090510-qumsiyeh41Dr MAZIN QUMSIYEH is a tireless activist for Palestinian human rights who returned to his hometown of Beit Sahour in the Israeli-occupied West Bank last year and now teaches at Bethlehem and Birzeit Universities. The author of Sharing the Land of Canaan: Human Rights and the Israeli-Palestinian Struggle (2004), Qumsiyeh is both a human rights activist and a scientist who has a lengthy list of publications on genetics to his credit. The Electronic Intifada contributor Ida Audeh met with him in April and discussed advocating the Palestinian cause in the United States and his impressions about the current direction of the Palestinian struggle.

During the 29 years he lived in the United States, Qumsiyeh earned masters and doctoral degrees; taught at several prestigious universities, including Duke and Yale; co-founded activist organizations (Al-Awda, the Palestinian Right to Return Coalition and the Wheels of Justice Tour — a traveling tour bus that stops at different communities to educate them about Palestine and Iraq); and was a board member for numerous organizations. Since the mid-1990s, he has maintained email lists that focus on human rights and international law. His weekly postings now reach approximately 50,000 individuals and include reports of events and comments that are informed by a deep understanding of common struggles in other parts of the world. An optimist who advocates “having joyful participation in the sorrows of this world,” he includes in every e-mail at least one action that the reader can take to make a difference. (From an interview with Ida Audeh, The Electronic Intifada , 11 May 2009)

In the news today is that scientists were able for the first time to usegenetic engineering to create a living organism.  They engineered the genetic material using computers and chemically synthesized DNA and placed it in a bacteria that has been cleaned of its own DNA (genetic material). This essentially created a dividing bacteria that produces its proteins from the DNA sequence and divides and reproduces.   This is an amazing breakthrough.  But here in Palestine, the death and destruction machine is still in high gear.

The people of Al Ma’sara participated in the weekly demonstration today. Last week we had a very successful cultural event in the presence of occupation soldiers.  The week villagers and internationals were even allowed to reach their lands.  Instead this week, they were met with a hail of tear gas, stun grenades and high velocity projectiles.  According to Mohammad Breijieh reporting from the hospital, his brother Hassan Breijieh has a critical head injury.  Another injured was Jawad Zawahra, hit in his leg.  There were also reports of two arrests: Mahmoud Abdel Karim Zawahra
and Iyad Mohamed Ali, both 23 years old.  For more information on this situation please call Mahmoud Zawahra 0599586004 (English) and Mohammed Braijieh 0598371749 (Arabic).

Many of us felt bad for having been at another demonstration at Al-Walaja at the same time the events in Al-Ma’asara were unfolding.  In Al-Walaja, there was no army and hence no arrests and no injuries.  Now, the demonstrations are in Sheikh Jarrah where settlers have taken over Palestinian homes (and unfortunately we as Bethlehem Palestinians are denied access to Jerusalem so cannot participate).  Meanwhile, politicians like Hilary Clinton bark that there will be more consequences for Iran and North Korea.  No consequences for the rogue state of Israel for countless violations of International law.

Action: Join us in Al-Walaja Sunday at 9 AM (at the tent erected in the path of the wall) and in Beit Jala Sunday at 11:30 AM for demonstrations against continued apartheid policies and land confiscation.

Hebron Nakba march through the old city

Jewish Settlers attack Palestinians
(a bit dated but relevant and ongoing similar situations)

How Hitler and Zionists cooperated

The Zionist Story 1-8
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8

Right to Education International Student Conference
…and visits to cities in the West Bank Birzeit University, Palestine


Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD
A Bedouin in Cyberspace, a villager at home

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