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At-Home with Gila Svirsky

12 October 2001
Subject: Not winning the Nobel, in perspective


The truly bad news is that the war on Afghanistan continues and so does the Israeli occupation.

In that context, the news that the international movement of Women in Black was not awarded the Nobel Peace Prize this year barely carries any weight at all. But we were disappointed, nevertheless. Getting this prize would have been such a boost to the international demand to end the occupation and get to peace. Can you picture saying “No more war! No more occupation! No more oppression of one nation by another!” from the podium in Oslo? On second thought, maybe some of you near Oslo in December should show up and say it anyway. The Nobel peace winners this year are the United Nations and Kofi Annan.

Women in Black vigils continued throughout Israel today, and are expanding. There are also more and more vigils springing up all over the world. It is heartening and empowering to hear how many women are joining this movement worldwide. These vigils are such an excellent way for women to stand up and be counted, especially when swimming against the current in their own countries.

Below I share with you an ad that the Coalition of Women for Peace ran today in Israel’s Ha’aretz newspaper. Prize or no prize, we will not remain silent.

Gila Svirsky

Stop the attack on Afghanistan!

This is no war against terrorism – it is revenge for lost honor and a display of power by the rich and strong against the poor.

The main victims of this bombing will be Afghani citizens who are already suffering under the brutal Taliban regime, especially Afghani women.

War is never a solution, and the war on Afghanistan will not end terrorism. On the contrary – this poor, hungry, devastated, and humiliated people with their millions of refugees will have nothing to lose but their honor, and will fight for this honor with all the means at their disposal, even the tools of terrorism.

Terrorism can be prevented only by ending oppression, hunger, and humiliation.

Instead of killing and destroying those who rise up against them, the rich and sated countries should help build the infrastructure for a decent life and a just sharing of resources. Food and education are preconditions, though not sufficient, for creating a more democratic and egalitarian society.

This universal principle holds true for Afghanistan, and for the Palestinians as well: An Israeli-Palestinian peace can be achieved only by ending the occupation and the oppression.


The Coalition of Women for Peace:
Bat Shalom
NELED - "Women for Coexistence"
New Profile: Movement for the Civil-ization of Israeli Society
Noga Feminist Journal
TANDI - Movement of Democratic Women for Israel
Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom - Israel chapter
Women and Mothers for Peace - The re-grouped Four Mothers Movement
Women Engendering Peace
Women in Black

Join Women in Black vigils every Friday 1-2 p.m. in the following locations:

Jerusalem - Kikar Hagar / Haifa - corner Herzl and Balfour / Acre - Tnuva Junction / Jezreel Valley - Megiddo Junction / Tel Aviv-Jaffa - Tnuva Junction / Tel Aviv-Jaffa - corner Ben-Zion and King George / Nachshon - Nachshon Junction.

For more information: Dalit (051) 525-234

At-Home with Gila Svirsky

Letters from Jerusalem, 2001
Letters from Jerusalem, 2002
Letters from Jerusalem, 2003
New & recent letters from Jerusalem (2004)
Resources and Links

© 2001 Gila Svirsky, Coalition of Women for Peace.

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