Scrolling news:

Palestine: Gaza casualty toll on the rise, Israeli strikes continue on day 20

Palestine: Eight Palestinians killed, dozens wounded Sunday

Eid moon sighting possiblities, Muslims in South Africa have declared Eid

Pakistan: More rain with thunder, lightening forecast in next 24 hours in Rawalpindi

Libya: US embassy evacuated after heavy violence

Palestine: List of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces between July 8 to July 27

Palestine: Two Palestinians beaten by Jewish mob in Jerusalem

Palestine: Reports show murder of 3 Israeli teenage settlers was not carried out by Hamas

Palestine: Remains of 85 Palestinians located under rubble of bombarded homes

Palestine: Ten Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in West Bank

Palestine: At least 15 kidnapped by Israeli forces from West Bank

Palestine: Palestinians pull over 140 bodies from under Gaza rubble, total killed 1000

Lebanon: Nasrallah: Israel on a path towards “suicide” in Gaza

Palestine: Two Palestinians killed as tens of thousands protest Israeli assault across West Bank

Palestine: Amid Gaza ceasefire calm, at least 40 dead bodies are found

Palestine: Entire 20 members of one family in Gaza killed prior to ceasefire, as death toll tops 940

Palestine: Seventeen killed in early morning hours of Friday

Palestine: Israeli forces invade Azzun in W Bank, use Palestinian civilians as human shields

Palestine: 931 Palestinians from Jerusalem & inside Israel taken captive in 3 Weeks

Saudi Arabia behind effort to disarm the Palestinian Resistance

Poetry: Born to Dream

28th Feb 2014

Born to Dream

I gaze above, afar
Searching for my North Star
Seeking beyond desire’s reach,
I was born to dream

Gawking at the gutters and greed around me
Binds me to the grim and grimy
Raising my sights to divinity, beauty, flight
Sets my true aspirations alight

I work, I eat, I sleep
I function on a daily routine
Yet in heart and mind, I can transcend
Traverse a higher realm

A realm of purpose, discovery
Of who I am and who I choose to be
Where love, grace, purity
Surpass abstract theory
To be the essence of my being

Society, of course, is not conducive to dreaming
Idealising is idling
Time is money, money success
Spirituality, selflessness
Rarely accrue in pounds and pence

And yet, don’t social revolutions, world peace,
Depend on dreamers with lofty ideals?
The vision, courage, tenacity
To see a better world and make it a reality?

Without idealists, dreamers
Who would be the Mandelas, Mother Theresas?
Who would fight American hegemony,
Israeli apartheid, Saudi bigotry
Or even the vice within oneself or community?

Who would champion the plight
Of those stripped of their basic rights?
Would anyone really care
To save the victims of poverty, ignorance, despair?

I return to myself; I ask candidly
Dreamer, scrooge, cynic – who will I be?
Will I look beyond self-interest
To realise a more compassionate self,

Or will I eventually die
With shrivelled heart and cold eyes
Complicit in perpetuating
The pain of the wretched and deprived?

Fatema Valji

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Sectarianism in the Middle East and its rise in the UK, Standpoint, Sahar TV. Interview 29 May 2013 and aired on 12 June 2013


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