4th of July Fireworks, In Marietta GA, and in Gaza

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

There were flag waving fireworks displays in Marietta GA, where they make the Lockheed F-16s. Some of those F-16s took part in another fireworks display last weekend over Gaza. The fireworks in Marietta smelled like gunpowder and burnt paper. What do white phosphorus, high explosives, depleted uranium, burning libraries and schools smell like?

4th of July Fireworks, In Marietta GA, and in Gaza

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

"This year as always, the Israeli fireworks in Gaza are artillery shells fired from tanks, or air to ground missiles shot from drones..."

The nightly news covered the fireworks in downtown Marietta GA where I live. But they didn't mention the fireworks in Gaza at all, even though some of the fireworks in Gaza took place at the same time. In Marietta they shoot these fireworks off every 4th of July. In Gaza they happen at the whim of the Israeli occupiers.

So many people came to see the fireworks in Marietta that the news broadcast traffic warnings. I imagine people in Gaza, news or no news, mostly tried to hide or flee the areas being fired on, if they could, and if there was anyplace to shelter or go to.

In Marietta the fireworks were crackling red, white and blue sparklers. They flared and glittered and mostly burned out against the night sky before falling harmlessly into the park. They smelled like fireworks, like gunpowder and burning paper. Whole families sat on parked cars and trucks and lawn chairs and curbs to see.

This year as always, the Israeli fireworks in Gaza are artillery shells fired from tanks, or air to ground missiles shot from drones and from the F-16s manufactured at the Martin-Marietta Lockheed plant only a couple miles away from here in Marietta Georgia. Past fireworks displays over Gaza have included white phosporus, a banned substance that self-ignites and burns white hot when exposed to air. But unlike the fireworks in Marietta GA, white phosphorus continues to burn after falling to earth, through walls and rooftops and flesh and bones. Israeli fireworks in Gaza certainly include high explosive rounds, and in the recent past even depleted uranium with lasting radioactive contamination.

"The nation that celebrates its anniversary on July 4 was built with stolen labor on stolen land. Many who did the stealing and their descendants celebrate the notion that their god blessed that theft.."

I don't know what burning schools and libraries or farms and irrigation works or blasted grandparents and aunties smell like, and they don't let people on the nightly news who know these things to tell us. We can only guess.

I suppose things are just different over there in Gaza. But maybe not so much.

The nation that celebrates its anniversary on July 4 was built with stolen labor on stolen land. Many who did the stealing and their descendants celebrate the notion that their god blessed that theft. You can't miss that on the 4th of July weekend, many of the white churches, and even a few of the black ones were ringed with hundreds of American flags planted every few feet. How different is that from state supported Israeli rabbis and politicians waving blue and white flags calling for the expulsion or extermination of Palestinians?

The differences are that (1) genocide and dispossession of native Americans was pretty much complete a dozen decades ago. Our authorities can now afford to manufacture and export the firepower to our allies in places like Israel where similar chores are being undertaken; and (2) that we and the world don't have to allow the brutal and genocidal occupation of Palestine and Palestinians to continue.

We can build and contribute to the global BDS movement, to boycott, divest from and sanction Israel and the Israeli state, until the day that Israel-Palestine becomes not an ethnocracy, only for those with J-positive blood, as Max Blumental puts it, but a state of peace, refuge, equality and prosperity for all who live within its borders.

And maybe back in Marietta GA, we can convert that Lockheed plant, the county's biggest private employer, away from manufacturing instruments of murder to making things that help people live better lives.

For Black Agenda Radio, I'm Bruce Dixon. Find us on the web at www.blackagendareport.com, and be sure to subscribe to our free weekly email updates not on Facebook or Twitter but directly at www.blackagendareport.com/subscribe. That's www.blackagendareport.com/subscribe.

Bruce A. Dixon is managing editor at Black Agenda Report and a member of the state committee of the GA Green Party. He lives and works in Marietta GA and can be reached via this site's contact page, or at bruce.dixon(at)blackagendareport.com.


New art re Gaza& update "DemNow" July 7,2014

I have posted a new piece today on my Flickr public photostream page in protest of the U.S. supported attack on Gaza by the Israeli military.   It is #34, at the top of the page,

http://www.Flickr.com/photos/sanda-aronson-the-artist/   My Hebrew names are Sima Frida.

"an atrocity" "war crimes"  "repeat of what happened in 2012", guest on Dem.Now at 8:45AM, human rights lawyer.  Like my art says, "like sitting ducks".  I want to add that my first art on my Flickr public photostream page is at the bottom of the page and is a visceral reaction to Israel's attack on Gaza years ago; I compare the bombing of civilians to other bombings in history and list them: Guernica, Warsaw....


Mutuall feelings you and I, if your art indicates

This is first I've seen all your 'stuff.' Great work. I think the first one I recall was to do with Lynne Stewart. I wrote to her, to my lawmakers, Tweeted and gave money to help her first get out, and then with medicine she needed.

This BAR site really is about the issues, and I learn so much, even though as Glen Ford says of the weekly cast, from a Progressive black left perspective, misleading that, cuz, so called Progressives often miss issues. Without slaves wanting freedom there'd never have been a Progressive movement.

I lose sleep over what the Israelis are doing to Palestinians, but until July 2010 I was sort of neutral hoping for peace and no on one side or the other. July, 2010, I read a 1947 American mag article by Jordan's King Abdullah, written Nov 1947, called How the Arabs see the Jews, and after I read it, all I could think was the lies I bought into by corporate media of Terrorism as being defined only as being Arabs' actions, and were it not for the internet, I'd still bounce on dumb and blissfully happy in my ignorance. This King A's article must have been seen by Ben Gurion and all his Zionist cronies, and even so soon after the Holocaust to the Jews, plans to force indigenous from Palestine. Ilan Pappe's book The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine(which is ongoing even today)described it best. From the decision in March 1948 to actual Nakba from May to Dec 1948 Zionists rained hell down on Palestinians, moving a quarter million from their homes.

Today, as a reminder to Gaza, Israel commits murder ongoing financed by the USA, that might makes right. How is it a group so marginalised by the German edict with help by others it dominated, could act towards the Palestinians just how Germany did towards the Jews, and even now Palestinains refer only to Israel's crimes as the catastrophe without really laying blame at the Zionists doorstep. Doesn't sound very terroristic does it?

Bruce Dixon nailed what's happening in Gaza. I wish I could stop Israel. My letters appealing to AIPAC and Israel must go off into limbo, for I get no response...so far, since Aug 2010.

@RayRay9845, Glad you like the work - on the topic however

RayRay9845, I understand that you came late to realizing "neutralilty" is not an option.  In fact, my favorite book of all time is titled You Can't Be Neutral on A Moving Train, Howard Zinn's autobiography.  History is movig and we have to pick sides.  I would suggest you do some additional reading on the topic of the U.S. and its relationship to Israel, support by the #1 Bully for the #2 Bully, which is what my art is about.  Some good sources are Ali Abounimah and Electronic Intifada website, Noam Chomsky and the writings and interviews (one video interview is on Znet) with Edward Said, the late Palestinian in exile.  Also read Amira Haas, who is an Israeli journalist living on the West Bank , writes about Palestinians for the newspaper and publishes in Ha'aretz newspaper and often has articles posted on Znet. Update 7/15:Amira Haas has an interview today, July 15 on DemNow - the video and transcript are on line http://www.democracynow.org  There is also a segment with Norman Finkelstein on topic, video and transcript online now,too.

I can't imagine why you would write to AIPAC.  But, we all expand our knowledge if we read BAR. 

Cancel Fourth of July

Another Anti-Freedom 4th of July story.  Reading this just broke my heart.  I have not celebrated a 4th of July in years because, my country has forgotten what it really means.  Those who are in government in  my country have become as our enemy in the Revolutionary War to the rest of the world.  They have stained our country and made it an imperialistic destroyer of freedom. 

The citizens of Georgia paid for their 4th of July fireworks with their tax dollars.  Who paid for the fireworks in Gaza?