Tag Archives: Israel

Pay it Forward


Whenever some one asks for help , or I sense it myself I do it with whatever means I have. I don’t expect anything in return. I seek my reward with God.

My son S had gone to a mosque for donating clothes and things for the needy. It was nearer Zuhr Prayer (noon prayer), so he decided to wait, say his prayer and then leave. A man came and asked him about the timings. The prayer time was at 1.45 pm. In between waiting for the Azan (the muezzin call to prayer) they got talking. 

He was a Palestinian refugee who is residing here.  He was working in Kuwait and used to send money to his wife and children in Palestine. After the war breakout, he shifted to U.S. He lost his papers somehow and to this day he is a refuge. He tried to go back but the land is under Israeli rule. They are not allowing him. He was telling my son he is a man without a country. Here he is not accepted as a citizen and he can’t go back. He hasn’t seen his family for the past fifteen years.

He supports himself by selling blankets (he stands at a corner) in downtown Houston. He gets them from a shopkeeper, sells them, and then pay the shopkeeper. A few days back a woman with two kids came. She was homeless and needed the blankets for her kids, since the nights are getting cooler. She didn’t have the money to pay him. She told him that she had some vouchers if he could accept them in place of money. He accepted the vouchers and gave the woman two blankets.

Later on when he checked the vouchers they were expired. Now he doesn’t know how he is going to pay back the shopkeeper? The blankets were 100 dollars each. He makes only 6-10 dollars profit on them which he spends on food and his upkeep.

My son gave him whatever was in his pockets. I felt so bad after hearing the story.

Today when I was reciting the Quran in the morning, I came to read these Ayats.

Below are Ayats 6, 7 and 9 from the Quran, 29th Surah Al Ankabut
Translation by Yusuf Ali

And if any strive (with might and main), they do so for their own souls: for Allah is free of all needs from all creation.

This means who strive to do good deeds they do it for their own benefits .(Sheen)

Translation by Yusuf Ali

Those who believe and work righteous deeds,- from them shall We blot out all evil (that may be) in them, and We shall reward them according to the best of their deeds.
Translation by Yusuf Ali

And those who believe and work righteous deeds,- them shall We admit to the company of the Righteous.


Pay It Forward

Tell us about a time when you responded to an act of kindness with one of your own.



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