived today ….
The treasures inside included …..
Palestinian Olive Oil
The olive tree is the virtual lifeline of Palestine, hence it is one of the major targets for destruction by zionism itself. Some of the trees are over a thousand years old and have provided a livelihood for hundreds of Palestinian families. Every drop of oil in the bottle is precious and represents all that Palestine stands for.
Also included were 2 bars of Olive Oil Soap ….
That’s not all …..
No better way to enhance the taste of your salads and enjoy the taste of Palestine itself.
HERE are some easy recipes that I found online using Za’atar.
And from the Artistic Community ….
A beautiful handcrafted necklace made by Katie Miranda, resident cartoonist at Mondoweiss. Many of her works appeared on the pages of this Blog.
Katie studied the art of Arabic calligraphy with a master calligrapher while on a three year Solidarity Mission to Palestine with the International Solidarity Movement.
The necklace would be a perfect gift for the special woman in your life.
Her beautiful creations can be ordered separately from THIS site
And finally …. a treasure to enjoy over and over again ….
From Palestinian Artists …. a Gift of Music
Included is an album of music sung but Dr. Haidar Eid, BDS activist, and professor of Postcolonial and Postmodern Literature at Gaza’s al-Aqsa University.
Thanks to the electronic media, the cultural treasures of Palestine cannot be blocked by any wall or blockade. Become a part of this.
Here’s how to get your virtual treasure box ….
Click HERE to get to PALBOX’s order page.
Keep the following in mind when you order ….
Palbox helps Palestinian farmers, artists and artisans, as well as entire communities that benefit from Fair Trade community development. Second, downloadable music and visual art bypasses the Israeli blockade of Gaza, and provides a living for Palestinians under siege. 100% of your purchase goes to the Northern California chapter of the International Solidarity Movement, which has been participating in Palestinian nonviolent resistance to Israeli repression since 2001.
The songs are dedicated to the courage and resistance of the Palestinian people on the journey to justice and freedom. All proceeds from sales of the songs will be donated to the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement.
The ISM is a Palestinian led movement dedicated to resisting the Israeli occupation through non-violent means. In addition, Norcal ISM pays bail money for Palestinians arrested for political reasons, and gives travel grants to volunteers going to Palestine.
Is there a better way to support the Palestinian Cause? I think not!
This page with it’s links will remain on the SideBar for future reference
– Gettysburg, Pennsylvania – Nov. 19, 1863
“Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated can long endure.
We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting-place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead who struggled here have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract.
The world will little note nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us–that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion–that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.”
Image of Lincoln by Charles White
This morning I received an email from Sue, the daughter of the woman pictured above, informing me of the passing of her mother Anne Yellin yesterday, just a month short of her 99th birthday. She lived a full life and changed the lives of many who knew and loved her, including my own.
Anne played a special role in my life and I credit her more than anyone else for making me what I am today. It was she that handed me the leaflet in front of Woolworth’s in 1960 …. the leaflet that changed my life as can be seen in THIS post from the archives.
Anne was a pillar of the community I grew up in, known to all and loved by all. She was predeceased by her loving husband Jack, a veteran of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, in his own right, a true hero. She is survived by two loving daughters and Sue and Nancy and their children. May they all be comforted in the knowledge that the memory of their mother and grandmother will live on for years to come.
Bella Ciao dear Comrade and Friend!
My dear friend Matt Weinstein adds the following …
A good friend and one of the great “old-timer” activists and champions of peace and justice passed away today: Ann Yellin. She was a friend of my parents and a doting mom to her two daughters, Sue and Nancy as well as a very loving grandma. Ann, an RN by trade who worked for many years at Coney Island Hospital, was married to Jack Yellin, a veteran of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade—those courageous premature anti-fascists who fought in Spain before WW II, standing up to Franco and his backer, Hitler. And she was very proud of him. He died a long time ago but Ann carried his memory with her as the years passed and that memory helped bolster her to carry on. Ann was active throughout her life—she was a member of the Brighton Beach and Manhattan Beach chapter of Women Strike For Peace, fighting for a world free of the nuclear threat and then later in the Shorefront Peace Committee—its successor. Strongly opinionated but never wavering in her commitment, Ann Yellin was a strong partisan of socialism and with that as her goal she was one of those rare women who translate their beliefs and world outlook into concrete action on behalf of humanity. She was a beautiful woman—inside and out. We won’t soon forget her and the larger than life contributions she made for a better world.Ann died a month before her 99th birthday.
In honour of Anne’s 90th birthday, Matt wrote the following … (Click on link)
And finally, a Biblical tribute to our wonderful Woman of Valor …
Eshet Chayil אשת חיל (Psalm 31 Hebrew and English text translation)
When my son was about four years old he played a little game; if he saw someone or something that he didn’t want to see he would close his eyes and imagine that they were gone.
He was four at the time but thankfully outgrew this as he got older and learned to accept the reality of situations. Israel is almost sixty eight and still plays that game in regards to the existence of Palestine. Will they ever grow up?
Despite the fact that most of the world now recognises Palestine as a state (as can be seen in the following image), Israel still closes its eyes to that reality …
The reality I speak of is that Palestine is HERE and is HERE TO STAY! Whether or not Israel refuses to open its eyes to that FACT will not change the situation.
On the other hand, see how Palestine is seen when it is opportune for the zionists to almost acknowledge its existence …. (a post from the archives)
SUDDENLY THERE IS A PALESTINE AND PALESTINIANS
Did you ever notice that one of the hardest words for a zionist to utter or put into print is Palestinian? The word itself confirms that there is a Palestine.
News reports in the zionist media refer to Palestinians as Arabs, or at best, Israeli Arabs.
BUT, if any of the above are involved in a suspected terrorist attack there suddenly is a Palestine and Palestinians, except in the extreme right media as seen below.
Did you ever notice that?
Below the images presented are some examples of what I am talking about
First some images … and a short video
The video contains pictures of different Palestinian cities during the 1920’s and 1930’s, before the creation of the state of israel by the zionists in 1948.
How the right wing ziopress usually refers to Palestinians …
The following are examples from the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs
A Palestinian terrorist used his car to deliberately drive into a crowd of Israelis near a light-rail train station in Jerusalem. Three Israeli soldiers were injured Wednesday evening in the day’s second vehicular terror attack.
Whereas Israel takes measures to maintain public order and uphold the delicate status quo on the Temple Mount, many on the Palestinian side exploit the holy sites to inflame passions and undermine the long-standing modus vivendi in the city.
You might find this post from the archives of interest …. be sure to click on the highlighted links.
Allow me to start this post with some reflections on a past incident …..
The year was 1962. It was October, the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis. I was invited one evening to attend a performance of Swan Lake. The Bolshoi Ballet Company were the stars. I was invited by a Soviet friend of mine who was working as a press agent in New York.
When we arrived at Madison Square Garden I was seated next to the Soviet Foreign Minister, Anastas Mikoyan. He was in New York to address the United Nations General Assembly during the crisis.
A few minutes after we were seated another guest arrived, Adlai Stevenson, the US Ambassador to the United Nations.
He walked up to Mikoyan with arms outstretched and they both hugged and kissed each other like long lost brothers.
That very afternoon the two of them ‘went at each other’ in scenes watched by millions on TV.
Stubborn person that I am I refused to even shake the hand of Stevenson. I remember Mikoyan whispering in my ear at that point that ‘I would never become a diplomat’. He was right, but in all these years I never lost my integrity either, which is more important.
All of the above prove the immortal words of William Shakespeare;
All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms.
Then, the whining school-boy with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress’ eyebrow. Then, a soldier,
Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honour, sudden, and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then, the justice,
In fair round belly, with a good capon lined,
With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws, and modern instances,
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slippered pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side,
His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.
And now, the above connection to today’s post ….
Note that the stage settings are different today and there are new ‘script writers, but all else remains the same.
The following is a headline from today’s Ynet News
Labour boycotts company with Israel ties
That’s fine ….. but the rest of the article leaves much to be desired. Hopefully it is merely a zionist initiated BEX Alert and not true, fabricated because of his expressed support for the Palestinian Struggle. Otherwise, The Labour Party will definitely not receive any forthcoming endorsement from this Website.
UK’s second-largest party voted to boycott a major company with commercial ties to Israel while party head Jeremy Corbyn calls for negotiations with ISIS.
Negotiations with ISIS???? Does he not know who they are? Does he think we don’t know either??
One does NOT negotiate with the likes of ISIS. One exposes them which will lead to their eventual destruction!
As was posted a few days ago, The best way for Americans to defeat the Islamic state is to end support for Jewish nationalism SEE
Shame on Jeremy Corbyn for thinking otherwise.
While the party was busy boycotting a company for its ties to Israel, the party’s leader, Jeremy Corbyn, was calling for negotiations with the Islamic State terror organization. We should not be “drawn into responses that feed a cycle of violence and hate,” Corbyn said yesterday.
“The dreadful Paris attacks make the case for a far more urgent effort to reach a negotiated settlement of the civil war in Syria and to end the threat from ISIS,” he concluded.
Full Ynet Report HERE
Jonathan Pollard, a convicted spy and traitor to his country of birth was released from prison today … after 30 years behind bars
Israeli spy Pollard released from US prison
NORTH CAROLINA – After 10,956 days behind bars in the US, convicted Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard left his prison in North Carolina in the early hours of Friday morning.
“The people of Israel welcome Jonathan Pollard’s release,” said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a statement released shortly after the news broke.
Full report HERE
The ENTIRE nation of Palestine remains incarcerated for over 67 years for crimes not committed….
WHERE IS THE JUSTICE?
Last night our local cable company aired one of the most brilliant movies I ever saw; A Dry White Season.
It takes place in Soweto in the year 1979, but in actuality it could be taking place in any occupied city in the West Bank TODAY …. the similarities are unbelievable.
It’s a MUST WATCH for anyone who wants to see what apartheid really is, but unfortunately it is no longer available on YouTube (I wonder why😉 )
I was able to find the following two trailers …. but you MUST get a DVD of the movie and see it in its entirety. If anyone reading this finds the full movie online, please add a link in the comments … thanks
Not only were Netanyahu’s remarks regarding the holocaust refuted by historians and politicians ….
Even Germany itself was offended ….
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has re-affirmed her country’s responsibility for the Holocaust, following controversial comments by Israel’s prime minister.
The Israeli Prime Minister’s obvious hatred of the Palestinian people has finally come to a head via his remarks this week ….
An apology to the people of Palestine, as well as to the six million Jewish victims of the holocaust, their descendants and the survivors themselves is definitely in order.
This to be followed by by his resignation from the office of Prime Minister as he has definitely proven to be mentally unstable and not in a position to continue.
Nothing short of that would be acceptable.
THIS Op-Ed from Ynet is a MUST READ
ISRAEL’S LOSS IS CANADA’S GAIN!
The true North, Proud and Free just might become that again!
For the first time in nearly ten years, I can finally say that I am a proud Canadian!
Good luck and best wishes to the new Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau
Your Dad would be proud of you! I know that I am !!
The good news is that with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s defeat Monday in the national elections, Israel is about to lose one of its best friends on the international stage.
Even better news is that Canada will now have a government that works for Canada, not the USA or Israel!
As a humorous side note, thanks to John Oliver for possibly swaying the election results …
Full report HERE
Justin Trudeau Victory Speech
Or ~~ A NIGHT DEVOID OF STARS
The situation in Israel/Palestine is spiraling out of control by the minute. Killings on both both sides continue with no immediate end in sight ….
The question is WHY?
I went through my archives this morning and found three posts which speak of attitudes that lead to hatred, that lead to death; I am reposting them to give you a better picture of what is going on here ….
WE LIVED IN PEACE TILL THE WHITE MAN CAME
(Originally posted in April, 2014)
On Friday evening I was approached by a local resident in the French Hill area who with anger in his voice he said that “a ‘creature’ threw stones at one of our buses …. we must do something about the situation”. My response was that “I never saw a ‘creature’ throw stones, was it a cat or a dog”? “NO! It was one of YOUR Arabs from Issawyia”! “What can we do about that”??
I answered with,”first we can end the occupation and second people like yourself can start referring to the Arabs as human beings and treat them as such”!
The resident in question is a recent immigrant from the United States. Not too long ago, after ‘coming down’ from a bad ‘trip’ on pot at a beach in Miami, he found God (the opiate of the people) , packed his bags and moved to Israel. Before his (and others of his ilk’s) arrival to the French Hill area we lived in peace with our neighbours in what was truly a showcase of coexistence …
On the other hand, this short video gives a glimpse of what life is like on the other side of the wall in the neighbouring village of Issawyia …
Surely this situation will lead to animosity, even hatred, towards the Jewish residents in the area …. but there are ways to deal with the situation. Stone throwing at innocent civilians is definitely NOT the solution and will only lead to a continuation of the growth of hatred on the Israeli side of the wall. Let us come together and prove to the White Man that peace IS possible. Then the wall will come down and hopefully the White Man will return to his true home on the beach in Miami. We definitely do not need or want his ilk destroying the peace process before it even starts.
LIFE IS TOO SHORT
(Originally posted in July, 2010)
‘THERE’S A GUY IN YOUR NEIGHBOURHOOD THAT LOVES ARABS’
(originally posted October, 2012)
You see everything in Jerusalem. It draws tourists from all over the world, every race, every religion, every political persuasion. Our own local population is quite a mixture as well…
We have Muslim women who dress like this woman…
We have Jewish men that dress like these men…
It was once thought that ignorance is bliss… that is certainly not the case today and there is no excuse for much of our ignorance, especially when it pertains to our fellow citizens.
A quote from a beloved Star Wars character, Yoda is…“Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.”
It was expanded by an unknown writer to say…”IGNORANCE leads to FEAR which causes HATE which leads to ANGER, which ends in SUFFERING.”
I prefer the second quote and it is fitting to the following episode I wish to relate here…
There was a woman walking towards the bank in my neighbourhood the other day. She was dressed like the woman in the photo. A man, on his way to the coffee shop passed her, he was dressed like one of the men in the other photo.
She covers her face so it would not be seen by men other than her husband, he, by his garb represents the ultra orthodox section of Judaism, is not supposed to look at other women. But he did, and he panicked. He ran from that woman as if he saw the devil himself. Why, because of ignorance. He had no idea why her face was covered. He was afraid. Most likely his fear will lead to hate and that will lead to suffering.
We cannot continue to live in our little isolated worlds. We have to open our windows and see who else dwells there. That alone will be a start to end this type of behaviour. It might even lead to peace.*
The Guardian’s Comment is free ran the following about my neighbourhood a few years ago … after reading it you will understand why I chose this particular area as my home. It will also clue you in to the fact that I am not the only guy in my neighbourhood that ‘loves Arabs’.
Thank God, Thank God Almighty I am not alone!
Could the harmony that has developed from an influx of Arab families in an area of Jerusalem set the tone for the rest of the country?
By Seth Freedman
The district of French Hill, which is technically over the Green Line but in reality bears little resemblance to the typical “settlement” stereotype, has seen a steep rise in the number of Arabs seeking to move into its neighbourhood in recent years. Not wanting to be caught on the “wrong” side of the security wall, many Arab families have sought homes on the Israeli side of the barrier, in order to ensure their Israeli IDs aren’t revoked, as well as to avoid hours-long delays at checkpoints as they commute to and from work.
With prices in the Arab villages of East Jerusalem soaring in the wake of a flood of eager buyers, those with fewer funds available have opted to move into Jewish parts of the city, including French Hill and nearby Pisgat Ze’ev. Their arrival hasn’t been to everyone’s liking, with the usual suspects up in arms and demanding that other residents band together to keep the Arabs out and ensure that the neighbourhoods remain strictly Jewish.
One such charming individual was quoted as saying: “As a Jew I am happy to be a racist,” claiming that it was the only way to preserve his children’s future in the face of the Arab invasion. Fortunately, however, his odious attitude is very much a minority one – at least, as far as I could tell from a visit to the area.
On arrival in the town centre, it was plain to see that the more level-headed and sedate residents have no problem with their neighbours and fellow shoppers. Jews and Arabs alike thronged the cafes, jostling for position in the bright sunshine as they downed cappuccinos and mint teas at the outdoor tables. The local bank was doing equally brisk business, and customers in kipot (skullcaps) stood in line behind others in Arabic headscarves with no hint of tension present.
Sitting behind the counter at Cafe Malcha, the Jewish owner spoke proudly of the mixed group of customers who pack his shop every day. “There’s no problem here. Jews and Arabs sit together, everyone’s friendly, and they come from all over, including the centre of Jerusalem and the surrounding [Arab] villages.” He pointed out that it is mainly the secular Jews and Arabs who socialise with one another, “since the religious on both sides are far more cautious.”
Iyal, a 19-year-old Arab who waits tables at the cafe, agreed with his boss that French Hill is largely devoid of any racial tension. “I’ve worked here for years”, he said, “and I never see any racism in the area”. Sitting outside was a group of five Arab workers, chatting loudly to one another in Arabic and clearly at ease in their surroundings – belying the image that some reporters portray of French Hill as being a hotbed of anti-Arab racism.
However, that’s not to say that under the surface there doesn’t linger some degree of antipathy between the area’s ethnic groups. Isawiya’s youth have something of a poor track record when it comes to their treatment of any Jews who enter the village. Many Jews go there to shop, or get their cars repaired, and are often pelted with rocks and stones by the local children, which does nothing to enhance relations between the two sides. At the same time, local Arab residents have made no bones about their desire to keep their neighbourhoods all-Arab, forbidding the sale of homes to Jewish buyers for fear of losing the Arab identity of their districts.
Similarly, one Jewish girl I spoke to had a great deal of venom in her system when it came to the local Arabs. “I can’t trust them enough to live alongside them,” she said flatly, before going on to assert that “they all want to kill us simply because we’re Jews, so why should we let them move into our neighbourhoods and get the chance to?” When pressed, however, she conceded that her work as a local receptionist has brought her into contact with plenty of Arabs, “and the ones I know aren’t like that at all. I suppose I shouldn’t generalise about them, actually.”
Despite it going against her defensive mentality, it is clear that the experience of working alongside Arab colleagues and discovering what they’re like as individuals – rather than collectively tarring them as “the Arabs” – has produced a chink in her armour. While I still wouldn’t want her in charge of the peace process, given her overriding penchant for painting the Arabs as bloodthirsty Jew haters, the fact that she softened her position at all during the course of our conversation indicates that the process of assimilation is bearing positive fruit.
And, in the words of another local I spoke to who said: “I can barely tell who’s Jewish and who’s Arab round here”, the success of French Hill’s multicultural exercise might well set the tone for the rest of the country one day. Of course, things aren’t going to change overnight – Arabs are still treated with a great deal of suspicion by many Israelis, at both street and institutional levels, but that shouldn’t stop the moderates on both sides forging on with their goal of overcoming the prevalent racist attitudes.
There is an aphoristic piece of graffiti sprayed near thecheckpoint between Jerusalem and Bethlehem that reads: “Fear builds walls,” which is as true as it is depressing. However, one unlikely byproduct of the security barrier’s construction could, ultimately, end up eradicating at least some of the fear that exists between the two communities, thanks to the Arab migration into Jewish neighbourhoods that it has created. And that, despite the overarching negativity that surrounds the building of the wall in the first place, is well worth clinging on to for those seeking at least a modicum of hope from a seemingly hopeless situation.
We waited decades to see the flag of Palestine raised at the United Nations Building in New York. It is a sure sign that Statehood of that Nation will soon become a fact.
But, there are elements that wish to stop this process via terrorism, on both sides of the wall.
On Thursday, a Jewish father and mother of four were gunned down in their car while driving through the occupied West Bank as their children watched in horror. This is part of a never ending process of hate that only leads to more hate and more terror from both sides.
Last night, two more Jewish Israelis were killed on their way to pray at the Western Wall.
DesertPeace condemns these actions and those responsible for them. We also condemn any Palestinian Website that condones these actions as well as any zionist Website that advocates the continuation of the occupation of Palestinian territories.
THE THE ONGOING TSUNAMI OF HATRED MUST END NOW!
Peace and the creation of a Palestinian State will only become realities when both sides realise that is the only possible way to survive …. there is an alternative to terror. Below is a letter penned by Roger Waters, showing how the BDS Movement IS THAT ALTERNATIVE …
Roger Waters to Jon Bon Jovi: “You stand shoulder to shoulder with the settler who burned the baby”
Letter to the pop group Bon Jovi:
Dear Jon Bon Jovi, David Bryan, and Tico Torres,
Often in the past I have written detailed, and sometimes even persuasive, letters to colleagues in the music business, encouraging them not to give succor to the Israeli government’s apartheid policies by performing in Israel. Having read Jon’s comments last week in Yedioth Ahronoth, I won’t waste my time drawing parallels with Apartheid South Africa and the moral stand that so many artists took then and that thousands are taking now in the face of decades of Israeli oppression of Palestinians.
So the die is cast, you are determined to proceed with your gig in Tel Aviv on October 3. You are making your stand.
You stand shoulder to shoulder
With the settler who burned the baby
With the bulldozer driver who crushed Rachel Corrie
With the soldier who shot the soccer player’s feet to bits
With the sailor who shelled the boys on the beach
With the sniper who killed the kid in the green shirt
And the one who emptied his clip into the 13-year-old girl
And the Minister of Justice who called for genocide
You had a chance to stand
On the side of justice
With the pilot who refused to bomb refugee camps
With the teenager who chose eight prison terms over army service
With the prisoner who fasted for 266 days until freedom
With the doctor banned from entry for saving lives
With the farmer who was cut down marching to the wall
With the legless child growing up in the rubble
And the 550 others who won’t grow up at all
Because of the missiles and tank shells and bullets we sent
The dead can’t remind you of the crimes you’ve ignored. But, lest we forget, “To stand by silent and indifferent is the greatest crime of all.”