Thursday, 8 January 2009

Gaza on our minds

Anna has something percolating on this in more depth, so until then, stealing an idea Carol left in our comments, here's a round-up of what I've been able to find in the progressive Kiwi blogworld, with an emphasis on posts from women:
For those interested in connecting with others about this, Indymedia has a lot of news about events (like this Saturday's protest in Auckland) and groups around Aotearoa, and beyond.

And here's a link to The F Word's round-up of international feminist blogging about Gaza, Israel, Palestine and war. Hat tipped to Carol. I was particularly struck by this quote in the post:
We demand that war no longer be an option, nor violence a strategy, nor killing an alternative. The society we want is one in which every individual can lead a life of security - personal, economic, and social.

It is clear that the highest price is paid by women and others from the periphery - geographic, economic, ethnic, social, and cultural - who now, as always, are excluded from the public eye and dominant discourse.

The time for women is now. We demand that words and actions be conducted in another language.

Like many others I feel utter despair and a complete lack of ability to do anything that would make even a smidgen of difference. I hate feeling powerless. And if I hate it, here on the other side of the world where the sun is shining and no bombs are falling and my son is not in danger of being killed because of an argument between powerful people with guns, then I can't imagine how bad it must feel to be there.

The horror of a bombing of a school, the high death toll of civillians (be they women, children, or men), it seems insane from here. As with so many other things, I find myself unable to understand the mindset that says the best way to stop violence is with more violence.

I have a friend travelling with her partner and young baby in Israel at the moment. I hope they are safe.


Carol said...

Thanks for this and the great load of useful and informative links, Julie.

Mostly I agree with the quote accessed via F-word. At least I think that women, children and the relatively powerless are the main victims of the violence and wars. I also agree we need "another language" to deal with intense and controversial disputes and diffences.

But I don't know how gendered such a language is. For instance, many women promote the violence on all sides. This is evident from comments by the Livni, the woman Israeli defense minister and the female Israeli military commander I see talking regularly on Al Jazeera (on Triangle TV in the mornings), the Israseli tennis player at the ASB tournament in Auckland (who is also an enthusiastic soldier in the Israeli military as shown in the link Julie provides), and some female supporters of Hamas violent resistance.

However, there may be a statistical tendency for women to seek dialogue over physical conflict - not totally sure on this though.

Brett Dale said...

Why would any feminist think about supporting Hamas and protesting Irasel. Interms of woman's rights I would take America and Israel over Hamas anyday. Perhaps any female joining in on the protests need to talk to the Palestinian's marching with them, to see what they think a woman's place should be.

The whole protests are a sham.

If Locke and Minto and groups such as Peace Action New Zealand are really for peace, and that is their only goal, how come they just shut up and say nothing when Hamas fires rockets towards Israel or someone straps a bomb to themselves and blows up a Jewish kindergarten??

How come they also organize protests where people burn the flag of Israel or American?

Can you imagine the outcry from the green party if a bunch of Americans started burning the Iran Flag in protests in downtown Auckland to protest what the Iranian government does to its people, and what it wants to do to the West.

How come there is no comment on how Hamas thinks Israel doesn’t have the right to exist?

How come these peace protesters never protest if a capitalist country is the victim of Terrorism?

Why did Locke snigger and make excuses for 9/11, why wasnt he outraged at this horrific event?

Two days after 9/11why did a so called peace group in Christchurch, tear down a memorial and replace it with banners saying “This is all America’s fault” and why would this peace group have posters in their town office that says “the Holocaust was a Jewish lie” This is the same peace group that has in the past had Locke as a key speaker.

But back to Hamas, the left may say, well Hamas has only manged to kill a few people, but of course they know if they had the capability they would wipe Israel off the map, but what does Locke and Minto say about that, well they just SHUT UP, while telling others to shut up.

What happened this week in New Zealand was repulsive, to protest a young 17 year old girl, when she is away from home is a form of child abuse, and there is nothing courageous about it.

Minto and Locke are not about peace, if they were genuine peace protesters, then any form of violence from any Government or group would met with a protest, they are really anti western and anti capitalist protesters. (just take a look at the New Zealand communist party banners at their protests) To use a so called peace march to push their own political point of view is despicable.

I’m not sure what to call these guys, they are of course hypocrites and extremely racist, and the hatred that comes from Locke’s mouth is downright scary, thankfully they also seem to be obsolete, only managing to get a handful of protesters to come along to their protest.

I guess that is what you get from a bunch of people who want to invite terrorists to live in New Zealand.

IMHO they are tied for the worst New Zealanders of the year.

Hugh said...

I've got to say I'm feeling pretty vindicated in my scepticism towards Ms Lipni when she was being lauded as being able to break the male stranglehold on Israeli politics and bring peace in this journal a little while ago.

McFlock said...

Jeez, Brett. Wow.

Keith Locke sniggered about 9/11?


I mean, I hope that was a load off, you know.

I guess I should offer congrats on the Israeli kill ratio.