|UNRWA: More than 30,000 Gazans fled to shelters since Thursday ...Prior to the conflict, more than half of the Gaza Strip's 1.7 million inhabitants were classified as refugees, being forced from their original homes inside what is now Israel by Zionist forces in 1948.|
I think Qanta Ahmed's op-ed "Palestine occupied by Islamism as much as Israel: Political Islamists push out legitimate Muslim groups and contribute to regional dysfunction" is brave, clear eyed... and a very good warning to any and all who are sincerely concerned about the very real plight of the Palestinians.
Deluged by tragic photographs of Palestinian children maimed and killed by Israeli bombs, it is easy to only feel blind rage towards Israel. The Israel-Palestine conflict has already been going on for more than half a century. Israel has been cruelly persecuting and impoverishing the native non-Jewish Palestinians. Israel wants as much land as it can grab, but Israel does not want the native non-Jewish population of that land because Israel is totally obsessed being being demographically "Jewish". Palestinians object to that, and rightly so. Israel is flagrantly violating many international laws and universal human rights. Some Israeli writers and NGOs also object.
But for the United Nations and UNWRA keeping Palestinian refugees alive the Israel-Palestine conflict would most probably already be over by now, with one fully sovereign, economically strong, heavily defended Jews-preferred Israel still refusing to respect UN Resolution 194 from 1948- the Palestinian refugees right to return to original homes and lands to live in peace.
Islamists do quote fragments of international law, mainly in an attempt to take ownership of the Palestinian refugees right to return, but Islamists are not at all interested in respecting universal human rights or even the concept of international law. Their goal is not real freedom, justice, and jobs for the people of Palestine. Their objection to Israel is not that Israel bases citizenship rights on a person's religion: Their objection is that they think Israel is the wrong religion.
Israelis and Palestinians advocating and working towards a fully secular two state end to the Israel-Palestine conflict are compassionate realists who have figured out that the current status quo guarantees things will only get worse for the people of historic Palestine because as things are both religious tyrants and criminals benefiting from the Israel-Palestine conflict are flourishing.
Compassionate realists understand the vital importance of golden rule thinking, the rule of fair and just laws, the crucial part that diplomacy plays in building a just and lasting peace, and the necessity of state building efforts for Palestine. Palestinian survival is not guaranteed, no matter how furious everyone is at Israel.
Anne Selden Annab
UN agency says Gaza destruction 'immense'
Balt Sun: Unemployment, poverty at the root of Israeli-Palestinian conflict [Letter] by Roger Lawson
What Israel and Hamas are really trying to accomplish in Gaza... "The sole purpose of this war with Israel is to force Egypt to change its policies"
Palestinians die in the most cynical of all military games
Syrian refugees, sectarian tensions endanger Lebanon
Thousands of Palestinians seek safe refuge at U.N. offices in Gaza
UN security council calls for Israeli-Palestinian ceasefire: Statement expresses 'serious concern regarding crisis related to Gaza and protection and welfare of civilians'
Gaza bloodshed spirals as world powers plead for ceasefire
"I have yet to meet a refugee who wanted to be a refugee and even less so, who wished to remain a refugee. Palestine refugees are no different. Their call for a just and lasting solution to their plight must be heard." UNWRA's Pierre Krähenbühl on World Refugee Day
STAY CONNECTED... Given the U.S. commitment to religious freedom, and to the international covenants that guarantee it as the inalienable right of every human being, the United States seeks to: Promote freedom of religion and conscience throughout the world as a fundamental human right and as a source of stability for all countries
UNITED NATIONS: International Year of Solidarity with the Palestinian People 2014
Reasonable voices & helpful resources ...America for Palestine MAY 2014
Normalizing Intelligent Conversations, Diplomatic Support, and Hope for Palestine: American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP)
The American Task Force on Palestine supports Palestinian institution-building, good governance, anti-corruption measures, economic development, and improved living standards. ATFP holds that these same values are relevant to the broader Arab world, and that the question of Palestine is inextricably linked to regional realities and developments.
ATFP provides an independent voice for Palestinian-Americans and their supporters and advances human rights and peace. It categorically and unequivocally condemns all violence against civilians, no matter the cause and who the victims or perpetrators may be.
ATFP Calls for De-Escalation between Israel and the Palestinians
July 8, 2014, Washington, DC -- The American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP) today called on Israel and the Palestinians to de-escalate as quickly as possible from an increasingly explosive situation and a moment of grave peril. Major airstrikes on Gaza have killed numerous Palestinians, reportedly including several children, today while another heavy barrage of rocket fire from Gaza was launched towards southern Israel, and at least one rocket being reportedly shot down over Tel Aviv. Today's violence comes in the context of tit-for-tat killings of, and attacks on, Israeli and Palestinian teenagers in Jerusalem, widespread tensions in the West Bank, and even growing unrest among Palestinian citizens of Israel.
ATFP called on all sides to demonstrate leadership and to take immediate and concrete actions to de-escalate the growing conflict and refrain from inflammatory rhetoric. ATFP urged all parties to consider the negative consequences of similar conflagrations in the past, and recall that they did not benefit either side, militarily or politically, but caused the deaths of countless innocent civilians, enormous destruction of property, and widespread and lasting misery. ATFP urged President Barack Obama and the rest of the international community to use their good offices to ensure that all prospects for resolving the crisis are fully explored.
The Arab villages lost since Israel's war of independence - Guardian Interactive: ...Pre 1948 ...March 1948 ... May 1948 ...June 1948 ...Oct 1948 ...July 1949 ...Now
Remembering the Nakba: Israeli group puts 1948 Palestine back on the map Zochrot aims to educate Israeli Jews – through tours and a new phone app – about a history obscured by enmity and denial
Growing Gardens for Palestine: "And it's up to all of us together"... a Spring poem for Palestine & peace
Peace Building ... civic muscle
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
The Golden Rule... Do unto others as you would have them do unto you
"The only way to honor our tragic histories is to create a future for our children free of man-made tragedy. This means making peace fully, completely and without reservation, between Israel and Palestine." American Task Force on Palestine's born in Jerusalem Dr. Ziad Asali: To honor a tragic history, we must work for peace