December 9, 2002

Victoria Senior Answers Call For Observers In Palestine

Marie Campbell, a retired University of Victoria professor, leaves on December 12 to spend a month in Palestine doing observational work with the International Solidarity Movement (ISM). Since the summer of 2001, ISM has been organizing campaigns in which international observers from Europe and North America act not only as witnesses, but also provide a measure of protection and emotional support to Palestinians.

International observers document and report back to their local communities what is actually happening in Palestine. Dr. Campbell, 66, was inspired to undertake this trip after hearing accounts and seeing video clips in a presentation by Neta Golan and George Rishmawi, ISM organizers who recently visited the University of Victoria.

“As a senior citizen, I am exactly the right kind of person to do this work”, said Campbell. “I’m no longer tied to a job, so I have the necessary time and energy. I can call on my experience from years of involvement in social justice issues.

“My commitment comes from being increasingly worried about the state of the world where militarism seems to be accepted as the answer to everything that is wrong. It is very scary. One feels so impotent. One thing that I can do is write and offer a perspective that is missing from what usually appears in the Canadian media.”

Upon arrival in Palestine, Dr. Campbell will undergo training in nonviolent forms of resistance to the Israeli military occupation and will be billeted in a Palestinian home. Dr. Campbell’s trip is being assisted by the Victoria Peace Coalition, which is purchasing a digital camera for her use. Donations can be made to the Victoria Peace Coalition through Susan Clarke,  dolcla [at] islandnet.com

For more information on the ISM see www.palsolidarity.org.

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