Palestinian women sitting in the middle of their demolished houses in Rafah. Rafah Today.
I've also been working on updating the Gaza section of a (fabulous) travel guide published by the Bethlehem-based Alternative Tourism Group. Its one of those kafkaesque type experiences, an exercise in the absurd.
I write about all of the wonderful experiences in Gaza, where to stay, what to do, and of course, an update on the humanitarian and political situation; yet as I write I realize in the back of my mind no one can GET IN to Gaza in the first place, unless they have a Gazan, Israeli-issued Palestinian ID or are UN staff or diplomats....
Its the same sort of experience I go through when I read about various restaurants or travel agents in the West Bank or East Jerusalem in the al-Quds daily paper: its not physically possible, yet everyone likes to pretend it is. I think its part of trying to psychologically imagine create a reality other than the one imposed upon us.
My musings on current events, current projects, current anxieties and current delights.
I started this under the Bush regime when any grain of sand thrown into the gears of the over-reaching imperial state seemed worthwhile.
I have worked to elect more and better Democrats -- and to hammer the shit out of them once we get them in office so they do the things their constituents want and need. It's a big job.
I have endured the dashed potential for a more transformational regime under Obama. The man has made himself an accomplice in the imperial crimes of his predecessor as well as committing his own. He has also almost certainly been the most progressive president most of us will live to see. I fear we'll look back on his years in office with mild gratitude for a respite from national leadership that was habitually stupid and vicious, as well as wrong.
Visitors here will find a lot of commentary on books I'm reading. I am very intentionally reading intensively offline these days. When it feels hard to find direction, it's time to learn something new.
I'm a progressive political activist who runs trails and climbs mountains whenever any are available. I've had the privilege to work for justice in Central America (Nicaragua and El Salvador), in South Africa, in the fields of California with the United Farmworkers Union, and in the cities and schools of my own country. I'm a Christian of the Episcopalian flavor; we think and argue a lot. For work, I've done a bit of it all: run an old fashioned switch-board; remodeled buildings and poured concrete; edited and published periodicals, reports and books; and organized for electoral campaigns. I am currently an independent consultant to organizations seeking "help when you have to make a fight."