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Educating Yourself About Palestine & the Occupation – 7 Resources to Explore
Current Events
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May 26, 2021
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3 MIN READ
Haute Hijab Staff
staff writer
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Image source: Daily Sabah on Twitter
Haute Hijab Staff
staff writer
Alhamdullilah that a ceasefire has been called between Israel and Gaza. But to simply forget about the violence, deaths and destruction that happened – disproportionately so against Palestinians in Gaza, Sheikh Jarrah, the West Bank and other places – is to forget about the past several decades of occupation as well as the deep history of land stealing by Israel and the apartheid government Palestinians have been living under.
As with all types of oppression, racism and trauma faced by various communities here in the U.S. and around the world, it is upon us to educate ourselves about the actual history and stories of those who have been marginalized and mistreated. Often their stories and histories receive little attention, and we are left with scant knowledge about the root causes of oppression various communities have faced.
We cannot let Palestine fade from our awareness. This is a crucial point for social media pressure and attention on Israel and Palestine resistance. Currently many media outlets are reporting a mass arrest campaign in Israel of Palestinians who took part in protests against the bombing of Gaza the past few weeks. Palestinian homes in Sheikh Jarrah are still under threat of being taken by Israeli settlers. Gaza is still an open-air prison. The apartheid wall and measures are still in place.
To expect Palestinians to educate those of us who don’t know enough is to put the burden upon them, which is tiresome and an unfair expectation. If someone is willing to engage and explain the trauma and history of their community to you, that’s well and good. But to expect that is asking too much.
We are nowhere near the experts at Haute Hijab about Palestinian oppression and history. However, we spent some time talking with HH team members who are Palestinian as well as doing some research on resources that can be helpful to you to educate yourself. This list is by no means exhaustive or complete. Please add other resources in the comments below, and we’ll try to add more to this list as things come our way.
A protest for Palestine in Chicago; image source: Bayan Fares
1. The Palestinian American Community Center offers up their own extensive list of resources, books, videos, journals, playlists and articles for you to read/watch/listen to brush up on the history of the occupation.
2. Speaking of the PACC, check out their Palestinian Resource Guide on Instagram (Part One) and Part Two for information dispelled in a social-media-friendly digestible format.
3. American Muslims for Palestine hosts a plethora of resources on its website covering all aspects of the occupation and history. They have a section on the website called “Palestine 101” (check out this quick history lesson) with articles and webinars to educate yourself.
4. Boycott, Divestments and Sanctions – what is BDS, and why do some wrongly paint BDS as anti-Semitic? What is it exactly, where does it stem from, and how can it be a useful tool in putting economic pressure on apartheid states? Click here to learn more.
5. If Americans Knew … this website, an independent research and information institute focused on Palestine, was founded by freelance journalist Alison Weir after traveling to and reporting on the region. It offers a lot of facts and statistics about what every American needs to know about Israel-Palestine, from UN sanctions to U.S. economic support of Israel to the history of illegal housing settlements to media analysis.
6. Who are the Palestinian citizens of Israel? How do the discriminatory laws of Israel affect them? This fact sheet from the Institute of Middle East Understanding gets into all of that. The IMEU has a multitude of fact sheets, interviews and other resources on Palestine, all of which we urge you to dive into.
7. How does the media report on Palestine-Israel? There are a lot of articles and resources out there on this, and it’s important to be very aware of this. The language used by the media shapes public opinion. We found this video by John Oliver and this analysis by Sana Saeed at AJ+ to be particularly timely and helpful.
There really is no end of books, articles, videos and even Tik Toks to help you educate yourself on Palestine and the Israeli occupation. There are actions we can take to keep up pressure on our elected officials and keep the occupation front and center on social media. It’s on us to do our part.
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