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Gaza Freedom March - nhpeacenik
Gaza Freedom March
I have a friend,  monadnockquaker , who is taking part in the Gaza Freedom March. She has not posted to her LiveJournal blog since arriving, and I am a little concerned for her safety because there are frightening scenes of police beating marchers on YouTube (e.g. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C5cMIViFPt8 ).  These are incoherent cell-phone videos and contain no commentary. There has been surprisingly little coverage of the events in Egypt in the mainstream US, British and international media. I was surprised to see that, as of an hour ago, the Guardian had no coverage of it at all. The New York Indypendent has been carrying relatively up-to-the-minute coverage. Democracy Now  carried a three-minute report on today's edition. The Real News (especially http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LZt5mO4WHCk ) has started getting on-the-scene reports. I just heard from my wife that a young woman, a French GFM delegate, has died today as a result of a beating by the Egyptian police [later edit: Later news reports made it clear sh died of natural causes and not as a result of a beating]. The suffering of the 1.5 million blockaded children, women and men of Gaza deserves all our attention and aid, and so does the effort of the 1300 international delegates determined to get to Gaza in solidarity today. They were offered a sop by the Egyptian regime, that 100 delegates would be allowed into Gaza; this caused great moral anguish among the delegates, some of whom were inclined to take the offer and most of whom rejected it as an effort at co-option. In the end a bus with 86 people on board did cross the border, but it was not officially a part of the GFM.  Most of the GFM delegates are in Cairo, trying to break through an Egyptian media blackout. Yesterday, the Israeli prime minister was feted in Cairo, showing that the Egyptian government is more concerned about its relations with Israel than with Arab public opinion.

Margaret's attitude is one of sympathy and solidarity with the people of Palestine, a spirit-based desire for justice and peace. I am praying for her success and her safety, and for a just solution to the tragedy that hides the humanity of  the peoples of Palestine/Israel from each other.

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