Who am I? I am a Palestinian girl.

Niveen Abboushi, Facebook, December 22

Who am I?

I am a Palestinian girl.

Before I was born, the occupation took most of my village’s lands to build a new settlement called Halamish.

Then they arrested my father. When my aunt went to visit him, one of the soldiers pushed her over the stairs of the court and she died.

Since I was little the settlers of Halamish keep stealing more and more of our lands to expand the settlement.

Our home has demolition order because it is in Area C. The settlers are allowed to build on our land, but not us.

In 2005, the settlers made the spring of our village part of the settlement and prevent us from using it, even though many of us are farmers.

All these things happened with great support from the Occupation army and government.

When the people of the my village started to resist the injustices with protest marches, my father was arrested again.

My mother was arrested too. My uncles, aunts, brothers, cousins – all of them were arrested too.

My cousin Mustafa was killed by the Israeli army. My uncle Rushdi was killed by the army too!

Later, an Israeli sniper shot my mom in the leg and she couldn’t move for long time.

Almost every week, the army breaks into our homes to arrest one of my family or to confiscate our laptops or phones.

During our marches, they shoot us with tear gas rubber bullets – my cousin is in hospital badly injured because he was shot in the face the week before.

A few days ago, two soldiers came to our house to take positions to shoot at the demonstrators from my village. I stood with my family to prevent them, the soldier pushed me and I slapped him.

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Code Pink Update: Calling for a 16-year-old to be raped?

#FreeAhed

No one should have to live under the rule of an occupying army. No one should have to pass through checkpoints on their way to school, watch their family members be shot, or have their homes invaded in the middle of the night. Two weeks ago, 16-year-old Palestinian girl, Ahed Tamimi, couldn’t take it anymore. This time when soldiers came to enter her home, she stood up and pushed back. She screamed and slapped the soldiers.

For the damage Ahed caused to their sense of masculinity, Israel is exacting revenge. Ahed has spent the past week and a half in various Israeli prisons. Most of her time has been in a freezing cold isolation cell with a camera monitoring her every move. Tomorrow as she appears in court, we are demanding of Netanyahu that she be released immediately.

Israeli leaders want extreme punishments for Ahed. Israeli Education Minister Neftali Bennett has said she and her family “should spend the rest of their lives in prison.” Israeli journalist Ben Caspit called for her to be sexually assaulted, saying, “we should exact a price at some other opportunity, in the dark, without witnesses and cameras.” Defence Minister Avigdor Liberman said she and her family must “get what they deserve.”

The ill-treatment of Palestinian women prisoners, including various forms of sexual violence, is well documented. Now, leaders of Israeli society are publicly declaring that a 16-year-old girl should be raped! Netanyahu must release Ahed Tamimi immediately!

Twice so far, Israel has refused to release Ahed. Tomorrow she appears in court again. This time she must be set free. Please share your outrage on Twitter and Facebook and let the world know we will not tolerate such horrific abuse of power.

In solidarity,
Ann, Ariel, Brienne, Haley, Jodie, Katie, Mariana, Mark, Mary, Medea, Nancy, Paki, Robin, Sarah, Taylor, and Tighe

P.S. Young women are leading the movement for Palestinian rights. This week New Zealand pop singer Lorde cancelled her upcoming concert in response to the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement. Lorde called it the “right decision” and we agree! Show your support for Lorde by listening to and purchasing her fantastic music.

Gaza Lights: Electrical Power for People Under Siege


The Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA)

Many mothers told us the same story. Their children are so scared of the dark they won’t even get up at night to use the bathroom. One mother brings home rubbing alcohol from the clinic where she works to make a small fire so her children can have light to do their schoolwork.” –Amal Abu Moailqe, MECA Gaza Staff, Mechatronics Engineer

“Gaza Lights” provides households in the Gaza Strip with electrical power by providing a rechargeable system that generates electricity for approximately 12 hours and includes three lights, a fan, and a mobile phone charger.

The Electricity Crisis in Gaza, Palestine

The Gaza Strip has been deprived of adequate electrical power for most of the last ten years. In the beginning of 2017, most residents were getting five to eight hours of electricity per day. As summer approached, that declined to just one to three hours. This effected almost every aspect of daily life: storing perishable food and medicines, performing basic household and care-taking tasks; studying and work; phone and internet communication. Household fires have occurred from the use of candles and cooking with wood fires.

The Gaza Lights Project

Free 16-year-old Ahed Tamimi

Ahedi.jpg

On December 18, 2017, in the middle of the night the Israeli army burst into the Tamimi family home and arrested 16-year-old girl, Ahed Tamimi. They beat her father, mother, older and younger brothers and confiscated the families laptops, phones and cameras. Today, when Ahed’s mother, Nariman, went to inquire which detention center her daughter was being held in, the military arrested her as well.

It is well documented that Palestinian children are beaten, abused, and tortured during their arrests by the Israeli military. For Ahed’s sake we need as many members of Congress as possible to sign onto the legislation congresswoman Betty McCollum just introduced to end the abuse and detention of Palestinian children.

Ahed is a high school student preparing for college. She lives in a Palestinian village famous for women leadership in resistance to the occupation. As a young girl, Ahed rose to headlines for her bravery to confront the Israeli soldiers who enter her village on a regular basis. In 2014, at the age of 13, she received the Hanzala Courage Award in Turkey. In 2015, she and her family were profiled by the New York Times Magazine. Now she and her mother are sitting in Israeli jails. No one knows where they are being held or if they are okay.

Tell your Member of the House of Representatives to sign onto H.R. 4391 to make the condition that US military aid to Israel not be used for the abuse and detention of Palestinian children in Israel’s military court system. Rep. Mark Pocan of the Wisconsin 2nd District is a cosponsor of this bill. Contact your Representative and Senators asking them to intervene for mother and daughter activists Ahed and Nariman Tamimi. Then share on Facebook and Twitter that the Israeli military must release them.