Middle East Peace

Get on the Right Side of History

by mgopin on September 24, 2011 · 0 comments

(A version of this essay was recently published in The Jerusalem Report.)

Across the world in the last 40 years politically organized religious forces have played an increasingly important role in national politics. From India to Indonesia, from Lebanon to Israel, from the United States to Russia, organized religion has increased its impact on politics.

We are also aware of the frightening rise of very violent religion, expressed through terror groups. For this reason, it is easy to misunderstand the relationship between religion on the one hand and between states and ethnic groups and their very secular interests, on the other hand.

Precisely because so many millions of people care about religion, religion has become an essential tool of secular state and ethnic interests. Indeed, what may seem to be a religious issue often turns out to be very secular state interests. Missing this relationship, it becomes easy

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I love Radiohead for their profound lyrics and powerful music. Earlier this month, Radiohead made available a track that’s a tribute to the late Harry Patch, who was believed to be the last living survivor of World War I. Patch, pictured below, died on July 25 of this year.

Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke was inspired to write the song — titled “Harry Patch (In Memory Of)” — after he heard a 2005 BBC interview with Patch. Yorke, quoted in a Wall Street Journal article about the song, said: “The way he talked about war had a profound effect on me…It became the inspiration for a song that we happened to record a few weeks before his death.”

Yorke used some of Patch’s words from that 2005 interview in the lyrics of the song:

I am the only one that got through
The others died where ever they fell
It was

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Problems & SOLUTIONS in Akko (Acre)

by mgopin on October 14, 2008 · 2 comments

Riots between Arabs and Jews have plagued the Israeli town of Akko for days now. There has been outrageous behavior and frightening experiences for everyone. The facts of what really happened will be contested, as is expected in this ongoing conflict of Arabs and Jews. But…

John Lennon once said,
“Well I tell them there’s no problem, only solutions.”

With this in mind, here is something going on in Akko that unfortunately, you won’t read about in the newspapers:

“Peace Sukkah in Akko/Sulha Tent
Thursday, October 16, 12:00
Tentative meeting place: Outside Akko Theater
(please contact Orly for a final location 054-210-3139)

Join us in promoting reconciliation among Akko residents. 
If you want to see the crisis as an opportunity for a meeting, getting closer and reform, join us in a conversation, in creating a space which allows sharing of pain and hopes for reconciliation between Palestinians and Jews.

Activity …

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What is *Reality*? – Welcome to the Sulha

by mgopin on September 29, 2008 · 4 comments

In the context of major global conflicts, where everyone is analyzing what is right or wrong, black or white, left or right, it has occured to me that the definition of reality sometimes gets lost in the mix.

Here are few definitons of reality occording to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary

‘Reality’

1: the quality or state of being real

2 a (1): a real event, entity, or state of affairs reality(2): the totality of real things and events realityb: something that is neither derivative nor dependent but exists necessarily

Imagine for just a moment if headlines coming out of the Middle East read like this tomorrow….

Today thousands of Arabs, Jews, Israelis,
Palestinians, Seculars and Religious, Christians, Muslims,
Druze, young and old gathered to dance, to cry, to share, to
laugh, to work, to play and ultimately, to live together for
three days just a few miles outside of

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Tzipi Livni seems headed to victory in the Kadima primaries, and it is possible now that, instead of calling for general elections, which would favor the Right and Netanyahu, she may try to form a new government. Who is she and what does she stand for? There is Tzipi Livni an aspiring Prime Minister, and then there is the person who would actually lead. Who is she and what would she do? I am wondering with Roni Sofer’s assessments and predictions are accurate because they seem more hardline than her actions as Foreign Minister. It is time to study Tzipi Livni.

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