The Go Green Fair, Cameron and Apartheid and Palestine and the occupied territories

The Go Green Fair
The Green Ovingham Group (www.greenovingham.org.uk) held a Go Green Fair in Ovingham Middle School on Wednesday 10th February. This was a community event involving not only the children and staff of the school but also a variety of related projects and businesses too.
The event was very well attended – I even spotted a couple of runners-up in the forthcoming election!
The children had made great efforts with their garden project and, I gathered, were supplying the school kitchen. I also found homemade plant pots and some potted plants. There were books of drawings of den building that took me back to my own childhood.
Amongst the external contributors were Bill Haylock and his very hi tech new home. Elecscoot were showing their electric scooters and on the same stand was OptionC, a pay by the hour car club operating locally. North Country Organics and their organic box scheme showed what can be done with high quality locally produced food. These are exactly the sort of developments that we need to see everywhere.
My thanks to Debbie Reed for inviting me and for all the children, staff and other contributors for their efforts.

Cameron and Apartheid
It was in 1986, and an acknowledgement of ‘mistakes’ was made in 2006, but even so I was staggered to discover that Cameron had made an anti-sanctions lobbyist funded visit to South Africa. What does this tell us about his judgement and values? Actions speak so much louder than words.
I do not know anyone who supported Apartheid –either then or now. Apart from Thatcher, of course.

Palestine and the occupied territories
A volunteer worker amongst the Palestinians (with http://www.eappi.org ) in the occupied territories has been in touch to ascertain my views.
I am with Obama on the subject – The situation of the Palestinians is intolerable.
Here is the text of the reply I made to the volunteer worker:
The starting point that I take is that the Palestinians and Israelis are equally important – neither preferred over the other, but my sympathy towards the two communities is divided in proportion to the death toll – currently several hundred to one in favour of the Palestinians. The lack of action by the community of nations in this perpetual disaster is baffling and an outrage. When in Westminster I will be speaking strongly on the issue.

Though I lack the firsthand knowledge to be sure, I suspect that large numbers of both communities would be perfectly content to live together in harmony and mutual endeavour but the extremists and fundamentalists have achieved political dominance and now exclude more reasonable voices. Consequently, the young of both communities suffer and die for the purblind bigotry of the older element – it was ever thus.

The influence of AIPAC seems to be being opposed by a new US Jewish group whose acronym escapes me at the moment. Perhaps this is a hopeful sign.

Over recent years I have grown increasingly sceptical about the two state solution and suspect that the only enduring solution will be a one state situation but heavens knows how many generations that will take. The pan-Arab solution, based on recognition of Israel for the 1967 borders, may yet gain traction.

Richard Ingrams worried me considerably when he reported Bush, in conversation about Israel, talking about Gog and Magog, as though it was the most natural thing in the world to introduce Old Testament material into a 21st century geo-political discussion.

In my view the entire world has a vested interest in securing an equitable and enduring solution to the Middle East’s many interlinked problems. Neither of the contesting parties occupies any high ground, moral or otherwise. Both of the parties have a valid historic entitlement to residence.
It ought not to be beyond the combined wit of the world community to secure peace and progress.

“The world will live in peace, only when the individuals composing it make up their minds to do so”.
Mahatma Gandhi.”

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