In Chicago, for the Hearing

So I’m in Chicago, for the Chicago Hearing, which will be running from 1:30 through 5:30 this afternoon, CST.
Last night we had an interesting dinner at Dr. Ghada Talhami’s home. Jad Isaac of ARIJ and Mark Braverman of, um, Mark Braverman were there along with a bunch of other interesting people.
I hadn’t seen Jad in many years, so it was great to catch up with him. Back during the First Intifada he was one of the pioneers of organizing mass civilian (nonviolent) resistance. Last night he was talking very interestingly about (1) the apparent hopelessness of the PLO’s current negotiating strategy, but (2) the apparent usefulness and effectiveness of Salam Fayyad’s administrative and economic strategies.
I guess the big question I wanted to ask is how long you can continue with #2 there so long as #1 continues, since the horrible facts of continuing occupation, dispossession, expropriation, and Israeli control will always constrain Ramallah’s ability to exercise effective domestic governance.
A “well-run” ghetto– who wants that?
Anyway, this morning I had breakfast with a group of interesting Syrian Americans. On Friday, Norman Finkelstein was here. Chicago seems to be hopping with pro-justice activity!

3 thoughts on “In Chicago, for the Hearing

  1. bevin

    “A “well-run” ghetto– who wants that?”
    That is the $64,000 question. And the answer is that the exploiter does. In Iraq and Afghanistan the search is always for the right man to run the ghetto, to smooth out the process of exploitation.
    In Palestine Fayyad serves the purpose of keeping things quiet while the population is being robbed, of the last few acres of its land.
    Everywhere the object is to come up with a shepherd who will quieten the lambs as they are driven to slaughter. In the West Bank it is Fayyad, in Washington it is Barack Obama.
    One major difference is that Palestinians understand what it happening to them.

  2. Abdelhafid Dib

    I hope Chicago Hearing meeting will be fruitful for the just Cause.
    My regards to all participants without exception,
    I with them a good luck.
    Hafid

  3. Clif Brown

    Helena, I’m sorry I didn’t get a chance to meet you while you were in Chicago, having heard you conduct interviews for Jerusalem Calling, I know you are a very capable speaker. I was at a house party last night for Jeff Halper, during which he gave an informative presentation. Sorry to say, I was not aware of the AFSC gathering until then and was told it was sold out.
    I believe most agree that the seemingly unstoppable Israeli oppression in the occupied territories shows signs of being slowed and the the point of leverage is in the United States Congress, the great source of power for the Israeli right.
    How telling it was to recently see Netanyahu posing for the cameras with Pelosi and Boehner after being unable to win the usual smile session with the President. What other world leader would presume to do such a thing?
    It is way past time for Americans to become informed about what is taking place and voice their condemnation of it to their legislators. Apartheid has nothing to do with American values (nor should it with Israeli values).
    Thank you for your involvement in a just cause and keep it up.

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