Monday, March 21, 2011

Ask an IDF. Part1

A week ago I came across an article posted on Maan. The title was very interesting; it was called “How to friend an Israeli soldier.” After reading most of the article, I couldn't help but visit the website.

The Website Link: Friend a Soldier

The website in general looked like a dating site, with pictures of young men and women in uniforms, with big smiles, and of course big guns (to be fair, not all of them have big guns). It is pretty much what you see in the picture below, if you didn't already click on the website.

After browsing for a while and reading the short biographies of the 11 soldiers listed on the website, I left the website. Afterwards, I sent it to my coworker, who used a fake email to send them a question. 24 hours later, she got a nice email back, obviously written by a PR expert. 

Sama Question: 
"Hi, How did your past experience in Lebanon and Gaza helped you when studying International relations?

Soldier Shlomie Answer: 

"Dear Sama,
Thanks for your question.

I would have to say that participating in the war and in Gaza had definitely influenced me to study international relations. I wanted to learn more about decision making and the way that our political leaders think and act. Of course, I also wanted to know the reasons why they act in such way. My experiences in Lebanon and Gaza have definitely caused me to think much deeper about Israel and our neighbors in the region. I believe that my knowledge and what I’ve been through have definitely helped me understand International Relations a lot more. Therefore, I must say that I think I have an advantage over other students who did not experience the same things.

Thanks again for contacting us! If you have any other questions please feel free to send us another e-mail!


The next day, I sent them my own question:
"How you saw Palestinian? in other words, What you think of Palestinian?

I got the following as an answer from Yagil:

"Hey Ahmad, 
I think Palestinians as a people are generally good at heart and have good intentions just like anyone else. However I also think they are in some ways a lost people who need better leadership and better guidance to receive what they want, which is obviously an independent state alongside Israel. Most Palestinians I believe are fed up with the current situation and I think if they really want to achieve what they want, it can't be through violence or resistance. It is unfortunate to see terrorist organizations like Hamas claim they know what's good for the Palestinians and make ignorant claims like calling for the destruction of Israel, which is not the step in the right direction and does not represent the beliefs of the majority. I believe what will shape the future for the Palestinians is taking responsibility and making educated decisions that will benefit them for the near future. Of course Israel has to play a main part in this and any decision between the two needs to be a joint decision."

Earlier today, I sent them 3 more questions. I will post the questions and the answers as soon as I get them. 

Although I gave them a chance, they don't deserve to explain their position on what the IDF is doing or has done to the Palestinian people, either in the West Bank or in the Gaza strip. Yet I strongly believe that no matter how hard they try to make their soldiers look better, they will always be the evil monsters in the green uniform, at least for the kid inside me! 

Good Night and Good Luck,

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Women and Revolutions

When I start writing this, I wanted to write about Women rights and the revolutions in the Arab world, and how some people addressing such issue in a ridicules way such as demanding the revolutionaries not to forget adding "Equal right to women" on their demands list. yet over the last 4 days and since March 15, when Palestinian's activist hit the streets of Ramallah, Nablus, Hebron, and Of course Gaza. Although I could only join after I finish my working hours, I managed to see the few young women and men, surrounded with a relatively big number of action Hijacker.

In March 15 I spent the whole evening standing either with my friends, or setting with the protesters chanting, or singing, one thing I couldn't help but noticing, those young women (students mainly) who been standing there, for all day long, chanting, singing and defending their action from the Hijacking attempt.

Arab women played a major role in Egypt revolution, "you would notice, if you followed through out twitter" they helped in organizing,  recruiting, end in spreading the word regrading the major marches. For more info, you can check AlJazeera English report on this matter.

I personally, don't think those women will go back to the "kitchen", specially after tasting the freedom of the street, they will not let men forgetting about them, ever again. (Time to Run men!)  

When women, or men, call the revolutionaries of Egypt, Yemen or Tunis not to forget about women right, is simply a good call, with a very bad timing. Why? Well, first of all, it's a revolution, NOT a social movement. second, when you are facing all those thugs and security forces and their attacks one after another. Do you really have time to think about women rights, specially when you are fighting side by side with a woman. "She is fine!" you will think to yourself "If it crossed your mind in the first place".

In the end, I would love if the world realized what the Arab women are capable of, specially in the after revolution world.

Salute to all of those women who are much braver than me and many other men. in Ramallah, Tunis, Egypt, Gaza, Libya, Yemen and Bahrain.

Good night and Good luck

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Spilled Blood in Itimar

Today the distinguishing breaking news music, was my alarm, I open my eyes, to hear the announcer, "five settlers were killed during the night" at this moment I had the usual smile, Palestinian usually have when they hear such news, yet this smile were gone when the announcer continued, "the five belong to the same family, the parents and their 3 children.". well, the smile is gone.

I know, many people would say this is terrible how can you smile when you hear about people death, well, live in Palestine for a year, then think we talk.

anyway, I left home to the super market, as I walked through the market, I couldn't help not hearing the people talking about it.
I heard a lot of theories, I heard a lot of opinions regarding it, and this is what I formed in my mind, in Points, why I think we(Palestinian) have nothing to do with it. 

1- The Attacker/s used knifes, which is something unusual for a Palestinian militant activist to use, as they usually use machine gun, in worse cases pistols.
2- The use of knife in any crime usually mean one of 2,
A. the killer has a personal relation with the victims, as stabbing consider an emotional crime.
B. The killer use it out of necessity such as if he had no other weapons, or his original weapons got jammed, which is impossible, no one will send a combatant to raid a settlement without a proper weapon, knife is not Proper.
3- The Attack was directed to a certain house, usually when Palestinian attack they don't stop at one place, the keep on going to the next house then the other until they get killed by either the Army or a settlement guard, only 3 recorded attacks that I know about where the Attackers manage to successfully retreat to their bases, non was against civilians. 
4- The sensors were triggered, yet the settlement guard, didn't act, they didn't scan the area as they usually do, since when they Ignored such things.
5- The latest report I heard, was about 2 attackers who entered the settlement, and wondered around for 2 hours before they choose the house to attack. they either very lucky, or someone from inside helped. (If you are not aware about the settlement, they are full of cameras and sensors, that can capture a fly)
6- Israel as a government and as settlers benefited  from this attack more than any other Palestinian faction, I don't think Palestinian factions are that stupid to give them such gift.
7- Finally, No Palestinian faction claimed responsibility for it.

So, this is what I think, this is not based on political, or crime analysis. It is just a personal opinion from someone who strongly hope, it wasn't his people who did such a crime on political bases.

May their souls rest in Peace, Yet this doesn't change the fact that settlements is an unwanted entities in the west bank.