Friday, February 19, 2010

Na'vis in the West Bank

I wrote an op ed in Haaretz about the subjectivity of the Avatar Na'vi narrative and how both Israelis and Palestinians have seen it as their own story.

For those interested in the surreal photos and video from the Avatar themed Bilin protest connected to the here they are. Photos courtesy of Hamde Abu Rahme. Video courtesy of Haitam al Katib.

Apparently even Na'vis are susceptible to tear gas


Joseph Glatzer said...


"Essentially, these are just the latest tactics in a fight for freedom."

This is where you last left things. How did you go from this to cruelly making fun of non-violent protesters saying, "Apparently even Na'vis are susceptible to tear gas." This is really sickening. These are decent people who want to farm their land, and this is what they get: teargas and jokes.

If you think, as I do, that Palestinian protestors in Bilin are in a "fight for freedom" how can you marginalize them in this way? Why don't your articles have anything close to that statement about a fight for freedom?

It's like you're always searching for some sort of fake balance to come across as "non-biased".

Do you know what it does to these people's plight when you make snide comments about them? Americans who haven't been there as we have think, "Wow those guys are really maniacs." They don't understand the subtleties.

In your Haaretz article: are each of the narratives equally valid? Is the settler who lives on stolen land a victim? If so, is any Palestinian his victimizer? Of Course not is the answer to both.

"To date, there have been no reports of liberal Israeli activists morphing into Palestinians." Another snide comment. What is the point of this? Israel kidnaps and tortures these people in the middle of the night, they are desperate to get their message out to the world that they need help, and what do you do? You make jokes about the zany and wacky Bilin spectacle of a protest.

Are you forgetting Tristan Anderson is in a freakin coma because Israel shot him with a teargas canister in the head? What about Bassam Abu Rahmah? He's goddamn dead man. The way you joke about this it's as if you don't understand there are lives on the line and lives lost in this life or death struggle.

jaron said...

I'm not sure where you live, but over here in Israel/Palestine, despite the conflict, and possibly because of it, people have a great sense of humor.

You are clearly biased and perhaps too detached from the reality to be commenting objectively about the situation. There is an element of comical absurdity here that even the most die-hard Palestinian activist would admit to.

My point was that nobody has a monopoly on victimization. And whether you are being victimized today or are suffering from a post-traumatic cultural narrative of victimization, it shouldn't justify oppressing anyone else.

jaron said...

Dear Joseph,
Please do not comment on my blog for your own ulterior PR motives.
I should have guessed that you were a radical left-wing hack. You should at least have the decency of excerpting everything I wrote rather than just take the convenient parts that justify your nonsensical arguments. You also make it seem like this conversation was just between the two of us rather than a conversation with many participants. But I suppose taking things out of context is what you do best...

Lirun said...

hey dude.. nice juxta..

i think its interesting.. kosovo was briefly a dual use metaphor as well.. it confused everyone in the middle east..

did its independence support israel's declaration of a state or does it now support the beckoning palo-state.. these questions created a lot of very unsure positions.. it was interesting to watch..

some palestinians view israel as a colonial power.. others view it as a breakaway state..

its easy to get swept away in metaphors..