My Anecdotal Life
Reem.19. female. Muslim. Arab. Qatari.
Film buff & avid reader. This blog supports Palestine.




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September 1st
4:56 PM
"

There have been two “walkouts” from the World Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance in Geneva….The first walkout, led by the United States, was of those countries boycotting the entire conference. These included the U.S., Canada, Israel, New Zealand and Australia—the major settler states that through genocide displaced Indigenous populations from their territory. The Netherlands, the plunderer of Indonesia, and Germany and Italy, which waged murderous wars against barely armed African populations, joined them, as did Poland, now itself a semi-colony.

A few of the largest historical despoilers and plunderers of the colonized world held back from this first walkout. France and Britain, for example, which had divided up most of Africa, the Middle East and large parts of South and East Asia, opted to participate in the conference. This gave them the opportunity to disrupt from inside—which they did a few days into the meetings.

On April 21, when President Ahmadinejad of Iran spoke denouncing the racist actions of the Israeli state against Palestinians, most of the U.N. delegates applauded the speech….However, Britain, France and the rest of the European Union countries present walked out, accusing Ahmadinejad of “racism”.

Their actions spoke louder than any words of phony concern…There has to be a vigorous struggle against racism precisely because the imperialist powers and their settler states—which for historical reasons are mostly white—have promoted racism against peoples of color and all Indigenous peoples throughout the world in order to better exploit them. The ones who wound up walking out of the conference on racism are exactly those most guilty of racism. And everyone who remained knows it.

"
3:42 PM

samanticshift:

chasewoods:

The Events in Ferguson will one day make a great movie for white people to feel guilty about and give an academy award to

and the story will revolve around a white journalist who ultimately realizes that wow, we’re all human

(via shfy)

8:24 AM

swingsetindecember:

a show where the allegory for an oppressed group uses a black person as the oppressor of white people is missing the fucking point and just shows how the writers are really so far up their own asses that they don’t even understand allegories or the system of oppression black people deal with everyday 

(via the-uncensored-she)

8:05 AM
"My grandmother’s name is Sala
Sa-la
A hard L- the kind where your tongue has to push against the back of your front two teeth
My grandfather’s name was Mustafa
But we always called him Tati
Ta-tee
They grew up in the same village
And played together until the age that boys and girls are separated to learn their roles
My grandmother retreated to her father’s house, learning to cook and clean
And my grandfather started going to school
My grandmother blushes when she admits to me that she used to sneak up to the roof of her house when dawn came
Just to see my grandfather walking to school, books clutched against his chest
Every morning, him and the sun
It seemed to her that the sun rose with him,
That it could only be coaxed eastward if he pulled it with him
My grandmother married the boy who pulled the sun up for her every day
And they had six children
Seven, if you count the one who died before his first birthday cake could be made
My grandfather was, as they say, “ahead of his time”
He was an intelligent and forward-thinking academic living in Communist times
His children came home from school each afternoon singing songs about the benevolent nature of their leader
Tito belongs to us and we belong to Tito, they hummed
But when Tito died, the tides changed
And when my grandfather spoke up opposing the nationalistic movement against Albanians- which would one day grow into full-fledged ethnic cleansing-
He didn’t make it home from work
And my grandmother wondered how to explain ‘political prisoner’ to her children
One night, months after my grandfather’s disappearance,
My grandmother saw a blue-eyed stranger trudging up the village hill
In his hands- a note scrawled in my grandfather’s handwriting
Sell everything. Meet me in Rome.
So she did
She sold everything, kissed her weeping relatives goodbye
And trudged across Europe with her children
In Rome, a reunion
We’re going to America, my grandfather said
We’re refugees, he said
America- the word was bulky in my grandmother’s mouth on that sundrenched day in Rome
And even now she can’t quite wrap her tongue around it
Amer-eek, she said
Amer-eek, their children mimicked in high-pitched voices Amer-eek!
My mother, an 8-year old pig-tailed refugee in Rome
On her way to Amer-eek
New York City, to be precise
Their first house was right off of Ditmas Avenue in Brooklyn
A crumbling 3-family home shared with other Albanian refugees
Where, during that first year, English was spoken so rarely that you could almost forget you’d left home
The house was right underneath the Cortelyou Road subway station
Every time the trains rumbled past, the walls of the house shook and trembled and my grandmother prayed under her breath
My grandmother- a woman who gave birth to seven children and raised six of them
But never learned to read
Every morning she sent her children to school, a place she would never set foot in, a mystical land where knowledge and learning were the status quo
They came home speaking English, which my grandmother was glad for only so that they could translate for her at the grocery store or the doctor’s office
My grandfather worked days in a factory and spent his nights smoking and reading about the land that he’d left behind
As his sons and daughters grew into young men and women,
Their old country smoldered-
A fire quietly growing
It would spread soon, my grandfather knew
It wouldn’t be long before the name of his country became famous for all the wrong reasons
Blasted out of radios, smeared across CNN
Serbian forces move to Kosovo
Ethnic cleansing
Genocide

But that wasn’t until the ‘90s
And in the decade before his country was ripped apart by misplaced nationalism,
My grandfather sent my 18-year old mother back home
Go to college, he said, get a degree
Meet a nice boy
, my grandmother said, get married
She did both
And when she finally returned to America a couple of years later,
It was with my father and oldest sister in tow
My parents made their own home in America in the mid-80s
By 1985, my second sister made her appearance-
the first of the Latifi’s to be born in America
Meanwhile, my father was studying for his medical boards and his ESL class at the same time
And my mother was raising my sisters in the bustle of Brooklyn
The 80’s faded and in the first year of the 90’s, my brother joined our family
My father named him Kushtrim, which means battle cry
And was fitting because as my brother was taking his first steps,
Our Bosnian neighbors were being brought to their knees
By the time the war spread from Bosnia to Kosovo,
I was 5 years old and living in Virginia with my family
In a sprawling brick house surrounded by a lush green lawn that my father mowed every Sunday
Just like a real American
But the news was on every hour of every day
And some of my earliest memories are of peeking over the living room couch,
Straining to see what was happening in the country where my family started-
Where my grandparents met as children
Where my parents fell in love as college students
My brother and I were deemed to young to watch the news with my parents
So we snuck looks from behind doorways,
Sat on the stairs that wrapped around the back of our house-
Anything to catch a few words from Christiane Amanpour’s mouth that would explain why my mother jumped every time the phone rang
And my father sat in front of the TV with his mouth pulled into a tight line
My brother and I whispered to each other from our hiding spots,
Pulled dictionaries into our room and blew the dust from their pages
Genocide: the deliberate killing of a large group of people, especially those of a particular ethnic group or nation
My brother read the definition aloud and I tilted my head to the side
Why us?
He slowly shook his head side to side
8 years old
How was he supposed to know?
In the spring of 1998,
I sat on top of my father’s shoulders as we marched through Times Square,
Chanted in front of the United Nations building in Midtown Manhattan
Around us, the crowd swarmed
Red and black t-shirts, the Albanian eagle stamped on every single one
Free Kosova, U.S.A.! we yelled
Free Kosova, U.S.A.!
In 1999, Bill Clinton became the hero of Albanians everywhere when he ordered NATO to launch an air strike against Serbia
78 days later, the war was over
But what we didn’t understand then was that it had just began
The first time I saw the country of my ancestors was in the summer of 1999
British army tanks rolled down the streets instead of cars
And my mother tried to distract me by pointing out landmarks
That’s where your father and I used to have coffee
That’s where my dorm was

But all I could see was the soldiers guarding the entrance to my aunts’ apartment building
And the pile of rubble that used to be my father’s childhood home
I looked out with my big brown eyes
And saw an entire country bleeding and breaking
I went back to America after the summer of 1999 with the taste of my homeland burning my tongue
My grandfather-
Tati, remember?
He lived to see the war start and end
But died before anyone recognized our independence
A snowy New Year’s Eve
2003 slipping into 2004
A heart attack
A widow
A funeral
The first time I saw my mother cry
My youngest uncle washing my grandfather’s body
My baby sister only three months old, screaming like she felt our pain
It’s been 10 years and my grandmother is still mourning my grandfather
It’s been 15 years and my country is still mourning our lost souls
But my grandmother has stopped wearing all black and she laughs with her grandchildren like we’re the only thing that keep her breathing
And my country just celebrated 6 years of independence
I know my grandmother is lonely
She talks about my grandfather like he just stepped out of the room for a moment
And I know my country is hurting
We still hang flowers on the mass graves of our countrymen
But we’re all healing
Which reminds me of the best advice my grandfather ever gave me-
Shpresa le te v’des e fundit-
Let hope die last
"
—  Fortesa Latifi - The Plight of the Refugee & Their Family (via madgirlf)

(via jurhfalastini)

August 31st
7:56 PM

exulansis

dictionaryofobscuresorrows:

n. the tendency to give up trying to talk about an experience because people are unable to relate to it—whether through envy or pity or simple foreignness—which allows it to drift away from the rest of your life story, until the memory itself feels out of place, almost mythical, wandering restlessly in the fog, no longer even looking for a place to land.

6:41 PM
"أسوء من الأرق أن تنام وفي قلبك كلام"
—  The only thing worse than insomnia is falling asleep with unsaid words in your heart .. (via meh-ran)

(Source: bandar-khader, via thewayshelives)

6:10 PM
"

Look, I’m glad ‘12 Years [A Slave]’ got made and it’s wonderful that people are seeing it and there is another view of what happened in America. But I’m not real sure why Steve McQueen wanted to tackle that particular sort of thing.

[‘Fruitvale Station’] explains things like the shooting of Trayvon Martin, the problems with stop and search, and is just more poignant. America is much more willing to acknowledge what happened in the past: ‘We freed the slaves! It’s all good!’ But to say: ‘We are still unnecessarily killing black men’ – let’s have a conversation about that.

"
—  

Samuel L. Jackson

Agreed!

(via martinifan)

Okay but isn’t he the guy from D’jango???? 

(via the-uncensored-she)

August 30th
8:41 AM
oglaighnaheireann:

Bobby Sands Street, Iran

Following Bobby’s death on hunger strike Iran renames the street that the British Embassy is located to Bobby sands Street. This obviously meant all mail being delivered to the embassy has to be labelled with Bobby’s name. The embassy has since moved its main entrance so that it is on a different street.

oglaighnaheireann:

Bobby Sands Street, Iran

Following Bobby’s death on hunger strike Iran renames the street that the British Embassy is located to Bobby sands Street. This obviously meant all mail being delivered to the embassy has to be labelled with Bobby’s name. The embassy has since moved its main entrance so that it is on a different street.

(via allahyil3analsohyouniyeh)

August 29th
8:50 PM

thepalestineyoudontknow:

Caricatures by Naji AlAli : those from books I have called ” Naji AlAli 1 and 2 : the spokesman of the poor and the cause “ 

Honoring his memory : Like this day in 1987 he died , he was assassinated.   

About Naji AlAli :

Naji Al-Ali grew up to become perhaps the most popular cartoonist in the Arab world. With brutal honesty, Naji Al-Ali analyzed the relationships between the governments of the United States, Israel and the Arab regimes and the ramifications for the Palestinians. Time Magazine described him saying, “This man draws with human bones.” The Asahi Newspaper, in Japan, once wrote, “Naji Al-Ali draws using phosphoric acid.”

Naji Al-Ali was well loved for his work but was also well hated, as illustrated by the many death threats he and his family received. On July 22, 1987, in London, Naji Al-Ali was assassinated as he walked towards the offices of Al-Qabas newspaper. He died in the hospital on August 29th. His murderer has never been apprehended.

Who is Handala?

Naji Al-Ali wrote: “The child Handala is my signature, everyone asks me about him wherever I go. I gave birth to this child in the Gulf and I presented him to the people. His name is Handala and he has promised the people that he will remain true to himself. I drew him as a child who is not beautiful; his hair is like the hair of a hedgehog who uses his thorns as a weapon. Handala is not a fat, happy, relaxed, or pampered child. He is barefooted like the refugee camp children, and he is an icon that protects me from making mistakes. Even though he is rough, he smells of amber. His hands are clasped behind his back as a sign of rejection at a time when solutions are presented to us the American way.”

Handala was born ten years old, and he will always be ten years old. At that age, I left my homeland, and when he returns, Handala will still be ten, and then he will start growing up. The laws of nature do not apply to him. He is unique. Things will become normal again when the homeland returns.

(via anonymouslaymoun)

9:15 AM
holygoddamnshitballs:

Ferguson Police
Steve Sack, Cagle Cartoons, The Minneapolis Star Tribune

holygoddamnshitballs:

Ferguson Police

Steve Sack, Cagle Cartoons, The Minneapolis Star Tribune

(via the-uncensored-she)