Student groups in LCT 375 Global Issues Section C hosted an awareness campaign on Nov. 9 in Saint Mary’s Hall to inform students, faculty and staff about the current Israel-Palestine conflict. Held on Nov. 9 in Saint Mary’s Hall, the campaign was created by junior students at Saint Mary’s who are currently in the Global Issues course, taught by Dr. Dorothy Diehl. LCT courses are intended to teach students more about how to enhance Saint Mary’s mission through service, faith, and leadership.
An ethnic cleansing is currently occurring in Palestine. For years, Israelis have been taking over Palestinian land. This started when the Zionist Movement began. Zionism is the movement for the return of the Jewish people to their ancient homeland in Palestine. Zionists believe that the land rightfully belongs to them. Through the years, more and more Israeli settlers have began moving into Palestine and occupying the land.
This has caused tremendous conflict over the years. Many Palestinians have been killed in wars. Palestinians became hungry for revenge, which has led to acts of violence committed against Israel. The Israelis retaliated by imposing further restrictions and damage upon the Palestinian state. This has created a vicious cycle of violence and frustration.
Along with the violence, it is extremely difficult for Palestinians to live normal lives. The Israeli army imposes strict checkpoints that make it difficult for Palestinians to travel for work, medical care, etc. Israel has also created barriers that separate the Jewish settlers from the Palestinians, and roads that only Israelis can use, which makes it harder for Palestinians to travel. All of this is done by the Israeli government so they can ensure that no Palestinian terrorists enter Israel. To create more space for settlements, Israel also has been demolishing Palestinian houses, often without the inhabitants’ permission.
The goal of the LCT class campaign was to spread information about what is happening in Palestine. Many people are not aware of the Israel-Palestine conflict, so we tried to inform people about the situation. Hopefully, once people are better informed, they will want to aid those who are suffering.
Our group focused on settlements, by-pass roads, and home demolitions in Palestine. Our fundraiser was held on Nov. 6. We sold cookies and raised almost $200. Dr. Diehl and her husband, John Schollmeier, have pledged to match that amount. The proceeds will be donated to the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund (PCRF), which helps doctors aid children in the Middle East.
We also informed many students and faculty about the conflict. We appreciate everyone’s enthusiasm and interest in our fundraiser. Thank you for the support and for helping end the conflict!