Tell Me a Secret: 07/01/2006 - 08/01/2006

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Sad Qana...

Qana, is a Lebanese village, a small village that I know.
In the matter of fact, almost everyone in the region knows Qana, and that's not because of it's beautiful nature, nor because of any certain thing the villagers of Qana do better than the rest of Lebanese people, and not because a famous leader, poem or writer comes from it, no, not because of any of that.
Qana is very famous, because of a massacre that happened in it, ten years ago, in April 1996 "Israel" bombed that village killing tenths of civilians. And today, the very exact thing happened again.
"Israel" bombed a civilian building, killing over 57 un-armed civilians, out of 63 people that form two families (yes, two whole families) "Shalhoob" and "Hashim".
Among the 57 people that were murdered, 37 children. Thirty seven children.
T h I r t y S e v e n C h I l d r en.

Is it possible to have enough tears to be shed over them?

Needless to say that "Israel" said/will say that weapons were hidden in the village.

T h i r t y S e v e n C h i l d r en, I am assuring you: None of them had a missile, nor a rocket for sure, were killed today.

"Israeli" army and decision makers are cowards and inhumane, thinking that by killing more and more people, they will create enough pressure to gain whatever political demands they have.

They have always been, and are only cowards.
Even in the battle ground, they are weak and they are cowards, how else did a tiny hardly trained group like Hizbollah beat the hell out of them in every direct fight since the beginning of this mess? They are supposed to be number 13 on the list of the most powerful armies in the world, and yet, Hizbollah which is not even an army, made them a joke in front of the whole world. They only know how to press the buttons, and kill civilians from distance, they are not men enough even to be able to do it themselves.

And the world's reaction? Of course they will condemn! What else? And if they tried to work out any practical solution, guess who will use the Vito to stop it?

Yes, you are right.

Oh wait, I am so sorry, I lied, I hid an important peace of information: Condi is sorry!
how sweet is that?

Over 750 civilians killed this far in Lebanon (including five from the one family in another location in the south today, too) and thousands injured, and counting.

see some pictures, if you dare.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Opening eyes series....Session # (1)

*A bit edited, thank you Ivana*

The truth is that I have been really confused in the last week, thinking of a way to gather thousands of years, hundreds of books, endless numbers of facts and numbers all about the Palestinian-"Israeli" conflict so that anyone that have lived his entire life hearing about it from the western biased media gets to hear it all the way from the beginning, hear the other version of the story this time.
And I had planned visits to certain people and certain universities and libraries, to collect the references I want to use, and to translate the ones that are in Arabic. I had it all planned in my head, and was full of sorrow knowing it will probably take months before I have the time to do all that, the most important point I wanted it to include is to remind people that what you call "Israel" today, was only born just a while ago, 1948, a little while in the terms of history, When Zionists started the fight and occupied the Palestinian land, the parents or grandparents of each one of you probably were there back then and witnessed it all. I know that my grandparents did, and Hundreds of thousands left their homes taking the keys with them, thinking they will go back next day, next week, next month maybe, now it has been almost 60 years and they didn't go back yet, and a lot of them still have the keys with them till now, although a lot of their houses are already demolished or taken over by Israel. My grandfather died couple of years ago and never managed to go back, and my grandmother is living in Jordan now, still hoping to go back one day.
(Nowadays you hardly ever see that little peace of information anywhere, in a 100 years of time, the history will be re written and the world would be told that "Israel" existed before Palestine!).

Alright, back to my point, I wanted it also to include the numbers of people that were killed on both sides, just to show you who is the real terrorist here, you will be shocked when you see the numbers, and it will give you a good reason to stop believing the western media, you will see who is the criminal here, and who is the victim, who is the occupier, and who is defending himself in the scene, this time for real I mean.
And I wanted to show you the numbers of UN resolutions that were made against "Israel", and how "Israel" ignored them since they all demand to either un-occupy Palestinian lands, or let the Palestinian refuges get back to their houses, or stop taking their rights, or giving them back some of them, and of course, none of that ever happened.
All the UN resolutions have numbers and you can check them using any source, even an Israeli one, any library, any UN office, while you find "Israel" ranting about how they want to fight till the UN resolution 1559 is enforced, just suddenly "Israel" respects the UN resolutions out of the blue! The country of democracy, ha?

Another ugly face of the story, is the really shameful American role in all this, and how the united states supported it, all the way from the beginning, and how it took every biased stand whenever it could, against the Palestinians, and today against the Lebanese (and don't even get me start talking about Iraqis), making all possible efforts not to stop the Israeli attack on civilians, but to make sure it doesn't stop, while the American laser-directed missiles are in their way to "Israel" to be used against civilians in Lebanon and Palestine, too.

And then yesterday, I was asking Mr. Google about things related to all that, and how lucky was I to find what I found, I found a site where people actually did all the work I wanted to do, just all of it, and put it all together, if I wanted to do it myself I don't think it would have been better, no well of course it would have, everything I do has to be just perfect you know.
so anyways let's forget about my ego for a moment and get back to the point: the site, I am giving you the link, and you need to do the rest, those people really made a lot of efforts to put it together, the least you can do is to read it! Still I have to say that they put only the head lines for all the issue, there are really hundreds of books to be read to see all the details, but the site at least takes your hand through class (Palestine-"Israel" 101). Probably 102 too.

*Note: "Lebanon..." post is still active, and all updates about Lebanon are posted in the comments section there*

Monday, July 17, 2006


*** *update* the comments section is active, I post links to sellected news, pictures and articles there, and there are ongoing debates that you are welcome to participate in.***

I keep asking myself the following few questions:

Why doesn't Israel occupy the whole Arab homeland? If I were in the Israeli government I would have long time ago; can't they see that they control Arab leaders so well, that the only thing the Arab governments will ever do is condemn? And then fight two weeks among them if they should have an emergency meeting for Arab leaders or not, and then when they finally meet, they will decide that they, condemn what happened, and then will decide that they have to go to the UN and security council, sdo they run crying for them: helppppp....Israel just occupied all of our countries, and killed over 2 millions civilians, and bombed every power plant and bridge in the entire Arab homeland, and used banned weapons against civilians more than once...Help pleaseee! We are facing a humanitarian disaster! We are dying! We lost our countries!

and the UN would go: ehhh....Come next next week, we are playing pool now.
and then Arabs leaders will of course agree, and go and get bombed for a week, and the rest of them ( the ones that weren't killed during that week) will come again crying for the UN to have them stop: please UN, they killed over 5 million now, and they are raping every woman they find, and they already gave contracts for their companies to invest in the oil, and they already gave contracts to their companies to rebuild what their military destroyed!
and the UN would meet, and then will announce that they understand Israel's right to defend itself. But they ask Israel to show more self restrain.
and when they decide to ask for siece fire, the government of the USA, Bush's administration ( Bush's government new name is The Filthy Devil, oh did that name hurt the feelings of some people? Good!) will use the Vito to make sure that doesn't happen.

so I really think Israelis are stupid, they really should invade all the Arab countries.

The other question I am asking myself is, what the hell is the Lebanese army doing? Lebanese military sites have been bombed many times now and many members of the army were killed already, and the Israelis have been attacking the Lebanese lands for the last 6 days, what are they exactly waiting for?

Third question:

Hezbollah has 10-15 thousands missiles according to reports, some of them can reach a range of 200 km, which means they can reach Tal Abeeb (which you know as Tel Aviv) and Quds. Israel have crossed every red line, and executed over 1000 air strike and attacked the buildings of Hezbollah and the southern suburbs of Beirut, where most of Hezbollah supporters are, and announced and an open war on TV, what are they waiting for? Why aren't they sending a message to Israel that they "really" shouldn't mess with Lebanon? I mean the two sides are talking missiles now, and the Israeli side is doing all efforts to send the message to all Lebanon, all the Area, all the world, that they shouldn't mess with Israel. What is Hizbollah saving the rest of his missiles for exactly?

One of my Friends, Ramzi Kysia, wrote this article:

The Distance from Guernica to Lebanon By Ramzi Kysia

As I write this, I can hear Israeli warplanes flying over head, breaking the sound barrier and rattling all of our windows. In the distance there are explosions. I don’t know where the bombs are dropping, but it’snot close to me. I can’t hear the screaming of thesurvivors from where I sit.

Hezbollah and Hamas may possess the ability to kill dozens of Israeli civilians and terrorize countless others, but they are not an existential threat to Israel. As events on the ground have unmistakably demonstrated over this past month, today it is Israel that is a clear and present danger to the further existence of the Lebanese and Palestinian peoples. Adanger, if not to their very lives - then certainly tothe continuation of their nations.

This is the third, catastrophic attack I’ve livedthrough. I was in New York City on September 11. I wasin Baghdad during “Shock and Awe.” It’s not somethingyou ever get used to. That so much hatred can live in the world, so much indifference to human suffering--living under that hatred and indifference is almost ashard as living under the bombs.

As I write this, over two hundred Lebanese have beenkilled. Almost all of them were civilians.

I think of Guernica.

On April 26, 1937, during the Spanish Civil War, the German Air Force, siding with fascist dictator Francisco Franco, began a bombing campaign against thecity of Guernica. Some 1,600 people were killed, and the city was reduced to rubble. Guernica is remembered as the first time air power was used against acivilian population with the intent of causing complete destruction.

When it happened, Guernica shocked the world. Today,we do not shock so easily. Lebanon is being sacrificed without so much as a casual protest.

Israel has bombed power plants, roads, and bridges all across Lebanon. Israel has bombed gas stations andfuel depots, grain silos, lighthouses, the seaports in Beirut, Tripoli, Jounieh and Tyre. Beirut’s airport isin flames. Beirut’s Shi’a suburbs have been almost completely demolished. Fire fighters are pleading forhelp, because they do not have enough water to put out the blazes. (1)

I think of Guernica.

Israel has ordered all of the people living in Southern Lebanon to flee their homes and villages. AviDichter, Israel’s Minister of Internal Security, told us that “tens of thousands of Lebanese who will flee towards the north will create the right pressure on Hezbollah." (2)

Two nights ago, eighteen people in the South were burned alive when Israel bombed their fleeing convoy with incendiary shells. Eleven of the dead were children under the age of twelve. Mahmoud Ghannam, the father of two of the killed children, broke down when he saw their bodies. He struck himself in the head repeatedly and cried, "my God, my God. I can't make out the faces of my children. They are burnt black...Which ones are my children?" (3)

A copy of Pablo Picasso’s famous painting of the annihilation of Guernica was hung outside the chambers of the UN Security Council, as a reminder of why the United Nations was created, and of what the Security Council is supposed to prevent. In 2003, the United States ordered the eleven foot painting covered, so as not to even subtly embarrass American diplomats pressing for a war against Iraq. (4)

We are supposed to forget what modern warfare means.

Living in Lebanon today, I cannot forget. I remember Guernica.

Today, Lebanon is being forced toward total ruin. If Israel’s intent is just to destroy Hezbollah, then why are they bombing Christian and Sunni neighborhoods and
Hezbollah’s headquarters in Beirut, making sure to first bomb power plants, bridges and roads throughout the entire country? Israel’s clear intent is to trash this entire country, smash everything that makes Lebanon a modern nation, and demolish all of the work the Lebanese have done over the last fifteen years to rebuild their country.

As Lebanon is ravaged, U.S. President George Bush loudly and proudly asserts Israel’s right to“self-defense.” (5)

As Lebanon is ravaged, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rica announces that Israel should continue bombing to “reduce the threat” from Hezbollah. (6)

Do Arabs possess the right to defend themselves from Israel?

As Lebanon is laid to waste, Israeli Prime MinisterEhud Olmert has secured himself new found adulation within Israel. Everyone apparently loves a killer. (7)

As Lebanon is destroyed, Olmert has announced that he will refuse to meet with a UN delegation attempting to secure a cease-fire (8), George Bush has publicly refused to call for a cease-fire (9), and the United States is blocking other nations on the Security Council from calling for a cease-fire (10).

On "This Week with George Stephanopoulos," Condoleezza Rice not only defended Israel’s actions in Lebanon andU.S. policy in Iraq, but said “[Mid-East] hostilities were not very well contained, as we found out on Sept.11, and so the notion that somehow policies thatfinally confront extremism are actually causing extremism, I find grotesque.”

Grotesque. As if Lebanon or Iraq--or even Hamas or Hezbollah--had anything whatsoever to do withSeptember 11.

I remember what is grotesque. I remember Guernica.

When Westerners speak of “smashing the infra structure of terror,” it is understandable that they mean all of the Arab peoples themselves. Arabs are “the infrastructure of terror.”

Speaking against a cease-fire, Rice added, “We have togo at the root cause. … It's fine to have a cessationof violence. …But unless we go to the fundamentals here, we're going to continue to have these spikes of violence in the Middle East as we have had for thepast 30 years.” (11)

According to the Washington Post, going to these fundamentals means that Israel and the United Statesare going to prevent any cease-fire and continue bombing Lebanon for “several weeks” in order to establish their version of peace in the region. (12)

Indeed. I remember Guernica. I understand the peace of the jackboot and whip.

Dare any American or Israeli ever again ask, “Why do they hate us?”

The clear conviction being spoken by all of thepoliticians in Israel and America is that theirabsolute security is absolutely dependent on the complete insecurity of Arabs everywhere. And the clear lesson being taught to generations of children growing up in the rubble of what once was the shining jewel ofthe Middle East is simply this: their security canonly be dependent on the future insecurity of America and Israel.

Former U.S. Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich alsotook the opportunity to strongly defend this point ofview. In an interview on Saturday, Gingrich said that Israel and America must be forceful because, “we need to have the militancy that says 'We're not going tolose a city.’”

So, apparently, Lebanon is going to lose several.

Gingrich belittled the idea of negotiations or apossible ceasefire by saying, “this idea that we have this one-sided war where the other team gets to plan how to kill us and we get to talk, is nuts.” (13)

A hundred years ago President Teddy Roosevelt famously told Americans to “talk softly and carry a big stick.” Today the spiritual, if not political, heirs to Generalissimo Franco are riding high in Tel Aviv and Washington D.C., and they’ve gone one better than Roosevelt
Today, they don’t talk at all.


Ramzi Kysia is an Arab-American essayist and peace activist. He spent a year in Iraq with Voices in theWilderness, the Chicago-based predecessor to Voicesfor Creative Nonviolence ( He iscurrently living in Lebanon, and working on a book about his experiences.

1. "Israelis intensify bombardment of Lebanon'scivilian infrastructure," Daily Star (17 July 2006)

2. "Lebanese villagers ordered out," AFP (17 July2006)

3. "Jets 'incinerate' fleeing family," AFP (16 July2006)

4. "The Lessons of Guernica," Toronto Star (9 February2003)

5. "Mideast flare-up follows Bush to Russia," AP (14July 2006)

6. "Rice Says Israel May Need to Prolong Offensive,"New York Times (16 July 2006)

7. "War Gives Israeli Leader Political Capital," NewYork Times (16 July 2006)

8. "Lebanon bows on border demand," The Australian (17July 2006)

9. "Bush won't pressure Israel for cease-fire," AP (14July 2006)

10. "Lebanon: U.S. blocking call for cease-fire," AP(15 July 2006)

11. "Rice Defends Israel, Calls Criticisms of BushPolicy 'Grotesque'," ABC News Online (16 July 2006)

12. "Strikes Are Called Part of Broad Strategy,"Washington Post (16 July 2006)

13. "Let's face it, it's WWIII, Gingrich says,"Seattle Times (16 July 2006), The World's Blog Aggregator