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How Nora and Ahed Inspire Me

posted on: May 9, 2018

By: Jesús Nieto/Arab America Ambassador Blogger

When I first saw Nawar Anwar “Nora’s” picture, I was immediately taken by the innocent gorgeous 8-year-old Yemeni girl whose life ended at the hands of our President who ordered his first attack on Yemen. Nora was gone as hundreds of people and the attack was a total disaster according to the president’s own government and military officials.

This act angered me and made me realize the horrors of U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East and the reality of children, women, and men being murdered for no remotely justifiable reason.

The major cause of such aggression, in my opinion, is because of our country’s love for power, domination, influence, and economic profit. Wars are the biggest business in the world and sadly, our country is the biggest war profiteer in the world by an immense amount.

As a reflection of its cynical pursuit of money; unfortunately, the U.S. supplies weapons to several warring countries in the world, including the Middle East.

The 8- year- old Yemeni Nora is an American citizen; she’s a symbol of the tragic loss of life of beautiful spirits due to the selfish, greedy men that are willing to wage wars on a child and adult, female and male, poor and rich, dark-skinned and light-skinned, etc. Of course, it is the dark-skinned poor girls whose lives are least valued.

Now, how an American like me of Latino roots became inspired by Ahed Tamimi?

A few years ago, the Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) student organization at San Diego State University, where I teach, honored me by asking me to serve as their faculty advisor. In all probability, this was because I was an advisor to MEChA, a Chicano student organization.

Although I strongly agreed with the Palestinian struggle for justice, I still refused their offer because of fear that I’d be labeled anti-Semitic and thus damage my inter-campus relations with faculty, staff. and students. But then, I began to think about it seriously and realized that I was selfishly selling out my values out of fear for the personal consequences I might experience. The more I thought about it the more I regretted my decision.

I was blessed with the opportunity to atone for my error when the SJP again gave me the great honor of asking me to serve as their advisor the following year. Having had a year to reflect on my cowardly prior decision to decline their request, I was more than ready to accept this 2nd invitation.

As time went on in this capacity, I let the Palestinian cause enter into my heart more and more, and now, I have a very bright flame of concern for Palestine.

How do I feel about Ahed Tamimi?

Words fail me in describing Ahed’s almost unimaginable courage in confronting IDF (Israeli Defense Forces) soldiers. Of course, she is presently being covered widely in the international media for an incident during which she screamed at 2 IDF soldiers to get off of her front yard. When they failed to comply, she kicked and slapped them.

Ahed is presently serving an eight-month sentence for this “attack,” although it’s obvious that she was in no way a threat to the IDF soldiers. Shortly before this incident, her 15-year-old cousin, Mohammad Tamimi, had been shot by an IDF soldier inside Ahed’s home.

As for Mohammad, Ahed’s cousin, surgeons removed the bullet that had entered from his mouth and lodged in his brain. Ahed’s courageous confrontation of IDF troops goes back to the time when she was about 8 years old, at which time she shook her fist at a soldier (see photo).

Of course, Zionists call Ahed a puppet of “terrorist” Hamas as well as accusing Ahed of being used by her “terrorist” mother and father who they claim they must not be parents themselves.

As I am a father of two beautiful children, there is no way on earth that I would put them at the slightest risk for political purposes. Zionists’ extreme cynicism and hypocrisy are also reflected in their being completely unmoved by Palestinian casualties/deaths. One justification they offer for their uncaring brutality is by blaming the victims as “terrorists” and maintaining that all Palestinian suffering is Hamas’ fault. Zionists rightfully care about every Jew casualty, but not about a single Palestinian, in a striking case of pathological selective love.

Zionists freely admit that they want to get rid of all Palestinians, and don’t want a single Arab in “Israel.” This desire is similar to Zionist views toward African Sudanese and Eritrean immigrants whom they refer to as “filth.” One pathetic excuse for this racist, xenophobic attitude in publicly speaking out about the importance of maintaining the purity of Israel’s racial lineage.  These anti-Palestinian and anti-African immigrant reactions can be verified on Youtube.

Zionists certainly appear to be motivated by extreme fear/panic; it’s exemplified by the official policies of no Right of Return for deported Palestinians or those who left in fear, vs. Birthright visits which are extended to all Jewish youth ages 18-32 from around the globe.

Clearly, this is a mechanism reflecting the Zionist desire to increase the Jewish population of “Israel”. while completely eliminating the presence of Palestinians in their historic homeland, Palestine. A shameful use of religious doctrine (Bible/Torah) is utilized to justify the genocide of fellow Semites. Critics are labeled as anti-Semitic (Incidentally, Arabs are also Semites) and stooges of terrorist Hamas propaganda; anti-Zionist Jews are labeled as self-haters and race traitors.

Conversely, Palestinians seem motivated by nothing more than love for their ancestral land and their people.

“Nora” is a symbol of the suffering of innocent children and women at the hands of male fabricated wars. Ahed Tamimi is an international hero and role model, giving hopes to oppressed people and social justice advocates around the world.

Their inspiration makes me a much better person in terms of love, courage and the desire to pursue social justice for Palestinians and other oppressed groups in the world.

Having Nora’s pix on my computer’s home screen inspires my daily love and social justice activism for my Palestinian sisters and brothers and all others in similar circumstances.

The only thing I ask of God is that I not be indifferent to pain, to injustice, to war, and to lies.                                                                        –Mercedes Sosa. Singer from Argentina – 1950-2009