Hebron… it’s really heartbreaking … it’s beyond apartheid.”
Hebron… it’s really heartbreaking … it’s beyond apartheid.”
A good day to reflect on my week in Jericho because the rain and wind are keeping me inside in Jerusalem.
Jericho is located near the Dead Sea, and many consider it the oldest inhabited city in the world, more than 11,000 years old. An Arab geographer in 985 wrote that the “water of Jericho is considered the highest and the best in all Islam.”
I saw the concrete lined channels carrying the water to the fields and the bounty of date and banana trees, cauliflower and many other vegetables growing under plastic sheeting with drip irrigation.
Jericho’s long, long history might be summed up as conquest after conquest. When the Ottoman Empire collapsed at the end of World War I, Jericho came under the rule of the British in Mandatory Palestine. Then in 1948 Jericho was occupied by Transjordan during the Arab-Israeli war.
The Jericho Conference, organized by King Abdullah and attended by over 2,000 Palestinian delegates in 1948 proclaimed “His Majesty Abdullah as King of all Palestine” and called for “the unification of Palestine and Transjordan as a step toward fullArab unity.” In mid-1950, Jordan formally annexed the West Bank and Jericho residents, like other residents of West Bank localities became Jordanian citizens.
During the Six Day War in 1967, Jericho was occupied by Israel along with the rest of the West Bank. During my visit, I saw very few signs of the presence of Israel or the occupation in Jericho. Jets flying overhead signaled Israel’s presence. I later learned that it was the first city handed over to Palestinian Authority control in accordance with the Oslo Accords.
The limited Palestinian self-rule of Jericho was agreed on in theGaza–Jericho Agreement of 4 May 1994. Part of the agreement was a “Protocol on Economic Relations”, signed on 29 April 1994. The city is in an enclave of the Jordan Valley that is inArea A of the West Bank, while the surrounding area is designated as being in Area C under full Israeli military control. Four roadblocks encircle the enclave, restricting Jericho’s Palestinian population’s movement through the West Bank.
Israel sent her troops into Jericho during the second intifada and even dug a deep trench around a large portion of the city to control Palestinian traffic in and out of Jericho. I met a man in Jericho who described what it felt like when the Israeli soldiers entered his house, demanding that he come downstairs from his bed where he was recuperating after surgery. Soldiers could re-enter Jericho at any time, and it’s this reality that hangs like an oppressive unseen blanket over the city.
In 1994, Israel and the Palestinians signed an economic accord that enabled Palestinians in Jericho to open banks, collect taxes and engage in export and import in preparation for self-rule. In 1998, a $150 million casino-hotel was built in Jericho with the backing of Yasser Arafat.
I never saw the U.S. presence in Jericho but learned later …
In 2009, Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad and U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs David Johnson inaugurated the Presidential Guard Training Center in Jericho, a $9.1 million training facility for Palestinian Authority security forces built with U.S. funding.
Most of my time was spent with family and friends in Jericho, observing the strength of filial bonds, the tradition of sitting and talking over coffee and sweets, and the absolute certainty that Palestine is their land and they will prevail someday.
The take-away message for me was one of “patience”. The Palestinians I met in Jericho (Muslims and Christians) seem to have patience in their DNA.
One man in particular made an impression on me. He was a young (30+ something) caretaker of a small Mosque. He noticed me taking photos of the Mosque and greeted me. He spoke broken English but I learned enough to know that he was a volunteer caretaker and lived on the property with his wife and two young children. He held out his hand to me, palm up, and showed me his fingers. He pointed out the joints in each finger and said: “We are like these joints — the Jews, the Christians and the Muslims. Each connected and working together to make the whole hand work as one.” I interpreted his message as meaning that all of us are connected, as one hand, and we must help each other and live together.
MINNEAPOLIS — “Palestine-Israel: Understanding The Conflict At Hand” presented MintPress founder & editor in chief Mnar Muhawesh as a panelist, along with two members of Jewish Voices for Peace , Cindy Cohen and Asa Diebolt, joined by Palestinian-American and Anti-War Committee member Sabry Wazwaz to discuss solutions to peace in the Holy Land and ending Israeli apartheid.
Below is an edit of the highlights from the peace forum. Panel members asked for more understanding of the real human issues–religion aside– and knowledge about the extent of the Zionist Israeli government apartheid action and relief from the futile argument that Israel is a democracy and home to only the Jewish people– making genocide and ethnic cleansing of Palestinian Muslims and Christians acceptable in the name of Judaism. Muhawesh discussed the media’s responsibility in covering this conflict as a human rights issue, how to identify this as an effect of imperialism of dividing Muslims and Jews to exploit those two religious populations to further “conquer” the Middle East region.
So what’s the solution? End religious privilege and superiority in the Holy Land and create a one state solution where all religious people, whether Christian, Muslim or Jew have equal rights living side by side in peace as they did for generations before the creation of the state of Israel in 1948.
Below is the full length panel discussion on the solutions for peace in the holy land and ending the violence. The panel was interrupted by hecklers who demanded to stand with Israel despite Israeli apartheid and genocidal actions.
She holds a BA in General History and Art History from Hebrew University, and studied Management at the Lahav School for Executive Education Tel Aviv University. For 15 years, she served as the Coordinator for Special projects and events at the JDC-Brookdale Institute, as well as the Manager of their Middle East program meant to enhance the quality of health care systems in the entire region. She co-chaired the Israeli NGO Aid without Borders from 2000-2002, and has spent the last 10 years fighting for Humans and Human rights for Palestinians. In addition to chairing the board of Directors, Meira has organized IsraAID workshops, conferences, and forums, as well as co-lead programs in the field.
I can find no affiliation to Zionism or zionist Israel in fact the chairperson of the board states” I for the past 10 years have been fighting for humanity and equal human rights for Palestinians”.
Below is the list of donors and partners,none have a stated interest in ZIONISM APART FROM Israel foreign affairs department possibly.
So as they say the devil is in the research ,and paperwork.So as far as hating Israelis, Israel AND THE JEWISH RACE, I don,t .I DO HATE WHAT THE LIKES OF BIBI NETANYAHU, THE I D F,ZIONIST FAR RIGHT, Israelis Zionists, Zionist jews of America,for what they are doing to the PALESTINE STATE AND ITS SHOOT TO KILL POLICY OF THE OCCUPIED PALESTINIANS.I do believe that the JEWISH ZIONIST MOVEMENT WISHES TO FULFILL THE WORDS OF THE TALMUD.”TO ENSLAVE ALL NONJEWISH ,”GENTILES” , STARTING WITH THE GENOCIDE OF THE PALESTINE PEOPLE AND ERASING ALL VILLAGES ,TOWNS ,AND CULTURE FROM THE FUTURE GREATER ISRAEL STATE.
“A state ruling a hostile population of 1.5 to 2 million foreigners would necessarily become a secret-police state, with all that this implies for education, free speech and democratic institutions,” Leibowitz wrote in 1968.
And yet, we return to our original premise: why is the current atmosphere any different than the years and decades past? People have been declaring Leibowitz’s prophesy fulfilled for over four decades now. Maybe there has been no dramatic turn for the worse. Maybe we are simply witnessing the latest dip in the depressing trajectory we’ve been following since June 6, 1967 — or, as many Palestinians would argue, since May 15, 1948.
At the end of the day it doesn’t really matter. Soon Israeli Right will celebrate 50 years since the occupation began, while multiple generations of Israelis and Palestinians will have never known a political system that treats all of its subjects equally. Institutional psychology teaches us that institutions are inherently averse to change, that their natural state is fighting to preserve the status quo. In Israel, that means fighting to maintain the occupation, fighting to retain military control over the West Bank, to some extent over the Gaza Strip, and on a number of levels, over the Palestinian people themselves.
After 50 years, it is only natural to perceive anything that challenges the occupation and Jewish political supremacy, the status quo Israel’s government is fighting to preserve, as a threat to the regime. And in the popular lexicon of contemporary Israeli political thought, a threat to the current Israeli regime is a threat to the Jewish people. And that, although it may not be articulated quite in those terms, is where human rights and anti-occupation activists find themselves today.
Remembering the context
The important thing to remember, and this becomes exponentially more difficult as it becomes more personal, is that Israeli human rights and anti-occupation activists are not the ones who most need and deserve the world’s attention here. Israeli human rights activists are not under attack not because of who they are or what they believe in, they are under attack because work threatens the occupation.
And while the political atmosphere in Israel is becoming increasingly hostile to the politics of left-wing Israelis, Palestinians living under Israeli military rule have not had freedom of expression for five decades. They do not have the rights of assembly, of free speech, to vote, to enter or leave their country, to move about freely within that country, to conduct trade, to live with their chosen spouses.
Gas u till death
“We will gas you until you die – your families, your sisters, your children, everyone.” – Israeli border police officer to Palestinians in the Aida refugee camp in the occupied West Bank.
Natalie Cole, whose hit songs included the duet Unforgettable with her father Nat “King” Cole, has died aged 65.
The Grammy-winning singer died on Thursday night at a hospital in Los Angeles, her publicist told the Associated Press news agency.
She rose to fame as an R&B artist with tracks such as This Will Be and Inseparable.
The singer had recently cancelled a series of performances, including one on New Year’s Eve.
“Natalie fought a fierce, courageous battle, dying how she lived… with dignity, strength and honour. Our beloved mother and sister will be greatly missed and remain unforgettable in our hearts forever,” said a statement from her son Robert Yancy, and sisters, Timolin and Casey Cole, AP reported.
she was a staunch supporter of the Palestinian freedom movement and against the apartied in Israel especially the maltreatment of Ethiopian jews because of the discrimination between black and white jew by the zionist Jewish ruling class and the genocide of the Palestinian race.
The singer had battled drug problems and hepatitis in the past, and underwent a kidney transplant in 2009.
Her greatest success came with her 1991 album, Unforgettable… With Love, which paid tribute to her father with reworked versions of some of his best-known songs, including That Sunday That Summer, Too Young and Mona Lisa.
On the hit track Unforgettable, her voice was remixed with her father’s, 25 years after his death.
The album went on to win six Grammys, including album of the year, as well as song of the year for the title track.
The daughter of crooner Cole and jazz singer Maria Hawkins – who worked with Duke Ellington – Natalie grew up surrounded by music in an affluent neighbourhood of Los Angeles.
Her father died from lung cancer when she was only 15, and she struggled to come to terms with his death. However, she appeared to find solace in music.
She began performing in college and had early success with her debut album Inseparable in 1975. The album track, This Will Be, became a top ten hit and went on to win Cole a Grammy for best female R&B performance.
Cole was also named best new artist at the Grammys – and the album’s title track, Inseparable, became another chart hit.
The follow-up albums Natalie and Unpredictable cemented her success, with tracks such as Sophisticated Lady and I’ve Got Love On My Mind bringing further chart glory.
In 1977, she had two platinum albums and her own Christmas special – and two years later she received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
But her drug issues came to prominence in the 1980s and there followed a predictable slump in her career, as she battled addiction.
She re-emerged on the music scene in 1987, signed to a new label and with a new sound. Jump Start (My Heart) and her cover of Bruce Springsteen’s Pink Cadillac were among her notable pop hits, while 1989’s Miss You Like Crazy won her international acclaim.
She returned to the classic standards associated with her father in the 1990s, telling the Associated Press, she had to “throw out every R&B lick that I had ever learned and every pop trick I had ever learned”.
“I didn’t shed really any real tears until the album was over,'” Cole said. “Then I cried a whole lot.
“When we started the project, it was a way of reconnecting with my dad. Then when we did the last song, I had to say goodbye again.”
In 2008, 17 years after Unforgettable… with Love, Cole released Still Unforgettable, which included not only songs made famous by her father but other artists, including Frank Sinatra.
The same year, she was diagnosed with Hepatitis C – which she believed was the result of her intravenous drug use in the early years of her fame.
Her battle with drugs, including heroin and crack cocaine, was charted in her 2000 autobiography Angel on my Shoulder.
She underwent a successful kidney transplant in 2009 – after being inundated with offers of kidneys from fans – and continued to tour and make public appearances on TV shows, including American Idol.
“I am a walking testimony to you can have scars,” she told People magazine. `”You can go through turbulent times and still have victory in your life.”
Cole was married three times, and had one son.
The daughter of jazz and pop legend Nat King Cole, Natalie Cole forged a successful career in three phases. She began in the ’70s as a soul-rooted artist with albums like Natalie and Unpredictable, had success in…allmusic.com