USC Students for Justice in Palestine

history, analysis, news, and event updates on the struggle for justice in palestine

Alice Walker in Palestine

Posted by uscsjp on July 25, 2009

” ‘The best place one could be on Earth’

Alice Walker in Gaza with Palestinian member of parliament and mother of five, Huda Naim (Electronic Intifada)

Alice Walker in Gaza with Palestinian member of parliament and mother of five, Huda Naim (Electronic Intifada)

Last March, poet, novelist and feminist Alice Walker joined a delegation organized by Code Pink, to travel to the Gaza Strip just weeks after the 22-day Israeli bombardment and invasion. Walker, globally acclaimed for her Pulitzer Prize winning novel, The Color Purple, had also traveled to Rwanda, Eastern Congo and other places where she witnessed cruel and barbaric behavior that left her speechless. In an essay on her blog entitled “Overcoming Speechlessness: A Poet Encounters ‘the horror’ in Rwanda, Eastern Congo and Palestine/Israel,” Walker recounts the stories of the people she met, and offers a lyrical analysis that ties their oppression and struggles to what she and her community experienced growing up in the violence and fear of the segregated American South. The excerpt below begins with her arrival in Gaza after a long overland journey through Egypt.

Coming ‘home’ to Gaza

Rolling into Gaza I had a feeling of homecoming. There is a flavor to the ghetto. To the Bantustan. To the ‘rez.’ To the ‘colored section.’ In some ways it is surprisingly comforting. Because consciousness is comforting. Everyone you see has an awareness of struggle, of resistance, just as you do. The man driving the donkey cart. The woman selling vegetables. The young person arranging rugs on the sidewalk or flowers in a vase. When I lived in segregated Eatonton, Georgia I used to breathe normally only in my own neighborhood, only in the black section of town. Everywhere else was too dangerous. A friend was beaten and thrown in prison for helping a white girl, in broad daylight, fix her bicycle chain…”

–Alice Walker. The Electronic Intifada, 24 July, 2009

See also:

Noam Chomsky: Season of Travesties

” …Once again relying on the impunity it receives as a US client, Israel brought the month of June 2009 to a close by enforcing the siege with a brazen act of hijacking. On June 30, the Israeli navy hijacked the Free Gaza movement boat ‘Spirit of Humanity’ — in international waters, according to those aboard — and forced it to the Israeli port of Ashdod. The boat had left from Cyprus, where the cargo was inspected: it consisted of medicines, reconstruction supplies, and toys. The human rights workers aboard included Nobel Laureate Mairead Maguire and former congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, who was sent to Ramleh prison in Israel — apparently without a word from the Obama administration. The crime scarcely elicited a yawn — with some justice, one might argue, since Israel has been hijacking boats travelling between Cyprus and Lebanon for decades, kidnapping and sometimes killing passengers or sending them in Israeli prisons without charge where they join thousands of others, in some cases held for many years as hostages…”

–Noam Chomsky, 9 July, 2009

And from Socialist Worker:

Journal:  Convoy to Gaza

“Solidarity activists traveled from the U.S. to Gaza to deliver desperately needed humanitarian aid to the Palestinian victims of Israel’s brutal war. writers contributed to this journal during the Viva Palestina convoy…”


Some Background on Jordan’s Palestinian Refugees

Osamah Khalil: Deconstructing the Jordan Option

Uri Avnery:  The Jordanian Option

Joanne Mariner: Rendition  to Jordan

Vijay Prashad: Memories of Barbarity

UNHCR Refworld,,IRBC,,PSE,4562d8cf2,48d223761a,0.html,,,,JOR,,4a40d2aac,0.html

Sharif Elmusa: A Greater Palestine?

Zvi Bar’el in Haaretz on Egyptian and Jordanian Citizenship Laws

Hasan Abu Nimah: Offering Israel new opportunities for obstruction

Adam Morrow and Khaled Moussa al-Omrani: Gaza War Divides Arab Governments from Their People

And finally, an interesting, albeit pro-Israel, book review from The New York Times:

Zionist in the White House

“Although Harry Truman left office widely disliked and dismissed more than half a century ago, the effort to resurrect his reputation is now a thriving industry, with politicians and pundits of all stripes trying to tie themselves to the tough, blunt old cold warrior. Contributing to this effort, the husband-and-wife team Allis and Ronald Radosh have written ‘A Safe Haven,’ the story of Truman’s integral role in the birth of Israel…”

–Jonathan Tepperman, The New York Times, 23 July, 2009


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