MSA to screen ‘Opposition 101’
The UH Muslim Student Association and Amnesty International will host a screening of Occupation 10,1 a documentary about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, from 3 to 5 p.m today in the University Center Houston room. A speech and question-and-answer session with Alison Weir, freelance journalist and founder of ifamericansknew.org, will follow.
Occupation 101 talks about the history of Palestine and Israel, starting from the post-World War II era and ending at the present, what role the US has played in this conflict and what life is like under Israeli military rule. It also presents the views of the conflict from different journalists who have covered the Palestinian-Israel situation, along commentary from peace activists, historians, and humanitarian workers.’
‘It is there to educate people about the truth and to give them an inside look at Palestine,’ art sophomore Adilah Yelton said.
According to ifamericansknew.org, there have been at least 6,288 Palestinians killed and 39,019 Palestinians injured by Israelis since Sept. 29, 2000. Palestinians have also faced much imprisonment and had their homes destroyed by the Israeli army.
American Muslims have spoken out against the Israeli occupation of the Gaza strip by organizing protests, signing petitions and as educating themselves and others about the situation.
‘There are a lot of Muslims that want to do things, but there’s only so much that one can do, mainly because of political power,’ Yelton said.
‘All over America there have been protests for a cease-fire. There are many world leaders that are trying to help Gaza, but the best thing that a Muslim can do is to ask God for his help because only he can save us all.’
Palestinians, as well as some Christians, Israeli Jews and Muslims are trying to use whatever resources available to stand against the oppression of the Israeli army and government. Israeli Jews have been able to speak out against this oppression because they have more freedom. The Palestinians, on the other hand, cannot.
‘The Palestinians have been silenced and often resort to what little they can, such as throwing pebbles at Israeli tanks, which often results in a Palestinian child being shot,’ nutrition senior Basmah Salam said.
Yelton also agrees that the voice of the Palestinians has been stifled in the conflict.
‘They have no freedom. They have no rights, freedom of speech or freedom to vote. They can only hope for people like us to speak out on their behalf,’ Yelton said.
MSA is hosting this screening because it wants students to gain knowledge of the situation happening in the Gaza strip and learn how it affects Americans at home.
‘Our purpose isn’t to point fingers at anyone, especially at any religion, but we would like to explain the situation from a political aspect,’ Salam said.
‘We want to show that this conflict goes way beyond the borders of race, ethnicity or religion. This is not a crisis among the Middle East and Arabs, nor a crisis between Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. This is a humanitarian crisis.’