lebanon feeds my soul. maybe not lebanon as a whole, but my friends and comrades in lebanon for sure. i didn’t want to go back because i didn’t want to see elements of east beirut–places where people were out drinking and partying. and i avoided that scene entirely. but spending time with friends in their homes, following and analyzing events, and strategizing what we can do now was essential. it gave me oxygen. rania gave me inspiration. rami and i talked again yesterday before i left about what we need to do. how we need to use this moment to plan for the future, for the liberation of palestine and lebanon, and frankly the rest of the region. this is important so we do not move on with our lives and forget what has happened in gaza. we need to:
1. understand the context and our limitations given where we might be in terms of how we can support the resistance
2. we need to never forget that this is one episode, one massacre of many over the course of 61 years
3. we need to keep from despairing or feeling powerless
4. we need to crystallize how we can organize, continue organizing
what israeli terrorists want is for us to despair, for us to feel powerless, for us to be defeated. so on an emotional and political level we must be steadfast. this is an important part of resistance. we will not let them break the resistance, break us. we need to be organizing every day, every moment, and find people to bring into the fold to continue that resistance and organizing work. this is how we can honor the martyrs and the work of the resistance.
while this energy of resistance and organizing is strong in beirut, in lebanon, there are of course elements that want to continue their consumption unabated. who want to just shop at one of vera modo many shops on hamra street and go to jemezieh and get drunk at night. one way to resist this is to force such people to confront the reality of gaza. yesterday before leaving for the airport i met a couple of friends at masrah al madina on hamra street to say goodbye. they had organized a brilliant piece of street theatre in which black coffins were placed on the main sidewalk of hamra street forcing shoppers and other people oblivious to the suffering in gaza to walk through a maze of these coffins which had attached to them naji al ali’s hanzala artwork and images from palestinians in gaza bombed by israeli terrorists. they had a van parked on the street in front which blared ahmed qabbour’s music into the street. and they had a glossy little pamphlet that they handed out to passersby and even to those driving through the bumper-to-bumper traffic on the street. the photos here (after the first one from bourj al barajneh refugee camp) are taken from this gaza memorial.
there are those who are doing this sort of work who will not forgive, who will not forget, who will not normalize with israelis. (i wish that number were higher, however). angry arab reminds us why this is necessary:
Peace with a terrorist state like Israel is basically a legitimation of terrorism, massacres, and occupations. Just as our opposition to apartheid and Nazism was categorical, our rejection of Israel should be absolute and categorical. Peace with a state like Israel is a recipe for war. Real peace is in a rejection of this terrorist state.
though it seems that collecting signatures for our petition to lebanese professors seems to be slow going. it disturbs me to no end that people find their own careers or israeli academic freedom as more important than palestinians lives or the liberation of palestine. i really fundamentally cannot comprehend such a point of view. and frankly this is one of the many reasons i don’t believe in marriage. as people get married, have children their concerns tend to turn away from resistance and justice as they tend to become more myopic in their focus. they tend to think only about their immediate needs, the future of their children, but often not the future of other people’s children. remaining unmarried, remaining without children gives one the freedom to resist in certain ways that i just cannot imagine giving up. ever. certainly i have quite a few friends, especially in lebanon, who are not like this. but unfortunately, it seems to me that marriage leads to children leads to heightened consumption, leads to a watering down of one’s politics and what one is willing to sacrifice for things like liberation, justice, freedom.
from that sort of space where people are thinking about supporting resistance, of not continuing on with life as normal amidst the massacres in gaza, i returned to amman. it is striking how different life is here. in lebanon my friends read radical, smart newspapers like al akhbar whereas in jordan there is no such media as the media is censored by the government. in lebanon my friends watch al jadeed, al manar, al jazeera for their news. here they watch american-saudi propaganda stations like cnn or bbc or al arabiya. in lebanon friends who are leftists are organizing around ways to support hamas and hezbollah as these are the strongest resistance movements we have now and we need to support what is effective. here people are afraid of what hamas and hezbollah would mean for jordan. in lebanon there are laws making it illegal to normalize with israeli terrorists; in jordan there are laws promoting the normalization with israeli terrorists. but in both places the leaders continue to spew rhetoric without any action. on this front they are like the rest of the world. even those who condemn israeli terrorism refuse to do something about it. but another difference between jordan and lebanon: in lebanon people critique publicly the normalizing with the west or the empty rhetoric of their leadership; in jordan people continue to fear, or sometimes continue to believe, that the leadership in jordan is anything other than empty and vapid.
empty and vapid just like this so-called ceasefire which apparently began about 11 hours ago (2 am local time), at least on paper or in rhetoric, but in reality there is no ceasefire. and once again i’d refer you to as’ad’s words quoted above. why am i so opposed to any form of normalization with israeli terrorists–every last single one of them–because they know how to do nothing other than murder, steal, lie, and destroy. there has never been a “treaty” or a law that they have not broken. (think, too, here of their american terrorist partners who have also broken every single “treaty” they signed with every single american indian tribe.) they called a unilateral ceasefire. here is a glimpse of what “ceasefire” means to israeli terrorists:
Israeli reconnaissance planes buzzed overhead, and explosions were heard in several parts of the Strip. Israeli shells fell on a group of Rafah residents in the south, and phosphorus bombs landed in the At-Tuffah neighborhood of eastern Gaza City.
Gazans also reported that an Israeli helicopter shot at a group in line near a Bank of Palestine ATM in Jabaliya.
Eyewitnesses say hundreds of families were seen moving in the streets, heading back to their homes in northern Gaza. One family, caught on film with Al-Jazeera, returned north to the Jabaliya district to find their family home demolished. They dug through the rubble and pulled out more than 25 bodies. One man collapsed when he discovered his brother beneath the debris.
even on al jazeera reporters are trying to wrap their head around what that means. in a nutshell it basically means that israeli terrorists will stop their bombing (they have not) and it means that they will keep israeli terrorist troops in gaza and it means they will continue to control the border crossings and let a trickle of aid supplies into gaza. for israeli terrorists this means political gains in the coming election. for palestinians in gaza this means: nothing has changed. conditions will not change. and worse: because now it is not only like it has been for the last 18 months with an economic siege keeping goods from flowing in and out. now on top of this how will people deal with the damage and destruction caused by israeli terrorism? how are they to rebuild–especially given that things like concrete are not allowed in by israeli terrorists? how are they supposed to be able to send children to school? according to christopher gunness on al jazeera: 4,000 homes were destroyed. 16,000 homes were damaged. 16 health facilities were attacked. 60 schools, including 4 unrwa schools were destroyed (one was attacked just as israeli terrorist were to vote on the “ceasefire”). and 1,216 palestinians were massacred and 5,200 were injured. 382 of those murdered were children. al jazeera has a partial list of their names which i will post here:
Ibtihal Kechko Girl 10
Ahmed Riad Mohammed Al-Sinwar Boy 3
Ahmed Al-Homs Boy 18
Ahmed Rasmi Abu Jazar Boy 16
Ahmed Sameeh Al-Halabi Boy 18
Tamer Hassan Al-Akhrass Boy 5
Hassan Ali Al-Akhrass Boy 3
Haneen Wael Mohammed Daban Girl 15
Khaled Sami Al-Astal Boy 15
alaat Mokhless Bassal Boy 18
Aaed Imad Kheera Boy 14
Abdullah Al-Rayess Boy 17
Odai Hakeem Al-Mansi Boy 4
Allam Nehrou Idriss Boy 18
Ali Marwan Abu Rabih Boy 18
Anan Saber Atiyah Boy 13
Camelia Al-Bardini Girl 10
Lama Talal Hamdan Girl 10
Mohammed Jaber Howeij Boy 17
Nimr Mustafa Amoom Boy 10
29/12/2008 Ismail Talal Hamdan Boy 10
Ahmed Ziad Al-Absi Boy 14
Ahmed Youssef Khello Boy 18
Ikram Anwar Baaloosha Girl 14
Tahrier Anwar Baaloosha Girl 17
Jihad Saleh Ghobn Boy 10
Jawaher Anwar Baaloosha Girl 8
Dina Anwar Baaloosha Girl 7
Samar Anwar Baaloosha Girl 6
Shady Youssef Ghobn Boy 12
Sudqi Ziad Al-Absi Boy 3
Imad Nabeel Abou Khater Boy 16
Lina Anwar Baaloosha Girl 7
Mohammed Basseel Madi Boy 17
Mohammed Jalal Abou Tair Boy 18
Mohammed Ziad Al-Absi Boy 14
Mahmoud Nabeel Ghabayen Boy 15
Moaz Yasser Abou Tair Boy 6
Wissam Akram Eid Girl 14
30/12/2008 Haya Talal Hamdan Girl 8
31/12/2008 Ahmed Kanouh Boy 10
Ameen Al-Zarbatlee Boy 10
Mohammed Nafez Mohaissen Boy 10
Mustafa Abou Ghanimah Boy 16
Yehya Awnee Mohaissen Boy 10
Ossman Bin Zaid Nizar Rayyan Boy 3
Assaad Nizar Rayyan Boy 2
Moaz-Uldeen Allah Al-Nasla Boy 5
Aya Nizar Rayyan Girl 12
Halima Nizar Rayyan Girl 5
Reem Nizar Rayyan Boy 4
Aicha Nizar Rayyan Girl 3
Abdul Rahman Nizar Rayyan Boy 6
Abdul Qader Nizar Rayyan Boy 12
Oyoon Jihad Al-Nasla Girl 16
Mahmoud Mustafa Ashour Boy 13
Maryam Nizar Rayyan Girl 5
01/01/2009 Hamada Ibrahim Mousabbah Boy 10
Zeinab Nizar Rayyan Girl 12
Sujud Mahmoud Al-Derdesawi Girl 10
Abdul Sattar Waleed Al-Astal Boy 12
Abed Rabbo Iyyad Abed Rabbo Al-Astal Boy 10
Ghassan Nizar Rayyan Boy 15
Christine Wadih El-Turk Boy 6
Mohammed Mousabbah Boy 14
Mohammed Iyad Abed Rabbo Al-Astal Boy 13
Mahmoud Samsoom Boy 16
Ahmed Tobail Boy 16
Ahmed Sameeh Al-Kafarneh Boy 17
Hassan Hejjo Boy 14
Rajeh Ziadeh Boy 18
Shareef Abdul Mota Armeelat Boy 15
Mohammed Moussa Al-Silawi Boy 10
Mahmoud Majed Mahmoud Abou Nahel Boy 16
Mohannad Al-Tatnaneeh Boy 18
Hani Mohammed Al-Silawi Boy 10
01/01/2009 Ahmed Al-Meshharawi Boy 16
Ahmed Khodair Sobaih Boy 17
Ahmed Sameeh Al-Kafarneh Boy 18
Asraa Kossai Al-Habash Girl 10
Assad Khaled Al-Meshharawi Boy 17
Asmaa Ibrahim Afana Girl 12
Ismail Abdullah Abou Sneima Boy 4
Akram Ziad Al-Nemr Boy 18
Aya Ziad Al-Nemr Girl 8
Ahmed Mohammed Al-Adham Boy 1
Akram Ziad Al-Nemr Boy 13
Hamza Zuhair Tantish Boy 12
Khalil Mohammed Mokdad Boy 18
Ruba Mohammed Fadl Abou-Rass Girl 13
Ziad Mohammed Salma Abou Sneima Boy 9
Shaza Al-Abed Al-Habash Girl 16
Abed Ziad Al-Nemr Boy 12
Attia Rushdi Al-Khawli Boy 16
Luay Yahya Abou Haleema Boy 17
Mohammed Akram Abou Harbeed Boy 18
Mohammed Abed Berbekh Boy 18
Mohammed Faraj Hassouna Boy 16
Mahmoud Khalil Al-Mashharawi Boy 12
Mahmoud Zahir Tantish Boy 17
Mahmoud Sami Assliya Boy 3
Moussa Youssef Berbekh Boy 16
Wi’am Jamal Al-Kafarneh Girl 2
Wadih Ayman Omar Boy 4
Youssef Abed Berbekh Boy 10
05/01/2009 Ibrahim Rouhee Akl Boy 17
Ibrahim Abdullah Merjan Boy 13
Ahmed Attiyah Al-Semouni Boy 4
Aya Youssef Al-Defdah Girl 13
Aya Al-Sersawi Girl 5
Ahmed Amer Abou Eisha Boy 5
Ameen Attiyah Al-Semouni Boy 4
Hazem Alewa Boy 8
Khalil Mohammed Helless Boy 12
Diana Mosbah Saad Girl 17
Raya Al-Sersawi Girl 5
Rahma Mohammed Al-Semouni Girl 18
Ramadan Ali Felfel Boy 14
Rahaf Ahmed Saeed Al-Azaar Girl 4
Shahad Mohammed Hijjih Girl 3
Arafat Mohammed Abdul Dayem Boy 10
Omar Mahmoud Al-Baradei Boy 12
Ghaydaa Amer Abou Eisha Girl 6
Fathiyya Ayman Al-Dabari Girl 4
Faraj Ammar Al-Helou Boy 2
Moumen Alewah Boy 9
Moumen Mahmoud Talal Alaw Boy 10
Mohammed Amer Abu Eisha Boy 8
Mahmoud Mohammed Abu Kamar Boy 15
Marwan Hein Kodeih Girl 6
Montasser Alewah Boy 12
Naji Nidal Al-Hamlawi Boy 16
Nada Redwan Mardi Girl 5
Hanadi Bassem Khaleefa Girl 13
06/01/2009 Ibrahim Ahmed Maarouf Boy 14
Ahmed Shaher Khodeir Boy 14
Ismail Adnan Hweilah Boy 15
Aseel Moeen Deeb Boy 17
Adam Mamoun Al-Kurdee Boy 3
Alaa Iyad Al-Daya Girl 8
Areej Mohammed Al-Daya Girl 3 months
Amani Mohammed Al-Daya Girl 4
Baraa Ramez Al-Daya Girl 2
Bilal Hamza Obaid Boy 15
Thaer Shaker Karmout Boy 17
Hozaifa Jihad Al-Kahloot Boy 17
Khitam Iyad Al-Daya Girl 9
Rafik Abdul Basset Al-Khodari Boy 15
Raneen Abdullah saleh Girl 12
Zakariya Yahya Al-Taweel Boy 5
Sahar Hatem Dawood Girl 10
Salsabeel Ramez Al-Daya Girl 6 months
Sharafuldeen Iyad Al-Daya Boy 7
Doha Mohammed Al-Daya Girl 5
Ahed Iyad Kodas Boy 15
Abdullah Mohammed Abdullah Boy 10
Issam Sameer Deeb Boy 12
Alaa Ismail Ismail Boy 18
Ali Iyad Al-Daya Boy 10
Imad Abu Askar Boy 18
Filasteen Al-Daya Girl 5
Kamar Mohammed Al-Daya Boy 3
Lina Abdul Menem Hassan Girl 10
Unidentified Boy 9
Unidentified Boy 15
Mohammed Iyad Al-Daya Boy 6
Mohammed Bassem Shakoura Boy 10
Mohammed Bassem Eid Boy 18
Mohammed Deeb Boy 17
Mohammed Eid Boy 18
Mustafa Moeen Deeb Boy 12
Noor Moeen Deeb Boy 2
Youssef Saad Al-Kahloot Boy 17
Youssef Mohammed Al-Daya Boy 1
07/01/2009 Ibrahim Kamal Awaja Boy 9
Ahmed Jaber Howeij Boy 7
Ahmed Fawzi Labad Boy 18
Ayman Al-Bayed Boy 16
Amal Khaled Abed Rabbo Girl 3
Toufic Khaled Al-Khahloot Boy 10
Habeeb Khaled Al-Khahloot Boy 12
Houssam Raed Sobeh Boy 12
Hassan Rateb Semaan Boy 18
Hassan Ata Hassan Azzam Boy 2
Redwan Mohammed Ashoor Boy 10
Suad Khaled Abed Rabbo Girl 6
Samar Khaled Abed Rabbo Girl 2
Abdul Rahman Mohammmed Ashoor Boy 12
Fareed Ata Hassan Azzam Boy 13
Mohammed Khaled Al-Kahloot Boy 15
Mohammed Samir Hijji Boy 16
Mohammed Fareed Al-Maasawabi Boy 16
Mohammed Moeen Deeb Boy 17
Mohammed Nasseem Salama Saba Boy 16
Mahmoud Hameed Boy 17
Hamam Issa Boy 1
08/01/2009 Anas Arif Abou Baraka Boy 7
Ibrahim Akram Abou Dakkka Boy 12
Ibrahim Moeen Jiha Boy 15
Baraa Iyad Shalha Girl 6
Basma Yasser Al-Jeblawi Girl 5
Shahd Saad Abou Haleema Girl 15
Azmi Diab Boy 16
Mohammed Akram Abou Dakka Boy 14
Mohammed Hikmat Abou Haleema Boy 17
Ibrahim Moeen Jiha Boy 15
Matar Saad Abou Haleema Boy 17
09/01/2009 Ahmed Ibrahim Abou Kleik Boy 17
Ismail Ayman Yasseen Boy 18
Alaa Ahmed Jaber Girl 11
Baha-Uldeen Fayez Salha Girl 5
Rana Fayez Salha Girl 12
Rola Fayez Salha Girl 13
Diyaa-Uldeen Fayez Salah Boy 14
Ghanima Sultan Halawa Girl 11
Fatima Raed Jadullah Girl 10
Mohammed Atef Abou Al-Hussna Boy 15
these child martyrs do not comprise a complete list. nor will this list remain cease to grow given the ways in which their visible and less visible attacks will continue. to track some of thse mass murders, there is a great blog that has a map of where the death and destruction by israeli terrorists have taken place (i posted it below) but you can check it out on their website directly, too.
the so-called “ceasefire” makes it clear that it is not a “ceasefire” at all. just rhetoric. and more lies embedded in israeli terrorist rhetoric:
On Saturday, and despite the continuous offensive, resistance factions clashed with the invading forces and fired homemade shells.
On its side, Hamas movement said that Israel’s unilateral ceasefire does not mean that the army ended its hostilities or the siege had ended.
Fawzi Barhoum of Hamas, said that the ongoing Israeli siege on Gaza is also one of the components of the Israeli war.
Barhoum added that resistance would continue, and that the presence of the Israeli forces in Gaza opens the door for resistance against the occupation.
Yet, the Ynet News said that Israeli military officials speculate the Hamas will cease fire in three days and that the Israeli army will continue its readiness for a possible military escalation in Gaza.
it’s not just the hypocrisy of the israeli terrorists. it’s members of the united nations like ban ki-moon who are complicit in the suffering and who are blind to their own hypocrisy of speaking out with empty words all the while enabling israeli terrorism:
On Thursday, Jan.15th, as Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General, was meeting Israeli officials in Jerusalem, Israeli soldiers shelled a UN compound in Gaza city. The building belongs to the United Nation’s Relief and Work Agency of the Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA). UN officials in Gaza believe the building was shelled with a phosphorus bomb as it caused a huge fire in the building which burned almost all the food and medical supplies.
On Tuesday two weeks ago, a UN run school was attacked. At least 43 civilians were killed and 100 others wounded, when the Israeli troops launched an attack on the school in the northern Gaza town of Jabalia. Last Thursday, the military attacked an aid convoy for UNRWA, killing a driver and injuring another.
regardless of whether or not this is a true “ceasefire,” all evidence to the contrary so far, oxfam reminds us that the death will not stop. that the murder will return to the quiet, less visual death of palestinians as a result of banning medicine, limiting aid, keeping the concentration camp of gaza closed:
Oxfam expressed concern over the unilateral Israeli declaration to declare a ceasefire Saturday evening, calling the move “insufficient to halt civilian deaths.”
so what do we do now? first things first: make sure that no one is deluded into thinking that this is a real “ceasefire” that things will get back to “normal” or that gaza is no longer occupied by israeli terrorist colonists. follow lebanon’s lead as in their protest at the u.s. embassy today. resist not only israeli terrorism, but also american terrorism and those who are in cahoots like the lebanese army that attacked the protesters at the american embassy in beirut today.
we should follow kali akuno’s words about building a global boycott, divestment, and sanctions movement and include in our list of those who we target all those with blood on their hands, all those who were complicit, who did not kick out israeli ambassadors, who continue to have economic relations with the israeli terrorist state:
We can and must build a genuine anti-imperialist movement that, over the long-term, cuts Israel from its US imperialist benefactor. Until now, in the political mainstream and, indeed, among too many progressives, US political and financial support for Israel has been virtually unquestioned. It is our responsibility to add another 25% to the 41% of people in the US who oppose Israel’s genocidal assault on Gaza, and to deepen their understanding so they not only reject the latest Israeli atrocity, but also the entire Zionist project in the shape of the continued colonial occupation of Palestine.
We must intensify the international campaign of Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS). The central goal of BDS must be to target corporations, investment entities, and other institutions that financially and politically support the Israeli government, especially the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF). This movement must also seek to challenge and eventually end all US aid and material support to the IOF and intelligence forces, illegal settlements in Jerusalem and the West Bank, subsidies to settlers, and the construction and maintenance of the illegal apartheid wall and related infrastructure. Furthermore, it should also seek to isolate a number of African, Arab, Asian, and Latin American governments that are complicit in the dispossession and inhumane deprivation of the Palestinian people, such as the Egyptian, Turkish, and Jordanian governments via their self-serving collaboration with Israel and the US government to negate Palestinian self-determination.
we should follow the lead of south africa trying to kick out the israeli terrorist ambassador:
MPs on Friday gave the Israeli ambassador to South Africa, Dov Segev-Steinberg, a severe tongue-lashing, accusing his government of perpetrating “racist” abuses against the Palestinian people “that make apartheid look like a Sunday school picnic”.
And as the war in Gaza rages for its fourth week, Cosatu has called for the Israeli ambassador to be “kicked out” of South Africa, for the embassy to be “shut down,” for a “total boycott of Israeli goods” and for the “savage rule of Zionism over the Palestinian territories to come to and end”.
we should heed the call of palestinian professors beseeching us to boycott israeli terrorist professors:
Enough is enough. Please join the calls from artists, writers, lawyers, academics and students the world over and help bring an end to a regime that has continuously (since the beginning of the 20th century) relied on killing, dispossessing, incarcerating, and discriminating Palestinians in order to fulfill its own political agenda – the establishment and maintenance of an ethno-religious autocracy.
finally, we must build a movement to try israeli terrorists for war crimes. but this is a challenging notion given the situation with respect to the jurisdiction as elna sondergaard explains in electronic intifada:
The crucial question is however: To which courts of justice can Palestinian victims bring their claims? There are Palestinian courts in Gaza but they have no jurisdiction over criminal cases involving Israelis. As stateless people, Palestinians have no state which could sign the Rome Statute with a view to seeking the adjudication of the ICC, or which would be entitled to bring a case to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague as Bosnia and Herzegovina did concerning the massacre at Srebrenica. Without a state, Palestinians are also denied the legal protection offered by classic interstate diplomacy.
Initiating criminal prosecution against Israelis within the Israeli criminal system would be a matter for the public prosecutor to decide. Since the beginning of the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza in 1967, most grave breaches of international humanitarian law, including willful killings of civilians, have not been investigated by the Israeli army, let alone the subject of prosecution. Most often the Israeli authorities have turned a blind eye to serious violations of international law. In the few cases when an investigation has been carried out by the army, it has been of very poor quality, and testimonies from Palestinian victims have not been considered. This fact is well known and has been convincingly documented by numerous human rights and non-governmental organizations. In other words: discrimination against Palestinians within the Israeli criminal system leaves them with no access to effective judicial remedies. As a result, Israeli courts will not be in a position to impartially and independently adjudicate criminal cases concerning Gaza.
fida qishta highlights some of the many reasons why israeli terrorists must be tried for war crimes, and tried in an international venue where there will be the severest of punishments possible:
In testimony collected from residents of the village of Khuza’a by the Observer, it is claimed that Israeli soldiers entering the village:
• attempted to bulldoze houses with civilians inside;
• killed civilians trying to escape under the protection of white flags;
• opened fire on an ambulance attempting to reach the wounded;
• used indiscriminate force in a civilian area and fired white phosphorus shells.
If the allegations are upheld, all the incidents would constitute breaches of the Geneva conventions.
The denunciations over what happened in Khuza’a follow repeated claims of possible human rights violations from the Red Cross, the UN and human rights organisations.
i’m not a lawyer or a judge, but i’ve got the perfect punishment for these israeli terrorists: take their jewish state away from them. NOW!
i also recommend following the advice of angry arab with respect to legitimizing israeli state level. this is absolutely necessary on the individual, collective, and state levels:
When I first came to this country, I watched many Arab intellectuals and leaders of Arab American organizations fidget and squirm whenever they are asked the question: do you recognize the state of Israel? For me, it is a very simple question that requires a simple answer. Zionist hoodlums often asked that question following a talk by Arabs, in order to throw off the speaker. For me, I relished that opportunity. When I asked, I say: of course I don’t–and will never–recognize that terrorist state of Israel. In fact, it is immoral to recognize Israel because the recognition grants Israel legitimacy for its terrorism, occupation, and racism.
it is normalization that is the death of arab, muslim, and palestinian empowerment. it is so painfully obvious to anyone who has ever spent time in places like jordan and lebanon, for instance. there can be no peace with a terrorist state. that’s reality. that’s been reality for 61 years. there are certainly those who think differently even in palestine, even in gaza. i know someone like this in gaza, someone from jabaliya refugee camp who normalizes with israelis, who works in their hospitals. i don’t remember how i first got in touch with izzeldin abu el aish, but it happened a couple of years ago. i was looking for someone from the village of najd, what israeli terrorist colonists call sderot today. i wanted to know more about the village because nestle, one of the companies on the boycott list, is located there under the israeli terrorist name of osem foods. i went to najd to photograph this company and to see if i could find any remnants of palestinian homes. izzeldin guided me by phone to places that i should see. one of those places was a former cemetery of his village that has been leveled to make way for ariel sharon’s wife (sharon has a farm on this land, too). i had a difficult time relating to a palestinian refugee who is not allowed to return to his land, who treats israeli terrorists in their hospitals rather than focusing solely on his own community’s needs. i reject normalization from anyone in any context as i have seen it lead to the death and suffering again and again of palestinians. it is like watching someone participate in their own death and destruction. perhaps a death and destruction they cannot see because they are given the drug of hope. but israeli terrorists are not interested in peace. they are interested in theft, murder, and deceit. only this. only ever this. and yet my heart is aching now because what i am saying has now affected izzeldin in a severe way. he has, apparently, been reporting on israeli terrorist television about the situation in gaza. and while he was reporting live on television for israeli terrorists’ consumption, his own family was murdered by israeli terrorists:
“I want to know why my daughters were harmed. This should haunt (Israeli Ehud Prime Minister) Olmert his entire life,” Abu al-Aish said on Israel’s Channel 10, speaking through a cell phone in Hebrew as he has throughout the war.
He added that his daughters were “armed only with love.”
Gazan officials identified Al-Aish’s deceased daughters as 22-year-old Bisan, 15-year-old Mayer and 14-year old Aya. His niece was identified as 14-year-old Nour Abu al-Aish.
al jazeera showed this footage from israeli terrorist televsion where you can listen to izzeldin’s reporting on the murder of his family, of his children.
and while i would never want any palestinian to suffer–whether they normalize or not–i feel that this is the painful lesson of those who normalize: whether you are hamas or whether you are invested in israeli terrorists through normalziation your fate will be the same. this is why only resistance will lead to the liberation of palestine. this is what we need to do.
and we need to follow the zionists’ example: never forget and force them to witness the slaughter of palestinians every f)*#&@! day of their lives until palestine is liberated.