The BDS movement is gaining momentum. Inertia is important when reminding people that the “Universal” Declaration of Human Rights is not limited to a select group of nice people.
Last week I uploaded a link that buoyed my spirit: a marginalized people may yet gain the attention it so desperately needs. It’s an article in Mondoweiss that’s received 503 views so far on the CPSC FB page.
Yesterday the Cincinnati Palestine Solidarity Coalition hosted a taste of Palestine event to celebrate solidarity in electorally significant SW Ohio. About 30 attendees enjoyed a gathering of people from a range of interests, ethnicities and ages to engage in festive spirit.
The dishes were overwhelmingly vegan and a tribute to the healthy aspects of a Mediterranean diet.
Among the gentle people there was a contingent from Dayton OH where an active solidarity for refugees of the longest lasting refugee crisis since 1948, known as the Nakba. Please visit American Support Network for Palestine for some extraordinary links on Palestine after Nakba
On Tuesday, May 3, protestors in London will gather to demand action be taken for the innocent civilians of Aleppo, who are being crushed by the brutal Syrian regime. If you live in the UK, join the Student Union of King’s College London at the Quad, Strand Campus, from 6 p.m. BST. For more details, visit the Facebook…
Steady readers of billziegler1947 have now seen the name Jeff Halper appear frequently.
It is my privilege to continue bringing ICAHD and the Matrix of Control into the conversation.
If this blog serves only to introduce you to Dr. Halper it has succeeded. While I am on an imagined roll, please consider finding a 1 hour 40 minutes open time slot in your viewing schedule for his talk in Winnipeg Manitoba from July 8, 2015. (Transforming Palestine into a Binational Independent State).
“He is coordinator of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions and a leading figure in the Israeli peace movement. Nominated for the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize, Dr. Halper has published several books and many articles while working tirelessly for peace, justice and public awareness, often using non-violent direct action.Transforming Israel-Palestine into a Binational Democratic State.”
Dr. Halper has good memories of the metropolis I write in. It’s a fortune of geography and history that we both graduated from educational institutions with international reputations: Jeff at Hebrew Union College and I at the University of Cincinnati Department of Geography. Both schools on the same street, and we graduated in the same year 1969.
Please make a pilgrimage to Cincinnati if you are anywhere near. Of course you can also read more about it right here and at the link below.
Very good news for everyone who follows, does not follow or has never heard of Stanley Cohen: the unchained man is unchanged and is taking up where he left off. Somewhere on this small planet we all share.
A recent interview by Sarah Ferguson in The Villager lends us an update on a life in progress: weeks before the Panama Papers exposed protection already available to the routinely protected. You don’t get into the business of defending the most marginalized clients on Earth because it’s lucrative and gives you circumstances, fame and pomp. Ours is a prison/military economy. Slave labor keeps prices down.
The IRS sought hidden funds but found none, so they sentenced Mr. Cohen for alleged but unproven hidden funds and sent him to the Canaan (Northwest PA) prison campus for 11 months of prison American style. Click your way over to Caged but Undaunted for details.
Stanley and I are both staunch friends of Palestine.
Canary uses a dark agenda funded by a secret sponsor seeking to remove the privacy of innumerable activists and destroy their futures, i.e. a cleansing.
Hasbara works by achieving a deft balance between information availability and media participation. It helps to have billions of dollars available to combat free and open society. Success depends upon promoting democratic principles on the de jure side while using fascist techniques on the de facto side. Then to proclaim that they continue the good fight as the only democracy in the Middle East: one protected by the most moral army in the world.
Corporate ownership (NYT, Time) and corporate sponsorship (NPR, PBS) permits bias to enter the news. The big lie requires billions of dollars to grow but it has shallow roots.
Appropriately enough it started in South Africa where the word Apartheid finds its origin. A literal translation from the Afrikaans is “Aparthood.”
That term turned into a rallying cry that awoke the planet. Unfortunately for the Native Peoples South Africa possesses natural beauty, rare resources and the indomitable spirit that deep roots bring a culture: easy low-fruit harvest for the voraciously hungry inheritors of southernmost Africa.
The parallels between the Palestinians and the Blacks under imperial rule are quite clear. Whereas the White settlers immediately took command in Africa, the representatives of an ethnocracy took command in the British Imperial presence in what the British named a Mandate for Palestine.
Guess who controlled that Mandate? Just as the Blacks were held in their place by the White colonialists, the Palestinians had the land pulled out from under them when the British left. A miracle of rare craft grafted to the roots. The people who left with their house keys in hand did not simply decide to leave this lovely land.
Unfortunately it was beautiful, as splendidly Mediterranean in climate as Southern California.
The British had just given up their Raj puppets in India one year earlier in 1947. You can recognize the charismatic leaders of these three exploited mandates for India, South Africa and now Palestine. One small hint: Mahmoud Abbas is not a charismatic leader but an enormously convenient Puppet for Israel. Arafat’s leadership? Cut short in 2004.
The Iran deal fell short for Netanyahu.
Teleprompter logic did the thinking for AIPAC: the Annual Conference for 2016. Mandate for Washington D.C.
Where a half-truth is a full-lie and a decimated truth is an epic.
The AIPAC Conference in Washington D.C. this week demonstrates that America is not only shoulder-to-shoulder in the ties that bind. America and Israel are shoulder-to-shoulder at both shoulders now. It’s beginning to resemble that iconic Brezhnev/Honecker image burned into my, and now your, memory.
Wealth is publicly flaunted in 2016. The party of the big tent is becoming the party of the wide wallet. Before AIPAC met I held slight hopes that despite Clinton’s roots in political dynasty and Realpolitik she might take note of Palestine on Monday. Not a hint. Without Bernie Sanders it is the party of little hope for 2017.
I wonder if the New York Times would reject my headline suggestion:
“PACers pleased at remaining appeased.”
Meanwhile 2.5 million Palestinians living in Palestine and 3.5 million Palestinians in diaspora live without independence but with a stolen homeland. Palestine was around a hundred years ago. Israel was not.
The Palestinian Authority directs attention from the sleight of hand played by Israel. Abbas is useful for diverting your eye from everyday ethnic cleansing.
The parties at the Oslo Accords of 1993 let pass a largely unknown legal restriction: requiring the labelling of goods manufactured in the West Bank, the occupied territories. A small negotiating point and legally binding, but the powers that be know the difference between de jure and de facto. Some negotiator did not recognize that BDS would happen.
The Gaza Strip is the most densely populated political unit on Earth. I wonder where the Palestinians now living in Gaza lived before they lived in Gaza?
It’s not a trick question. They lived in Palestine.
Here is where they used to live before the Nakba of 1948:
The rocks thrown by Palestinian youth are Made in the USA: created with weapons of modern technology. On July 12, 2014 Israelis showed up with lawn chairs (and a sofa) to witness rock manufacturing.
Bonus dollars for the military-industrial complex: an exploded bomb no longer exists after the explosion and must be replaced by an unexploded bomb. The destroyed homes are not replaced. But if they are replaced bombs are available to destroy them again.
Operation Protective Edge was just the most recent of many catastrophic assaults on Gaza. Meanwhile, Israel’s Justice System imprisons 12-year-old rock throwers. Death by sniper on Palestinians of any age thought to hold a knife. Actual knife-wielding/rock throwing optional.
The common response in the USA: shrug that shoulder.
Another lucrative industry for Israel: prisons. It’s where 12-year-olds are sent for throwing rocks, where they are housed. During a daily patrol IDF soldiers follow “suspected” youth to their homes. They enter homes at will and locate the suspect’s bedroom. At 2:00 in the morning a knock comes on the bedroom door. Bedwetting is common. I wonder why.
It’s called Stone Cold Justice. The unemployment rate in Gaza is +40%. Disaffected youth talk to their grandparents about memories of life before Nakba. My two grandchildren are not disaffected youth without hope. They have a grandfather who was born 8 months before Nakba. Their grandfather was not born in Jaffa.
Maybe we can look to the Ministry of Justice in Israel for justice, so let’s check there. Ayelet Shaked is Justice Minister.
I am blessed to live among my fellow curious creatures on this orb, trotting about this world alongside ants with societies much like ours, to dolphins who exceed our intelligence and do not declare war.
Shakespeare may now be paraphrased, “let slip the dolphins of war.” The Defense Dept. discovered they could train gentle seagoing mammals for military missions. These shine a warm light upon an institution that needs better PR perhaps. Eisenhower in January 1961 recognized the dark side of the MIC.
I think our enormapendous “Defense” budget is too large by many orders of magnitude. Just saying.
Yes it really is cool to be a citizen of our singular planet and I’m grateful for every soul reading these words with eyes or ears developed in the Cambrian Explosion.
Todays visitors are from Australia, Philippines and United States. Another day when visitors from over the many seas outnumber those in the country of my present geography.
Here is the local geography. Cincinnati rests on a fluvioglacial terrace, i.e. the latest glacier passing by crunched a flat space. A great geologic arch extended from central Ohio to central Kentucky. Take a 360-degree look from a hill overlooking our downtown and you see accordant summits: all the hills surrounding the central city are at the same elevation above sea level. By the way, that link for accordant summits shows you why this blog has no click-bait: the choice for me: to be ad-free!
Recently I discovered a fellow traveler on WordPress who has morphed the music and theme of Woody Guthrie’s “Deportees” with lyrics that blend the Palestinian spirit of the indomitable with a tragically deferred dream, Junior Chills for Palestine. The Palestinian people have not allowed humiliation by colonizers to wipe away their joy.
Damien of Junior Chills is a fellow denizen of Earth. He lives, writes and performs in the city of Belfast, Northern Ireland,identified by map makers as the United Kingdom and borders what the world globe tells us is the Republic of Ireland. Two of the three monotheist faiths share a common isle that unites and separates, but they work hard at achieving peace. Belfast used to make the headlines here every day.
Junior Chills tugs at values I try to express and organize in my mind. Music combined with what it is to be Palestinian today. Those same Palestinians were around when Woody Guthrie was hard traveling, Palestinian refugees are still living in diaspora.The American Empire is unquenchable in its appetite for domination, a thirst handily hidden under the ugly name American Exceptionalism. Be fruitful, multiply and conquer.
So much do we learn from music and photography where images share humanity. People who live in those places defined by Empire. The British Empire thought themselves bestower of blessings upon the colonized.
Why is the Mercator Projection still the default standard for maps? It’s only practical use is as a navigation aid for mariners crossing oceans. Long ago. Centuries before GPS. Greenland has about the same square kilometers as Mexico. Peel an orange and you’ll recognize how well that crap map deceives the viewer. The Mercator method takes a sphere and infinitely stretches it along a tall cylinder: every line of longitude must parallel every other line of longitude.This places the North Pole at infinity and the South Pole at infinity. The only accurately described line is the equator. It may be poetically keen to imagine Santa’s Workshop as infinitely large, but it doesn’t help us relate to our fellow citizens with their geographic relationships.
It’s the method of Procrustes to force things until they fit. Empires have too much on their minds to allow people to live their lives without an overlord deciding where you belong, where you don’t belong and how to enclose different peoples in the same country. The reason: just let the natives fight it out, they matters of empire to attend.
John Cleese has an answer to a question “Why does English food suck?” “I don’t know. We had an empire to run.” So they brought back somewhat more edible fare from the colonies.
Successful revolutions are the everlasting bane of the colonizer. Control the narrative and image becomes reality. This kind of reality: Freedom is Slavery.
Did you know that Colonialism ethnically cleansed the First Peoples of Cuba? Land was found sticking up from the sea circa 1492. Did the Spanish make plans for a thanksgiving dinner or did they brutally subjugate and enslave the locals? Empires prefer the latter. They may miss pockets of resistance during clean up operations but it’s not from want of trying. Native Peoples either become victims of genocide or they are gathered and placed in camps like Gaza, more geographically appropriate: Guantanamo.
Caption for the cartoon and the bulleted text below are at Boundless.com:
The end of the 1800s was known as the ‘Age of Imperialism,’ a time when the United States and other major world powers rapidly expanded their territorial possessions.
One of the most notable instances of American Imperialism was the Annexation of Hawaii in 1898, in which the United States gained the control and possession of all ports, buildings, harbors, military equipment, and public property that had belonged to the Government of the Hawaiian Islands.
1959: heads rolled at “Concerned Citizens for Answering the Question Who Lost Cuba” when Fidel and Che pushed back against occupation. Empires do not like being embarrassed by nightmarish headlines: “Inhabitants of a 1,000 mile-long island expel American Empire.”
A large faction in the British Mandate for Palestine expelled 700,000 Palestinians in 1948, all but pockets of resistance remained. Possession is 9 points of the law, so the remaining Palestinians obtained citizenship by default. But of those 3/4 of a million refugees? The Universal Declaration of Human Rights has a reply: they retain the right to return. Syrian refugees retain that right.
When the British Empire imploded, their imperial “Mandate for Palestine” disappeared.
Dr. Laurence G. Wolf, no small voice for humanity, was my mentor from 1965 to 1969 at the University of Cincinnati: formative years. I last talked to him in a service of two local Unitarian churches a summer or two ago. Wolf introduced me to the geography of the Middle East.
Lisa Chieco brought up Thailand the other day. It’s the only South-East Asian country not colonized by the British or the French. The British left their tongue in India. Indian literature suffers profoundly from imposition of English over many generations.
Foreign policy wisdom does not spring from imperial ambition. Lisa and I were among many of you who may have read this far. We earned a collective memory of the day before the disaster of 2003. A catastrophe (Nakba) for Iraq.
Saddam did not gas his own people, he gassed the Kurds. Lines were not drawn in the sand, they were drawn with a straight-edge, but not at random. They used the strategy divide and conquer, i.e. let the Sunnis and Shias fight each other and we save bullets and we save time. Kurdistan is already inhabited by the Kurds but modern-day boundaries place them among foreign peoples in Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Syria.
Cincinnati Palestine Solidarity Coalition: Upcoming Events. Unfortunately there are no events to announce right now (30 January 2017).
The Cincinnati Palestine Solidarity Coalition is a group worth following, now you can do that right here on billziegler1947. CPSC is speaking with a peaceful voice, in solidarity with everyone who finds hope in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights affirmed in 1948: proclaimed in the same year as the Nakba.
A good starting point is the CPSC Facebook page, it’s worth visiting even if you are not anywhere near the southwest corner of Ohio. And here is a shout-out of appreciation to readers every continent: 53 countries in 2016 so far. The idea is to make ideas available and not to impose them upon people.
A protest timed to coincide with a large AIPAC conference in Washington DC. CSPC is participating with a contingent. Timing is also critical since AIPAC can no longer depend on an automatic lockstep bipartisan support of Israel, dependable as clockwork.
(Already happened) March 29 (Tuesday) A teach-in on Rasmea Odeh takes place March 29. Details to follow. Here is a picture of Rasmea marching for another people who share her experience. In solidarity.
(Already happened) March 31 (Thursday) The fifth of five teach-ins is on March 31 at the Clifton Mosque. The theme: economic and military ties between the U.S. and Israel.
(Already happened) 3 (SUNDAY) 1:30 to 4:00 at the Clifton Mosque. An event sponsored by CPSC and Black Lives Matter Cincinnati (BLM:C)
This group is including Cincinnati on its itinerary. From their website:
“Mariam, now 85 years old and respectfully known as Umm Akram, has spent the last 68 years in crowded, makeshift refugee camps in Lebanon. She has raised three generations in the same camps, all waiting to return to their home in Palestine. She has lived through five Israeli invasions of Lebanon, as well as the 1976 Tel al-Zaatar camp massacre that killed more than 2000 of the refugees there.”
Taft Research Center, University of Cincinnati, Edwards One, 45-51 Cory Boulevard, Cincinnati, OH 45221
A Presentation by Dr. Jeff Halper about Israel, the Palestinians and Global Pacification. In the wake of the publication of his latest book, War Against the People: Israel, the Palestinians and Global Pacification (Pluto Press/University of Chicago, 2015), Jeff Halper is embarking on a five-week tour of the US. The tour is sponsored by The People Yes! Network (TPYN), a new initiative with which he is involved, which seeks to advance critical political analysis, combine campaigns across the range of global issues and generate effective political advocacy. Jeff continues to be a leading member of Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD). His talks address the situation in Israel/Palestine and the possibilities of a one-state solution. But as his new book indicates, Jeff is also moving on to what he calls “global Palestine,” a wide range of global issues including Israel and Palestine.
I am reading his latest book War against the People, just published in 2015. One very clear mark of genuine scholarship: the notes section at the back of the book is 44 pages long!
Halper is well known internationally for his ardent work on the difficult but important task of stopping home demolitions in the occupied territories. Synchronicity is best enjoyed when unexpected, we both graduated from college in the same year: 1969.