Citizen Action Monitor

Palestinian and Israeli women gather in Arab village for Conference against the Occupation

“Practicing Civil Disobedience” was Conference theme

No 435 Posted by fw, March 13, 2012

“Banners at the conference center showed slogans like “End the occupation” and “Tear down the wall” and expressed support for Hana Shalabi, the Palestinian political prisoner on hunger strike for more than three weeks.”

Beit Ommar Organizes Second Women’s Conference Against the Occupation March 12, 2012

On Saturday, March 10th, 2012, more than 400 Palestinian women, supported by Israeli and international activists, gathered in the village of Beit Ummar for the second women’s organizing conference of popular resistance to the occupation. [Beit Ummar is is an Arab town located eleven kilometers northwest of Hebron. It’s the home of the Palestine Solidarity Project and the Center for Freedom and Justice.]

Women of all ages arrived in the village from various parts of the West Bank, and were joined by both Palestinians and Israelis who had taken the trip from Israel. After a cup of tea or coffee, registration and social mingling, close to 400 women found their seats in the main hall.

The topic for this conference was “Practicing Civil Obedience”. Banners at the conference center showed slogans like “End the occupation” and “Tear down the wall” and expressed support for Hana Shalabi, the Palestinian political prisoner on hunger strike for more than three weeks.

Representatives from different groups were present, at the conference and gave updates of the current work and activities being done by women against the occupation. Translation in Hebrew, Arabic and English was available for all conference participants. The conference opened with a moment of silence in a mark of respect for the dead after Israel’s recent bombing of Gaza.

Introductory speeches were held by Mrs. Ebtesam Zidan, Chair of the Palestinian Women’s Struggle Committee Union and Ilana Hammerman, founder of the Lo Metsayat Group. The conference continued with a panel discussion, discussing civil disobedience initiatives. The Israeli lawyer Lea Tzemel gave a good talk from the legal point of view, giving a harsh criticizing of the Israeli legal system.

After lunch, professor Nurit Elhanan-Peled gave a speech about The Apartheid Report, arguing that Israel is in fact an apartheid state. Another panel discussion started, discussing non-violent resistance where 15-year-old Rand Waleed Abdul Razzak raised her strong voice on behalf of the young people, telling about settlers with weapons taking over their houses with the help of the soldiers, and daily arrests, both violations making life so unlivable.

Conference organizers did not overlook the importance of music in lifting the spirit of these activists. Check out Israeli singer Rona Konen’s swinging rendition of My Prison by the Sea. Clearly a love song, the lyrics, which follow the two videos, are wide open to interpretation because we never know for certain who or what the “you” is the object of her love. And is the “prison by the sea” Israel, the Occupied Territories or, quite possibly, both? The line “Everyone knows this isn’t right” leaps off the screen.

My Prison by the Sea – The video is okay but the audio quality is not the greatest.


My Prison by the Sea – Another version of the same song — the audio quality is excellent but the video is limited to a still photo of Rona

My Prison by the SeaLyrics

This was never meant to happen like this
Not that I had some sort of plan
But I swear it wasn’t meant to happen like this
Save me from the hurricane this door can’t take the wind
Not that I have some sort of plan
But please save me from this hurricane if you can

Days go by and I forget what you look like
Let me out of this prison by the sea
Days go by and your voice is so distant
But you’re the only one who has the key
To my prison by the sea

Every time I turn away I seem to miss a train
Everyone knows I’m not to blame
But every time I turn I miss a train
Teach me how to live without you but never leave my sight
Everyone knows this isn’t right
God help me survive this night

Days go by and I forget what you look like
Let me out of this prison by the sea
Days go by and your voice is so distant
But you’re the only one who has the key
To my prison by the sea

Fair Use Notice: This blog, Citizen Action Monitor, may contain copyrighted material that may not have been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material, published without profit, is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues. It is published in accordance with the provisions of the 2004 Supreme Court of Canada ruling and its six principle criteria for evaluating fair dealing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: