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Celebrities for Palestine; Cultural Activism with Ben Rivers


by Marivel Guzman

A talk by Ben Rivers on Playback Theatre and Popular Struggle in Occupied Palestine. Photo: Bhagya Prakash. K

A talk by Ben Rivers on Playback Theatre and Popular Struggle in Occupied Palestine. Photo: Bhagya Prakash. K

Since December 2011, The Freedom Theatre’s Freedom Bus has engaged thousands of Palestinians and people from abroad in cultural actions that address Israel’s practice of settler colonialism, military occupation and structural apartheid. The Freedom Bus partners with village cooperatives, popular struggle committees and grassroots organizations to hold multi-day “solidarity stays” and “freedom rides” in villages, towns, refugee camps and Bedouin communities throughout the occupied West Bank. These events involve community visits, interactive seminars, guided walks, Hakawati (traditional storytelling), building construction, and protective presence activity.

A central feature of Freedom Bus events is the use of Playback Theatre. Through this method, a troupe of Palestinian actors and musicians invite stories from the audience and subsequently transform each account into a piece of improvised theatre. By sharing stories about the realities of life under colonization and apartheid, community members aim to mobilize audience members in the broader struggle for freedom and equality in historic Palestine.

Irene Fernández Ramos writes for her Storytelling, Agency and Community-building through Playback Theatre in Palestine What is Playback Theatre?
Playback Theatre is a form of non-scripted, interactive community-based theatre created in the 1970s in the United States by Jonathan Fox. A Playback Theatre event usually lasts around seventy-five minutes and it is constructed from the stories of members of the audience who are invited by a conductor to share short or long stories, or ideas, with the rest of the audience. The new storyteller steps forward and sits on the edge of the stage, where he or she is seen by the performers and by the audience. With the help of the conductor’s questions, this new ‘storyteller’ narrates his or her experience allowing the performers to understand the personal feelings lying behind the story and to translate them into improvised theatrical language. Read more on her essay here 

Endorsers of the Freedom Bus include personalities such Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Alice Walker, Angela Davis, Judith Butler, Maya Angelou, Noam Chomsky, Omar Barghouti and Peter Brook. (Click for the full list of endorsers).
The Freedom Bus is also endorsed by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC), Jewish Voice for Peace, Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI), Code Pink in between other organizations.

Freedom Bus The heart and art of playbackUsing stories, photographs and video, Ben Rivers speaks about the Freedom Bus initiative and its role within the popular struggle movement.

Palestinian Solidarity Committee in India and 1 Shanthiroad last February organised a talk (Video) by Ben Rivers, a British-Australian drama therapist and co-founder of The Freedom Bus Initiative with The Freedom Theatre in Palestine, on playback theatre and popular struggle in Occupied Palestine. In the talk Ben focused on the cultural activities of the Freedom Bus Initiative, including ‘solidarity stays’ in which the team resides in a village for some days, acting as a protective cover or re-building homes . “We also work very closely with grassroots, popular struggle groups and organisations. We organize political actions together.” Excerpt from the Hindu.com

In his talk, Ben narrated some of his experiences working with the communities in occupied Palestine.

“In the South of the West Bank, in a region known as South Hebron Hills, we were on the outskirts of a village called Atwani, where a very small community lives. A lot of their land was stolen by people of a settlement nearby who were hostile. Palestinians who are grazing their sheep on the hills are regularly attacked by them. Palestinian children used to be stoned by the settlers as they walked to to school.”

Struggles that unite the Nations


Published by Akashma Online News

by Marivel Guzman in collaboration with Omar Karem from Turkish/Syrian border

Omar Red Crescent May 31 2013

Three convoys converged in Turkey to deliver much needed aid to the people of Syria suffering a three years internal violence.

Omar Karem, 30 years old from Gaza with an uncertain future. He it is a refugee himself but regardless of his precarious situation, his humanitarian heart does not allow him to stay idle, he is adding his helping hands around in the Aleppo Halab Syrian Refugee Camp. He is stranded without visa, but this does not stop him from helping others in need.

Syrian Refugee Camp

Refugee Camp set up by UN on the border of Turkey/Syria receiving every day people running from the violence inside Syria.

It is very difficult to be Palestinian, he said. You have no rights in your land, and you have no rights in other people’s land.
The Palestinian Nabka since 1948 had left Palestinian without rights. They are denied visas to work, or to visit other countries on the ground of  being Palestinian. Omar said, that most of the times they refuse to grant them visa just because they are Palestinians.
The word refugee is not new for Palestinians. The refugee status of Palestinians, it is wore as stigma. A painful one, that follows them every where they go.

“All Arab governments  and specially the ones called national government are unchanged. Omar, said. They filled history with revolutionary slogans.  They said that they will liberate Palestine, they set up thousands of festivals. Printed millions of posters and after 65 years of Nakba, nothing changed one meter of Palestine’s land, he said.

Omar, that victoriously broke Gaza siege last year had seen the end of his triumph. Now stranded in the border of Turkey/Syria in Aleppo Syria in a refugee camp for displaced people forgetting his own struggles and his uncertain future, he moves around in Halab refugee camp helping and documenting the atrocities of the war.

He better than anybody knows the horrors of the war, he lived the Israel occupation all his life. He knows the terror in the eyes of a child after a bomb had destroyed half of his home. Israel did not spared the terror of the bombs, the white phosphorous, the sonar bombs, the drones flying every day above their heads. Omar knows the aftermath of war, now he sees himself as a refugee in a foreign land, but still hoping for a better tomorrow, and helping Syrian refugees to cope with the lost.
What to do, when you are Palestinian?  Add your voice to the Palestinian Struggle, he said,  let’s help to end the Israeli Occupation of Palestine.  Now witnessing the horror of the Syrian violence that does not forgive, women, children and elderly, he said, “Syria will be free.”

Omar Karem and  Ebrahim Musaji

thousands miles away from their Land, Omar Karem and Ebrahim Musaji Aleppo Syrian Refugee Camp

From all the oddities of life, Ebrahim Musaji, 27 Mavi Marmara survivor and humanitarian peace activist from the UK comes to Syria in a convoy to bring Aid, and find Omar Karem from Gaza, Palestine, stranded yet in another no man’s land. When Ebrahim went to Gaza 2 years ago, Omar still in Gaza was part of those in need, now circumstances had changed. They both meet in another country, with conditions similar to Gaza. Undoubtedly the times changed but the situation is the same.
In a skype interview,  Ebrahim Musaji, speaks of his many humanitarian enterprises. He has been in Gaza in three occasions, With Viva Palestine convoy, Road to Hope, and the attempted Mavi Marmara organized by İnsan Hak ve Hürriyetleri İnsani Yardım Vakfı – İHH. He had been in Syria as volunteer 2 times, the first time he stayed 3 months inside Syria helping displaced people. This would be his third time in a convoy from UK delivering aid to the people inside Syria.

UK convoy members Libyan Red Crescent Omar Karem and Ebrahim Musaji

Ebrahim Musaji, Omar Karem with members of the Libyan Red Crescent delegation arriving to Istanbul in their way to Syria.

Syria Refugee Camp Border Turkey

Ebrahim spent 3 months in Syria on January, delivering the ambulances and donated aid and cash to school inside Syria and in the refugee camps.

Ambulances arriving to Istanbul ready to depart to Syria

25 ambulances from Libya crossed  Thursday Turkish territory, loaded with tools and medical supplies, to the Syrian territory. The Ambulances were accompanied by 14 people, including three doctors, that crossed the Syrian-Turkish border from the crossing Gelovaguzo the “Gate of fancy”, in Rihaniyya area city Turkish Hataa. The coordinator of the Red Crescent in Libya, “Nasser Mohammed Dou,” said, that Libya provided so far 235 ambulance to Syria since the start of the crisis, and to support the Libyan humanitarian aid will continue on an ongoing basis to the Syrians. He explained, “Dou” that three doctors came with the delegation, in order to provide medical services to the Syrian refugees who were forced to leave their homes and stay in tents and camps inside Syrian territory.

Omar Karem and Ebrahim Musaji meet in Aleppo refugee camp on May 27, and made their way back to Istanbul to welcome the Libyan Red Crescent delegation arriving with 25 ambulances, and the group from IHH, once they all meet they started their journey to Syria.
Circumstances unite people more than they can imagine.

Who is Anonymous and what is their mission?


Originally published on April 3, 2013 on Coast Report

by Marivel Guzman |  Staff Writer at Coast Report |

Anonymous Exposes Massive Leak of United States Department of Justice

It is hard to describe in words what Anonymous really is. To most, it is a group of hackers who disrupt web pages and steal data. However, some think that they are doing good things for society.

The irony of the situation is that Anonymous is not a group that can be traced to a building or to a country. They are dispersed around the world — they have no offices, no leaders, they do not follow a strategy.

With its ever growing popularity, it has become a case of whether or not they can actually be considered criminals.

At Orange Coast College, most haven’t heard of it, but the students who had agreed that while they are hackers, they do things that benefit society.

Jairo Navarete, 24, computer science major at OCC, said Anonymous is a group of Internet activists and it is good when the group exposes bad information about certain companies.

“The government should not punish them with long sentences, because what they do not affect the company’s people — only the money,” he said.

Another student said the group usually has the people in mind.

“They are a group that speaks in favor of society’s best interest and only mean well,” said Garret Smith, 19, a video-game science major.

Some students said releasing confidential information can be valuable for society.

“I know they expose information that would be valuable for the public to know, that otherwise is kept secret to fulfill the government’s agenda,” said 20-year-old Jimmy Wakem.

The Obama administration says organizations such as WikiLeaks and hacking group LulzSec may conduct economic anonymous we are legion

espionage against U.S. companies.

In fact, Anonymous members work independently but when they finish, they leave their calling card where they use their famous quote, “We are Anonymous. We are Legion. We do not forgive. We do not forget. Expect us.”

Anonymous has millions of followers on the Internet. Their Youtube videos have millions of views and they have become a type of cyber heroes.

Heroes or villains, the government has doubled its efforts to stop Anonymous’ activities, but it seems that the hacktivists are multiplying and Anonymous is growing every day.

Disclaimer: This article belongs to Coast report. The article was published on their print and online edition on April 3, 2013.

Pakistani enhanced economic cooperation with Iran


Iran Pakistan

We need to learn Geography to understand the strategic alliances between the countries.

Posted on Akashma Online News

Source IRNA

Pakistani Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf has said that Pakistan and Iran enjoy close and brotherly relations which are rooted in historical, cultural and religious commonalities.

At the same time Closer Pakistan-Iran military ties proposed.

The Senate Defense Committee, which has broken taboos in the realm of national security by opening up debates on defense budget, counter-terrorism policies, civil-military relations, had this time invited a delegation of Iranian parliament led by Alaeddin Boroujerdi, chairman, National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of Majlis-i-Shura, for security dialogue.

The Prime Minister expressed these views in a meeting with Iranian Parliamentary delegation led by Chairman Standing Committee on National Security and Foreign Policy of Majlis, Alaeddin Broujeri at the PM’s House on Tuesday.

The Prime Minister noted with satisfaction that cooperation between the two countries is on a positive trajectory. He underscored the importance of constant and extended contact between parliamentarians and public representatives of the two countries to further cement the existing warm relations.

The Prime Minister said that the close economic ties between the two countries are reflected in the cooperation on the gas pipeline project, electricity and infrastructure projects, a statement from the PM office said.

On Afghanistan, the Prime Minister said that Iran and Pakistan have shared objectives and both the countries have to work in tandem for peace and reconciliation. He said that a peaceful, prosperous and stable Afghanistan is in the interest of not only Pakistan but the entire region. He said that terrorism and extremism are our common enemies and we must join hands to defeat these, he stressed.

Mr. Alaeddin Broujeri said that Iran is keen to expand and strengthen its relations with Pakistan. In this connection, agriculture is one area where both countries can cooperate more intensely, he added.

Mr. Alaeddin Broujeri thanked the Prime Minister who asked him to convey his best wishes to the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei.

Other members of the delegation included Mr. Mohammad Esmaeili and Mr. Ali Reza Ayyari.

Mr. Rehman Malik, Minister for Interior, Senator Mushahid Hussain Syed and other senior government officials were also present during the meeting.

Hamas Successful test of the Fajr-5 Missiles

November 26, 2012 1 comment

Posted on November 26, 2012 by Akashma Online News

By Marivel Guzman

Source Israel Defense

UPDATED

Interceptor Missile Used by David Sling System

Iron Dome was the news yesterday, the 1 billion dollars “Defense System” was being portrayed as the winner of this one sided war with Gaza. Israel was bragging that their Iron Dome success was 90 % when in reality was only 28 %. The inconsistency on the numbers are astonishing. Knowing that this Iron Dome was completely financed by the Department of defense of the US with a 1 billion 275 millions of American tax payer money, we wonder why now they are putting aside the Iron Dome News and they started another PR campaign.

The New David’s Sling Missile System has been awarded to Rafael since 2006, why now the buzz?

According to Lieutenant General Henry Obering, former director of the U.S. Missile Defense Agency, “We wanted a truly co-managed program because the United States will be very interested in this for our own purposes.”

Israel has successfully test fired the David’s Sling missile defense system on November 25 2012, bringing the country’s  air interception capabilities one step closer to the potential to intercept all enemy fire, the country’s military has announced. This is 4 days after the truce of cease of fire was agreed with Gaza. Did they wait after the rockets from Hamas stop to test their system?

According to Israel sources they knew of the existence of Fir 5, Iran missiles technology in Hamas hands.
“The Fajr missiles revived Arab and Islamic community’s prestige and dignity, an Iraqi lawmaker said after Iran taught Palestinian Resistance groups how to make Fajr missiles which, military analysts say, made Israel drop its war plans and demand a ceasefire with Palestinian groups.
“The Iranian Fajr-3 and 5 (the technology of) which had been given to the Palestinian Resistance restored the (shattered) awe of Palestine, Arab and Islamic Ummah against Israel,” Borzoni stated, adding that these missiles proved that “there is no Iron Dome contrary to what was claimed by the Zionist enemy”.
FARS Agency

­The David’s Sling battery, stationed at an undisclosed desert location in Southern Israel, fired and destroyed the incoming missile with a two-stage interceptor.

“The Israel Missile Defense Organization and the US Missile Defense Agency completed the first phase of the development of the David’s Sling Weapon System, by conducting a successful interception,” the statement said.

Fajr-5 Iranian Technology helped in the cease of fire

The complex, also known as the Magic Wand, is a military system developed jointly by the Israeli military contractor Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and the American contractor Raytheon. It is designed to intercept medium- to long-range missiles fired from 40 km to 300 km away. The Fajr-5 Iranian Missiles capabilities is 80 kilometers. If Iron Dome was a failure why Israel did not use the David Sling Defense System? Real simple, they were selling the Iron Dome to the world. Now they are looking for more money from the US to complete their defense system. Lucky for United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act of 2012 is about to expire and new money will be coming in for the 2013 give away

Political and military experts believe that Israel was shocked and later pushed to reassess its calculations after Palestinian groups responded to the Israeli army’s Wednesday aggression on Gaza with a stunning retaliation, hitting Tel Aviv, a move which eventually made Israel start an overture and change its war rhetoric about an impending ground incursion into Gaza to a tone of compromise in pursuit of truce.

The system is also designed to fill the gap between the other two functioning pillars of Israeli air defense: the Iron Dome short-range protection and the Arrow 2, a ballistic long-range defense system. The next generation of the Arrow is also being developed, and is set to be deployed in 2016. The military states that David’s Sling will “provide an additional layer of defense against ballistic missiles.”

The new technology utilizes Stunner interceptors installed in 16-missile launcher. It works jointly with the Israel Aerospace Industries multi-mission radar (MMR) and could also be formatted to be used against enemy aircraft.

Projected to be fully operational by 2014, the new arsenal would be used to defend Israel’s border against oncoming missiles such as the Fajr and Fateh 100, M 600 and the Zelzal, which are often used by Lebanon’s Hezbollah, which Tel Aviv calls a threat to its national security.

The David’s Sling system is intended to provide Israel with an additional layer of defense against short and medium-ranged missiles, thus strengthening the country’s air-defense layout which protects against the threat of missiles and rockets. Rafael is the chief contractor for the development of the David’s sling system, working in cooperation with Raytheon.

The radar used by the system is developed by Elta Systems, and its command and control system is developed by Elbit Systems.

Hamas rocket teams carried out an experiment against Israel’s wonder weapon: They fired a 16-rocket Grad salvo at Beersheba. Iron Dome blew up 8 in mid-air, 4 landed outside built-up areas but 4 made it into the heart of the town. A few minutes later Hamas started shooting 14 Grades in volley after volley just a few minutes apart – altogether 30 rockets at the same target in the space of two hours.
The score was 8 to 22 in favor of the Hamas tactic. The experiment was designed to assess the Iron Dome teams’ post-operation reloading speed – information which is a close IDF secret.

What the Palestinians learned from the Beersheba experiment was that their strength against the Israeli defense system lies in numbers: the bigger the multiple missile barrage, the greater its chances of penetrating Iron Dome cover and reaching urban targets. They accordingly put together large batteries of 6 to 8 rockets each side by side and fired them all at the same time from underground silos.
The launchers were then folded back underground for concealment.
DEBKAfile’s military sources confirm that, like the Palestinians and Iranian missile engineers, the team which developed Iron Dome likewise used the Gaza operation as a testing ground. Certain improvements were introduced on the spot in the course of the hostilities. This process continues apace.

What happens if the interceptor missile misses it target? Do they do the same destruction that the missile itself ? If the interceptor misses the target and touch ground, what happens to it?

Israel is contracting enemies by the dozen, with all their Iron Domes, David’s Sling and Arrow defense system Israel will need to built

thousands of these Batteries if Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Palestine will decide that enough and enough of this arrogant bully.

Pray For Us: Father Who Art In Heaven Hallowed Be Thy Name

December 5, 2011 2 comments

Posted on December 05, 2011 By Marivel Guzman

The Occupy Movement that it is brewing the Revolution

We know who you are, behind your thick mask of steel, power and salaried labor, you are my father, my brother, my husband, my sister, my mother. You are My Family Stay Human and protect us from harm.

I m speaking as an American Natural of this beautiful American Continent, that for the last 400 hundred years have been hijacked by foreign forces driven by evil spirit. Apparently we have enjoyed peace but has been at the expenses of other nations, see around, the destruction is been done to every spot on Earth.

The conflicts created by our leaders has created an atmosphere of murder and pillage everywhere on earth, the natural resources has been depleted to the minimum sustainable levels, the social and economical chaos is not possible to control any longer.

The time is closing on us, the time for acting instead of praying is necessarily howling in our ears every morning that we wake up and a new “Bill” is enacted against our liberties.

The constitution is an eroding document enacted for our protection, every time that a new “Bill” is signed, one more civil liberty is stripped away from us. We do not need to be lawyers to protect our constitutional rights, our bill of rights.

The time to act is a premium-urgent matter, leave the prayers for night time , the time to act  is around the corner, it’s in every Occupy spot in our country.

Some more brave than others have made the switch already, some more desperate for a change than others have started acting in their behalf. Some starving fathers and mother unable to feed their family have taken to the Occupy Spots to try to salvage some crumbs from a lost economy that only enriched the 1 % of our society.

We are not Mad, We are the others, the 1 % that can not stand the inequality any more

We were programed to drive as a robots, just occupied to survive. All the social diseases such alcoholism, drug addiction, poverty, socially engineered poor healthy habits and under funded education were specifically and purposely inadequate to keep you busy and uncomfortably numb.

The unrest is felt every where; in the gas pump, in the supermarket, the University, the factory, the “office”, the coffee shop even in the busiest underground freeways where the homeless live.

Some desperate housewives, nothing to do with soap opera, forced to hopelessly by the banksters and the blind eye of our American Government are adding their misery and  their bodies to gross the lines of the Occupy Spots in America, they have nothing else to lose.

After the President Obama economic plan for the rich that was too much, too long, too expected has sparked the social unrest in the US.

I don’t think we have a choice to turn back the clock, we left our welfare unattended for so long, thinking that Uncle Sam would fix our economical situation, we are half responsible for every bit of calamity we are suffering.

Remember that famous Statement: “First they came for the Jews and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for the Communists and I did not speak out because I was not a Communist.

Then they came for the trade unionists and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist.

Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak out for me.” by Rev. Martin Niemoller (1937)

We can add up so many negligence acts of pure numbness, and carelessness from our part that pertained to our actual situations, new twist on the wording and we get karma pay right back at us.

“First they came for the Muslims, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Muslim.

Then they came to detain immigrants indefinitely solely upon the certification of the Attorney General, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t an immigrant.

Then they came to eavesdrop on suspects consulting with their attorneys, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a suspect.

Then they came to prosecute non-citizens before secret military commissions, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a non-citizen.

Then they came to enter homes and offices for unannounced “sneak and peek” searches, and I didn’t speak up because I had nothing to hide.

Then they came to reinstate Cointelpro and resume the infiltration and surveillance of domestic religious and political groups, and I didn’t speak up because I had stopped participating in any groups.

Then they came for anyone who objected to government policy because it aided the terrorists and gave ammunition to America’s enemies, and I didn’t speak up because…… I didn’t speak up.

Then they came for me……. and by that time no one was left to speak up.”

               By Stephen Rohde,  President of the ACLU of Southern California.

Let’s not forget that everything started in America with the erosion of our precious civil liberties, and the taking away by thugs of our privacy rights, with lies and well paid propaganda that was serving the coffers of a war industry, well ingrained in the conscientiousness of our American Society. A industry that worked so laboriously to take away your children, bathed in a faked patriotism since the cradle. The Government become not your protector but the servile slave of the Corporate America, making laws to serve their masters and becoming the prostitute of Justice. “Working for the best Paying Hand” .

It is not a crime to ask for justice, dissent is our right. Use it wisely while you can.

And as our society keep sinking in despair, dropping deeper in the dark hole of abuse by the insatiable greed of the corporate world and the support of our leaders,  other hands are reaching out between the mud of desperation, and even if you judge on moral grounds or out of ignorance without thinking that their doings don’t affect your daily life, but their suppression does, it is a sign of the times.

Understanding the rights of others is the basis to guarantee that we keep enjoying our bill of rights and that no government official can design a law to strip that away from us.

And the stripping and the twisting keeps the ladder and the traps and the wording keeps changing and your rights smudging down.

“First they came for the hackers.
But I never did anything illegal with my computer,

Then they came for the pornographers.
But I thought there was too much smut on the Internet anyway,

Then they came for the anonymous remailers.
But a lot of nasty stuff gets sent from anon.penet.fi,

Then they came for the encryption users.
But I could never figure out how to work PGP anyway,
so I didn’t speak up.

Then they came for me.

And by that time there was no one left to speak up.”

PROTECT YOUR PRIVACY RIGHTS

For many years they created murders out of us, the world started hating us, because they took decisions in our name and did great damage to other nations, if we could just have acted with Truth, Justice and Peace, we could have other society, more wiser, more equal and less convulsed with war.
Some have escaped from the lethargy long time ago, and they have been giving us strength with their compassion, leadership with their actions, they are an army of peace activists around the globe, they are musicians, writers, photographers, actors, poets, directors, ordinary citizens that without blinking an eye they defend the weak, the voiceless, the poor, the oppressed from every land.

Vittorio Arrigoni RIP, Ken O’keefe in Gaza Strip, Palestine. Song by Agron Belica

First they made us  egocentric fools, thinking that we were right to murder, bomb, invade, colonize, exterminate, “democratize”,  all in the name of our mighty power. Fools Fools we let them created pariahs out of us.

Now they turn against us, we can not pray any more. How desperate are you? Do you still have “Capital” to invest in their game?. And as we move along, the Occupy Movement keeps growing, even if you do not see it in your silver screen.

We can not turn the clock back but we can help others to wake up, your compassion is guiding you to lead our society to a more humane society, where Truth, Justice and Peace are the Pillars that support us and make our journey easy to navigate to a simpler society where Love is what move us to fight for us, for you, for them for our Blue Dot, our Mother Earth.

And the twist keeps getting closer to home.

Then they came for the middle class but I did not speak out because I was not part of the middle class, and I let them destroy the buffer zone of our economy.

Then They Came for the poor and I did not speak out because I was not poor, and I let them starve them to death, unable to pay their medical bills, unable to educate their children and they converted them in drug addicts, street gangsters and thugs, and they destroyed the left over of the sweet hard masses working class that was supporting the Our Nation On Their Shoulders.

Then they came for the homeless, and I did not speak out because I was not homeless.

Then we all became homeless, right-less, vulnerable to a police-state-Fascist- like society that wants to put us in concentration camps for complaining of our misery. Fools Fools we let them destroy Our American Dream.

Love me as if I m you, compassion is not an alien feeling but a natural state of your mind, let it reign onto you and love everyone and everything that is creation.

Join Us all to into this Incredible Invisible Revolution that is making waves in the consciousnesses of every soul/mind/spirit that it is open to a change.
Remember The Thoughts are manifestations that want  to come out to explore the third dimensional bound that keeps you from knowing how capable you are of loving one another, from exercising your compassion for every creature that exist, and with that, brake free to a new world order, where  Love is abundant and free to give.
Do not allow the structured social/economical chaos to stop you from freeing yourself and help others.
Stay Human, Peace Be Upon You and Bless All Men of Good Will.

Good evening, London. Allow me first to apologize for this interruption. I do, like many of you, appreciate the comforts of the everyday routine, the security of the familiar, the tranquility of repetition. I enjoy them as much as any bloke. But in the spirit of commemoration – whereby those important events of the past, usually associated with someone’s death or the end of some awful bloody struggle, are celebrated with a nice holiday – I thought we could mark this November the fifth, a day that is sadly no longer remembered, by taking some time out of our daily lives to sit down and have a little chat….. Excerpt from V for Vendetta

Take what it is ours, softly move the wrath of oppression to the sides, do not stumble on violence, is not the way, move ahead to the next evolutionary level of our society. Do it with love.

Love can move mountains, love and compassion can unite us all. Peace To All.

If I m able to preach love and feel that is possible to change my world for a better one then I m in Love with my world, and you are part of my world. Help me to help you, Help you To Help Us All. I can not do without you, because I m part of you, and you are part of me. We are One. Remember!, One Creation!, One Family on Earth!.

Indeed I m in love!

Our Father, who art in heaven
hallowed be thy Name,

Forgive our trespasses that same way that you forgive us, do not allow us to become numb with injustice.

Give us strength to maintain our focus on what it is important in our lives. Do not allow father that destruction of our Earth, the war waste is polluting every green land, river and tree.

Stop the lunatics war makers, that  are corrupting every mind and heart on Earth.

Take away greed to the heavens, and transform into into compassion and make it  to rain on every spot on earth.

Take away hate from the hearts of every men and fill it with love and light to make Love not War any more.

Forgive our sins, and accept our deeds as a token of peace. Peace Be On Earth and Above the Sea, under the Sky and in every heart that be.

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.


Hamas: They Are Not Bad, They’re Just Drawn That Way


Posted on July 21, 2011 by Marivel Guzman


I choose to re-post this article because express very clearly the way the collective conscientiousness  get sway away from the reality, the facts, the Truth. Part of this article is Originally Posted on October 19, 2009 By Mary Rizzo on Sabbah Report

Read in its entirely and think what is written in here, what resonate with your ideas, ideals and inner thoughts.

What is really that you think of the resistance movements around the world, not only Hamas, but every movement of resistance that you know about it, that you have heard on the NEWS.
After reading this article I invite you to go and read about any country that has any sort of conflict and read on their history, their struggles to survive, their patrons, their exploitators, their dictators.

Pick up few articles from diverse news outlets leaving out the Big Media and if possible pick some books on the subject, make sure they are not ‘Best Sellers’, (Leave out Oprah’s Picks), as they tend to be tools of propaganda,  at the end of 3 months of reading and making analysis of what you have read, I want you to to make your conclusions and write down what you thought of that country.

Now open CNN, FOX, BBC or any three  Big News Outlets and find their stories on the country you have studied and make again conclusions and feel the notion of liberation from poisonous social entertaining Business News.

You will see the world with different eyes, you will ‘feel’ the world from your perspective. Take it as a mental experiment, to see how soaked you are with lies, dis-information and debunking information.  I know that after you go to this process of cleansing, you too will be part of the invisible revolution that has overtaken our world, and welcome to the New World Order, our New World Order.

I know for some of you will find almost incredible that I picked this article from this author, happen to be that 2 years ago, she  wrote what she felt was right. And given credit to her authorship is just right. Bear in mind that I do not agree with everything that she write in this article but I do agree with some points she mentions regarding resistance movements. Her article is very extensive and I don’t doubt that she research extensively to created such a lengthy piece, never forgetting that the source of our research is what sometimes makes our state of mind.
I know Hamas subject is very touchy but is very good example of what we need to explore and understand. The reality on the ground is very far from what we imagine, even if we get the pictures of the day, we can not even phantom the fear of war, the moments of terror that the children live day by day. The responsibility of their appointed leaders is enormous, so this is an invitation to see their side of their story, thru the eyes of the independent media and the story portrayed by the PAID MEDIA, and at the end will be their story, vs our story, or the official story, in one word His story/history.

“The Media and the Use of Propaganda in WarIn researching the existing literature pertaining to the issue of the media and propaganda, there must first be proper definitions for the terms ‘propaganda’ and ‘media’ in the context of politics and war. Next follows an analysis of the different articles and works already undertaken on the subject of the media’s role (as a propaganda tool) and the effectiveness of this specific form of propaganda. Thereby also concerns several pending questions regarding the different human perspectives of propaganda that is spread by the media. Lastly, there is the review of literature in relation to propaganda as a whole. Definitions of the media and propagandaIn identifying the topic scope, the term ‘media’ refers to the plural of the word ‘medium’ (Pearsall 1999). In this context, the ‘media’ is defined as ‘the main means of mass communication in forms of television, newspapers and the radio.’ (1999: 884).Petley states, that the term ‘propaganda’ refers to ‘the deliberate use of newspapers, television and other media to influence people’s attitudes (2000:26). Petley also states that propaganda is ‘[used] often [by] employing lies and distortion’.”

hamas-flags-at-sunset

In many parts of the West, certain political parties or movements are treated as if they come from the Moon or are alien to any body politic. Their existence among the people is always scrutinized as negative, transitory and something created in a boardroom or a backroom, imposed upon an unsophisticated public that is unable to differentiate a true political programme from empty and simplistic rhetoric. These parties or movements are depicted as if they only address the margins of society who are disenfranchised from any “normal” democratic bodies, and thus, are ramshackle bands that represent a minority constituency. Given their oppositional nature to pre-existing parties, they are outfitted with the label that will serve to keep them isolated from the structures that are already in operation. All of this is to destroy the party or movement by propaganda work rather than analysis of reality.

An entire mythology has been built around the Palestinian resistance movement (which morphed into a party) Hamas. This construct has actually taken on more legitimacy as a factual interpretation of Hamas than the facts themselves. In most of the Western media, no matter if it is on the right or the left, and in some of the “moderate” media in Arab countries, the very name of the party is coupled with terms such as “fundamentalist”, “radical” or “terrorist”. Clearly, this serves to create a fear trigger that will remove the word from being critically and honestly evaluated. The listener will immediately identify Hamas with a negative connotation and is removed from responsibility for understanding that this is a manipulation of reality. The listener is expected to accept the claims that Hamas is “anti-democratic” and “fanatical”. It is child’s play to then convince the listener that Hamas is Bad, that it is the Enemy of all We represent (in our own eyes, tolerance, democracy, Goodness itself). It is possible to then extend that reading to the belief that action must be taken against them, that they are a “cancer that must be gotten rid of”, as quoted by the institutional peacenik.  How does one eradicate a cancer, once it has been diagnosed? By extirpation or bombardment. With cancer treatment, one “bombards” even the healthy parts of the body with toxic agents, waiting to see if after the battle there were enough healthy parts remaining to allow the organism to continue to exist. Once you have set into the minds of millions of people the idea that destruction is good, because the enemy is just so damaging and evil if allowed to exist, the risk of bringing the entire organism to its grave by weakening it dramatically is taken as a viable risk to run. This is a way to make them justify actions that their own eyes don’t see as therapeutic, but are pure horror and evil.

How did it work that the world was so fooled and allowed Israel to destroy Gaza to “get rid of Hamas”? It was quite simple, and it’s always the same answer: Israel and its allies keep people dis-informed. Those who actually will go slightly below the screaming headlines of the newspapers might find out a few facts buried that that will contradict the spin, but not that many people will go that far, given that they are exposed to something with an element of truth buried deep within. If that were not problematic enough, even the “progressives” have done meritorious services to rendering Hamas untouchable. They might accept them as a “resistance movement” but they won’t allow their personal ideological bias to see Hamas as a progressive force for their own people’s advancement. This may be out of conviction, convenience or even lack of research or a blind spot that does not allow variations on the theme of the class struggle, where everything is “international” and the same type of rules and ideals should be considered applicable and necessary for all, going so far in some cases to “import democracy” under various more or less aggressive forms.

These people, many of whom are armed with good intentions, have chewed, swallowed, and are spitting back quite a few of the outright lies and distortions that are part of the mythology created by opponents of Hamas, created in Israel and the West, primarily.

What are the components of that mythology?
1) Hamas was created by the Israeli Mossad.
2) Hamas represents a marginal portion of the Palestinians.
3) Hamas turned democratic enough just to be able to obtain some legitimacy to later take over and turn the Palestinian Territories into an Islamic State.
4) Their victory in the polls was nothing more than a protest vote against the corruption of Fatah.
5) Hamas is comprised of a bunch of illiterates and their electors are sucked in by their own ignorance.
6) Hamas is a fundamentalist group and therefore inflexible and incapable of any modification or evolution. The oft cited Charter is used against them to stress that they are simply a radical, destructive group poised for Holy War.
7) Hamas does not seek any kind of compromise with other Palestinian political parties or factions, and are therefore the divisionary element that prohibits of the unity of the people.
8 ) Hamas operates to indoctrinate their people with hate propaganda in order to utilize them as cannon fodder.
9) Hamas is a terrorist group that exists only thanks to financing by “fundamentalist regimes”.

That Hamas is merely a resistance movement has been thoroughly disproved by the elections, but this seems to be the safe place that activists can cluster in order to allow themselves to be able to tolerate Hamas, while wishing for their quick demise. They are not viewed then as having a true heritage as a political party that can be compared to those of “democratic nations” of the “international community”, and thus, analysis of them can remain at an elementary level, lending itself to hasty generalizations.

I ask my readers to kindly forgive all the inverted quotation marks, but these words do become ironic and empty of true meaning when they are applied to the objects indicated by the spin doctors, whose task it is to do the bidding of the hegemonic powers. How can a minority of a handful of nations that always pits itself against the will of the remainder of the world community in the UN be considered as the “international community”? It’s a boy’s club that excludes practically everyone. How can a country that puts in office the candidate who obtains the lesser amount of votes be called a “democracy”? It is when we start to question our own foundations that we can detect that there is a lot of convenience in presenting any opposition as being an enemy and outside of paradigms that we consider to be core to our expectations of how to establish a just and equitable world.

It’s time to debunk a few of these myths with facts.

1) Hamas was not created by Mossad. Although Israel does like to claim credit for many things, this one is not their doing. Political Islam in Palestine has had a presence since the early 40s in Mandate Palestine, and Hamas was born as part of the Muslim Brotherhood (Ikhwan), with many of its early leaders formally affiliated. It was the experience of refugeehood that turned Hamas into a more autonomous element with a particular nationalist basis to it, a natural result of the urgent and real human situation of displacement and loss of their cultural and national identity.

There were close relations of this group with the Egyptian base, and the first offices of the Ikhwan in Palestine were created in Gaza in 1945, led by a member of one of the most important families of the zone, Sheykh Zafer al Shawwa. During the first Arab-Israeli war, Islamist volunteers reinforced the ranks, coming primarily from Jordan and Syria, and this support showed the refugees that the Ikhwan had the courage to defend itself, even during the “Israeli War of Independence”. The growing number of refugees gave a stronger identity and sense of purpose to the Islamist movement in Palestine. Therefore, in the civil society and in the population in general, a motivation from any other source was not required to be able to pledge: “I promise to be a good Muslim in defending Islam and the lost land of Palestine. I promise to be a good example for the community and for others.” These were the words spoken by those who swore their loyalty to the Ikhwan in Palestine (source: Beverly Milton Edwards, “Islamic Politics in Palestine”, p. 43). The local Ikhwan had its own agenda, defending its lost land. It didn’t require fanaticism, outside influence or even propaganda. The refugees themselves were living proof of the horrors of deportation and suffering. The identification as part of an international movement was concomitant with the recognition of the particularity of the Palestinian experience. The official foundation, dating 9 December 1987, was only the culmination of an organization in the works for decades. Organized Islamic resistance was further utilized when the situation precipitated dramatically in 1967 and a new generation was born as refugees. For this generation, a return to Islam was considered as a necessity for the moral and political future of a people that was being literally destroyed. The cause of the Nakba was seen by many as the result of the distancing from a normal society, the Palestinian one, in which the ethical, religious, cultural and traditional values had been devastated by the occupation, and the descent into further degradation, poverty, disenfranchisement and social instability was seen not only as the result of the occupation, but part of its cause.

The “international community” would not come to the rescue of these people, the rest of the Ummah was not caught up in their national struggle, largely because they were not directly involved or were even prohibited from involvement. The extreme pain and disgrace of losing one’s land at that time was a new element to the area, where previous colonization avoided expelling the indigenous inhabitants, and throwing off the usurpers was not complicated with the total loss of roots and a base. The basis for the formal dimension of Hamas was thus present for decades prior to its official birth. In order to operate, being under the thumb of the occupation, these organized groups that existed had established charities and benefit organizations for their people. These institutions were tolerated by Israel in the Occupied Territories. Israel conceded some operating space through granting of licenses. As General Yitzhak Sager said in an interview to the International Herald Tribune in 1981, the Israeli government “…gave money that the military governor allocated to the mosques […] the sums were used both by the mosques and the religious schools, with the purpose of reinforcing a subject that would contrast that of the Left that was in favour of the PLO.” If there was some motivation for Israel to be involved, it was really as an act of ‘divide and rule’, a bit of tolerance, a bit of economic support to the various religious associations in order to see if an opposition to the nationalists of the PLO could develop. They really were only looking for a way to see the weakening of the PLO, which was gaining some support in the West, and they did not found, provide major financing or in any way influence a movement that they would in some way infiltrate or control. That is pure mythology. Why give Israel credit where none is due?

2) That Hamas represents only a marginal portion of Palestinians is another myth to debunk. It is indeed true that all Palestinians are not refugees, and it is also true that virtually all of the leaders of Hamas were born in exile or at some point were subjected to the experience of expulsion and loss of their homes and possessions. This is a core Palestinian experience, and it is true that even those (few) Palestinians who were not uprooted can identify with the loss of their cultural and national identity, and all of them know that their national aspirations and cohesion as a group have been destroyed by Israel. Thus, even a movement or party that has its own identity in the refugee camps and in exile or in religious roots, is recognised as an intrinsic, legitimate and natural representative of Palestinians as a whole. They even obtained the majority vote in areas of the West Bank that were not considered as Hamas strongholds, as well as obtaining votes from many Christian areas.

3) The myth that Hamas turned “democratic enough” just to get its foot in the door as the first step of forcing an Islamic State upon the entirety of Palestine is a very widespread one, especially in the progressive circles that do not recognize the popularity of the movement or who have an ideological prejudice against any religious movement. There is much to be said in favour of separation of church and state, but this of course is something that cannot be imposed from afar, and furthermore, there are many levels of separation to take into consideration. Those who subscribe to this position of “Hamas buying time before introducing the Sharia” tend to deny that a democracy has certain characteristics, and it is not necessarily a synonym of “secularism”. When the word “democracy” is applied correctly, it has certain characteristics, and Hamas meets these. Hamas has popular consensus. It has an internal structure that is autonomous and recognized as legitimate by its constituency. It follows the rules of elections, meeting the requirements for participation. Once elected, it assumes its role within the existing system, not having overthrown or staged coups against established structures. It is a political movement with several factions (some of them armed, as is true of many parties in areas under occupation, Fatah included) with a history and an organization. There is widespread discussion among its constituencies, including those who are political prisoners, prior to making decisions, and the majority decides the actions to be undertaken. If one thing must be said about it to set it apart from parties that Westerners are familiar with, highest level leaders generally do not assume the governing roles. This is understandable in a party where a great quantity of the leaders are routinely assassinated by Israel. That the current political director, Khaled Meshaal, must live in exile after having once been victim of an attempted assassination says more about this anomalous situation than a thousand words can.

4) That Hamas’s victory in the Legislative Council election was nothing more than a protest vote (another pet theory of the left) was brilliantly illustrated as false by Paola Caridi in her very good book (despite the sensationalist subtitle) “Hamas, What it is and what the Radical Palestinian Movement Wants”, published by Feltrinelli and only available in Italian at this time. I am translating a few paragraphs that deal with this question.

“There is a precise political reason for which the majority of Palestinians voted for Hamas. It is a reason that concerns the decision made by the Islamist movement formally on 23 January 2005. (translator’s note, a year prior to the Legislative elections): a unilateral truce, reached together with the Islamic Jihad (that had instead broken it on several occasions), which had turned words into facts: that there would be the end of the season of terrorist attacks made by Hamas inside Israel as indicated within the confines of the 1949 armistice, the Israel within the Green Line, in other words. The ending of suicide attacks in Israeli cities, substantially bringing an end to the Intifada as well as (Hamas’s) participative choice is interpreted by the Palestinian population as a precise political proposal: an alternative to those who had governed and controlled them, holding the hegemony up to that moment. A proposal that poses at the same time new de facto limits to Hamas’s resistance strategy. The Islamist movement has not been, therefore, chosen only as a protest against the corruption, patronage and inefficiency of Fatah, which as a party is often confused with the PA. Corruption, patronage and inefficiency that are related, at least from a temporal point of view, with the failure of the Oslo Accords and the “facts on the ground” realized by the Israelis.

“The people of Hamas were considered people who are serious, who did not enrich themselves at the expense of the population, in fact, they continued to live in normal neighborhoods and in the refugee camps.” (Caridi, p. 171).

5) An extremely offensive smear, oft repeated, is that Hamas’s followers and its leaders are a “bunch of illiterates” or “religious fanatics”. Almost all the leaders are (or were, given the number of assassinations within their ranks, the past tense is de rigueur) university graduates in fields ranging from medicine and physics to jurisprudence, economics and theology, is testament itself that this smear is merely to throw dirt on them and paint them as having read only religious texts and therefore “under-developed” when compared to other movements. Education has always been one of the pillars of Hamas and its charity work. The people of Palestine don’t need to be told this, it is a reality for them, where in many cases without this foundation, Palestinians would be left wanting in this area.

6) The inflexibility of Hamas is another myth, especially yanked out when speaking of the 1988 Charter (Mithaq). Shiekh Hamed Bitauri, “religious authority of Nablus, president of the Union of the Palestinian Ulemas, known for his radical positions had no problem confirming that ‘the Charter is not the Qu’ran. We can change it. It is only the synthesis of the positions of the Islamist movement in its relations with the other factions, and its politics.’ Aziz Dweik, founder of the Department of Geography of the University of Nablus, later to become the spokesman of the Palestinian Parliament after the 2006 elections, and imprisoned in Israeli jails since the summer of that year, went even further, declaring the political and pragmatic necessity of distancing from the Mithaq of 1988 to Khalid Amayreh, Palestinian journalist that is sensitive to Islamist positions, he said that ‘Hamas would not remain as a hostage to rhetorical slogans of the past like those of the ‘destruction of Israel’.” (Khalid Amayreh, Hamas Debates the Future: Palestine’s Islamic Resistance Movement Attempts to Reconcile Ideological Purity and Political Realism, in “Conflicts Forum”, Nov. 2007, p.4) (Caridi p. 90).

Haniyeh has mentioned on many occasions that the Charter has been surpassed in its substance by the other official documents, the most important of which, the Electoral Programme of the Reform and Change List (the list in which Hamas ran for office). This programme is structured like a document that goes far beyond the needs of a political campaign, according to the leader of Hamas, and it indicates the policy of the movement. It was not written in the heat of the revolution of the Intifada, and reflects the evolution of the party. The changes present are not ideological so much as ones of a strategic and political nature. The positions have been reiterated so many times in interviews and public interventions, it seems incredible that the complexity and maturity of Hamas should by now not be apparent to everyone. It is clear that they are still dedicated to the liberation of Palestine, but they are attempting to achieve it through reaffirmation of the rights of the people, knowing full well that as a party, Hamas is not equipped to overthrow the occupation in any practical way or to destroy what they recognize as a reality.

Many of us who follow events in the Middle East hope that they do not surrender to pragmatism so far as to recognize Israel not only as a reality, but as a “Jewish State”, however, we must watch from the sidelines and evaluate facts. The people of Palestine will be vigil about what rights are being surrendered, if any, and many of us believe that backs to the wall, they will not capitulate and lose what they know is theirs for reasons of political expediency. Hamas too is aware of this fact.

7) Hamas has been far less divisionary than its principle counterpart, Fatah. The Gaza “coup” that shocked and saddened the world was actually a preventive measure to the thwart the planned takeover by the Fatah forces faithful to Dahlan (in collaboration with Israel). That Hamas was the party that was awarded victory by its own people has never been recognized by the “international community” that nevertheless pushed for elections and insisted that this was the necessity for Palestinians, because this would mean that the resistance had been granted legitimacy and would become policy within the governing body, the rejection of negotiations as sub-alternates with Israel, which was Fatah policy, had been officially sanctioned by the populace and it would only be a matter of time before the programme would become policy. So, any steps by the Fatah “Security Forces” to overtake Gaza would actually have been the coup. But in the backwards way of viewing events, fueled by disinformation, the tragic bloodbath between Palestinians prevented the real overthrow of democracy that would have taken place had Dahlan had the chance. Again and again, Hamas has sought to work together with the opposition party, and this is something they would not tolerate in the vain hope that their economic advantage and political nulla osta from the boy’s club would allow them to command even in absence of the popular mandate to do so.

8 ) It’s not necessary to use propaganda to show to Palestinians in the Occupied Territories and in exile, and even to many within Israel, the ongoing destruction of the Palestinian civilization and people. Blockades, bombardments, assassinations, war, checkpoint humiliations, restrictions, separation of families, imprisonment and further abuses are not isolated incidents, but they are the daily bread and water of Palestinian life. No one needs to invent a rage over a phantasmagoric enemy. There is a real one that is subjecting the people of all ages and conditions to humiliation, deprivation and death. Showing a man in a mouse costume to insist that children are being indoctrinated in hate might go down well with the uninformed masses, but a glimpse into the reality makes Farfur look like the sweetest kind of way for a child to assimilate and tolerate that he or she is a prisoner doomed for life to suffer in the most atrocious way for being born as a lesser being in the oppressors’ eyes.

9) The worst smear against Hamas is the one to keep them as the symbol of evil: that they are a terrorist group, financed by “rogue States in the axis of evil”. Bearing in mind that their financing is abysmally inferior to the gigantic economic and “military aid” package given to Israel by America, Canada and many other nations in the “international community” in an official way, why should the claim of foreign financing be considered as unacceptable when it is simply the way the that Israel keeps afloat through billions of dollars annually, up front, and heaven only knows what other financing comes in through the thousands of “charities” that are really little more than fronts for mass immigration to Israel to curtail Arab growth? If Zionism and its charities are considered as legitimate and noble, why are Islamic ones put on blacklists and the donors treated as if they are financing terrorism? There is a double standard here.

That Hamas has rejected terror operations against civilians and did its best to do so in the service of achieving a realistic improvement for the life conditions of its people is an authenticated fact, corroborated by none other than the USA Congressional Research Service, a Think Tank that basically presents its conservative and Israel-friendly positions to the Congress so that they become policy. In fact, in the document coordinated by Jim Zanotti http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/mideast/R40101.pdf Israel and Hamas, Conflict in Gaza (2008-2009), we see that the quoted “reason” for the onslaught of Gaza to “cleanse it of Hamas”, the rockets fired into Israeli territory, was nothing but an excuse that the West drank down with gusto as if it were cherry juice. The extremely rudimentary rockets were recognised as NOT having been launched by Hamas, and not only that, Hamas was viewed as being able and willing to suppress the attacks. It is significant that the first victims of the Israeli attacks in Gaza were the regular police forces who had just been trained, perhaps also for this purpose. Zanotti writes:

For the first five months, the cease-fire held relatively well. Some rockets were fired into Israel, but most were attributed to non-Hamas militant groups, and, progressively, Hamas appeared increasingly able and willing to suppress even these attacks. No Israeli deaths were reported (although there were injuries and property damage), and Israel refrained from retaliation.

Nevertheless, each party felt as though the other was violating the terms of the unwritten ceasefire. Hamas demanded€”unsuccessfully€”that Israel lift its economic blockade of Gaza, while Israel demanded€”also unsuccessfully€”a full end to rocket fire and progress on the release of Israeli corporal Gilad Shalit from Hamas’s captivity.

Israel cited the sporadic rocket fire as justification for keeping the border crossings and Gaza’s seaport closed to nearly everything but basic humanitarian supplies. Hamas, other Arab leaders, and some international and non-governmental organizations involved in aiding Gazan civilians complained that Israel was reneging on its promises under the unwritten cease-fire agreement.

If that were not enough, the author, certainly not sympathetic in any way to Hamas, makes statements about the aftermath of the war where even Israel admits that Hamas was not responsible for the rockets:

Since Israel’s unilateral ceasefire began on January 18, 2009, there have been about 40 sporadic rocket launches into southern Israel, far fewer than occurred on average per day just before Operation Cast Lead. Moreover, Israeli officials believe that smaller militant groups, such as Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, and not Hamas, have fired the rockets, as they did during the cease-fire (although it is possible that Hamas is enabling or acquiescing to these attacks while preserving denialability).

So, Israel used the excuse of Hamas rocket launches to justify the elimination of Hamas (by means of destruction of the entirety of Gaza) through what they call “military operations” but the rest of humanity knows is war, while they were aware that Hamas was neither the author nor the facilitator of the rockets, any kind of excuse they pull out of the magic hat to justify their actions should fall on deaf ears. Complaints about arms smuggling through the most rudimentary of tunnels should stink to high heaven when we see the Defense Budget Appropriations for US-Israeli Missile Defense Programs in that same Congressional Report. Iron Dome, David’s Sling and other “military aid” costing the American people billions of dollars are described briefly. For every five ineffective bottle rockets that are smuggled through a tunnel, the USA is flying in full cargoes of arms and cases of cash to be spent by Israel for their military “needs”. The double standards here also draw innocent blood in violation of international law at the expense of your hard-earned money. Again, from the Congressional report:

Israel may have used weapons platforms and munitions purchased from the United States in its military operations in Gaza, reportedly including, among others, F-15 and F-16 aircraft, Apache helicopters, and, according to Israeli press reports, GBU-39 small diameter guided bombs approved for sale by the 110th Congress following notification in September 2008.

Additionally, all unilateral truces between Israel and Hamas (called by Hamas, not by Israel) were broken in every case by Israel. In many cases, making incursions into the Occupied Territories, which legally they are prohibited from doing, as civilian populations under occupation (even if the “settlers” have left, Gaza is kept under siege by Israel) are required to be protected by the occupier, not attacked. Israel, using weapons and planes supplied for them by the good graces of the people of the United States, bombarded streets where their targets (politicians and clerics that Israel terms as “militants” if not worse) were located, killing in an indiscriminate way anyone in the range, children included. If that’s not terrorism, the word has no meaning.

These are only a few of the myths in circulation. They represent just a portion of the lies, disinformation and hasbara that circulates about one of the major Palestinian parties, born from within, developing as all parties do, from below, and legitimized by fair and legal elections. Debunking these lies is a duty. One doesn’t need to agree to the entire programme of Hamas, but one is obligated to recognise that they are entirely different from the image that they have been straitjacketed into. What Jessica Rabbit said in the film, “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” could very well apply to Hamas: “I’m not bad, they just draw me that way.”


* Mary Rizzo is an art restorer, translator and writer living in Italy. 

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