sister city

Kathy Kelly: Report from Rafah

Here's a report from Kathy Kelly about the situation in Israel/Palestine. Included is information about Rafah, Olympia's Sister City on the Gaza Strip. Kathy Kelly also asks what size tunnel it would take to transfer weapons from the US to Israel - weapons that are manufactured in the US - weapons that are sold and profited from by people in the US.

Additionally, I would like to ask for your opinion on the ethics of deriving financial profit from the sale of weapons. Do you think or feel that it is right and/or acceptable to make money from the sale of military hardware, and weapons used in war? You can probably guess where I stand on this issue. (mm hmm Boeing?) Read on:

How Do People Keep Going?
By Kathy Kelly

People have asked me, since I returned from Gaza, how people manage? How do they keep going after being traumatized by bombing and punished by a comprehensive state of siege? I wonder myself. I know that whether the loss of life is on the Gazan or the Israeli side of the border, bereaved survivors feel the same pain and misery. On both sides of the border, I think children pull people through horrendous and horrifying nightmares. Adults squelch their panic, cry in private, and strive to regain semblances of normal life, wanting to carry their children through a precarious ordeal.

And the children want to help their parents. In Rafah, the morning of January 18th, when it appeared there would be at least a lull in the bombing, I watched children heap pieces of wood on plastic tarps and then haul their piles toward their homes. The little ones seemed proud to be helping their parents recover from the bombing. I'd seen just this happy resilience among Iraqi children, after the 2003 Shock and Awe bombing, as they found bricks for their parents to use for a makeshift shelter in a bombed military base.

The Olympia- Rafah Mural Project - Arts Walk Celebration - Tile Painting and Performance!

Come and paint a tile that will be permanently displayed in the Olympia-Rafah Mural on the Olympia Labor Temple building. Add your voice for peace, in the form of a painted ceramic olive leaf, which will be one of many leaves of a giant painted olive tree. Visually express solidarity with our sister city of Rafah, in the Gaza Strip, and your desire for peace in the middle east -- no experience necessary!

Come Check us out! We'll be in the Alley between Last Word Books and Quality Burrito on 4th Ave. in Downtown Olympia on Friday April 25th, between 5-9pm, and on Saturday, April 26th between 12pm and 4pm.

Don't miss an exciting performance by Olympia's own Holly Gwinn Graham, and other talented local performers in the Alley by the Free Wall behind the Capital Theater to celebrate the Olympia- Rafah Mural Project on Friday evening at 7pm.

For questions or volunteer opportunities, please contact 754-3998 or

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