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I AM PALESTINIAN. I HAVE ALWAYS BEEN PALESTINIAN. AND I WILL ALWAYS BE PALESTINIAN
After more than a year of unemployment, I received a rejection letter that broke this camel’s back. I have applied for every job under this sun. Or so it seems. My Linkedin total of jobs applied to has reached 6,000+ ages ago. That doesn’t take into consideration all the other jobs I’ve applied to using tens of other sites.
I’m drawn to humanitarian positions that deal with Palestinians, as I am Palestinian and feel very passionate about Palestine. Palestine is my mother, my sister, my child. Palestine is my everything and the reason I live and breathe. I’ve tried to put into words many times what it is Palestine means to me, but it never seems enough. As a writer it’s frustrating. As a Palestinian, I feel it in my bones, my veins, my lungs, my life, my every molecule. Palestine made me the woman I am. Again, Palestine is my everything.
And as my everything, you can imagine how upsetting it is when I get rejected time and time again from these organisations. I’m not bitter, I accept that I wasn’t right for the position and I move on. But every so often I get an email from an organisation saying that the reason I didn’t get the position was that I’m not Palestinian, and they gave the position to a Palestinian person. What’s infuriating is that these emails come from a white member of staff. You would think, someone who works with Palestinians and supposedly works for the cause of Palestine would recognise the struggle we face.
It’s been well documented that politicians such as Golda Meir and many Zionists alike ignore the existence of Palestinians. They ignore that we exist, they ignore our right to live, they ignore our right of return, our ownership of land, our human rights, our every movement and our every basic dignity in this life.
Being from Haifa, we get labelled many things: Arabs, Israeli-Arabs, Arab-Israelis, 1948 Arabs, Inside Arabs, and so on. “They,” the Zionists, the politicians, the Arab regimes, Europe, America, the media, the whoever you want to consider in this umbrella “they”— They’re the ones who label us. But only we can label ourselves and only I can label myself.
So why is it that I get these emails from these white humanitarian workers who feel it ever necessary to tell me I don’t meet their definition of Palestinian. No, I don’t want to work for an organisation that has such a narrow, colonised and Zionist definition of Palestinian. I reject your rejection and assert my right to be addressed as a Palestinian. And more importantly, I reject your false participation in our movement.
Enough is enough. You either decolonize that self-righteous and false sense of so-called humanitarianism or you leave. This movement has enough struggle as is and we want participants who truly believe in the Palestinian right to exist, on our own terms, not by the ones you set up for us.
You cannot dictate who I am and who we are.
I am Palestinian and Palestinian I am.
Excerpt from “The Factors that Determine What Makes a Revolution Violent or Nonviolent”
What is a Revolution?
A revolution is described as a distinct form of change, whether it be social or political and takes place within a brief time span. Many elements are involved in defining a revolution and are debated by many theorists. For the purpose of this paper, a revolution is defined as a fundamental change in the social and political structure of a current government and/or society that takes immediate effect within political, societal and economic structures. A mere exchanging of politicians or political parties is not sufficient to be considered a revolution, but rather a complete overhaul of politicians, laws, regulations, economic rationalization and societal stipulations must take place. A revolution must affect all parts of society inclusively, including the youth, children, adults, elderly, men and women. It must not exclude race, sexuality, religion or any other minority part of society.
There are many methodologies that explore how revolutions begin, are executed and structured. There are micro and macro revolutions, as well as political, societal and socioeconomic revolutions, as well. Also taken into consideration is whether a revolution is sparked by internal or external sources.
“A social movement can be defined as a persistent and organized effort on the part of a relatively large number of people either to bring about or resist to social change.” Although few social movements fit into the categories of being either a “change-resistant conservative revolution” or a “change-oriented liberal revolution,” benefits arise in understanding the goals and motives of such movements. Furthermore, reducing a category to being either revolutionary based or reform based. A reform movement is oriented around changing existing policies, whereas revolutionaries seek the complete upheaval and replacement of the system at hand. Within the scope of revolutionaries, there are further categories of Rightest revolutionaries and Leftist revolutionaries. Rightist revolutionaries seek a return to “traditional” values and institutions, preferring to put aside social equality in favour for social order “through institutional change,” whereas, the Leftist revolutionaries’ goal is to:
…change major social and political institutions in order to alter the dominant economic, social, or political relationships within a society. Usually involved is a redistribution of valuable resources between the rich and the poor, with more equal access to educational opportunities, medical services, higher wage levels, or in the case of a predominantly agricultural society, land, a stated goal.
Although sociologists attempt to categorize social movements, social movements have the ability to be rooted in a combination of conservative and liberal change, just as revolutions can be not completely liberal or completely conservative, but have a mixture of characteristics.
What Causes Revolutions?
Revolutionary movements develop for a number of reasons, differing from country-to-country and society-to-society. Below is a list of elements in no specific order of essential factors in the development of revolutions:
Milestones of a Revolution
Once these factors are in place, a revolution has the ability to blossom and take place. Although in the event, a revolution lacks any of these factors, a revolution is more prone to failure. A revolution’s success is not only measured in the overthrowing of a power, but also in the construction of a new social/political/economic order.
Once a revolution begins to take place evident progress occurs in a series:
Revolutions have the ability to divide a group of people in two- the first being those who oppose the old order and those who prefer to side with the old order; something being experienced in Libya today and to a much less degree in Egypt. “Needless to say, if the structural change is a slow one, an evolution, then there will be sufficient time to adjust and absorb so that the changes will become less threatening.”
Revolutions can be sub-categorized into internal revolutions and external revolutions:
The external revolution may be successful or not, accompanied by a regular war or not, but the goal is usually clear: autonomy in decision-making. Precisely because that goal is so clear, such a national revolution is often not accompanied by any social revolution. Instead, it becomes an achievement in its own right.
The internal revolution is a social revolution and a much more complex phenomenon involving a change not only in the structure relating the country to the outside but also in the internal structure. It is difficult to see how this can be brought about without some positively formulated goal, some relatively clear-cut idea of the alternative to domination is freedom from domination; for the internal revolution the matter is more open-ended and more complex. Since it is more complex it is often simplified, and one mechanism of simplification is to see an automatic link between the two types: if only the external revolution can be achieved the internal revolution will come almost by itself.
“Between 1900 and 1999, the world produced about 250 new wars, internal or civil, in which battle deaths averaged at least two-thousand per year… Those wars caused about a million deaths per year.” Here, Tilly indicates the great influence of armed conflict on battle deaths, but what is an armed conflict or an internal war?
“Conflict” can be defined as the state of relations experienced when two or more parties have mutually exclusive goals… Internal wars involve violent conflict, but they may fall short of the levels of violence that we typically associate with wars. Included in this category are the following: coups d’etat, whereby one elite seeks to replace another elite element in the government; revolutions, which are mass movements aimed at removing the government; and insurrections.”
Although there is no clear and universal definition of the criteria of what constitutes a war, Keith Krause, an expert in Human Security in World Politics describes the main characteristic differentiating a war from an armed conflict is that wars occur between nations and armed conflicts occur within nations.
In similar fashion, the definition of nonviolence is also debated, but in contrast, Kurt Schock describes eighteen misconceptions of nonviolence in attempt to define what violence is.
The Middle East and North Africa region has been the site of early civilizations and empire expansionism for centuries. This, involved migrations of people and as empires fell or new civilizations started, minority populations—those left behind by previous empires remained and became engulfed in their new surrounding societies. We would now categorize these areas as Arab nations. There are many ethnic minority groups in the MENA, some of which had been living in the region before the emergence of Islam. According to the Islamic Human Rights Council, as of 1990, there were approximately thirty million minorities living in Arab nations out of the 220 million overall populations. As of recent statistics, there are more than 340 million Arabs in the MENA region, this number, however, includes the many ethnic minorities that do exist in the area, including the Kurds, Armenians, Aramaeans, Chaldeans, Turkmens, Cherkess, Turks, Zangians, Nubians, Berbers, Banyans, Haratins, Gnawas, Tauregs, Chechens, Romanis, Ajamis, Moors and Assyrians.
Bahrain being one of the more prominent nations in the news concerning the Arab Spring is home to the Ajamis and Banyans. The Kurdish population is very much concentrated in the regions of Iraq and Syria, whereas the Armenian population extends out into Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, Egypt and Jordan. It is estimated that 15-20% of the Iraqi population is Kurdish and 5% are Turkmen, with sizeable populations of Cherkess, Armenians and Chechens. Lebanon and Jordan’s non-Arab population is estimated to be around 5%, respectively. Kuwait’s expatriate community makes up slightly less than half of the total Kuwaiti population, which played a major role in the protests that erupted in Kuwait. Aramaeans and Chaldeans are estimated to account for more than 100,000 citizens of the Arab population. Many Moroccans, Algerians and Libyans are of Berber descent and genetic testing in Morocco further supports the theory made by Berberists that despite the conquest of North Africa by Arab nations and the predominance of the Arabic language, the population remains ethnically Berber.
Johan Galtung, A Structural Theory of Revolutions. (Rotterdam UP, 1974), Introduction.
Galtung, Op. Cit. 19.
James DeFronzo, Revolutions and Revolutionary Movements. (Boulder, CO: Westview, 2007), 9.
Charles Tilly, The Politics of Collective Violence. (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2003), 55.
Rye Schwartz-Barcott and Carolyn W. Pumphrey, Armed Conflict in Africa. (Lanham, MD: Scarecrow, 2003), 4.
Keithe Krause, “Human Security in World Politics. ”Human Security in World Politics Lecture Notes”, (The Graduate Institute, Geneva, Switzerland 2011) accessed 20 June 2011.
The Islamic Human Rights Commission, “IHRC – Minorities in the Arab World”, Islamic Human Rights Commission [web document] (27 January 2004) <http://www.ihrc.org.uk/show.php?id=989>, accessed 17 July 2011.
CIA World Factbook, “Bahrain”, CIA World Factbook [web page] (2007) <Cia.gov>, Accessed 17 July 2011.
Human Rights Watch, “Syria”, Human Rights Watch [web page] (1996) <http://www.hrw.org/legacy/reports/1996/Syria.htm>, Accessed 17 July 2011.
Armenian Diaspora, “Armenian Population in the World”, [web page] News from Armenia, Events in Armenia, Travel and Entertainment. <http://www.armeniadiaspora.com/population.html>, 17 July 2011.
CIA World Factbook, Op. Cit. Iraq.
CIA The World Fact book, Op. Cit. Jordan.
CIA The World Fact book, Op. Cit. Lebanon.
CIA The World Fact book, Op. Cit. Kuwait.
The Islamic Human Rights Commission, Loc. Cit.
BBC News, “Africa | Q&A: The Berbers.” BBC News, 12 Mar. 2004, 23, <http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/africa/3509799.stm>, accessed 17 July 2011.
N. Harich, et al., Classical Polymorphisms in Berbers from Moyen Atlas (Morocco): Genetics, Geography, and Historical Evidence in the Mediterranean Peoples. (Annals of Human Biology 29.5, 2002) 473-87.
Help us reach our goal! If the fund is successful, all shirts will arrive approximately 14 business days after this fund ends on Jul 16 2016
Carl Knappett examines the way in which people think through material culture stating that the “meaning of an object arises in the articulation of the its pragmatic and significant dimensions.” He uses a methodology that utilizes physical affordance, cultural and conventional constraints, iconicity, as well as indexicality, to exemplify Bonnot’s case study that showed that significance and symbolism of material culture could shift through time and spatiality.
This case study can be applied to that of Palestine, more specifically the right of return, Al ‘Awda, for Palestinian refugees. Within a Western context, old keys may be seen as just that, an old key. There are key museums that possibly seek to present older keys as art as opposed to anthropological artefact, as Gell would suggest. However, for Palestinian refugees, the symbolism of older keys not only represents, but also is synonymous with the right of return to their homeland, which they actively seek. Many Palestinians who fled Palestine during the Nakba held onto their house keys and land deeds, in hopes of a quick return. However, the current political situation has not lent itself to the repatriation of the Palestinian refugees, leading these keys to be passed down from generation to generation.
This generational hand-down of keys is one of the reasons why the image of the key is referred to as mftaH al ‘Awda, or the ‘Key of Return.’ This tradition has brought together generations of Palestinians in the aspiration to return to a homeland some have never seen. The Key of Return acts as a uniting factor amongst Palestinians all over the world, unifying Palestinians under one goal. Palestinians have shifted their political representation, as well as shifted their political aspirations, however, the right of return has been one thing that most Palestinians can agree on, regardless of political affiliation or geographic location.
While the Key of Return is largely a political statement, it can slink into the realm of the arts. Many Palestinian and Palestinian activists, who are artists, use this image in their work. The Key of Return has the ability to be both aesthetically appealing and meaningful, putting into issue Gell’s theory that people are “slaves” to art and aestheticism and that objects considered as “aesthetically superior” suggest symbolism beyond “mundane artefact.” The Key of Return’s beauty lay in the resistance movement, aspirations of return and Palestinian unity. It is only mundane when it is devoid of meaning and history, yet artists use the Key of Return as a socio-political statement in their art. Artists have the ability to evoke more emotion from an image of the key through various elements of their work; artwork of the key can therefore be considered meaningful and aesthetically appealing. However, had the Palestinian right of return not been associated with the image of the key, artists may fail to make the key aesthetically appealing, as it is a historical artefact, but it is the meaning behind the Key of Return that gives the key in artwork its aesthetic appeal.
Hello, I’m Heba. I have sent you this link because I REALLY want to work at your organization because I think your company is pretty awesome– I wouldn’t have sent this link to you otherwise. Below, you will find a list of the reasons I would make a great employee and creative partner. I hope by the end of this post you will learn more about me and give me a chance.
Here it goes:
1. I have a BA in Journalism from Penn State, an MA from Dartmouth College in Liberal Studies and an MA in Middle East and Islamic Studies from the University of Exeter.
2. I’m a fast learner.
I’m very much a hands on learner and I hit the ground running. As well as learning quickly, I’m always looking and finding ways to make work tasks more time efficient.
3. I’m dedicated and focused.
Once I set my mind on a goal, I put my all into achieving it. In 2006, after a mere month of fundraising, I was able to raise almost $1 million in medical supplies for war torn regions. How many other people can say that?
4. I have strong writing and editing skills.
I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. In addition to my BA in Journalism, in which I had a 3.67 GPA in my major, I had a focus in Creative Writing during my first MA at Dartmouth College.
5. I’m willing to move.
I have lived in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Washington, D.C., California, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Ohio, Switzerland, the U.K., Jordan, Palestine and Israel. I’m a professional at packing and moving. I’m more than willing to move for the right opportunity.
6. I can roll with the punches.
I consider myself a perfectionist, but I understand that things can’t be perfect all the time. Sometimes, you have to do the best you can with what you have. I can handle all sorts of circumstances that come my way. Kind of like when I can’t find Collection or Gabrini eyeliner anywhere and I have to make due with Almay.
7. I’m organized.
Really, I am. I even won an MVP award from my time working at the GAP because I was the most organized employee.
8. I can stay calm in a crisis.
Accidents happen and sometimes they’re unavoidable. Someone misses a deadline, a package wasn’t delivered on time, products break, people get hurt– Life happens. Working with kids between the ages of 5-17 has taught me to stay calm in all sorts of crazy scenarios. And if you’ve ever worked with kids, you know how crazy things can get.
9. I love to laugh.
Laughing and making others laugh is a great talent of mine. I’m not signing up for any open mic nights or doing any stand-up comedy acts, but I can find the funny in the ordinary.
10. I like to read.
In elementary school, I set the record for the most books read during National Reading Month. You can always find me with a book in hand or an article on screen.
11. I live online and stay on top of all the new trends.
Most of my day is spent online digging through the mountains of information, videos, photos and such. I’m always on the lookout for the next big thing and am always the first one of my friends to identify viral material and trends.
12. The world inspires me.
Everywhere I look, everyone I see, inspires me in some sort of way. Everyone I meet and encounter leaves a mark on me and inspires me to make the world a better place.
13. I’m well-versed in social media.
Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Snapchat, Periscope, Instagram, Pinterest– I love it all.
14. I’m a realistic optimist.
I try to see the best in everyone and in every situation, but my expectations are always realistic. After all, Rome wasn’t built in a day.
15. I can work with a team, as well as on my own.
Being a journalist, I’ve learned to work as part of a team. Especially when working as an editor, much of the position is dependent on working with others. Working in groups is great because everyone brings a different perspective to the project at hand. But, I have also been a teacher and have had to take responsibility for creating curriculums all on my own. Working on my own is also great because I get to see how far I can push myself.
16. I have experience managing volunteers.
Remember that huge fundraiser I talked about earlier? Well, I had recruited and managed the efforts of more than 50 volunteers in under a week’s time. I was responsible for training the volunteers, managing their schedules, communicating their needs and supervising their delegated responsibilities.
17. I’m an email wizard.
Any of my former students can tell you that I respond to emails as soon as I possibly can, sometimes within minutes.
18. I’m creative.
I dabble in the arts and always have new and innovative ideas running through my head.
19. I have lots of interests.
I like fashion, desserts, poems, coffee, bright colors, food, photography, art, literature, movies, music, naps, decorating, calligraphy, libraries and spending time with my friends.
20. I’m great at conflict resolution.
I’m an American-Palestinian-Arab-Muslim-woman with Israeli citizenship. If that doesn’t make me an expert problem solver, I don’t know what does.
21. I’m good at stuff.
I’m a good listener and a good friend. Some other things I’m good at include, but are not limited to: eyeliner application, fashion styling, tea brewing and reality check administrating. I’m also a pretty great actress in life more so than in art.
22. I have experience writing blogs, fiction, nonfiction, research papers, listicles, essays, executive reports, newsletters and more.
I can do it all because I have done it all. Writing, of all sorts, is what I do and it is what makes me happy.
23. I’m confident in my abilities to speak and relate to different types of communicators.
Not everyone communicates in the same way. I have learned to adjust my tone, vocabulary and methods to fit the person I am speaking to.
24. I’m proficient in Word and other software.
Word, Adobe, ProTools, PCs, Macs, FinalCut and so much more.
25. I’m pretty good at evaluating situations.
I’ve always been good at reading a situation. I’m pretty observant and I can usually tell when someone is sad, happy, irritated, excited or any other range of emotion.
26. My creative writing pieces have been published in several magazines.
You can check out my published writing by clicking on the Portfolio link at the top of the page.
27. I’m always looking to improve.
Whether it’s getting a new haircut or trying to learn a new language, I’m always trying to improve myself, both inside and out.
28. I can dish it and I can take it… In a respectful manner, of course.
As a writer, criticism can be tough. I put my heart and soul into my work and I know how disheartening harsh criticism can be. I’ve grown a thick skin over the years and can take criticism pretty well. I believe that criticism should always be constructive and when I give constructive criticism to an employee, I am always respectful and appreciative for their hard work. Constructive criticism should always help the other person improve their work and boost their self-confidence.
29. I take pride in my work.
But just the right amount of pride. I’m not cocky, I promise.
30. I want to plant some roots.
I’ve moved around a lot and I’ve had a lot of different type of jobs. Now, I’m ready to settle down and really grow within a company.
31. I’m a coordination queen.
That goes for both my outfits and my workload. I’m all about the time management skills.
32. I’m passionate about human rights, education, social justice, prison reform, women’s health, politics and life.
33. I’m always prepared.
I watch a lot of scary movies. As a result, I’m now prepared for any and all scenarios, at all times. If the zombie apocalypse ever happens, come with me because I have a plan.
34. I like to bake.
I love baking and all things sweet. I also believe that sharing is caring, so, if you hire me you will be sure to have a taste of the sweet life.
35. I smell nice.
I wear perfume even when I don’t leave the house, because I deserve to smell nice. I’m also super hygienic and carry around hand-sanitizer that doubles as lotion. It’s kind of my thing.
36. I love animals.
Well, most animals. I have a fear of geese and swans, but other than that, I love animals. One of my dreams is to open up an animal sanctuary so I can love and hang out with my animal friends all day.
37. I’m a feminist.
I believe everyone should be a feminist and we should all be working towards equality and justice for women.
38. I make 11:11 wishes for good measure.
It can’t hurt, right? I’ll make a wish for you too.
39. My life is a meme.
Anyone who knows me, knows that if there is a one in a million chance of something strange happening to someone, it’s going to be me. And most days people get a kick out of it. Me included.
40. I want to work and have fun doing it.
I want my work to be meaningful and I want to enjoy doing it. I’m not looking to clock in and clock out. I want to make a difference and improve people’s lives. I may not be able to change the world, but I certainly can change a tiny corner of it– even if it is one person.
It’s like they [Confucius] say: Choose a job you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.
Job posted by: Pioneers Baccalaureate School
As noted by Rashid Khalidi, the term “Middle East” has become a source of contention and is seen as an unsatisfactory term to describe the region we now know as the Middle East and North Africa. Khalidi is correct in being sceptical of the term “Middle East,” as its definition is unclear. The World Bank uses the term “Middle East and North Africa” which encompasses the nations of Algeria, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, West Bank and Gaza, as well as Yemen. The United Nations Statistics Division, however, refers to the countries of North Africa separately from the countries of “West Asia,” which includes the Gulf countries, the Levant, as well as Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey. While the United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Middle East Media Research Institute, the Central Intelligence Agency, the UN Refugee Agency, as well as Human Rights Watch all have slightly different definitions of what countries encompass the Middle East or the Middle East and North Africa, the larger questions are: Why do these organizations feel the need to define this region and what is the need to define this region?
Hasan Salaam, an Egyptian-American lyricist made a simple and important observation in some of his lyrics stating, “No such thing as the Middle East… No matter where you stand there’s always something to the east of you.” The definition of the “Middle East” and the terms that are used to describe North Africa, the Gulf, and West Asia have changed throughout history depending on which nations are the current superpowers. It seems that the European and American bodies that set th term “Middle East” into place, wanted to create Europe and North America as the centre of the world, in which everything must be in relation to these regions, and that the terms “Middle East” and “the West” are all relative.
The “West” has consistently defined the “East” in their own terms, in order to better define themselves and in order to mark “their” territory. When the “West” occupied the “Middle East,” it occupied the languages and the minds of the people in that region because, now, in Arabic the region is referred to as al-Sharq al-Awsat, or the Middle East. The “West” defined the borders of the “Middle East,” the same borders that the “Middle Eastern” countries fight to defend despite the end of colonialism. They have let the “West” define who is seen as friend and who is seen as foe. By doing this, the “Middle East” continues to be the pawns of the “West” and still unknowingly caters to the “West’s” notions of how the “Middle East” should be defined.