Speech on Eid Mubarak introducing the Dossier on Palestine

Tony Seed, editor and publisher of the Dossier on Palestine, addresses 1,500 members of the Chebucto Mosque on Eid Mubarak

Tony Seed, editor and publisher of the Dossier on Palestine, addresses 1,500 members of the Chebucto Mosque on Eid Mubarak

TONY SEED, Eid Mubarak, December 6, 2002

Brothers and Sisters,

Eid Mubarak. Assalamu Alaikum (peace greetings)

On behalf of the staff of Shunpiking magazine, I sincerely thank you for this opportunity to speak with you about the Dossier on Palestine on such a significant occasion.

In very brief, the word “shunpiking” means to shun the turnpike, those big American toll highways of so-called progress and the civilization of the west, and to take the back roads. For us, it is a metaphor for discovery. We distribute our magazine from one end of Nova Scotia to the other.

The Dossier on Palestine is a gift for the world’s people. It is not one man’s work but a collective and unique work, some six months and more in preparation, a labour of love, friendship and seeking of truth, a deed of the people of Halifax, of people who hail from various national origins and faiths.

The Dossier on Palestine strives to clarify four basic questions:

  • Why and how the Palestinians have been dispossessed as an oppressed people from their mother soil, and why Israel continues to occupy their land and attack their sovereign government in explicit opposition to every norm of morality, justice and law;
  • Why Israel lives outside of and places itself above the rule of law, and the principles on which it is based, including opposition to the use of force to settle conflicts within nations and between nations;
  • Why the United States has proclaimed the Middle East a sphere for its own national interest and an extension of its own territory; and
  • Why so many conflicts have taken place in this oil-rich region in such a relatively short period.

Dossier-on-Palestine.coverSome people ask us, “why have you published this Dossier?”

When the courageous Palestinians stand against the blackest reaction and unprecedented violence, when a civilian population wage an unequal battle against a well-equipped army using the most modern weaponry, when such a people appeal to the world’s people for support, how can we not respond?

When the United Nations for five decades has recognized the sovereign right of Palestinians to self-determination, and that right continues to be denied to them, how can we not speak out in defence of right.

When Canadians – of all backgrounds and faiths – express their conscience, voice their concern – simply or ask what on earth is really happening in Palestine and the Middle East anyway? – and demand enlightened information to help them make sense of the issues and the context, how can we not meet that need?

When the mass media spread one-sided reporting, prejudice and fanaticism in the name of free intellectual discourse how cannot we not demolish the disinformation?

When the political culture is so debased that prophets are maligned as “terrorists” – which slander must be “tolerated” in the name of “freedom of speech” – how can we not work for enlightenment and freedom of conscience?

When our government is silent before the Israeli-US-genocide or conciliates with the slaughter by citing “an endless cycle of violence” from “both sides”, how can we not speak out?

When the American imperialists tell Canada to jump, the Chrétien Liberals say how high? When others want to apologize to George Bush for not jumping higher, how can we Canadians not be revolted?

“Why we have published this Dossier?”

How could we do any less?

It is our duty and responsibility to a courageous people who have fought the blackest reaction.

Literature, to have any worth, must be read, and read widely.

You are all participants in this society second to none. We ask for your active support and participation in the work to have as many Canadians as possible read this Dossier your family, your neighbours, your work-mates, your fellow students, your Muslim brothers and sisters.

This Dossier is not our Dossier. It is your Dossier. Without you and everything you stand for it would not be possible. It belongs to the people. Let us together take it widely amongst the people and arm them with enlightened, historical and truthful information of the just cause of the Palestinian people. The Dossier on Palestine is a spiritual bullet. Let us fire it at the enemy.

Before I conclude, let me personally thank both Dr. Ismail Zayid of the Canada Palestine Association and Dr. Mohamed Elmasry of the Canadian Islamic Congress for their active participation and assistance in the Dossier on Palestine.

Thank you again, from the bottom of my heart, for recognizing our work and letting us share it with you today.

Assalamu Alaikum

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Filed under Media, Journalism & Disinformation, Shunpiking Magazine

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