Sunday, January 11, 2009

Read: shabbat shalom 02.01.09 ~ from Jerusalem

Domingo/Sunday ~ Diciembre/December 11, 2009 @8:47 AM ~ PST

Greetings All! The below is an Email from a dear close friend of mine whom I have never met in the flesh but hope to do so soon. She has been my online recovery sponsor for several years and more importantly a trusted friend and spiritual sister to me.

In November of the year 2006 I created a blog for her to archive her weekly Shabbat Shalom posts located on the Internet @

Over the years she has been of critical help for me in understanding the Middle East situation. Perhaps the best analogy she has given me is two dogs fighting over the same bone. As usual most people inside the United States of all political leanings are strapped into the stale and sterile left-wing vs. right-wing thinking and cannot think beyond and outside of this divided narrative. All the good guys are on one side and all the bad guys are on the other. Ol' wild West cowboys and indians thinking. The connected reality is that there is room for gross errors on both sides and the truth is often in the gray areas between two extremes.

Hamas was elected in a democratic fashion, Israel is a military occupying force and treats the Palestinian people as hostages. After decades of being demonized some people may actually miss ol' Yassar Arafat and his PLO, though he was surely no angel.

Related Link:

On an ideal level, both the Israeli and Palestinian people should have two separate states that are respected by each other, especially in terms of their territorial sovereignty. No nation can truly consider itself as a nation if it cannot defend its own borders. A nation must be an independent nation, not a mere cerebral concept. It must exist in connected reality.

This is part of why the concept of an independent Chicano nation is insane inside the United States and Chicano cultural nationalism is a manifestation of social-political insanity.

There is no independent Palestinian state that is recognized and respected by other nations in the region, certainly not by the Israeli government! Unfortunately or not, connected reality is not governed by ideals.

The usual question from folks is: Who started it? Not why it is being fought and what the combatants are fighting for! 

Israel and Hamas Vow to Press on With Fighting in Gaza: By Sonja Pace
Jerusalem ~ 11 January 2009      
Israel says it will press on with its military offensive in the Gaza Strip, as Hamas vows to do the same. Hostilities are now into their third week with Gaza medical sources reporting over 860 Palestinians killed, about half of them civilians. Thirteen Israelis have been killed in that time span, including three civilians killed by Hamas rocket fire."

Israel together with Hamas should commence with a cease fire, but it seems that both sides are determined to cause as much killing and damage to the other as possible until actual circumstances on the ground force them to stop. Remember: there has never been any Middle East Peace, certainly not in my lifetime. The war will go on... sometimes people have to fight it out, make war in order to bring about a relative peace, which can only be a short temporary truce in the Middle East condundrum.

In the end we may find that the war that must be fought is a spiritual warfare between the forces of good light and that of dark evil. How much hatred and revenge do we harbor and cherish within our own inner souls? Unless we all end up searching for our loved ones scrambling over the ashes and ruins of a failed war fought by failed states. The war begins and ends in our own souls!

Education for Liberation!

Peter S. Lopez aka: Peta


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  {Edit by PSL}

From: Linda Whittaker ~ Email:
Friday, January 2, 2009 10:18:27 AM
Subject: shabbat shalom 02.01.09

Hi everyone,

2009 begins here on a grim note; once again we are at war.  This time Hamas missiles are falling on the Negev and Israel is pounding the shit out of Gaza in an effort to get them to stop.  I wonder what the grand strategy might be on either side.  What does Hamas want to gain?  Is it worth the beating they are taking?  What does Israel plan to do?  After the bombs, are we going in with tanks, house to house searches, eradicate Hamas on the ground?  And then what?

Or is this all just emotional; Hamas running on the Moslem equivalent of apocalyptical vision and pride, and Israel mainly fed up and trying to teach Hamas a lesson it is not capable of learning?  Are we playing a high level chess match or just reacting from the gut?  (What worries me is the old adage, "Never underestimate human stupidity.")

People are getting injured and killed, and the news is full of dead babies and hysterical adults.  That's the human interest face of war, of course, and it is real.  But the chessmasters who play these games are not affected by dead babies.  Although they spread on on a long scale from sane to crazy, they tend to be quite cold-blooded and rational about reaching their goals.  This is true for both sides.

I find myself trying to figure out what is going on in their heads, their goals, their risk assessments.  Viewed with detachment, it is fascinating.

Fortunately, I get pulled back from this kind of speculation before I become an inhuman monster, which could happen quite easily.  I am listening to Jewish and Christian friends (no Moslems at the moment) who are voices of compassion and reason.  They are praying for the innocent victims on both sides, and trying to figure out how to pick up the pieces when this period ends.  I'm hearing from Ramallah as well as Jerusalem.  These voices are saddened but not in despair.  Maybe we moved beyond that.  We've been through so much that they know we will be able to pick up the pieces and move on.

If any good comes of all this, it will be the replacement of Hamas by the Palestian Authority in Gaza, and a reunification of the two parts of the Palestinian people.  Israel doesn't want to occupy Gaza (jeez, nobody wants Gaza, it is a basket case.)  Eradicating Hamas will leave a vacuum which will be occupied by more extremists unless the PA moves in.

Alternatively, the world powers will yank Israels chain and pull us off. Then what, I don't know.

We are noticeably jumpy here in Jerusalem even though we are far from the shooting.  My colleagues are snappy and my own impatience threshold is low.  I've bit off four heads at work during the last week because they bugged me.  Or maybe six.  Been there before; this is how I react to a wartime situation.  I get mean and short-tempered.  Gotta watch it; during the last intafada I had to take time out periodically before I banged someone's nose.  My boss is aware of it and told me to relax this weekend.  He's also been there before.....

Last week had a lot of rain (good news) and now the sun is out.  Typically we have dry weather in January and the winter rains return at the end of the month.  It is usually cold and clear with high pressure fronts from the north.  Which means also this is fighting weather, with good visibility for bombing.  So we are.....  (see how it all goes back to the war; even the weather?)

New Year's Eve didn't mean anything to me; I went to bed at 7:30 pm in fact.  My planned party was postponed until next week since everyone's schedules got disrupted by you-know-what.  Instead, I tried to read and prepare a review article I have to write.  Went up to Meggido (that's Armegeddon to you Americans) for a meeting.  It is the office for our northern district, and one of my favorite places.  They have a good shop for archeology and geography books in English, so I got a few.  My budget is tight now while I pay the loans for my car; gotta keep out of bookstores....

Not much more to mention.  It is cold, the woodstove is going, the cats are friendly and comfortable.  I feel like hibernating.

shabbat shalom,


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