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Ahed Tamimi's Speech at Brussels Women's Conference

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Ahed Tamimi spoke with grace and eloquence at a 2017 conference on the role of women in the Palestinian struggle. She noted, "we're not fighting against the Jews, we are fighting Zionism...Jewish people are also victims of Zionism... please, supporters, show your solidarity...it's incumbent on everyone in the world to find the solution."

The European Parliament in Brussels hosted a conference on the role of women in the Palestinian popular struggle on Sept 26, 2017. Ahed Tamimi, who was 16 at the time, was one of the featured speakers.


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In a Newsweek oped, I Watched Ahed Tamimi Grow Up And I Know Why She Defended Her Home, Mariam Barghouti writes, "Ahed, now 16, was once the shy girl that barely whispered whenever she was asked questions. Her voice was sweet and it lent itself to a vulnerability that makes you tread carefully and with kindness...(she was) barely nine when protests began...The little girl with the shy voice realized at a young age that she could not afford to be quiet, that whispers are a luxury afforded (to) those that do not have to defend their homes from daily raids, from land annexation, or incarceration."

Ahed's mother, Nariman, was scheduled to be at this conference with her, but had to cancel when Ahed's brother was shot the day before. And yet, Ahed was poised and articulate:

Palestinian women are) suffering day after day after day. We need to overcome our own fears because we really are in an extremely difficult situation...believe me, when I say the situation is almost unimaginable...Can you really understand everything that's going on in Palestine? It's difficult when you're so far away, to understand the day-to-day problems that we face.

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She appropriately placed some responsibility at the feet of the world community:

I've come here to try and explain to you what the situation is, and to remind you of the situation that we live in... the reason is, you have a responsibility (to) Palestinian people.

We're paying the price for the Holocaust, which took place in Europe, and that's having a negative repercussions in our lives.

I think that you have a responsibility to not just help us, but also to show solidarity and to demand with all authorities that the Palestinian struggle should be seen as a humanitarian struggle.

...it's incumbent on everyone in the world to find the solution.


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And she clarified what the Palestinians are resisting, noting they are not resisting Jews:

The struggle in Israel and Palestine is not just a struggle between two peoples.

In the media we always see comments which say that we don't respect the Jews; we don't respect the Jewish state...

But we're not fighting against the Jews, we are fighting Zionism.

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Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing since she was a hippie. She began writing for OpEdNews in Feb, 2004. She became a Senior Editor in August 2012 and Managing Editor in January, (more...)
 

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