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'I am Palestine' - Resistance Movement Against Israel Grows, Considers Options
Tim King Salem-News.com
The time is here for the movement to consider what it really has to do.
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(SALEM, Ore.) - There is a new message in the fight to free Palestine from over sixty years of oppression and occupation. The message is strength and the format is direct action and increased resistance.
Ken O'Keefe in Seattle
The truth is that many years of peaceful protests, Hamas' halt of suicide bombings and their renouncement of the acts, and admitting they were wrong for ever having done so, has absolutely not achieved anything to nullify the Israeli need to steal more land, hurt more protesters.
Ken O'Keefe is known as a Palestinian resistance fighter throughout most of the world. He and his fellow crewmen aboard the Turkish ship Mavi Marmara, were attacked last May on the high seas by Israeli commandos.
Because they were going to attempt to break the siege of Gaza, to deliver humanitarian aid relief.
The Gaza Strip is one of the few areas of Palestine left today. It is completely surrounded by Israel, and the people of Gaza are not afforded their basic human rights as demanded and set forth by the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights.
There are many aspects of this charter that are violated by Israel on a daily basis.
Aspects of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to consider
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. (Israel maintains separate roads and areas for Jews and non-Jews; there are very few Palestinians in civil service and no people of Arab descent serve in the Israeli Defence Forces)
All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination. (Israel charges Palestinian children as young as 6 with crimes; many claim they are sexually and physically abused in Israeli custody)
Everyone has the right to an effective remedy by the competent national tribunals for acts violating the fundamental rights granted him by the constitution or by law. (The people of Gaza were ruthlessly slaughtered during Israel's 'Operation Cast Lead' two winters ago. The Goldstone Report from the United Nations found Israel to be suspect in war crime violations, the U.S. and Canada regularly use special UN veto privilege to skirt these rules)
(1) Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state. (The entire Gaza Strip has become little more than an open air prison, or concentration camp)
(2) Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country. (Residents are not allowed to leave or return to Gaza).
This is more than a snapshot of the UN Declaration, but there is more to it. 
There is also a substantial fact that is seldom if ever, mentioned. Israel and western media constantly discuss the "Hamas rocket attacks" on Israel. These highly touted acts of hostility have been going on since 2001; most are launched by people outside of Hamas which Hamas can not adequately control. One would think that these rocket attacks had cost Israel heavily over the years. The reported number of Israeli deaths however, is 28. Less than thirty people have died in nine years of rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza.
There are neighborhoods in Los Angeles where gang warfare has claimed 28 lives in nine years' time. Barrios, not nations.
23 years ago Hamas was founded by Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, Abdel Aziz al-Rantissi and Mohammad Taha of the Palestinian wing of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood. This happened at the beginning of the First Intifada, one of the uprisings against Israeli rule in the Palestinian Territories, as Wikipedia explains.
In reality, the word Intifada means literally, "to shake off" and does not necessarily allude to military conflict.
Hamas became well known in Palestine by the mid 90's, for funding and operating schools, health-care clinics, mosques, day-care centers, youth groups and athletic clubs.According to Wikipedia, "An estimated 80-90% of Hamas revenues fund health, social welfare, religious, cultural, and educational services."The remaining 10% to 20% is largely dedicated toward the military, and there is a history of tragic suicide bombings that Hamas signed its name to.
However, that ended a long time ago, and it needs to be stated. The first suicide bomb claimed to be the work of Hamas happened in April 1993, but Hamas ended these attacks in 2005 and had completely renounced them by April 2006, more than four years ago.Taking that position, renouncing your own behavior; isn't the easiest thing for a political group often more associated with militant behavior, to do. Some would read it as a strong desire to move forward.
The rockets are typically referred to in inner circles as 'glorified fireworks' though firecrackers may be more appropriate. Israel has the latest high tech U.S. supplied weaponry and guidance systems to kill their neighbors with. These feeble attempts at hostility from Palestine are more of an exercise in frustration and ultimately... futility.
After the Gaza Freedom Flotilla was attacked last May, Hamas made the statement that what the flotilla achieved could not be equaled by a thousand rocket attacks. The Israeli attack on the Flotilla vessels raised world public awareness of the plight of Gaza.
Catalyst for change
The question is, when there is a defined set of rules in place and the governing body ignores its responsibility, who takes charge?
If you asked Ken O'Keefe, he would tell you that the power is in the hands of the people. Relying on governmental intervention in this area is a waste of time because Israel holds the purse strings; plain and simple. Bringing about change without resorting to violence is the goal, but at some point people just get tired, pardon me, of having their asses kicked. They are tired of burying their sons and daughters and parents and grandparents. Murder is not an acceptable act and neither is open hostility.
Israel's biggest problem is that it is a nation built on religious extremism, Zionism; the belief that the land belongs to the Jews "because God said so" is accepted across the board.
This leaves no room for actual or historic land ownership, or fairness or governmental honesty. It leads to the constant building of new colonies known as 'settlements' that steal more land from Palestinian families every day.
So now the time is here for the movement to consider what it really has to do. Non-violence is the answer, but only so far as it doesn't amount to cowardice. The people of Palestine are not going to stop working toward a goal of world fairness and equity and I can tell you that many internationalists share the same thought.
Peace between Israel and Palestine could become very contagious. We just have to remember in the meanwhile that most of the Muslim bashing in the U.S. originates from Zionist sources. It is a big propaganda game but the stakes are too high for the umpires to be asleep.
This video speaks to the point...
Ken O'Keefe speaks Friday, October 8:
Portland State University: 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Smith Memorial Student Union bldg, Cascade Room (236 Smith Union)
 The Universal Declaration of Human Rights - United Nations
 Palestinian rocket attacks on Israel - From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 If HAMAS is a Terrorist Organization, What Does That Make Israel? - Political Perspective by Tim King Salem-News.com
Tim King: Salem-News.com Editor and Writer
Tim King is a former U.S. Marine with twenty years of experience on the west coast as a television news producer, photojournalist, reporter and assignment editor. In addition to his role as a war correspondent, this Los Angeles native serves as Salem-News.com's Executive News Editor. Tim spent the winter of 2006/07 covering the war in Afghanistan, and he was in Iraq over the summer of 2008, reporting from the war while embedded with both the U.S. Army and the Marines.
Tim holds numerous awards for reporting, photography, writing and editing, including the Oregon AP Award for Spot News Photographer of the Year (2004), first place Electronic Media Award in Spot News, Las Vegas, (1998), Oregon AP Cooperation Award (1991); and several others including the 2005 Red Cross Good Neighborhood Award for reporting. Tim has several years of experience in network affiliate news TV stations, having worked as a reporter and photographer at NBC, ABC and FOX stations in Arizona, Nevada and Oregon. Serving the community in very real terms, Salem-News.com is the nation's only truly independent high traffic news Website. As News Editor, Tim among other things, is responsible for publishing the original content of 65 Salem-News.com writers. He reminds viewers that emails are easily missed and urges those trying to reach him, to please send a second email if the first goes unanswered. You can send Tim an email at this address: firstname.lastname@example.org
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