Arab American War Veterans website is looking for your military stories
New website seeks to document the experiences of Arab Americans who have served or are still serving in the U.S. Military. The profiles and photographs are being archived on a new website to help Americans better understand the contributions Arab Americans have made and continue to make to this great country.
By Ray Hanania
Arab Americans have served in every American war to defend this country. They have done it with honor, allegiance and with courage, and they never gave up their love for their heritage or their homelands.
America allows all immigrants who come in through the front door to live with equality and enjoy the bountiful fruits of this nation. And American gives everyone the opportunity to fight for their causes and their rights. Not everyone does it though.
One of the biggest stumbling blocks to achieving justice is the unfamiliarity that many Americans have of other cultures, or the lack of real knowledgable facts about those cultures, ethnicities, and experiences. Arab Americans have been the biggest victims of this ignorance of the facts.
When it comes to the Middle East, most Americans get their limited understanding of the Middle East and the Arab World from fictionalized Hollywood movies and fiction novels, and from well-funded antagonists who benefit from putting Arabs down. Arabs have been demonized and treated unfairly in this country. Our story has not been told.
But that can easily change. The best way to start is to begin by telling your story. Your personal story. Your family story. The story of your heritage.
One of the most powerful stories is the story of Arab Americans who served with honor, courage, and dignity in every branch of the U.S. Military. Our community has many of those stories of veterans who served and we need to tell them.
If you don’t tell your story, you are doing a disservice to your heritage and to your country of origin. Too many Americans think that Arabs are only here to exploit this country but do not contribute. We have contributed. We have sacrificed. We have played a significant role in advancing America and making it great.
Don’t allow the racist and biased mainstream news media to be the voice that speaks for you. Speak for yourself. Write your story. Submit that story along with photographs of your service and we will share them on our Arab American War Veterans website and Facebook Page.
April is National Arab American Heritage month. There is no better time than to showcase our achievements as an ethnic American community or our pride in our culture and heritage. Let’s make this first year of National Arab American Heritage Month one of the most successful ever.
Don’t wait. Don’t procrastinate. Your service in our military deserves to be told.
I am proud of my military service during the Vietnam War. Are you proud of your service?
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Ray Hanania is an award winning political and humor columnist who analyzes American and Middle East politics, and life in general. He is an author of several books.
"I write about three topics, the Middle East, politics and life in general. I often take my life experiences and offer them in an entertaining way to readers, and I take on the toughest topics like the Israel-Palestine conflict and don't pull any punches about what I feel is fair. But, my priority is always about writing the good story."
Hanania covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. Hanania began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East food stores in 48 American States (2004-2007).
Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at www.ArabNews.com, the TheArabDailyNews.com, www.TheDailyHookah.com and at SuburbanChicagoland.com. He has also published weekly columns in the Jerusalem Post newspaper, YNetNews.com, Newsday Newspaper in New York, the Orlando Sentinel Newspapers, and the Arlington Heights Daily Herald.
Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem.
Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media. In 2009, Hanania received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. He was honored for his writing skills with two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild. In 1990, Hanania was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times editors for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.
His writings have also been honored by two national Awards from ADC for his writing, and from the National Arab American Journalists Association.
The managing editor of Suburban Chicagoland Online News website www.SuburbanChicagoland.com, Hanania's columns also appeare in the Southwest News Newspaper Group of 8 newspapers.
Click here to send Ray Hanania and email.
His Facebook Page is Facebook.com/rghanania
Visit this link to read Ray's column archive at the ArabNews,com ArabNews.com/taxonomy/term/10906
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