Learn to tell the Gaza Story

Unlocking Gaza: A Training for Advocates Online Spring 2020

Background Readings
Session One: From Fence to Fence: Retelling Gaza’s Story

Loai Ahmed “From Filistia: Retelling Gaza’s Story.” In Gaza as Metaphor, edited by Paul Costello and Helga Tawil-Souri, 83-93. London: Hurst Publishers, 2016. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Z052b7noFFPfDpP2k5H0MohZwKfVySA2/view?usp =sharing


Filiu, Jean-Pierre. 2014. “Gaza Before The Strip .” Chapter. In Gaza: A History, 1–54. New York, NY: Oxford University Press. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1hBxuMJjtIg_Dkmzl2CZYtIqls2L9BKzp/view?usp=sha ring

Gaza in Context, Gaza in Context (Status Audio-Visual Magazine, 2016),

Institute for Middle East Understanding, Resources on Gaza https://imeu.org/topic/category/gaza, https://imeu.org/article/what-is-hamas, https://imeu.org/article/4.12-what-was-the-gaza-disengagement-and-how-has-it- affected-palestinians

Gaza Map by Gisha


Return to what? Against misreadings of Gaza’s Great March, October 14, 2019, by Rana Baker

https://madamasr.com/en/2019/10/14/opinion/u/return-to-what-against-misreadings-of- gazas-great-march/

Session Two: Gaza’s Present Realities

Book review of Sara Roy’s book on Economy in Gaza:


Stories of life under blockade, written by Palestinian youth in Gaza, 2018


Israel’s killer bureaucracy by Refaat Alareer The Electronic Intifada 28 June 2016 https://electronicintifada.net/content/israels-killer-bureaucracy/17226

Gaza Screams for Life, by Rawan Yaghi, April 3, 2018

Roy, Sara – Trump’s Move to Slash Aid for Palestinian Refugees will Lead to Tragedy

https://www.thenation.com/article/archive/trumps-move-to-slash-aid-for-palestinian- refugees-will-lead-to-tragedy/ (January 2018)

UNRWA: Education in the Gaza Strip https://www.unrwa.org/activity/education-gaza- strip

United Nations Office of Coordination for Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) section on Gaza https://www.ochaopt.org/location/gaza-strip

Fact Sheet on Kerem Crossing (March 2020) https://gisha.org/publication/11002 and https://features.gisha.org/kerem-shalom-crossing/

Session Three: The Gaza Blockade: Challenging Myths, Engaging in Action

Merryman-Lotze, Mike. “Challenging Narratives about Gaza and Violence.” Gaza Unlocked. American Friends Service Committee , July 20, 2018. https://www.gazaunlocked.org/content/challenging-narratives-about-gaza-and- violence

Infographic – The Blockade https://www.gazaunlocked.org/50-years-occupation-10- years-illegal-blockade-learn-more

Frequently Asked Questions – GISHA – https://gisha.org/about/faqs

IMEU How Israel’s Blockade Turned Gaza into an Open Air Prison

https://imeu.org/article/imeu-video-how-israels-blockade-turned-gaza-into-an-open- air-prison

The checkpoints, by Rawan Yaghi, January 20, 2018,

Merryman-Lotze, Mike. “US Mendacity on Gaza.” Gaza Unlocked. American Friends Service Committee, July 20, 2018. https://www.gazaunlocked.org/content/us- mendacity-gaza

Merryman-Lotze, Mike. “In Gaza blockade, humanitarian organizations can no longer be neutral”, American Friends Service Committee, April 21, 2016 https://www.afsc.org/blogs/humanitarian-neutrality

Jennifer Bing and Mike Merryman-Lotze, “Building our power for a free Palestine” (2019) https://mondoweiss.net/2019/08/building-power-palestine/

Jennifer Bing, “Tell Americans We Want to be Free: Gaza then and now” (2014)

U.S. Policy Response to Coronavirus in Gaza, Zaha Hassan and Hallaamal Keir

https://carnegieendowment.org/2020/03/30/u.s.-policy-response-to-coronavirus-in- gaza-pub-81390

Amnesty International Report on Palestine 2019

https://www.amnesty.org/en/countries/middle-east-and-north-africa/palestine-state- of/report-palestine-state-of/

AlJazeera news on Gaza


Presenters Bios:

Loai Ahmed
Loai was born in the Gaza Strip, Palestine, and currently lives in
Brussels. He has a BA in English language and translation from Gaza University, and a diploma in Education from Quds open University. He also Professionals and has worked as a project coordinator for UNRWA, OCHA, Doctors Without Borders, and Save The Children.Loai played for Palestine’s National soccer team, and is passionate about playing soccer and teaching young talented kids to do the same. Loai’s project for change to motivate children with post-traumatic stress through playing soccer.

Salma Rajae Abushaban, a 21-year old Palestinian, was born and lives in the Gaza Strip under blockade. She has survived three wars and many attacks. She is a student at Al-Azhar University in Gaza where she studies Law in English. She has a particular interest in human rights and international law, particularly international humanitarian law (IHL) and international criminal law. She is a human rights activist and a contributor to international communication projects. In 2019, she was one of the speakers in a meeting via Skype with Members of the U.S. Congress organized by the Palestinian Center for Democratic Dialogue and Political Development. She hopes that one day she will defend the Palestinian case before international tribunals.

Omar Shaban is the Founder and Director of the Gaza-based PalThink for Strategic Studies an independent think tank with no political affiliation. He is an analyst of the political-economy of the Middle East and is a regular writer and commentator for the Arab and international media. Omar is a founder of Palestinian groups for Amnesty

International, the deputy head of the board of Asala, an association promoting microfinance for women, and a member of the Institute of Good Governance.

Jehad Abusalim is the Palestine activism program associate at the American Friends Service Committee. He is also a PhD candidate at the History and Hebrew and Judaic Studies joint program at New York University. He studies Arab intellectual writings on Zionism from the first half of the twentieth century. In his work, Jehad examines the various ways Arab intellectuals perceived and engaged with the Zionist idea and project. Jehad also studies the social and political history of the Gaza Strip, focusing on the impact of the Nakba on life in Palestine’s Gaza district and 1950s political life in the Gaza Strip. He earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration and Hebrew from Al-Azhar University in Gaza. He has been published in +972 Magazine, Al-Jazeera English, Palestine Square, Journal for Palestine Studies and Vox, and contributed to the anthology Gaza as Metaphor with a chapter entitled “From Fence to Fence: Retelling Gaza’s Story.”

Jennifer Bing has worked with AFSC’s Palestine-Israel Program since 1989. Based in Chicago, she organizes events, speaking tours, exhibits and trainings, and coordinates AFSC’s education and advocacy work on the campaigns Israeli Military Detention: No Way to Treat a Child and Gaza Unlocked. In this role, she works closely with faith organizations and human rights groups throughout the U.S. During her time at AFSC, Jennifer has created two documentary films focused on the Palestinian-American community, “Benaat Chicago: Growing up Arab and Female in Chicago” (1996) and “Collecting Stories from Exile: Chicago Palestinians Remember 1948” (1999); and helped produce the recent documentary “Detaining Dreams” (2015). Prior to AFSC, Jennifer worked as a volunteer teacher at the Ramallah Friends School in the West Bank, as a researcher on child rights with Save the Children, and a coordinator of seminars with Gene Sharp and the Program on Nonviolent Sanctions at the Center for International Affairs at Harvard University. Jennifer has appeared in numerous media outlets including Truthout, Worldview/WBEZ, Mondoweiss, Electronic Intifada, Alternet, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Reader, Friends Journal, and The Washington Post. Jennifer is a Quaker and an active member of the Quaker Palestine Israel Network.

Mike Merryman-Lotze is the American Friends Service Committee’s Middle East Program Director. He coordinates AFSC’s Israel and Palestine focused advocacy and policy programming, working closely with AFSC’s offices in Jerusalem, the West Bank, Gaza, Jordan and throughout the US. From 2000 through 2003, Mike worked as a researcher with the Palestinian human rights organization Al-Haq in the West Bank, and from 2007 through 2010 he worked in Save the Children UK’s Jerusalem office managing child rights and child protection programming. He has also managed community and local government development programs in Lebanon, Jordan, Yemen,

and throughout the Middle East and North Africa. Mike has appeared in many news outlets, including Al Jazeera, Mondoweiss, Centre for Research on Globalization, Truthout, Friends Journal, +972, and Middle East Eye. Mike received his BS in International Politics from Earlham College and his MA in International Relations with a focus on Conflict Management from the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins.