Jan 16, 2012

From de Bouilon to Bwn Gurion

Rushing between talks in Europe leaves little time for any sightseeing.   As we pass by the Royal Palace in Brussles, Belgium and cannot stop as we have to rush to the train station. But in that large square stands an imposing statue of Godfrey de Bouilon,  the first ruler of Jerusalem in the period of the crusaders (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_Square_(Brussels).  What jumped to my mind was Herbert Samuel the first British Zionist high-commissioner of Palestine and David Ben Gurion, the first Prime Minister of Israel.  This was my first visit to Belgium and I was thinking how here like in other countries, there is the contrast between people’s vision and history and official mythologies and monuments.  The people I worked with are common Belgians of all walks of life who have a different take on their history than official national myths.  One said:” look at the palace of justice and how huge it is.  It is intended to make the common Belgian feel guilty and accept the rule of the state.”  Europe is like the US where  the state teaches myths: about Columbus discovering America, about thanksgiving, about 1792, and promotion of freedom and democracy clash with the reality of ethnic cleansing of natives, slavery, Vietnam and Iraq (see Howard Zinn’s book a People’s History of the United States).   Here also there is a people history that clashes with official history. While I should learn the language more so that I can read that people history,  I can hear it from people themselves: the hospitable and generous common people volunteering in the Platform Charleroi Palestine (http://www.pourlapalestine.be/) , www.intal.be, www.association-belgo-palestienne,.org Rete di solidariet√† con la Palestina – Milano, ISM-Udine, and the Nederlands Palestina Komittee (www.palestina-komitee.nl ).  In one week visiting Italy Belgium, and Holland, I already spoke to over 1000 individuals of all background and ages (including three high schools). Israeli propaganda posters for “Visit Israel” have Boycott  Israel stickers. Europeans hope to move beyond the history of support for colonialism and wars towards coexistence and concern for fellow-human beings.  Thus,  Europeans prepares to join either the Global March to Jerusalem March 30th  (www.globalmarchtojerusalem.org) or the Welcome to Palestine Campaign 15 April (see http://bienvenuepalestine.com/ ).

The truth of what has happened and what is happening cannot be hidden by the gate-keepers in official media whether in Europe or occupied Palestine! Any serious student of history knows that crusader leaders including de Bouilon would best be described as a war criminal and that the same can be said for Herbert Samuel and David Ben Gurion.  The ghosts of these folks still cause great pain to so many people.  They were not national or historic leaders except in a negative sense.  The people they claimed to represent did not on the long-run do better because of their actions. On the contrary, suffering only came from their arrogance and brutality.   Christianity and Christians did not benefit in the long-term from the “Christian Crusaders” who committed massacres. Judaism and Jews did not and will not in the long term benefit from the modern-day Crusaders who replaced a cross with a Star of David in their flags.  History marches on and new generations come about and humanity gets mixed in ways that are ironic.  De Bouilon who murdered Jews and Muslims (and some of my Christian ancestors because they were Eastern Christians) would turn in his grave to note how things have changed today.  Muslims and Jews thrive in this country to the chagrin of any remaining De Bouilon supporters.   Similarly in many years from now, BenGurion’s statue may still be in Tel Aviv but the face of the country and its attitude of its transformed citizens will be human and humane.

Videos: 2011 B’Tselem camera Project distilled one year of misery in 3 minutes
And even more checkpoint brutality

Join us also for the Global March to Jerusalem
Alternative Information Center "The demographic battle for Jerusalem"

Professor of Hate: Israeli "scholar" urges ethnic cleansing of Bedouins

Must Read: Ethnic Cleansing of Invented People By Miko Peled January 04, 2012 http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article30156.htm

I saw Sabra hummus for sale at my high school cafeteria and decided to act  by Nadine Darwish
The faces of new Egypt: Muslim cleric in Egypt congratulates Christians in Egyptian Church

A Zionist Rabbi publicly apologizes to our friend Rich Siegel
Rich Siegel was honored at an event I attended
I listened to Rich’s wonderful new CD “The Way to Peace” and I highly recommend it – it is beautiful
(visit http://www.richsiegel.com/)

Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD
A Bedouin in Cyberspace, a Villager at home

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