Statements and Press Releases
The Perfect Storm: Civil rights in the era of Trump, Netanyahu, and Abbas
Eve Spangler on
Originally published by Mondoweiss
Having returned just this week from a 17 day human rights trip to Israel and Palestine (my 10th in as many years), I conclude that the best description of the emerging situation is this: a perfect storm is coming, all the most destructive forces aligning to produce (possibly violent) change and uncertainty early in the Trump administration.
Of course the Israeli/Palestinian situation has always been difficult: a product of mutually exclusive demands and massive power imbalances. Defying the advice of such early cultural Zionists as Buber, Arendt, and Einstein, the political Zionists, almost from the very start, were dedicated to creating an ethno-religiously exclusively Jewish state in Palestine. This required the “transfer” of Palestinians out of the path of the Zionist project. Palestinians, on the other hand, while living peacefully…
The Back Story
It has been said that home is where the heart is. Home is remembered as the place where one flourished and is remembered with joy; when one has lost their home, that joy is mixed with an ever-present sadness and longing. In 1915, a ten-year-old Osanna Panian left home and escaped what is now known as The Armenian Genocide; she survived and walked over the mountains into Iran and life as a refugee. Was she just lucky that she survived what Winston Churchill later called the first holocaust of the twentieth century? Or was it Providence?
Osanna is the Latin version of the Greek word hosanna. It’s a popular girls’ name in the Eastern Orthodox tradition, but it is also a liturgical word with Hebrew and Aramaic roots meaning “Save me!” or “Help me!” When sung in the liturgy on Palm Sunday, this beseeching cry has the feel of a profound prayer for deliverance. Osanna Panian was given this liturgical name because she was born on Palm Sunday in 1905. Little did anyone know…