Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Hamas aid cutoff: Israeli attacks kill 16 including 2 children

Over the last four days, from Friday to today, Israeli shelling has killed 16 Palestinians including two Palestinian Children, one girl inside her home and a young boy near a car hit by rockets in Rafah. This massive offensive coincides with the Israeli announcement that they are cutting off connections with the Palestinian government and ruling out any negotiations with any member of the current Palestinian Authority including Abbas.

Meanwhile, many American news sources like the AP reported the attacks over the weekend as a small paragraph in other articles. Locally, the Baltimore Sun mentioned the deaths of 14 Palestinians including one child on Friday and Saturday in the 12th paragraph of a story entitled Olmert aides OK Ending Ties.

This disproportionate weight in the value of Palestinian versus Israeli life can only cause the increased desperation of Palestinians, as they are increasingly isolated from direct and even indirect aid from the US and Europe even as Israel increasingly isolates those from the West Bank from Gaza. The reactionary elements of both Palestinian and Israeli armed wings will surely be emboldened by this new status quo, as I have argued before.

Remember These Children
has yet to update its list of dead Israeli and Palestinian children to keep up with this weekend's carnage. They do, however, show the death of "Mohammed Farid Hassan Zayed, 15, of Qalandya refugee camp, Ramallah District... Killed by an Israeli patrol with five live bullets to the lower part of his body" on April 3rd.

Friday, April 07, 2006

A Haiku for the Headlocked

The Beltway Poetry Quarterly has released its Wartime Issue, in which friend, activist, engineer and UMD employee Zein El-Amine offers his

Haiku for the Headlocked

We thrash, curse for air
As our strangler declares, look
How violent the Arab

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Jonah House Nuns from Baltimore Return to missile Silo: Risk Arrest

CNN reports that
Three pacifist nuns who were jailed for an October 2002 protest at a missile silo returned to the site, vowing to continue their nonviolent resistance to the nuclear armaments.

While CNN reports that the women are from the Dominican Order in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Jonah House confirms that these are the same Sr. Carol Gilbert and Ardeth Platte who live with the Jonah House community in West Baltimore.

They are risking arrest by refusing to pay court ordered restitution and by skipping a supervised release visit with their parole officers that did not allow them to attend events in Colorado against the use, stockpiling and proliferation of nuclear weapons. No news on whether a bench warrant is or will be issued for the arrest of the nuns.

The Jonah House community has a history of anti-war and non-violent acts of resistance motivated by a deep belief in the teachings of Jesus Christ. Founding member Father Phillip Berrigan awakened a nation's conscience and went to jail as part of the Baltimore Four and Catonsville Nine, who destroyed Selective Service records at the Baltimore Custom House and the Catonsville Draft Board with blood and homemade napalm. This action was meant to prevent the killing of American youth and Vietnamese by preventing conscription of soldiers. This was the birth of the plowshares movement in whose name Platte and Gilbert destroyed the Colorado missile silos.

More recently Jonah House members conducted a rare protest in Cuba by illegally traveling to the island and marching to the Guantanamo naval base to protest the torture of prisoners there. The Sun article on that protest is available online.

The dedication of Jonah House members and other dedicated Christians to the actual teachings of Christ makes one wonder how a religion founded because of a pacifist dedicated to social justice who was tortured to death could be use to promote violence, war and torture. One wonders what Jesus would have to say to the leaders of the so-called "Christian Right" who promote the politics of corporate capitalism, militarism and racism.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

I´m busy... Be back soon

Friends, families, strangers and neighbors. I have been quite busy this month, finalizing medical school plans and moving to a new address. I have not quite, but the blog has been low on my list of priorities this month. I will be back up and running the first week of April, expect updates then.