Reflections of a revolting spirit

Issa Sarras

May 14, 1999

Thousands of pages - reports, essays, articles, news and analyses. Crusading journalists and researchers are updating us with figures and facts, painting various (and often conflicting) pictures and scenarios about the present and the future. We are kept aware of the existence of an army of fact seekers, and finders, men and women whose sole aim is to inform us, broaden our perspectives and provide us with food for thought, and suggested courses of action, or what some call 'activism.' Or is that so?

In Palestine today, disappointment and disillusionment fill the air, and the horizons. Spiritual hunger, mental starvation, and a cultural crisis that is doing wonders to the very basic fabrics of a society that was once an example of tolerance, hospitality and humanity. Prestigious (and well funded) organizations explode, or implode. Loss of direction and alienation contribute to an atmosphere of intense crisis, and pain.

There is no lack of pundits and alleged thinkers who blame it all on occupation. As if we are the first people who were occupied. As if occupation forbids us to read a book, or be kinder to each other, as if occupation hardens our hearts and makes us practice injustice in our institutions, and send out to the street those original minds who do not conform, and do not always say 'Yes Sir.'

There is little doubt that Israeli occupation has been and continues to be our greatest disaster. The military closures and economical suffocation, the demolishing of homes, the confiscation of land and steady expansion of settlements, and much more, have harmed us and and continue to harm us beyond expression.

There are so many things that we cannot do. Restrictions on our personal freedom have reached criminal proportions, long ago. And the enfeebled United Nations steadily offers us resolutions that stay on paper, because two, sometimes three, great democracies oppose them. Of course I am referring to the great USA, Israel, and last but not least, Micronesia.

The question is: What about the things that we CAN do, in this large (or not so large) prison of ours.

Isn't there anything we can do to offer our people hope, except "facts and figures"?

Have our great intellectuals and spiritual leaders forgotten how to unlock the potential of men, and [women]?

Have we asked ourselves why Palestinian Christians continue to leave their homeland, the cradle of Christianity, to foreign lands?

"It's all because of occupation." Those who say so bear a tremendous moral responsibility. They are answerable, before all, to their own conscience.

How about a moment of silence, and reflection. A moment of Truth!.

Good Morning Palestine!