Palestine's nonviolent hope
It was the hottest week of the year. All Fadel Jaber wanted was some water for his family. But Fadel lives in the occupied West Bank, where the Israeli government has redirected water pipes to provide swimming pools for Jewish settlers and empty faucets for Palestinians like Fadel.
When the Israeli forces dragged Fadel off for taking water, his heartbroken five-year-old son Khaled could be heard screaming “baba, baba!” as his dad was torn away. This is daily life for Palestinians living under the brutal fist of martial law where their land and water has been stolen by settlers and they have no basic civil rights. But after years of violence and hopelessness, a movement is growing in Palestine -- a nonviolent resistance seeking the same thing that all Israelis already have: freedom, dignity and a state of their own.
For years, the media has focused on Palestinian militants, and to this day, extremists on both sides are pushing peace further out of reach. But what’s lost in all that vitriol are the loving families like Fadel’s that just want a normal life. Now, those families are stepping forward, leading peaceful marches, organizing sit-ins, and working with Israeli activists to seek justice and freedom. In response, the Israeli military has thrown them in jail, beaten up organisers, and ripped children from their beds.
Days ago, I went to the West Bank to meet with these brave, peaceful people. When I proposed that our community could come to their aid, their eyes lit up. They need funds for lawyers when friends and family are jailed on spurious charges, cameras to document abuses, training in media skills and nonviolent tactics, and campaigners to take this local protest global. These families are the real hope. Let’s each donate to boost the peaceful movement over the extremist ones and give Khaled a future worthy of his father’s dreams.
- Alice Jay, Campaign Director