Archive - 2008

AT-TUWANI: Israeli army fails to escort Palestinian school children twice in three days

In the last three days the Israel army has twice failed to escort Palestinian children between their village of Tuba and their school in At-Tuwani in the South Hebron Hills of the West Bank.

After school on Monday, 29 December, the army began the escort.  However, the soldiers accompanied the children only about 150 meters, stopping to chat with settlers and directing the children to continue alone most of the two km journey between the Israeli settlement of Maon and outpost of Havat Maon.  On the morning of Wednesday, 31 December, the soldiers failed to arrive at all.

December 30th

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO REFLECTION: Prepare the way

There were very few people attending Mass one recent Sunday in the service down the road from where Christian Peacemaker Teams stays in Goma, Democratic Republic of the Congo.  In that day’s Scripture,  John 1 speaks of preparing the way of the Lord.  Pere Marcel, a Congolese Salesian Father, invited all to respond to this call.  Preparing the way meant sharing our food with our neighbors, refugees who have come to seek safety in Goma. “We are all called to help those with sad hearts. These hurting people need our care,” he said.

COLOMBIA: The Indigenous Continue to Walk

After marching for over a month, ten-thousand representatives of Colombia's indigenous peoples from 102 towns arrived in Bogotá on 20 November, where they camped on the grounds of the national university for five days. They sought a meeting with President Uribe and the Colombian government to demand that they respect the rights of the indigenous communities. They also wanted to build solidarity with other sectors of Colombian society to join the struggle for a more peaceful country. 

IRAQ: A Visit to the Makhmour Refugee Camp

in:
"Sixteen years ago our families left our homes in Southeastern Anatolia Turkey because of violence against Kurds, and lived as displaced persons within our own country. Today we are in Iraq and still longing for a Kurdish homeland and for peace," one of the leaders of the Makhmour Refugee Camp told our CPT Iraq group. "In Turkey we were threatened if we continued to speak and teach the Kurdish language. We fled because they would have imprisoned and tortured us if we did not deny our cultural heritage.”

December 27th

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO: Mining the east

Mining the untold mineral wealth in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has its hazards for business interests.  First you have to convince the government to issue you a concession.  Then armed men may or may not shoot at you as you begin operations.  Along the way you have to make friends with the right people--not just investors but government officials, military commanders, and clans in the region.

December 26th

AT-TUWANI REFLECTION: Hope for the New Year


As I write this, Advent and Christmas are over.  The new Christian year has begun; the new calendar year is about to begin﷓Gregorian and Hijri.*  It is a time for looking forward to the New Year, the lengthening of the days again and, in due time, the earth's new growth in spring.

December 22nd

PALESTINE REFLECTION: O Come O Come Emmanuel


As I sat in a church in Jerusalem listening the words of this beautiful Christmas song, I became immediately uncomfortable.  Living in a place where immense injustice is perpetrated in the name of, and by, Israel, I feel uneasy when I listen to hymn and Old Testament references to a righteous Israel. I understand it's a gross misreading of Scripture to equate "Israel" with the State of Israel; it's more accurate to equate "Israel" with the people of God. But nevertheless, the word "Israel" conjures up some negative feelings and emotions inside of me because of my experiences in Palestine/Israel.  But, as the verses progressed and eventually came back to repeat the first verse, I was struck by the power, hope, and the significance of these words.

COLOMBIA URGENT ACTION: Send message to U.S. State Department regarding assassination of Colombian indigenous leader's husband


Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) is forwarding the following urgent action written by the Latin American Working Group (LAWG), with whom CPT’s Colombia team has collaborated extensively.  CPT accompanied the nonviolent protests of indigenous people mentioned below while they were in Bogotá. See http://www.cpt.org/cptnet/2008/11/25/colombia-indigenous-peoples-join-qu...

December 21st

December 17th

Prayers for Peacemakers, Wed., Dec. 17, 2008

PRAYERS FOR PEACEMAKERS, Wed., Dec. 17, 2008

Pray for the five members of CHAK, an Iraqi Kurdish activist group, who were arrested by local police for distributing a flyer protesting the continued bombing of Iraqi Kurdistan by Turkey and Iran.

Doug Pritchard
Christian Peacemaker Teams
Toronto, Canada