April 9, 2018: Voices of the Palestinian Resistance

From the Front Lines in Palestine

Monday, April 9
Multicultural Student Center
Red Gym, UW-Madison
716 Langdon Street
7:00 – 9:00 pm

In 2002, the International Solidarity Movement grabbed world attention by bringing volunteers from around the world to defend Palestine through nonviolent resistance. They stayed with resistance fighters in the Nativity Church in Bethlehem. They brought medical supplies to the besieged Palestinians in the ancient Nablus Casbah. They documented and filmed the destruction and mass killing of Palestinians in the Jenin refugee camp. In 2002 and 2003, thousands participated at their own expense.

One was Rachel Corrie, who was killed trying to prevent demolition of a home in Gaza. Another was Tom Hurndall, killed by a shot to the head. ISM has operated continuously since then, serving at the request of the Palestinian community through participation in Palestinian nonviolent resistance. In 2009, 2012 and 2014, ISM volunteers were with the Palestinian people in Gaza, reporting the Israeli invasion and helping in the hospitals, clinics and schools that were attacked even as they served the refugees.

But ISM is today unable to fill the demand from the Palestinian popular movement. We need to recruit more volunteers, so we have brought the ISM to North America to talk to interested groups. The speaking team consists of one of our Palestinian coordinators and an experienced international volunteer.

The presentation includes a screening of an abridged version of Radiance of Resistance, a film produced by three ISM volunteers serving in Nabi Salih and featuring Ahed Tamimi and her cousin, Janna Jihad.

Sponsored by Students for Justice in Palestine-UW Madison. Free and open to the public.

About the Speakers

Islam Maraqa

Islam Maraqa is a Palestinian activist and electrical worker from Hebron. He has been a human rights activist since the second Intifada, in 2003, when Israeli military forces closed his university. Since then he has founded and been an active member of many groups.

He joined ISM in 2006, first as an activist and then as a coordinator and trainer of international volunteers. During that time, ISM work in Hebron included accompanying children to school along routes near settlers, direct confrontation with military forces, resistance against house demolitions and remaining with threatened families. He conducted liaison with localPalestinian committees, organizations and families, for the purpose of assuring that ISM is always Palestinian-led.

Islam is a recognized and active member of his community, and especially in the resistance against human rights violations. Outside of his ISM activities, Islam started the Marmara Housing Project with a group of Palestinians and internationals, to rebuild eco-friendly and practical homes for the Palestinian families whose homes have been bulldozed by lsraeli Forces.

Joe Catron

Joe Catron went to Palestine’s Gaza Strip in March 2011, on the first international solidarity delegation to cross the Rafah border after the fall of Egypt’s Mubarak government, and lived there through October 2014. Over three and a half years in the besieged coastal enclave, he accompanied farmers and fishermen in Israeli-enforced access-restricted areas, joined popular protests along Israel’s separation barrier, supported campaigns in solidarity with Palestinian political prisoners, and assisted local organizations through editing and training.

During Israel’s military offensive in summer 2014, he and other international volunteers established a constant presence in hospitals threatened by Israeli bombardment and accompanied rescue efforts in conflict areas.

His writing and photography from Palestine have appeared in +972 Magazine, BBC, Electronic Intifada, Middle East Eye, the New York Times, Newsweek, and various other media. He is in Max Blumenthal and Dan Cohen’s new documentary, Killing Gaza, and was profiled by Ramzy Baroud in his latest book, The Last Earth: A Palestinian Story. He lives in New York and is the U.S. coordinator of Samidoun: Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network.
 

April 8, 2018: Radiance of Resistance,
a Tribute to Rachel Corrie

Featuring Rachel’s parents, Craig and Cindy Corrie

Sunday, April 8
St. James Catholic Church
1128 St. James Court, Madison, WI
2:00 – 5:00 pm

Joe Catron and Islam Maraqa from the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) will also be presenting. Rachel was volunteering with this group on March 16, 2003 when she was killed by an Israeli soldier driving a Caterpillar bulldozer as she protested the demolition of a Palestinian family home in Rafah.

A clip from from the new film, Radiance of Resistance, about Palestinian youth activists Ahed Tamimi and Janna Ayyad will also be shown.


 

PLUS hummus and tabbouleh; desserts including baklawa; and the ever-popular DOOR PRIZES. Palestinian olive oil, olive oil soap, zaatar & maftool, embroidery and other crafts will be available for purchase.

The event is free and open to the public, with a $5 suggested donation to cover cost of food. Donations will be gratefully accepted to help support the Samira Remedial Education Project for disadvantaged and traumatized children in Rafah, the Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice, and the ISM tour.

Co-sponsored by Madison-Rafah Sister City Project; Playgrounds for Palestine-Madison; Jewish Voice for Peace-Madison; Good Shepherd Parish Social Justice Committee; Amnesty International Group 139; Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom-Madison Branch; Colombia Support Network; Students for Justice in Palestine-UW Madison; and Bright Stars of Bethlehem. Welcomed by WORT Radio.

If possible, please RSVP to rafahsistercity at yahoo.com so that we are sure to have enough food.

Thursday, April 5, 12-1 pm, WORT 89.9 FM: A Public Affair host Allen Ruff will interview Craig and Cindy Corrie, parents of Rachel Corrie, about their daughter’s legacy and their work on behalf of peace and justice in Palestine during the 15 years since Rachel’s death in 2003. Call in at 256-2001 with your questions and comments, or listen live online.

Joe Catron and Islam Maraqa from the ISM will be speaking and showing the Radiance of Resistance film clip on the UW-Madison campus on Monday, April 9 from 7-9 pm, at the Multicultural Students Center in the Red Gym, 716 Langdon Street, Madison. See UW-Madison Students for Justice in Palestine for more details.

Samira Remedial Education

GAZA KIDS NEED YOUR HELP!

Barb Olson, Madison-Rafah Sister City Project, March 9, 2018

For the third time, the Madison-Rafah Sister City Project (MRSCP) is partnering with the Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA) and the Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice to fund the Samira Remedial Education Project in Rafah. Organized by the Rafah branch of the Union of Palestinian Women’s Committees (UPWC), this project employs special education teachers and a social worker to provide psycho-social support to 180 economically disadvantaged and learning-disabled children age six to twelve and their families.

The Gaza Strip, turned by Israel’s siege into the world’s largest open-air prison, is already one of the poorest and most crowded places on earth. The educational system is overcrowded, unstable and inconsistent. Sanitation, water and electrical services barely function. Public services are weak and underfunded, especially those serving mainly women and children. The recent US cuts to The United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) threaten to turn crisis into catastrophe. Three-quarters of Gaza’s 1.8 million people are refugees dependent on the schools, hospitals and food distributions of UNRWA just to survive. In addition, Gaza is subjected to frequent Israeli military land and sea attacks and has not recovered from the last decade’s three full-scale bombardments and invasions. Every one of the close to 1 million children in Gaza knows someone who was killed, injured or made homeless.

Gaza Community Mental Health Program

Children have been affected more than others because every aspect of their lives, especially the education system, has been repeatedly disrupted if not destroyed. Psychologically, the negative impact on children is enormous: nightmares, racing thoughts, nail-biting, panic attacks, uncontrolled urination, violent behavior and hyperactivity are common symptoms. It is estimated that at least 30 percent of all children in Gaza are so severely affected that they require some form of structured psycho-social intervention.

For the past couple of years, the Samira Remedial Education Project has been successfully intervening to develop the children’s skills and increase their ability to learn (especially reading, writing and mathematics); to support them psychologically and socially and rebuild their confidence; to implement scientific solutions to learning disabilities and reduce violent and disruptive behavior; to train families to better support their children; and to create job opportunities for qualified professionals in this field. Field trips, a children’s library and activities such as theater, music, art and reading help the staff to understand the children and create a space for the children to express their feelings.

The total cost of this project for the current phase is $14,049. The Rachel Corrie Foundation has pledged $2,000, MRSCP will contribute $2,500 and aims to raise at least $5,500 more by June, 2018 so that the project can be fully funded by MECA. We need your help to meet this goal! Please make checks payable to MRSCP with the note “Samira”, and mail to:

    MRSCP
    P.O. Box 5214
    Madison, WI 53705

If you prefer to donate on line, you can do so through the Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA).

The Madison-Rafah Sister City Project is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization and all donations are tax deductible. Checks to MRSCP will receive a letter at the end of the year acknowledging your contribution. Contributions made online will receive a receipt from MECA.

April 8, 2018
Radiance of Resistance: A Madison tribute to Rachel Corrie


 
Please join us for our Annual Rachel Corrie Commemoration and Benefit

    Sunday, April 8
    St. James Church
    1128 St. James Court
    Madison 2-5 pm

2018 marks 15 years since MRSCP was founded, and 15 years since Rachel Corrie was killed by Israeli soldiers in Rafah, where she was deliberately run over by a Caterpillar® bulldozer as she protested the demolition of a family home. Each year between March 16, the day of Rachel’s killing, and April 10, Rachel’s birthday, MRSCP celebrates her life with an event that benefits Palestinian children.

This year’s program will feature a visit by Craig and Cindy Corrie, Rachel’s parents, and a presentation by Palestinian and U.S. representatives of the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), the group that Rachel was volunteering with when she went to Rafah. The event also includes a clip from from the new film, Radiance of Resistance about Palestinian youth activists Ahed Tamimi and Janna Ayyad.

Interfaith Peace-Builders Delegation, Gaza, November 2012

 
Refreshments including baklawa, hummus and tabbouleh will be served, and the ever-popular DOOR PRIZES will be awarded. Palestinian olive oil, olive oil soap, zaatar & maftool, embroidery and other crafts will be available for purchase.

The event is free and open to the public, with a $5 suggested donation to cover the cost of food. Donations will be gratefully accepted to help support the Samira Remedial Education Project for disadvantaged and traumatized children in Rafah, the Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice, and the ISM tour.

Please RSVP to rafahsistercity at yahoo.com so that we are sure to have enough food.

Can’t make it to the event? Consider a donation to the Samira Project in Rachel’s name. You can mail a check with the note “Samira” to

    MRSCP
    P.O. Box 5214
    Madison, WI 53705

You can donate online through the Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA).

The Madison-Rafah Sister City Project is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization and all donations are tax deductible. Checks to MRSCP will receive a letter at the end of the year acknowledging your contribution. Contributions made online will receive a receipt from MECA.

As always, we appreciate your support and we hope to see you there!