Paris

Nov. 16th, 2015 09:57 pm
ceebeegee: (Default)
 So Friday. Along with the rest of the world I was obviously horrified and sickened and saddened by the news I started picking up online around five o'clock.  I went over to the woman for whom I work on Fridays and said "have you seen the news? Do you know what's going on in Paris?" We both started monitoring news web sites. I remember when just 66 dead (CNN) seemed like a ridiculous exaggeration. Absolutely horrifying. My brother's in-laws (he is married to a Parisienne) are all safe, thank God. 

Friday was a little crazy for me. I was struggling with my reaction to this horrific news situation but I also had a soccer game with my corporate team. I was actually really immersed into that and was grateful for the escape from the sadness. After the game I remembered again what had happened in Paris and immediately grabbed my phone to see what (new) news there was. Then I was asked to join another game which went really well (in both games I was the lead scorer). Again, I was very grateful for the escape.  I'll talk more about that later but it was a strange juxtaposition of feeling like a citizen of the world, compelled to partake of the world's tragedies, and feeling like a very privileged American, who can forget about stuff like this with frivolous activities.
 
The next day I had classes in the morning and then I had to hop on the bus to get home for a very brief trip so I could partake of my high school reunion. (Again, more about that later but it was a lot of fun.) But on the bus ride home I noticed two things--first, a lot of people were changing their profile picture on Facebook to add the tricouleur overlay. (Which I also wanted to do but was unable to manage via cell phone.) The other thing was that a lot of posts coming out about additional attacks that had happened in other locations by ISIS (i.e., Daesh), in Kenya and in Beirut. And it is obviously very important to point out this as well--for whatever reason the media didn't seem to push these stories as hard so I was unaware of them. That is absolutely worth discussing.

But there was also a lot of finger-pointing and a lot of pretty harsh statements (I saw one really offputting article on HuffPo today) about how racist people must be if they cared more about Paris than about these other attacks. I don't really take it personally because I know that these things are meant as a response to a trend and not to me personally but for the record I will say--I speak French. I have extended French family. I have a lot of French ancestry on my mother's side, and I was raised to be proud of that. And perhaps most importantly and most obviously: I have been to Paris. I daresay a decent number of Americans have. I have never been to Beirut, nor to Kenya. If I had visited those place, the attacks would've been much more on my radar and I would've had a response to them. If somebody had attacked Tangiers or Casablanca, two cities where I visited--in Tangiers's case I've been there many, many times –– I would've been just as horrified. I think it's a little ridiculous to beancount and micromanage people's heartfelt reactions to tragedy. Yes, if this were a perfect world we would always respond the same way to tragedies near and tragedies far, but right now that's not the way the human heart works. We tend to respond to those tragedies which are closest to us or to which we have some kind of personal connection. Again, along with everything else, I have visited Paris. It's a beautiful city--lots of history, gorgeous architecture, the world's most popular musical takes place there. *Shrug* I feel that that accounts for the reaction on Saturday and I'm not sure there's anything to be gained by trying to shame people into reacting to something else. It honestly strikes me as a weird version of the Oppression Olympics. Just let people react honestly and stop trying to police their grief unless it's overtly problematic.
 
I was also disappointed to read an article today that included a long series of comments about how stupid and silly people were to, say, add the tricouleur overlay to their FB profile pics. The way I saw it was--after 9-11, I was devastated, like everyone else in NYC, DC and the rest of the country. Shortly thereafter, people started forwarding the emails (remember our lives before social media?) showing how the rest of the world responded. I saw pictures of candlelight vigils from people all over Europe. And the Middle East--including Palestinians (that did quite a lot to me, after seeing that horrible video of Palestinians dancing around and handing out candy after hearing about 9-11). Country after country, culture after culture were standing up, saying we stand with you. We reject this. Nous sommes tous Americains. That mattered to me. That made me feel better. It comforted me, standing in my apartment, wailing to the ceiling, asking God how could you do this? What is the point of all that death? I wanted to send the same message back to our French friends. This is wrong. We stand with you. We are your friends. What is the harm? If someone wants to post a picture of themselves in front of the Tour Eiffel, why is that a problem? If someone mis-translates a statement of solidarity, who cares? You know what they meant. I just don't get the need to sneer at any effort that isn't perfect.

Aujour'dhui, nous sommes tous francais. Nous sommes avec vous. Nous vous aimons. Nous sommes vos amis. Nous marchons avec vous. Nous surmonterons.
ceebeegee: (Default)
Hamas has won in the Palestinian elections, which is bad news for the peace process in Israel. Hamas has declared in no uncertain terms that they hate Israel, and will not recognize it, and they have claimed responsibility for many suicide bombings during the intifadah. I had such hope after Arafat died--I truly believed the Palestinian people wanted peace and Abbas could make it happen.

My friend djeber says it nicely:

Here are some thoughts: the Palestinians were given a choice, and now they've shown the world what they stand for. I don't care how corrupt Fatah was or how many schools Hamas built. None of that changes the fact that the Palestians have put into power a fundamentalist, terrorist organization dedicated to the destruction of Israel. As such, I now just hope that they give Israel an excuse to wipe them off the planet. And if some civilians get caught in the crossfire, well, they put Hamas in power, so now they can reap the consequences. I won't lose any sleep over it.

Well, at least we (what is, Israel) know what we're dealing with--the gloves are off and Israel can continue to build that wall. Jesus. Yay for democracy?
ceebeegee: (Me)
Muslim scholar issue anti-terrorism fatwa.

American Muslim scholars issued an edict Thursday condemning religious extremism and calling terrorists "criminals, not `martyrs.'"

..."There is no justification in Islam for extremism or terrorism," the scholars wrote in the edict, called a fatwa. "Targeting civilians' life and property through suicide bombings or any other method of attack is haram — or forbidden."
ceebeegee: (Default)
Despicable.

Way to murder a baby there, Anonymous Oh-So-Brave Palestinian. Way to target not only civilians, but civilians celebrating one of their most solemn holidays. Have fun in Hell. Hope you brought your flipflops.
ceebeegee: (Default)
Yay! Hateful, hate-filled disgusting white trash murderer captured in North Carolina. Whoo hoo!
ceebeegee: (Default)
Jesus.

I'm surfing the net and come across the official site for the documentary One Day in September, about which I wrote months before. I came across this little tidbit:

To Palestinians Black September was September 1970 when King Hussein of Jordan took up arms against the unruly Palestinian militias based in his country, killing over 4,000 and expelling the remainder. Taking its name from this event the terrorist organisation Black September initially concentrated on revenge against the Jordanian regime. In Cairo on 28th September 1971 Black September assassins shot dead Wasfi Tell, the Jordanian Prime Minister, afterwards kneeling down beside their victim to lick up his blood.

Good. God. Savages. Unbe-fuckin'-lievable. They licked his blood. And these people were hailed by their countrymen as heroes after the Munich slaughter.

I feel sick. I can't believe I share a species with these animals.
ceebeegee: (Default)
Five suicide bombings in 48 hours.

This, so close to another possible peace agreement, proves more than anything how Palestinian militants--who, let's not forget enjoy the support of 60-70% of the "civilian" population so they are fairly representative--don't. Want. Peace. They don't want it. They don't want to coexist with Israel. They want to wipe it out.

And not just in the Middle East but everywhere. (Remember last July 4, with the guy who had to come over to America specifically to kill Jews over here? Nice. So it really has nothing to do with "Palestine"--it's just about hating Jews. Savage.) It doesn't matter that the Palestinians have a higher standard of living in Israel than almost anywhere else (certainly better than in Jordan). It doesn't matter that for all their bellicose rhetoric, the other ostensibly pro-Palestinian Arab countries have done nothing--nothing--to actually help the Palestinians in any meaningful way (they don't take them in, they don't try to moderate the two sides)--they do nothing but urge on the Palestinians in their terrorism. All that matters is their stupid, pathetic pride which is based on nothing in the last millennium and a half; their terrible, sad pride that's so mightily offended because Israel has handily beaten them in every war and gained ground; Israel has a higher standard of living; Israel has a much higher literacy rate. The only thing the Palestinians are good at is murdering civilians.

Just shaking my head over here. They're savages. The only way they can prove otherwise is to start negotiating in earnest and that means rooting out and destroying the militants. Which they won't do. Because they don't want peace.

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