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This is how to help Gaza

December 30th, 2008 · 7 Comments · Uncategorized

360 have died. 1400 are injured.

A ship carrying medical aid to Gaza has been attacked by the Israeli Navy. It was sailing from Cyprus, and was badly damaged – it had to make an emergency docking in Lebanon.

British doctor David Halpin told the BBC he thought he was going to die. As well as doctors, the ship was carrying a former US congresswoman and an MP from Cyprus.

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There is so much to say about this. First, Israel is in breach of the laws of war – the Geneva Conventions, on two counts. 1 – it deliberately targeted civilians. And 2 – it physically blocked humanitarian aid entering a war zone.

But that is for another discussion. I just want to say one thing. I salute the brave men and women on board this ship. And as I mentioned yesterday – it is Westerners putting their lives at risk to help the Gazans. Every single person on board is non-Arab, apart from three Arab journalists, and a half-Arab journalist and a Germany-based Arab journalist.

Where are the Arabs? They are marching and burning flags and shouting, and doing other productive things.

On board this ship are:

(UK) Denis Healey, Captain
Captain of the Dignity, Denis has been involved with boats for 45 years, beginning with small fishing boats in Portsmouth. He learned to sail while atschool and has been part of the sea ever since. He’s a certified yachtmaster and has also worked on heavy marine equipment from yachts to large dredgers. This is his fourth trip to Gaza.

(Greece) Giorgios Klontzas, Relief Captain
Cpt. Klontzas is an experienced sailor and human rights activist. This will be his fourth trip to Gaza.

(Greece) Nikolas Bolos, First Mate
Nikolas is a chemical engineer and human rights activist. He has served as a crewmember on several Free Gaza voyages, including the first one in August.

(Jordan) Othman Abu Falah
Othman is a senior producer with Al-Jazeera Television. He will remain in Gaza to report on the ongoing military onslaught.

(Australia) Renee Bowyer
Renee is a schoolteacher and human rights activist. She will remain in Gaza to do human rights monitoring and reporting.

(Ireland) Caoimhe Butterly
Caoimhe is a reknowned human rights activist and Gaza Coordinator for the Free Gaza Movement. She will be remaining in Gaza to do human rights monitoring, assist with relief efforts, and work on project development with Free Gaza.

(Cyprus) Ekaterini Christodulou
Ekaterini is a well-known and respected freelance journalist in Cyprus. She is traveling to Gaza to report on the conflict.

(Sudan) Sami El-Haj
Sami is a former detainee at Guantanamo Bay, and head of the human rights section at Al-Jazeera Television. He will remain in Gaza to report on the ongoing military onslaught.

(UK) Dr. David Halpin
Dr. Halpin is an experienced orthopaedic surgeon, medical professor, and ship’s captain. He has organized humanitarian relief efforts in Gaza on several occasions with the Dove and Dolphin. He is traveling to Gaza to volunteer in hospitals and clinics.

(Germany) Dr. Mohamed Issa
Dr. Issa is a pediatric surgeon from Germany. He is traveling to Gaza to volunteer in hospitals and clinics.

(UK/Tunisia) Fathi Jaouadi
Fathi is a television producer and human rights activist. He will remain in Gaza to do human rights monitoring and reporting.

(USA) Cynthia McKinney
Cynthia is a former U.S. Congresswoman from Georgia, and the 2008 Green Party presidential candidate. She is traveling to Gaza to assess the ongoing conflict. 

(Cyprus) Martha Paisi
Martha is a senior research fellow and experienced human rights activist. She is traveling to Gaza to do human rights work and to assist with humanitarian relief efforts. 

(UK) Karl Penhaul
Karl Penhaul is a video correspondent for CNN, based out of Bogotá, Colombia. Appointed to this position in February 2004, he covers breaking news around the world utilizing CNN’s new laptop-based ‘Digital Newsgathering’ system. He is traveling to Gaza to report on the ongoing conflict.

(Iraq) Thaer Shaker
Thaer is a cameraman with Al-Jazeera television. He will remain in Gaza to report on the ongoing military onslaught.

(Cyprus) Dr. Elena Theoharous, MP
Dr. Theoharous is a surgeon and a Member of the Cypriot Parliament. She is traveling to Gaza to assess the ongoing conflict, assist with humanitarian relief efforts, and volunteer in hospitals.

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7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 pamela // Dec 31, 2008 at 4.57 pm

    I,ve been scouring the news papers looking for the calls of anger at what happened to the free Gaza boat , the Dignity (what a fitting name , sadly not much dignity around Arab countries these days )but hardly anyone bothers to report it , these people put their lives at risk to help Gaza, they had surgeons who wanted to volunteer their services free , where is the outcry from the Americans and British goverments whose citizens were threatened ?
    Obviously the Israelis are allowed to do as they please , above the law and humanity because no one wants to be accussed of siding with “terrorists”
    Anyway the emporor(s) is (are)well and truly naked, and we all know who i mean !!!btw I wish it was Syria who had a border with Gaza!!!

  • 2 siam165 // Dec 31, 2008 at 8.31 pm

    In Jerusalem
    (A poem of Firasah Love and call to ALL the righteous of the world, on behalf of ALL my brothers and sisters now dispossessed, dying, and suffering in Palestine; and on behalf of the memory and honor of the great heroic writer and academic who spent his life struggling for the Palestinian cause – Edward Said, Nov 1, 1935 – Sept 25, 2003)

    1.
    i will die in Jerusalem on a day,
    neither cold nor hot,
    a day told of, long, long ago,
    before the Ark of Noah, Alaihi-Salam,
    was built to float, and rest upon the top of Mount Judi
    the place of my birth is also the place of my death,
    the origin is always in the end; ask Jesus, Alaihi-Salam,
    or our Holy Prophet Muhammad, Sall’Allahu Alaihi was Salam,
    their lives can tell you more of this than i,
    but our ending is always in our beginning,
    and our beginning is always in our end;
    all things begin and all things must end – in Jerusalem.
    i will die in the streets of Jerusalem,
    on a day of joy amidst weeping,
    wailing, and great lamentation,
    A MANIFESTATION of
    an aftermath to mad, but loving,
    and yet, joyous, poetical prophesying,
    though IAM no Prophet Alaihi-Salam, just another poet,
    walking in the footsteps of the Prophets Alaihi-Salam,
    who all went completely mad on behalf of the establishment
    of righteousness in the midst of unrighteousness, and
    justice in the midst of injustice;
    you and my brothers will see –
    because this earth and all flesh shall see it together,
    yet, IAM but ONE of TWO,
    that shall dance their MAD dance in the streets of
    Jerusalem together,
    on behalf of the
    same ONENESS,
    the ONENESS
    of their brothers’ suffering,
    the ONENESS of their brothers’ needs –
    all my brothers in the great land of Palestine,
    all my brothers and sisters who are dying in the great land of Palestine,
    all my brothers who need me and you in the great land of Palestine,
    all my brothers and sisters waiting on you and me, in the great land of Palestine;
    my brothers near the Gaza Strip,
    my brothers in Shiloh, Suba, Kakun, Jafa, and Akka,
    my brothers who had thirty-two of their houses destroyed by bulldozers in the Rafa Refugee camp,
    my brothers who are forced to walk a thin green line that leads to extermination, nullification, and more death,
    all my brothers struggling to survive all over the Western Bank,
    all my brothers in Jericho and Bethlehem,
    all my brothers incarcerated in ghettos, jails, and prisons,
    all my brothers who are being tortured daily,
    my brothers who are being missiled in their sleep,
    my brothers who are being bombed in their awake,
    my brothers who are being machine-gunned down,
    my brothers who are being run out of town,
    all my brothers toward whom the Israelis act demon possessed – and do not care for or caress,
    all my brothers who one day have a place to live – and the next day are dispossessed,
    all my brothers who have lost their wives and their children,
    all my brothers who have lost their arms and their legs,
    my brothers who have been blinded,
    my brothers who have been castrated,
    my brothers who have been beheaded,
    my brothers who are flame torched and maimed,
    all my brothers who have been denied and disclaimed,
    all my brothers who have lost their homes and their beds,
    all my brothers who are beaten, shot in the back – in the head, and often left alone for dead,
    all my brothers who are being made to fear and quake – all because of an unjust Israeli State.
    II.
    my wondrous and marvelous friend –
    Reality Call from NEW Berlin writes to me and reveals,
    that you have been Gangrened of Jewish Settlements –
    the body of your nucleus cut off and discarded forever,
    entire families with the young, elderly, and invalid,
    literally burned and buried alive beneath the weight of overturned rubble
    in brick and mortar – crying, hurting, needing, bleeding, dying,
    an atrocity multiplied to the trillionth monstrosity,
    a scientific equation of devastation that even Albert Einstein
    or Dr. Frankenstein could not, and would not speculate to calculate,
    an existential hypothesis of Salvador Dalied proportional distortion,
    of politicalized exterminational surrealism in 3-D’d amplification application,
    of alien domination, an abomination of horrified occupation,
    where hundreds of your villages have been knocked completely off the face of the earth,
    to be replaced by a distorted Jewish face and race of immanent domain and foul disgrace,
    a policy of imperialistic expansion of manifest destiny without any right
    of justice or equality for Your People’s Spirit, wrapped in sacred fragility of flesh, bone, and blood,
    your dwellings taken away in a single day or blown away in a solitary night of catastrophic fright –
    cities like Nahlal arising in the place Mahlul,
    Kibbutz Gvat arising in the place Jibta,
    Kibbutz Sarid arising in the place of Huneifis,
    and Kefar Yehushu’a arising in the place of Tal al-Shuman

    CITIES AND AREAS WHERE CHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL WARFARE IS
    IMPLIED,
    SUPPLIED,
    APPLIED,
    AND CAN NOT BE DENIED – LIKE,
    nerve gas used on demonstrators in Gaza,
    and water poisoning of those at the siege of Acre.
    III.
    but it was you my brothers, who laid foundation, and built and beautified the original land;
    you are the heart and soul of the land and without you,
    the great land of Palestine has no heart and has no soul;
    because you are the salt of this land and you are it’s gold.

    Shamir, my beloved Ustad, teaches me,
    that in your veins run the blood of ancient Aegean warriors,
    and that it was you who fought bravely on the plains of Karameh,
    that you are the poetry of Mahmud Darwish, the wisdom of Edward Said,
    and my Ustad says, there would be no Bible if there were no you,
    no Star of Ghassul, or Castles of Monfort, and Belvoir too,
    no Mount Carmel Monastery, no churches of the Holy Sepulchre and Nativity,
    no temples of Jerusalem and Mount Gerizim by necessity,
    no harbors of Ceasarea Philippi, no Mosques of Haram As-Sharif,
    and no Judas to become the biblical thief,
    and no disciple of Jesus, Alaihi ‘Salam, to wash his feet.
    you are the perfection of Palestine’s wondrous Olive Oil,
    the first disciples who helped Jesus, Alaihi ‘Salam, deliver his sermon on the Mount,
    the great warriors, who defeated Napoleon Bonaparte,
    and without you, the palaces of Jericho and Samaria today would not be art.
    yes, it was you my brothers who built and beautified the land,
    and now the world must come to help you make and take a stand,
    an Intifada call, an Intifada wall of resistance, a greater Intifada resurrection,
    of persistence – merciful, peaceful, and sincere assistance on behalf of every Palestinian woman,
    boy, girl, and man – and we can, if we will but recognize as an entire WORLD view,
    what is right, what is tight, what is just, and what is true,
    but you can forget about the support of most evangelical Christians,
    because they act as though they’ve never heard of you, let alone – loving you?!
    IV.
    mine is an end time, apocalyptic call – to brothers who love righteousness ALL –
    over Palestine, Africa, and Holy Mecca – in Medina, London, and France – in Belgium, in India, Canada,
    and in the Americas North and South;
    my Rastafarian brothers who love righteousness in The West Indies,
    my brothers who love righteousness in Saint Martin, Saint Croix, and Martinique,
    my brothers who love righteousness in Barbados and Spain,
    my brothers who love righteousness in Scotland, Great Britain, and the South of Wales,
    all my brothers who love righteousness in the North – in Russia, Poland, and Afghanistan,
    all my brothers who love righteousness in Iran, Syria, Libya, Egypt, Turkey, and Karbala,
    all brothers who love righteousness in Sultan Bahu’s Pakistan,
    all my brothers who love righteousness in Saint Jilan’s once, emerald City of Baghdad,
    my brothers who love righteousness throughout the entire Sudan,
    my brothers who love righteousness in The South – called Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam,
    my brothers who love righteousness in communist China and Japan,
    my brothers who love righteousness in Saint Touba’s Holy land,
    all my brothers who love righteousness in The Gambia and in Senegal,
    all my brothers who love righteousness in Nigeria, and Shaka Zulu’s Swaziland,
    all my brothers who love righteousness in Switzerland and in the Mountains of Tibet,
    all my brothers who love righteousness here, throughout the rest of the EARTH, and
    THIS ENTIRE MULTIVERSE!
    my brothers throughout the world, who hate injustice and unrighteousness in the great land of Palestine,
    will all flank my perimeters,
    whose base is wide,
    whose height is infinite,
    whose CapStone is –
    MOST RIGHT GLORY-JUST!
    but it will be too late,
    because no appointment or date,
    had been made or set,
    to say good-byes before i left.
    the station and estate will have changed by then,
    and i will be flying further east,
    apart from them, never, ever to return…
    but i was there when they most needed me,
    wrapped in purple, green, and gold mantles, of faith, and sincerity,
    and yet i dreamed of no foreboding Martyrdom,
    and i did not beat the drums of Lebanon,
    or drink water at Aynou Rahmati’s Well of Mercy,
    where Simba lives, and Mammadou gives, a children’s song unselfishly,
    where the Angel’s visit i did receive, in wonder, awe, and sanctity,
    or Saint Jilan adopting me as his beloved son out of graciousness and courtesy,
    or Saint Touba’s self made shoes, i did with haste and not misuse –
    hold, lick, and taste, in the Majestic House of Darr-ul-Quddus,
    or at Serigne Saliou’s feet, a gift to me – i did advance – the miraculous mystic alchemedic sub-stance,
    or smiled at, laughed with, and Ziarra’ed – by Serigne Afia when he called me M’Backe
    and made me benediction of Shaikh – i did but tremble, and should not break, or take –
    except to now dance, and romance, in exalted tranced ecstasy,
    on behalf of my brothers being set completely free,
    to return and rebuild their homes in Palestine finally,
    without bulldozers or armored tanks,
    or gun shots fired or heard ever again on the Western Bank.
    V.
    Yes, i will die in Jerusalem city,
    not unbecoming, but a becoming – willingly;
    on a street paved in pure gold,
    among the young, the destitute, and the old,
    who still have passion for ALLAH’s COME passion;
    who have been mercified by The Mercifier of ALL,
    i will die in the City of Jerusalem,
    pouring – THROWING! buckets of my brother’s blood, sweat, and tears,
    upon The Wailing Wall, standing and smiling in front of The Dome of The Rock,
    for the whole world will recognize IAM the ticking clock,
    with Nuclear Light Rays passing through and from me,
    bursting and spreading forth everywhere endlessly,
    leaving my image indelibly etched like a photo negative,
    my life image positively reversed,
    anthologized for all time,
    on the window pains of my Palestinian brother’s street vending shops,
    that had been bombed, toppled over, disarranged, and flattened to the ground,
    as well as on the widows of houses in Ramalah, Samaria, Qumran, Janin,
    and elsewhere, like, in the thought and hearts of men forever,
    throughout the Nations, and on TeleVision Stations,
    like CNN, NBC, ABC, and, Al-Jazeera,
    who witnessed by satellite coverage, my flash, and my dash,
    infinitely long, and secured by the promise of Him
    who made all mankind to be in love and free,
    without hate, without distasteful bitterness, of corrupted bile,
    of a River Nile, rapidly running through the veins of diseased hearts,
    it’s flowing waters turned red with the blood of death, hypocrisy, and destruction,
    because they would not conform, or reform,
    to the commands of the Divine decree – to see that all men be made free
    VI.
    The Poet’s Holy Lamenting Cry!
    a litany of Holiness in demise of the unjust, the evil, and the unwise,
    a litany of Holiness in song and deliverance for those who cannot sing,
    a litany of Holiness in prayer only the wretched of the earth can know and bring
    a litany of Holiness against all that is unHoliness i bleed,
    a litany of Holiness for the Holy of Holiness that all mankind deeply doth need,
    a litany of Holiness the poet shouts to the Holy mountains, the Holy heavens, the Holy earth, and its Holy seas,
    a litany of Holiness resounding, abounding, astounding echo penetrating all Holy deaf ears,
    a litany of Holiness in grief to waves of spectromatic unbelief on behalf of a billion Holy weeping tears,
    a litany of Holiness for the praise of Holiness to come for a thousand Holy of Holy years
    Holy! Holy! Holy! against all that is unHoly!
    Holy! Holy! Holy! against the purity that is impurity and unHoly!
    Holy! Holy! Holy! against the denial of the Holy!
    Holy! Holy! Holy! for the yearning of the Holy!
    Holy! Holy! Holy! for the return of the Holy!
    Holy! Holy! Holy! for those who live to make unHoly clean and Holy!
    Holy! Holy! Holy! for those who die to bring presence of the Holy!
    Holy! Holy! Holy! for the unafraid to declare and become the just and the Holy!
    Holy! Holy! Holy! for all that is perfect and righteously everlastingly Holy!
    Holy! Holy! Holy! for to be all Men, Jinn, and Angels more Holy of – THE HOLY!
    HOLY! HOLY! HOLY!
    LORD GOD ALMIGHTY!
    THE EARTH IS FULL OF HOLY-NESS – IN HOLY MOST GLORY-US!
    VII.
    Here in the Jerusalem, the City of Peace, i die;
    i die when the Sun is once again in Sagittarius,
    and the Moon is eclipsed in the sign of Pisces,
    while finding release, and relief, of affectatious reflections,
    in the eyes of my brothers souls,
    as theirs meet mine for comfort and consolation,
    thousands of them, now, waiting for relief, across the seas,
    to give me their Salams, and other greetings of Peace.
    Yes, i will gladly die in the City of Jerusalem,
    and because of King Solomon’s, Alaihi-Salam, rewarding Song of Songs,
    IAM the song of luminous martyred choirs singing on the Western Bank,
    a Holy, Sweet Honey In The Rock, Acapella of,
    God is not through with me yet!
    because all musical instruments have been destroyed and set on fire there,
    schools blown apart and pulverized into an
    aggravated and intensified Cloud of Unknowing there,
    and all school children’s books have been burned to a crisp there,
    on heaps, too steep to climb, to put out the flames there,
    and save them while they were still clasped tight in
    the little children’s hands there,
    before they cried, and died in pain there,
    children and adult teachers who had been raped there,
    and murdered on their land a million times by the millions there,
    where a zillion tears have been shed there,
    under a cloudy sky near Megiddo, or the city of Herodium, or Bethel, or Hebron,
    when a nightmare of hell broke loose upon my brothers,
    when i died in the Holy City of Jerusalem,
    my face turned toward,
    the Resplendent Light!
    SIAM

    An excerpt taken from Rain of Grace, New & Selected Poems by SIAM
    http://www.rainofgrace.com

  • 3 downsteamJim // Dec 31, 2008 at 10.34 pm

    Why not travel the seas to Somalia and get a good muslim welcome. The bunch should ransom for at least $.50.

  • 4 pamela // Jan 1, 2009 at 5.24 pm

    Jim your attempt at “humour “is crass, anyway I think the Somali pirates would be more merciful than your Israeli navy, they tried and failed to sink another unarmed vessel in 1967 called the USS Liberty , killing 35 American sailors , so keep your comments to yourself

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