It was inevitable that I would catch some flak for Saturday’s post, “Enough!”

A lawyer from Chicago wrote to me saying, “I admire your devotion to the causes of children, but I’m not sure I would take on advocacy of this political group.

“As I understand it, the Palestinians refuse to recognize the existence of Israel and, in fact, are committed to destruction of the Jewish state in alliance with the Muslim regime in Iran.  The Palestinians have also rejected Israeli peace proposals made at Camp David in 2000 and endorsed by Bill Clinton, and endorsed a couple years later by George Bush. This is the successor to a group that allied with Hitler during WWII (led by the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Mohammad Amin al-Husayni, who recruited for the Waffen SS)? Are not rocket attacks raining down a bit indiscriminately upon Israel from Palestinian territory?” he said.

I replied saying that I had read the full text of the previous day’s speech by President Abbas, and it appears the Palestinian position had shifted beyond that which this man had described. “As I understand it, the principal roadblock to peace talks is the Israeli government’s continuation of its construction of settlements on Palestinian land,” I said.

“In my view, this is not about politics but about right and wrong, good and evil.”

“The operative word there is ‘appears’,” he countered. “Unfortunately, appearances don’t always match deeds with the Palestinian group. Arafat, in particular, was less than reliable, and had a nasty habit of mismatching his deeds with his public utterances,” he said and continued: “Definition of “good” and “evil” is, for better or worse, a basic tenet of the political game. I have found it very difficult to attach those labels without playing politics to some extent.”

“The same duplicity can be ascribed to the Zionist side as well,” I replied. “I seek to sidestep the mutual finger-pointing and look at WHAT is right, not WHO is right. What is happening ‘on the ground’ is absolutely positively wrong. It has got to stop. People of goodwill on all sides of the issue have got to change their minds, hearts, and positions.”

“I agree there is room for improvement on both sides,” he said. “I was under the impression you were taking the Palestinian side of it.” 

“I am taking the human side in defending kids,” I replied. “They don’t care about politics—just living and growing up happy and free.”

This is the same position taken by MECA, the group that had organized the art exhibit called “A Child’s View from Gaza.” I spoke today with a spokesperson from MECA to learn how their guerilla art opening had gone on Saturday.

“We are devoted to supporting the children who have been living under siege. We think of ourselves as a humanitarian organization, not political,” she said.

She told me that 24 hours before the opening MECA had leased a retail space to exhibit the artwork for two months at 917 Washington Street in Oakland, only one minute away from the museum where the exhibit was to have been held. The reception began in the museum’s courtyard and was followed by a march to the rented exhibit space. Only a handful of counter-demonstrators were present—“maybe ten,” she said.

MECA had expected only 100-200 attendees for the event; thanks to the publicity the exhibit’s cancellation created, more than 500 supporters showed up.

Censorship in this case backfired. 


Groove of the Day 

Listen to The Wombats performing “Backfire at the Disco”

2 Responses to “backfire”

  1. 1 Gloria
    September 26, 2011 at 5:28 pm

    And I wonder myself which one is the side it should be taken according to this lawyer? It would be that bad to take the palestinian side? After all the Palestinians are the ones who are being massacreted (is that the right word or maybe is slaughtered)? which side it should be taken I wonder? whatever, sighs!!! I will take like you Dan the human side.

    quoted: the Palestinians refuse to recognize the existence of Israel and, in fact, are committed to destruction of the Jewish state in alliance with the Muslim regime in Iran

    Really? wow!!!! “shaking head in amusement.”

    And Btw, which are exactely the “Israeli peace proposal” ? oh yeah, we will continue to take your land and you (Palestinian people) won’t complain. quoted by the article below “Israeli settler Meir Bartler, 25, said: “We don’t care what they’re up to at the U.N. We have the bible, which says the land of Israel belongs to the Jewish people.”
    GEEZ!!!!!! problem solved, why the discussion at all?. The Almighty has talked. end of discussion.

    The truth is that I don’t know much about politics but I know about right and wrong. and as I say before I would take as well the human side.

    I honestely think those “two” will never come to peace, anyway, in the meanwhile the innocents (childrens) will be the ones suffering.

    Abbas stakes Palestinian claim to state at U.N.


  2. 2 Gloria
    September 26, 2011 at 5:39 pm

    Tell me why Israelis must continue undisturbed to kill Palestinian children??

    tell my why every one has country except me?

    tell me why i cant see my brother in the west bank and there is only steps between me and him?

    tell me why you stolen my country?

    tell me why you killed my beloved people?

    tell me why you killed my dreams?

    Beautiful song by 12 years old british palestinian talanted girl, Hadeel Shamallakh


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