Tag Archives: gaza

Make It Count

You’ve been given the opportunity to send one message to one person you wouldn’t normally have access to (for example: The President. Kim Kardashien. A coffee grower in Ethopia). Who’s the person you choose, and what’s the message?


Aftermath of drone attacks in Pakistan. Photos Credit: Google

Mr. President,
As a mother when I see young men, and women who lost their lives, their limbs in this endless war, my heart breaks for them. I cry when I see their homecoming: their ravaged faces, or their dead bodies.

I cry at happenings in my home country-Pakistan: where people die – young, and old at the hands of your war machinery. My country is a war zone, thanks to you, and the others before you.

When I was there, and had to go on some errand, I was never sure whether I would be back home: alive or dead.

You back despotic rulers behind closed doors, while brainwashing Americans you are a champion of democracy.

You support the killings in Syria, Gaza, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and else where round the world.

Stop supporting Evil, and it will go away.

Stop the killings.



by Mahroh Jahangiri 

I struggle to understand how we still need to protest police brutality, blockade, occupation, and ethnic cleansing. How I still need to comment with “today’s tally of dead womenandchildren” on the posts I see discussing security, human shields, security, and what is effective. And how people blindly respond that dead bodies is what is effective because yknow terrorism, tunnels, security, and the economic losses of a shut-down airport.

How many dead bodies makes an operation ineffective?

I guess that that would depend on the color of the bodies.

Brown and black and all of those bodies that are not dominant are continuously dehumanized to justify the violence that takes place against them. A very dear friend sent me a note this morning talking about this, and though I know this is nothing new, I am still consumed with it. It articulates what I have felt while watching the news these past few weeks, and what many have slept with/thought about/woken up to/thought of for decades. When people say “human shields,” what you are saying is that protecting civilians is no longer the occupying force’s responsibility – the Palestinians asked for it. When people say that the military gives ten-minute warnings, what you are saying is that the attacking force is absolved of its obligations to spare civilians – by taking eleven minutes, the Palestinians asked for it. When I comment with “today’s tally of dead womenandchildren” I’m only playing my role in a system that treats brown and black male bodies as inherently violent and born guilty.

What I am saying is that they asked for it.

The three Israeli teens murdered last month got a war to defend those that look like them.
The three Palestinian children that were killed by the Israeli military every nine days for the past thirteen years got a war that now kills one of them every hour.

“It’s because Hamas is their government.”
What you are saying is “they asked for it.”

Let’s reset our watches. In an hour, another Palestinian kid will lose his life because security does not apply to those who look like him.

“It’s because they were with/near/themselves a security threat.”
What you are saying is “they asked for it.”

I am sure that I do not agree with many of my Facebook friends on the causes of this conflict or the solutions. But I like to think that most of us in theory value each other’s lives equally. It is our media/society/and even families that actively push and socialize us not to.

The purpose of my post then is to ask my friends to recognize this and push back. Because talking about policy and solutions right now means we are still not addressing the fact that these policies and solutions are based on understandings that do not adequately value Palestinian people.

Take some moments to witness the occupation in Gaza and find some stories, photos, names that portray Palestinians as humans and not as a death toll. A great source is Ayman Mohyeldin on FB and on Twitter, the NBC correspondent reporting from Gaza through photograph and film. If I had just one opinion to share, it would be to follow him. Some journalist’s photos and videos are a longshot from capturing Palestinian humanity but they are a step in the right direction. For a few days before next liking or sharing a post that supports any militarized state, pro-police or pro-war official, returning soldier, defense operation, or right to security, make sure you know the names, ambitions, type of shelter, water access, food access, potential (or lack of a potential) future of the people that “security” kills. It’s quite a challenge to see the value in every person’s life.

Especially when states ban radio broadcasts naming children killed in Gaza. Or when media conglomerates pull out their Gaza correspondents after they witness the killing of four Palestinian boys playing soccer on the beach. Humanizing people is a really powerful thing because militants and collateral damage and security then no longer suffice as an explanation.

It’s quite a challenge to see the value in every person’s life.

And I do not think this will change everything.

But I do think that when the deaths of people that look like me are mourned equally as the deaths of people who look like you and costs are not measured according to the color of the dead bodies, “they asked for it” will make much less sense and violent policies and violent solutions will become less easy to justify.

And even if you believe they are still justified, even after knowing the stories and the faces, that is still better. Because at least it is now a little harder to stomach the brown and black bodies that serve as fodder.


Follow Ayman Mohyeldin:





Reblogged from Mahroh Jahangiri




One Palestinian child has been killed by Israel every 3 days for the past 13 years

Almost half of the Palestinian population is under 18Official statistics from the Ministry of Information in Ramallah have revealed that 1,518 Palestinian children were killed by Israel’s occupation forces from the outbreak of the second Intifada in September 2000 up to April 2013. That’s the equivalent of one Palestinian child killed by Israel every 3 days for almost 13 years. The ministry added that the number of children injured by the Israelis since the start of the Second Intifada against Israel’s occupation has now reached 6,000.

“The International Day for the Protection of Children is on June 1,” said a spokesman, “but Palestinian children are still subject to attacks by the Israelis and Jewish settlers on an almost daily basis.”

Noting that 2012 saw an unprecedented rise in the number of children arrested by Israeli forces, the report pointed out that 9,000 Palestinians under 18 years old have been arrested since the end of September 2000. Almost half of the Palestinian population is under 18. Almost two hundred and fifty Palestinian minors are being held in prison by Israel; 47 of them are children under 16 years of age.


Credit: Memo. Middle East Monitor