Monday, April 18, 2011

  • Monday, April 18, 2011
  • Elder of Ziyon
Two weeks ago, a new martyr was created. Juliano Mer-Khamis, who ran a drama club and theater for the youth of Jenin, was murdered by the very people he was said to be trying to help.

Condolences came from all over the world talking about how Mer Khamis and his mother, Arna, who created the theater were a ray of hope in Jenin, where they were teaching the young people there about how peace is better than bullets.

In reality, the theater was not only a failure, but its original members spawned an almost unbelievable amount of terror.

From The Globe and Mail, April 20, 2009 in an article that is sympathetic to the theater (no longer online, a copy is here):

The scene is 1989, the second year of the Palestinian intifada. Stone- throwing protests against Israeli occupation have spread throughout Gaza and the West Bank. In Jenin, the youthful protesters are joined by older militants who carry out armed attacks on Israeli soldiers and settlers. The Jenin camp´s schools are closed; its children have nowhere to turn.

Enter Arna Mer, a 59-year-old Jewish peace activist who had been born in a northern collective farm, fought as an 18-year-old to create the state of Israel, joined the Israeli Communist Party and married an Arab-Israeli activist. Since 1967 she had protested against the Israeli occupation and, by 1989, was determined to help the children of Jenin.

On the top floor of a house owned by a local widow name Samira Zubeidi, Ms. Mer opens a children´s drama school. Aided by her actor son, Juliano Mer Khamis, she forms a small troupe and provides an artistic and educational outlet for dozens of children, including Ms. Zubeidi´s sons, Zakariya and Daoud. For her efforts, Ms. Mer was awarded an alternative Nobel prize in 1993 and the prize money went to create a proper school facility.

The school would survive Ms. Mer´s death from cancer in 1996, and Mr. Mer Khamis´s departure – until 2002, that is, and the violence of the second intifada. It was destroyed when Israeli bulldozers levelled a section of the camp.

That´s when Mr. Mer Khamis would return and make an extraordinary film called Arna´s Children, using old and new video footage to show what had happened to those original young children his mother had nurtured.

Thirteen years after joining Ms. Mer´s company of children, all but one of the original troupe were dead: One had been so affected by the killing of a young girl, he launched a suicide attack on the Israeli town of Hadera; two had perished in the Battle of Jenin, killed in the theatre school´s rehearsal hall from where they had fired on advancing Israeli forces. One had become the Jenin leader of the al- Aqsa Martyrs´ Brigades militant group and was hunted down and killed.

Only Zakariya Zubeidi had survived. Imprisoned for throwing rocks, and again for throwing Molotov cocktails, he had been released after the 1993 Oslo Accords and joined the Palestinian police. He left the force, as a sergeant, disillusioned, he said, by the corruption he encountered.

In 2002, his mother and brother were killed when Israeli forces moved into Jenin camp. Once again, Mr. Zubeidi picked up a weapon.

He survived the intense battle in Jenin and, somewhat reluctantly, succeeded his friend as the leader of the al-Aqsa militants.

Mr. Zubeidi, his face still badly marked by a bomb of his own making, said in an interview last week that he did not approve of suicide missions, only military attacks on Israeli soldiers and settlers. High on Israel´s most wanted list, however, he somehow survived several assassination attempts.

In 2006, Mr. Zubeidi approached Juliano Mer Khamis, his old drama tutor and, by that time, an award-winning filmmaker, and urged him to reopen the theatre school.

Mr. Zubeidi, by this time a husband and father, said he wanted the next generation to find a better way to express itself.

I was fed up with the fighting,” he said. “It didn´t get us [Palestinians] anywhere.”
Arna's school had not resulted in a single original student supporting pacifism. Every single one of the original kids there became a militant.

It is hard to imagine that any random classroom of Palestinian Arab kids in the West Bank, or even in Gaza, would have such a stunning record of churning out terrorists.

Juliano's film, instead of castigating what was by any measure a catastrophic failure of the vision of his mother, romanticized it by claiming that Israeli measures are so bad that every single child was driven into terror, despite his mother's efforts.

From Mother Jones' tribute to Juliano and description of his film:

The film, shot over almost two decades, is set in the Palestinian refugee camp of Jenin, a place where Israeli bombs and tanks are inescapable realities of childhood. In the first half of the film, we are introduced to Juliano's mother, Arna, a Jewish Israeli who set up the theater group in Jenin in the late 1980s. Arna is bald from chemotherapy, yet devotes her dying days to her playful and talented little actors, helping them express their anger and grief through art and drama.

Years pass. Arna succumbs to cancer, the 1994 Oslo peace accords unravel, the theater program shuts down, the Israeli occupation hardens, and the 2000 second intifada erupts. On April 3, 2002, the Israeli army invades Jenin, killing more than 50 Palestinians and destroying hundreds of homes.

And many of "Arna's children" have now become militiamen and suicide fighters.

In the second half of the film, Juliano returns to Jenin to find out how and why this has happened. We see that it's not mainly about anti-Semitic brainwashing—Jenin residents adore Arna and Juliano despite their Jewish background and Israeli nationality. Rather, Arna's children have chosen "martyrdom" because of the searing horrors they've witnessed with their own eyes.

How can a youth program, supposedly meant to foster "peace" but that has a 0% success rate of creating peaceful people, be considered so wonderful?

Arna Mer-Chamis, if she really was trying to teach peace, was a spectacular failure. It is not possible for her to have been more of a failure. The last person alive from her kids, who now claims to want peace, didn't say he learned the idea from the Mer-Chamises - he just says that he was simply "fed up with fighting."

Which brings up the question: did the theater really promote peace in any sense at all?

Now Juliano Mer-Chamis, who created an entire movie trying to soft-pedal the terrorism of his mother's proteges, has become victim to something the leftists pretend doesn't exist - Palestinian Arab hate. His film, rather than showing the inherent culture of violence and hate that laughs at the idea of words replacing bullets, was a prophetic view of what his own end would look like.

No one is asking the question - if Mer Chamis was murdered by Palestinian Arabs for no good reason, then perhaps the terrorism that he justified in his movie is also for no reason, and not because of anything Israel does?

Too bad that those who watch the film have no capacity to look beyond the rosy, romantic notion of Palestinian Arab peacefulness and see the simple facts: the Palestinian Arab kids who were exposed to Western values became terrorists anyway. The same kind of terrorists that killed Juliano himself.

(h/t Silke, Giulio Meotti)

EoZTV Podcast

Podcast URL

Subscribe in podnovaSubscribe with FeedlyAdd to netvibes
addtomyyahoo4Subscribe with SubToMe

follow me

search eoz

Loading...

Recent posts from other blogs

comments

Speaking

Follow by Email

Contact

elder -at- elderofziyon dot com

translate

E-Book

For $18 donation








Sample Text

EoZ's Most Popular Posts Ever

Hasbys!

Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون
This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 11 years and over 23,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.

Donate!

Monthly subscription:
Payment options

One time donation:

Tweets

Compliments

The Jerusalem Report:"A seemingly indefatigable one-man operation, armed only with a computer, chutzpa and stamina."

Algemeiner: "Fiercely intelligent and erudite"

Omri: "Elder is one of the best established and most respected members of the jblogosphere..."
Atheist Jew:"Elder of Ziyon probably had the greatest impression on me..."
Soccer Dad: "He undertakes the important task of making sure that his readers learn from history."
AbbaGav: "A truly exceptional blog..."
Judeopundit: "[A] venerable blog-pioneer and beloved patriarchal figure...his blog is indispensable."
Oleh Musings: "The most comprehensive Zionist blog I have seen."
Carl in Jerusalem: "...probably the most under-recognized blog in the JBlogsphere as far as I am concerned."
Aussie Dave: "King of the auto-translation."
The Israel Situation:The Elder manages to write so many great, investigative posts that I am often looking to him for important news on the PalArab (his term for Palestinian Arab) side of things."
Tikun Olam: "Either you are carelessly ignorant or a willful liar and distorter of the truth. Either way, it makes you one mean SOB."
Mondoweiss commenter: "For virulent pro-Zionism (and plain straightforward lies of course) there is nothing much to beat it."
Didi Remez: "Leading wingnut"

Interesting Blogs

Categories

Abbas liar Academic fraud administrivia al-Qaeda algeria American Jews Amnesty analysis anti-semitism apartheid arab refugees Arafat archaeology art ASHREI B'tselem bahrain bbc BDS BDSFail Bedouin Beitunia book review breaking the silence Cardozo Chanukah Christians conspiracy theories Cyprus Daphne Anson Davis report DCI-P double standards Egypt Elder gets results ElderToons Electronic Intifada EoZNews eoztv Erekat EU Euro-Mid Observer Fake Civilians 2014 Fatah featured fisking flotilla free gaza freedom of press palestinian style future martyr gaza Gaza Platform George Galloway gideon levy gilad shalit gisha Goldstone Report Good news Grapel Guardian gunness hamas Hamas war crimes hasbara Hasby 2014 Hasby 2016 Hebron helen thomas hezbollah history Hizballah Holocaust denial honor killing HRW Human Rights Humanitarian crisis humor Hypocrisy ICRC Ilan Pappe impossible peace incitement international law intransigence iran Iraq Islamism Israel Loves America Israeli culture Israeli high-tech J Street jabalya jeremy bowen Jerusalem jewish fiction Jewish Voice for Peace jihad jimmy carter John Kerry jokes jonathan cook Jordan Juan Cole Judea-Samaria Kairos Karl Vick ken roth khalid amayreh Khaybar Lebanon leftists Linkdump lumish mahmoud zahar Malaysia max blumenthal McGraw-Hill media bias Methodist Miftah Mohammed Assaf Mondoweiss moonbats music Muslim Brotherhood Nakba Natural gas Nazi NGO NIF norpac NYT Occupation offbeat oxfam PA corruption PalArab lies Palestine Papers pallywood pchr PCUSA Peter Beinart poll Poster Preoccupied Prisoners propaganda Proud to be Zionist purimshpiel Qaradawi Qassam calendar Rafah Ray Hanania real liberals reference Richard Falk rogel alpher roger cohen roger waters Saudi Arabia saudi vice self-death self-death palestinians sex crimes SFSU shechita sheikh tamimi Shujaiyeh SodaStream South Africa Speech stamps Syria Tarabin Temple Mount Terrorism This is Zionism Thomas Friedman Tunisia Turkey UCI UK UN unesco unhrc United Arab Emirates Unity unrwa UNRWA hate unrwa reports UNRWA-USA Vic Rosenthal Washington wikileaks work accident X-washing Yemen zahran zionist attack zoo Zvi

Blog Archive

subscribe via email