today I saw a speaker during my econ class talk about her experience in the West Bank and some of the current events happening with Israel and Palestine that aren't brought up much in this country. how is it that I've been going to Hebrew school since third grade, studied to become a Bat Mitzvah for over a year, taught at Hebrew school for four years, went to Midrasha for four years, a whole year of which was devoted to studying Israel, and didn't know about half the things she taught us? it's not fair. no one can tell me that I was ignorant to all those things because I didn't put myself out there. I specifically took the time to learn about the Israel Palestine conflict, and thought I was hearing a rational, unbiased report of it. I was always told that when Israel declared independence in 1948 that the five surrounding Arab nations declared war on them because they were against a Jewish state. one of the main reasons they were against a Jewish state that was not made clear to me, was that in order to create a Jewish majority in that area, they kicked out hundreds of thousands of the Palestinians that had already been living there. this continued to happen not until 1967, but now. it is still happening now. Israel, according to international laws, is illegally occupying Palestine territory. the Israeli government is encouraging this by actually paying people to live on those settlements. they are also building a wall around the West Bank that is actually cutting into Palestinian territory. along with all the check points that are set up and the segregated roads, it is almost impossible for Palestinians to live a normal daily life. they can't go to universities or hold down a steady job because to going even fifteen miles could take anywhere from two to twelve hours. countless people have died because they hold ambulances and couldn't get to the hospital on time. and where does the Israeli government get the money to fund all these settlements checkpoints? from us, the United States of America. we give over 10 million dollars a day in foreign aid to Israel, more than any other country except for Iraq. yes, we fund Israel, a developed metropolitan state, more than any developing "third world" nation. we've been funding them since Israel became a state, breaking our own laws knowing that this money was being used for illegal occupation and other activities, knowing that to form the state of Israel, just as much terrorism was used by Israelis as Palestinians. we pay for their illegal settlements, we pay for their soldiers' guns. every time the United Nations tries to do something about Israel's illegal activity, the US uses their veto to stop them. this is how we've used our UN veto more times than any of the other five big countries have used theirs combined. what makes even more angry though, is finding out that these issues are discussed all the time in Israeli and Arab news, as well as European news. forget Fox, not one major news source in the US will talk about the issue from a Palestinian point of view. in August 2004, an article in the International Newsweek called "Plight of the Palestinians" was cut all together from the American Newsweek. fuck, our government isn't just hiding robots and aliens this time, they are trying to hide the fact that we are funding one of the biggest problems in the world today, and have been for over fifty years. the woman who spoke is part of an organization in the West Bank that supports non-violent Palestinian resistance. I'm so happy that I got to hear her, because this information is just so incredibly relevant. we are all a part of this, and we need this knowledge so we can decided what our part will be.
tell her what she wants to know, she'll find out anyway