Monday, December 29, 2008


As`ad (Angry Arab) and Marcy (Body on the Line, writing from Palestine) are covering the Israeli assault on Gaza more than adequately. There is little I can add to what they offer in terms of links, comments and analysis. I'll try to report news from Lebanon, if there is anything worth mentioning.

I really have nothing to add to my post of yesterday. I agree with As`ad's report on Nasrallah's speech: it offered very little in terms of substance. His calls to the Egyptian people to "open the Rafah crossing with their bodies" is, at best, symbolic. Yes he accused the Egyptian government of collusion with Israel, but this is very mild compared to what one reads in the Lebanese press (and to the reality). And his warnings of a possible Israeli war on Lebanon are of course realistic, but here too, this is not groundbreaking. There is a political void between the financial crisis, the transition between two US administrations and the end-of-the-year festivities. Israel may very well use this period to settle a few accounts with Hizbullah. A sort of "everyone is having their little party and is busy elsewhere, so lets grab this opportunity to kill a few Palestinians/Lebanese and their progeny". One wouldn't expect anything less from the great state of Israel. I mean even Obama understood that. And it gives some people in Israel so much pleasure, it would be hearltess to deny them this little treat. Especially during the festive season.

There is now a big demonstration for Gaza in Lebanon, but it is taking place in the Southern Suburbs and will be limited to Hizbullah's public. It is also coinciding with the second day of `Ashura, the Shi`a mourning period during which large meetings (majlis) are organized to remember the martyrdom of the Imam Husayn in 680 AD at Karbala. Those attending will hear a lot about Gaza, but they will also hear plenty about Husayn. Someone I know went there and they'll tell me about it and I'll blog it if it is interesting.

But then again, beyond showing solidarity, what can HA do? What can we or anyone else really do? At the end of the day, after the vigil, the demonstration, the blogging and the discussions, we all sit and contemplate the immensity of our powerlessness. We know, we must know that in spite of all our efforts and good will, the people in Gaza can only count on themselves.


Anonymous said...

thanks, rami. but it's nice to hear what is going on on your side of the border, too. i disagree with you and as'ad though about nasrallah's speech. i was in balata refugee camp all day and his speech certainly gave people a sense of hope, a sense that they are not alone even though in reality they are. but they need that hope. that hope is important in the midst of all of this destruction.

btw: rania's blog is doing some great work covering the situation, too.:

Rami Zurayk said...

Sure, I agree it gives people a sense of hope. No problem with that. But the real hope should come from their own actions, from their achievements, and not because they are supported by a tiny minority (relative to the whole world population). As the Lebanese say: show me the bank where you cash these good wishes.You know as well I do that what we are up against in Palestine is enormous, gigantic. Challenging Zionism is akin to challenging the whole world system. But we will continue to do it, not because we have the moral support of those who empathize with us, but because our cause is just.
Of course we recognize and greatly appreciate the support of friends and comrades everywhere.

Anonymous said...

I am writing from America. I am a blue eyed, blond haired, born in California, American. I read and write a lot in blogs. Unfortunately, my posting are almost all not allowed to be posted if I am critical of Israel or U.S. policy...even though I am polite.

Anonymous said...

...more from blue eyes:
I look everywhere for support for these poor people but it is nowhere. Not in Arab world, not in UN, not in Barack Obama. One of the few places you can hear the other side in America is

How can Barack be silent?