USS Liberty survivor of The Six Day War Donald Pageler, Palestinian Christian Authors, and Jewish Israeli BDS Activist exemplify HOPE in action for Thanksgiving 2017.
“HOPE has two children. The first is ANGER at the way things are. The second is COURAGE to DO SOMETHING about it.”-St. Augustine
By Eileen Fleming
Donald Pageler survived Israel’s attack on the USS Liberty and learned to treat Post Traumatic Stress caused by President LBJ’s ongoing cover-up through speaking engagements rooted in a deep connection to Jesus vis-à-vis the Palestinian struggle to end the Israeli occupation; which is sustained by USA policies fueled by Zionist ideology and bad religion.
Kicking off Thanksgiving Week, Donald Pageler emailed this American:
A few weeks ago I went to hear Mitri Raheb, a Lutheran Pastor from Bethlehem working with Palestinian youth helping them deal with life in a war torn country.
Mitri spoke of Hope.
I shared with him that while in Post Traumatic Stress Therapy between 1987 and 1990, I left group one night and in my car shook my fist at God, “How dare you let this happen to me”.
About 5 minutes later I found my self-thinking of Jesus hanging on the cross saying, “Father why have you forsaken me”…
Mitri spoke about counseling young ones when they get angry from the abuse inflicted by those who occupy their life.
He tells them to deal with themselves and determine what they want to do with their lives.
That took me back to a time in my PTS group when my counselor, Robert Key (a Green Beret in Vietnam) made a statement after a fellow veteran carried on saying I do not drink, I am not this, I am not that, I am not…
When the man ran out of steam, Robert said to him, “Now that you have told us what you are not, why don’t you tell us what you are?”
The thing that has stuck with me from the PTS group was the Serenity Prayer…
A few years ago my stepson said, “After what you have been through what do you think about the Middle East”?
I told him, “There are people on both sides that want war and people on both sides that want peace. The problem is Americans (the media) spend to much time paying attention to those that want war”.
That puts me in agreement with Mitri.
I continue to heal from the attack on the USS Liberty and now feel we were just a part of a much bigger issue.
Working for peace in the Middle East has become a more positive thing in my life. Which means less anger over the Liberty experience…
Also during Thanksgiving Week, Samia Khoury, a Palestinian Christian Author and a *SABEEL activist wrote:
When I heard the news concerning the U.S. administration’s refusal to extend the waiver of statutory restrictions on the General Delegation of the PLO to the United States in Washington D.C., I thought how absurd that sounds, and was contemplating to write a reflection on the issue when a friend sent me the statement of Dr. Hanan Ashrawi, a PLO executive committee member [who] said the following:
“Instead of holding Israel liable for its persistent violations of international law and conventions, the U.S. administration and Congress are threatening to punish the Palestinian people because of statements made by President Mahmoud Abbas at the United Nations and other leaders pertaining to ICC accountability for Israel and for its war crimes in Palestine. It is ironic that the U.S. is taking steps to punish the victim (the occupied) and not the perpetrator of the crime (the occupier).
“Conditioning the renewal of the waiver on the Palestinians, sticking to direct and meaningful negotiations with Israel, is actually superfluous since negotiations are nonexistent, and the current U.S. administration has yet to present any kind of peace initiative. After decades of negotiations, contacts and cooperation, it is unfathomable why American relations with the PLO have not been legally normalized and why the PLO, which is the highest political body in Palestine representing all Palestinians, continues to be subject to that statute, hence to blackmail and coercion.
“The Palestinian leadership has been negotiating with Israel for decades and has consistently abided by international law and signed agreements while Israel persisted in violating them without accountability or constraints. Yet, it is the PLO that continues to be placed on probation and unfairly judged while Israel is given preferential treatment and license to act with full impunity. If President Donald Trump decides not to renew the waiver after ninety days, the U.S. will embolden Israel even further and provide it with greater cover for its lack of compliance and unilateral actions. Such a measure will also disqualify the U.S. from taking any part in peacemaking and undermine its standing in the region and beyond.
“If it wants to be evenhanded and play any constructive role, the U.S. government should first break its deafening silence on the illegal settlements and maintain longstanding American policy on the two-state solution and the 1967 boundaries. Recognition of Palestine would go a long way towards proving that the U.S. holds all people equal before the law.”
In a separate email Samia wrote:
While the Knesset (The Israeli Parliament) and many of the US states are busy passing legislation against supporters of BDS a Palestinian NGO calling for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel for its policies against the Palestinians, Ronnie Barkan, the Israeli founder of Boycott from Within gives us hope.
In the video above, Ronnie Barkin a Jewish Israeli activist discusses the state of Israel today, Zionism, Anti-Semitism and reasons why there is HOPE for a “brighter future” –which requires remembering the past but being fully present to the NOW!
*SABEEL is a Christian ecumenical organization seeking justice and peace in the Holy Land through nonviolent advocacy and education. Sabeel is an international peace movement initiated by Palestinian Christians seeking a just peace NOW as defined by international law and existing United Nations resolutions.
LEARN MORE about *SABEEL in the USA: HERE
LEARN MORE ABOUT Mitri Raheb: HERE
Please view Don Pageler speaking to a California Church group:
Learn about LBJ’s FAILURE to Support the Troops and the 50 yr. Cover-Up every President since has colluded in: HERE
Eileen Fleming is TADN’s volunteer Health Reporter and Senior Non-Arab Correspondent
Fleming produced the UNCENSORED “30 Minutes with Vanunu” Mordechai, Israel’s nuclear whistleblower
Contact her HERE
READ MORE: HERE
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