Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Who Is A "Palestinian Woman"?

A month late, I saw this:-

American Consulate General in Jerusalem Supports Economic Empowerment and Entrepreneurship for Palestinian WomenDecember 5, 2013
On December 5, the American Consulate General in Jerusalem hosted the Fourth Annual Women’s Micro Enterprise Arts and Crafts Bazaar at the Ambassador Hotel in Sheikh Jarrah, Jerusalem.  The event featured local handicrafts produced by Palestinian women entrepreneurs from Jerusalem and areas throughout the West Bank...Hundreds of people attended and purchased items at the event.
In addition to the bazaar, the women vendors participated in a one-day training on December 2, sponsored by the American Consulate General, on how to enhance their entrepreneurial skills and how to more effectively market and sell their products.
The training and bazaar are part of the American Consulate General in Jerusalem's activities to promote entrepreneurship and small business development, and to support Palestinian women’s economic empowerment.

And I asked myself, who is a Palestinian woman?

And the answer must be: she who is not Jewish.

Jewish women, despite living in the area of the US Jerusalem Consulate, and even if they are American citizens, are regularly excluded from participating in these activities, paid for with US taxpayers' money.

As the Consulate site makes clear:

It now represents the United States in Jerusalem, the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip as an independent mission, with the Consul General serving as chief of mission. The Consulate General also provides services to American citizens in this district. Throughout its history, staff of the Consulate General has included Christians, Muslims, and Jews, demonstrating that people of different faiths and nationalities can work together in peace in this region.

What I fail to comprehend is how can peace be promoted is the populations are segregated?  How can coexistence and appreciation for the other be advanced is there is institutionalized separation?

Is not the consulate strengthening the view of the Arabs that Jews do not belong in their territory?

And more importantly, if the two groups are kept apart, how can that further peace?

No comments: