Monday, 16 March 2009

Welcome to Waltham Forest's home of Palestinian support

Welcome to Waltham Forest Palestine Solidarity Campaign's blogspot!  

Visit this site frequently to find out what we are doing in the London borough of Waltham Forest to support the Palestinian people.  

Although Gaza is uppermost in our thoughts today, we haven't forgotten the West Bank and the millions of Palestinians spread around the Middle East particularly in Lebanon and Jordan hoping, waiting to return home.  And we bring to mind the millions of Palestinians living inside Israel, disenfranchised, threatened.  

We recognise the diverse beauty of Palestinian backgrounds - Christians, Muslims, Jews, Athesists - once living their abundant, elegant Mediterranean life in harmony with the landscape.

And we know the indignation and frustration we feel today here in London, daily witnessing the breathtaking injustices meted out to Palestinians in front of the world's embedded press pack.  We gawp in stunned silence as TV packages and column inches alike frenziedly promulgate trite stereotypes born from disinterest, prejudice and scant research; or worse, say nothing at all, stonily silent as if Palestine and Israel had suddenly vapourised into thin air.  We can spot those editors and producers with hallucinatory personal agendas, from zionist racial cleansers to jihadist over-throwers via ecstatic evangelistic armageddonites, workers revolters, communist utopians, and anarchic nirvana-seekers.  Or whatever they are pushing.  And we search desperately for real Palestinian voices and cling to them like lifejackets in the ever drowning, stormy Mediterranean sea.

We know half the battle for Palestinians is simply daily recognition.  Palestinians exist, have done so largely unmoved for thousands of years and will do so far into the future.  They can be illegally shoved out of their homes but they won't leave their land.  Wake up to today: recognise Palestinians and respect Palestinians.  The UN does - and so should you.

And here we are ourselves: recognisable, firm, strong, supporting Palestinians in all they do. UK's Palestine Solidarity Campaign has been around since our political grandmothers founded it.  PSC's been friends with Rafah and Khan Yunis and Hebron and Bethlehem and Jerusalem and Ramallah and Nablus and Nazareth and Jericho and Jenin and Tyre and Beirut and Jerash and Damascus and Amman and the hundreds of other towns and cities in between, brimming with displaced Palestinians bulldozed from their homes by Israeli military forces, for generations.

And it's been friends with Gaza all along.  Ancient Gaza city.  The Israeli Government dumping ground of today: a prison camp, a hostage centre.  But their attempts will never work to make every inhabitant some kind of neolithic refugee to be fed by the UN, paid for and kept alive by the world's tax payers, locked inside those impregnable walls laced with thick barbed wire and denied all forms of basic civilisation.

Because Palestinians have been civilised for longer than all of us, and mere genocidal imprisonment and malnourishment won't get in the way of centuries of learning and cultured love of life.  You can't stop a Palestinian from offering you hospitality, even in a refugee camp.