palestinian-women

I can’t reblog the post because op blocked me but there’s a post going around to the tune of “this women’s march was organised by black, latina and palestinian women activists but white women just wanna be cissexist and talk about their pussies” and I’m actually furious.

1) Do you honestly think woc don’t have vulvas? That we are somehow unaffected by anti abortion laws and laws making it harder to access birth control? Do you think that our activist struggles are somehow unrelated to the exploitation of our bodies and reproductive labour? Do you honestly not think that a single woc has ever held a “get your rosaries off my ovaries” sign? lmao

2) Sentiments like these show a clear lack of knowledge (or maybe simply a lack of care) about our histories with regards to slavery and colonialism. There is a very long and painful history of black women’s bodies being used as a means of economic production during slavery, of native women being raped to further colonialist expansions in the americas, of poor immigrant latinas being sterilised in prisons. Our oppression differs from that of our men because of the exploitation of our reproductive capabilities so to act like any discussions of this is a “white thing” is so incredibly insulting especially considering the pain of our foremothers.

3) This is just neoracism. Racialized misogyny with an approved progressive stamp. It’s clear that our experiences, our histories and our realities mean nothing to these people as we are merely a prop in their antifeminist attempts to silence women and obscure the realities of our oppression.

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Palestinian student Shorouq Dwayyat, 19, sentenced to 16 years in Israeli prison

In another example of the lengthy sentencing practices especially targeting Palestinian youth and women in Jerusalem, Shorouq Dwayyat was sentenced to 16 years in Israeli prison by a Jerusalem court on Sunday, 25 December. Dwayyat, 19, from the village of Sur Baher, was also fined 80,000 NIS (approximately $21,000.) She was shot by an Israeli settler and seized by occupation forces on 7 October 2015 in eastern Jerusalem and accused of attempting to stab an Israeli settler. Witnesses reported that she was harassed by the settler prior to the alleged incident.

Dwayyat is a student at Bethlehem University who was studying history and geography. She graduated from high school, achieving a result of 90% in the national secondary Tawjihi examinations in 2015.

Classes at the university were cancelled for two days after her shooting and arrest in October 2015.

Dwayyat was severely injured by the four bullets lodged within her body, unlike the Israeli man she was accused of attempting to stab, who suffered no serious injuries. Following the court’s ruling, the Israeli Interior Ministry stripped the imprisoned Dwayyat of her Jerusalem residency, claiming “breach of trust,” using the case as a mechanism to further the Israeli state policy of attacking Palestinian existence in Jerusalem. Amjad Abu Assab of the Prisoners’ Committee in Jerusalem said that “this is a racist policy…with the aim of killing the spirit of challenge by Jerusalemites and preventing any manifestation of rejection of occupation in the occupied city of Jerusalem.”

She is one of 52 Palestinian women – including 12 minor girls – imprisoned in HaSharon and Damon Israeli prisons and now is serving one of the longest sentences. The longest-held Palestinian woman prisoner, Lena Jarbouni, is serving a 17-year sentence in Israeli prison.  The recent trend of particularly elevated sentences include those against Maysoon Musa (15 years), Nurhan Awad (13.5 years) and Israa Jaabis (11 years).

Palestinian woman in the 1930s, by the first Palestinian photographer Khalil Raad.

As Palestinians we’ve tended to respond to the attacks on our existence by saying no– look how civilized we were… before Israel invaded, we had paved roads and cars… we had built hospitals and schools… we had European-style railroads… we were so secular… we built great cities and we have deeds to prove the land was ours..

We prove our indigenous right to the land by invoking European/western (read: colonial) standards of what legitimises a people’s right to be somewhere. They tell us land is only yours if it’s your legal propertyonly nation-states are real countries…and we have forgotten that these are not universal standards and they are not our standards. They invoke civilized/savage, light/dark, progressive/backwards, rational/irrational, science/myth…and we play into their hands.

In doing so, we throw the experiences of half of our people under the bus. It’s true that we had built grand cities with beautiful architecture, but we also existed as Bedouins who did not have stagnant homes. We’ve left the Bedouin Palestinian out of our narratives so much and they continue to face the most amplified ethnic cleansing because they reject dominant ways of organizing their society.

It’s true that we had an amazing diversity of unimposing religions, but when we share historic photos of unveiled Palestinian women only to show how “progressive” we were/are, we only add to Islamophobic and Orientalist discourse. 

Here is the rule: indigenous people have a connection to the land that their colonizers do not. 

P.S. if connection to the land sound too emotional or unscientific to you, or if it’s just not enough, then you probably need to decolonize your mind, friend.

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“I am an Arab woman of colour and we come in all shades of anger, so let me just tell you, this woman side of me will only bring your next rebel. She’ll have a rock in one hand and a Palestinian flag in another… Beware beware my anger.” - Rafeef Ziadah

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Meet the “Speed Sisters,” the Arab world’s first all-female racing team 

“Freedom.” That theme comes up a lot as the Speed Sisters talk. According to the women, the only time they feel free from the fetters of their daily lives is when they’re driving or drifting. Despite the myriad challenges they face, the Speed Sisters are turning their freedom into trophies.

Amoun, 70, a blind Palestinian refugee who lived in the town of Aleppo in Syria, rests on a beach moments after arriving along with another forty on a dinghy in the Greek island of Kos, crossing a part of the Aegean Sea from Turkey to Greece, August 12, 2015. The United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) called on Greece to take control of the “total chaos” on Mediterranean islands, where thousands of migrants have landed. About 124,000 have arrived this year by sea, many via Turkey, according to Vincent Cochetel, UNHCR director for Europe. The Turkish coast is seen in the background. (REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis)