Wednesday, December 29, 2010

"Not Just A Friend" -- Ayed Morrar Regarding Jonathan Pollak

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ayed-morrar/not-just-a-friend-one-pal_b_802468.html?ref=tw
Jonathan Pollak is a friend whose friendship I am proud to share, despite all the efforts of the Israeli intelligence services that tries to depict the relationship between Palestinians and Israelis as either one of treachery or normalization based on our adoption of the notion that Israelis have the right to superiority over us in their daily lives and that we must get used to this or live as servants or traitors. Israeli intelligence tries to distort the image of any Palestinian-Israeli relationship based on joint resistance to occupation, an occupation that is the root of our problems in the region. We want to reach a point where there is no such occupation, and rather relations based on justice and true peace between equals, and not a peace between a slave and master.

I, a Palestinian, admit now that my friendships within Palestinian society are not all based on resistance to the occupation, but I wouldn't dare to build a friendship with an Israeli outside of resistance to the occupation, because of how the occupation distorts the meanings of human relationships, and because dignity would not allow me to have a relationship with someone who feels superior to me because of their power, gender, religion or ethnicity.

Jonathan Pollak is a man trying to prove that those who believe in occupation cannot claim to be humanitarian or civilized. He also wants to prove that resisting oppression and occupation does not mean being a terrorist or killing.

This freedom fighter, Jonathan Pollak, leaves a prison cell only to be sentenced again by the Israeli occupation authorities, and recovers from one of his solidarity demonstrations only to be injured again in the next one. We can't let his work be lost without our appreciation because we lack confidence in ourselves or in our relationships of joint struggle. Palestinians should be proud to give him the name "freedom fighter" against oppression, occupation and racism.

We have all the respect in the world for this freedom fighter and for all his colleagues from all parts of the world, from over forty countries. They left the temptations of life where they are from, and left their families and friends to join our struggle for humanity on this planet, choosing the path of those who sacrificed themselves for freedom in Palestine. International activists like the American Rachel Corrie and the British citizen Tom Hurndall, both killed by Israeli soldiers, are honored like Palestinians who died, and similarly Jonathan Pollak and his imprisoned Israeli colleagues are a part of the movement of imprisoned Palestinians.

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