Friday, May 20, 2011

Crossing the line for sake of justice

I came across this on a very decent Israeli blog called +972 Magazine that Michael W, and occasional reader and commenter on this forum has brought to my attention few months ago.

This exemplifies the inadequate recognition of the beautiful human beings (in this case, Just and peace loving Jews and Jewish Israelis) who cross the line of tribalism and religious clannish tendencies to seek and support justice for everyone.

My deep respect and admiration to people of all faiths and ethnicity whose universal sense of justice makes the world worth living in.
Something caught my eye when looking through photos on The Atlantic of the Nakba day demonstrations which engulfed the West Banks and Israel’s border areas last Sunday.
Image 16, reprinted below, carries the following caption: Two Palestinian men struggle after being overcome by tear gas fired during clashes with the Israeli police on May 15, 2011 at Qalandiya checkpoint near Ramallah, West Bank. (Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
Actually one of the men is an Israeli from Tel Aviv named Jonathan Pollak. I suppose The Atlantic was not aware that Israeli supporters joined the Nakba demonstrations throughout the West Bank on Sunday. Maybe the editors have not heard of the Israelis that have gone to jail or been injured resisting their country’s repression of unarmed Palestinian demonstrations. Perhaps they should have a look at the definitive account of the joint struggle and the new Israeli left which Noam Sheizaf and I wrote for the Nation in March 2011.
I think that the photo is much stronger seeing an Israeli and a Palestinian side by side suffering from Israeli tear gas…don’t you?

We have been very lucky in St. Louis to have many of those that cross those ethnic and religious lines, and dedicated their time, effort and money, and risked their lives in some cases to support causes alien to them, be it the Palestinian cause or the injustices against Muslims, Arabs, Blacks, Hispanic or any other minority in this area.
May God bless them all.

Check the rest of the impressive Photo-Essay by the Atlantic on Nakba Day protests (May 15 2011) at the borders of Israel and its 44-year occupied territories.


Local Activists and groups I am proud to know:


  1. Good to see you blogging again. I don't even remember mentioning +972 to you, but it's possible.

  2. Thanks Michael. And actually you did mention it in February or late January. I have followed it since then and I am glad you introduced it to me.

    As for blogging; the Middle East has been going through a lot since the year started. And with all the great people changing the world by their blood and sweat, it seems trivial to be just sitting here to 'talk and blog' about it.

    But I hope to get in the swing of writing again soon.

  3. I like +972 but I hardly agree with everything they say. I disagree with the majority of what they right but our final vision of how things should be is more or less the same. It's a matter of how things could or should get there. To the writers of Mondoweiss, +972 is part of the problem. The writing is better, and the commenters are less extreme.

  4. I really salute those who express their disagreement with Israel policy, at a time when anyone disagrees with the Israeli policy is automatically called anti-semitic.
    These people go to the extent of sympathizing with Palestinians. This is the ultimate courage, and going out their way to stand with what they think is right.
    This is rare nowadays, among any ethnic, or religious group. I hope we all learn from that self denial, to stand with what we believe is right