Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Shaheen Scholarships to be awarded at ADC Convention

2007 Jack G. Shaheen Mass Communications Scholarship to be Awarded at "Reel Bad Arabs" Premiere During ADC Convention

Washington, DC March 27, 2007 The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) is currently accepting applications for the 2007 Jack G. Shaheen Mass Communications Scholarship. Jack G. Shaheen, PhD, is the world's foremost authority on media images of Arab and the author of Reel Bad Arabs, Arab and Muslim Stereotyping in American Popular Culture, Nuclear War Films, and The TV Arab.

The deadline for applications is April 12, 2007. Dr. Shaheen established this scholarship through ADC to recognize Arab-American students who excel in media studies. Recipients of the scholarship will be announced and presented at ADC's Annual Convention during the DC premiere of the groundbreaking documentary, Reel Bad Arabs.On Friday, June 8, the ground breaking 50-minute documentary will be screened and then a question and answer session with Dr. Shaheen will follow and the scholarships will be awarded.


For more information on the DC premier of Reel Bad Arabs see:
http://www.adc.org/index.php?id=3069

PURPOSE:To recognize Arab-American students who excel in Media Studies.
AMOUNT:$1000
ELIGIBILITY:Juniors, Seniors, or Graduate Students.Must be attending college in the 2007-08 academic year.
Must be majoring in Mass Communications, Journalism, Radio, Television, and/or Film.
Must have at least a 3.0 GPA and be a U.S. citizen of Arab heritage

APPLICANTS SHOULD SEND THE FOLLOWING
TO THE ADC RESEARCH INSTITUTE:

A one-page statement stating that you are a US citizen, explaining your goals and why you merit the scholarship.Copies of articles, videos, films, etc.Official academic transcripts including your GPA.Two letters of recommendation from Mass Communications professors.Permanent home address, phone number, email address; also address, phone number, and email address during the school year.

DEADLINE: APRIL 12, 2007Awards will be announced and presented during ADC's Annual Convention in Washington, DC.

SEND MATERIALS TO:Attn: Nawar ShoraADC Research Institute (ADCRI)1732 Wisconsin Ave, NWWashington, DC 20007Tel: 202-244-2990Fax: 202-244-7968

SAVE THE DATE: June 8-10, 2007ADC Convention: "Toward A More Perfect Union"

American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee www.adc.org1732 Wisconsin Ave., NW Washington, DC 20007Tel: 202-244-2990 Fax: 202-244-7968 E-mail: media@adc.org

Sunday, March 25, 2007

PRESS RELEASE: American World War II Pilot honored by Saudi Arabia

Captain Joe Grant Honored in the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia

WASHINGTON, March 24 /PRNewswire/-- His Excellency Adel A. Al-Jubair, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to the United States, in partnership with Friends of Saudi Arabia (FSA), presented and honored Captain Joe Grant with Friends of Saudi Arabia's 2007 Hart Award.

"In Saudi Arabia we have a saying," said His Excellency Mr. Al-Jubair, "fire warms the body, the body and friendship warms the heart." In the first public address since he was appointed Ambassador in February, Mr. Al-Jubair painted a vivid picture of the friendship shared between President Franklin D. Roosevelt and King Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia.

Following his remarks, Mr. Al-Jubair congratulated Captain Grant on a "well deserved award." Captain Joe Grant was recognized for his longstanding contributions to fostering Saudi-U.S. relations. Named after late Ambassador Parker T. Hart, the Award recognizes an individual's achievements in fostering friendship, goodwill and mutual understanding between the United States and Saudi Arabia.

Mr. Joe Grant, the 99 year old World War II veteran and pilot, was the original pilot of the DC-3 that was given to King Abdulaziz as a special gift from President Franklin Roosevelt in 1945. Captain Grant stayed in Saudi Arabia as the first airline pilot for King Abdulaziz and was instrumental in the establishment of Saudi Arabian Airlines.

"Being in Saudi Arabia is a part of your life that makes your life," said Captain Grant. "Warmth, friendship and feeling for one another -- that is Saudi Arabia. The great King Abdulaziz had a vision of friendship, and it is that vision and friendship that we, as Americans, want to be a part of."

Mrs. Jane Smiley Hart, 2005 Hart Award precipitant and wife of Ambassador Parker T. Hart, joined The Embassy of Saudi Arabia and FSA in the presentation of the 2007 Hart Award. "I went there by accident and loved it," reminisced Mrs. Hart. "Saudi Arabia was so special to me and touched my life in so many ways; I am honored to have gotten the opportunity to go there."

Present for the presentation of the Hart Award were members of the diplomatic core, US Department of State, Royal Norwegian Embassy, Embassy of Iraq, Embassy of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Embassy or Chile, Embassy of Tunisia, Kuwait Information Services, Aramco, World Bank, Former US Consul General, Middle East Institute, among many other high profile personnel and organizations.

In closing, Mr. Grant addressed His Excellency Adel A. Al-Jubair, "Thank you Mr. Ambassador. Thank you for being my friend and our friend as Americans. I hope you don't mind that I have adopted you into my circle of friends."

The event marked the opening of the photography exhibition hosted by the Embassy or Saudi Arabia entitled: "Yesterday and Today." The exhibition consists of photographs of Saudi Arabia taken by Captain Grant in 1945 and contemporary photographs of Saudi Arabia taken by photographer and filmmaker Bruce Wendt in 2006. The exhibition will remain on display at the Saudi Embassy until April 6, 2007.

About FSA: Friends of Saudi Arabia is an apolitical, secular, educational, non-profit organization that serves to build bridges of goodwill and understanding between Saudi Arabia and the international community. Events hosted by Friends of Saudi Arabia serve as a tool for nurturing dialogue, debate, alliance building and networking opportunities between people of diverse backgrounds with hopes to dispel misconceptions, establish friendships, and inspire global understanding and exchange. Friends of Saudi Arabia aims to promote better "people to people" understanding as well as bridging social and cultural gaps.

For information of Friends of Saudi Arabia visit http://www.fsaus.org.

Event Detailed Information: Date: Thursday, March 22, 2007 Time: 3:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. Where: The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia 601 New Hampshire Avenue, NW Washington, D.C. 20037 Contact: Hazami Barmada Director, Public Relations & Outreach Friends of Saudi Arabia Office: (202) 558-7504 Cell: (901) 219-2041 Fax: (202) 448-1392

Email: hazami.barmada@fsaus.org
Web: www.fsaus.org
SOURCE Friends of Saudi Arabia -0-
03/24/2007 /CONTACT: Hazami Barmada, Director, Public Relations & Outreach,
Friends of Saudi Arabia, Office: +1-202-558-7504, Cell: +1-901-219-2041, Fax: +1-202-448-1392, hazami.barmada@fsaus.org

Web site: http://www.fsaus.org /

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Palestinian-Israeli women tour on conflict resolution issues

Muslim, Jewish and Christian Women Tour the US Offering Perspectives on Coping with War and Building Peace Between Israelis and Palestinians

Jerusalem Women Speak: Three Women, Three Faiths, One Shared Vision
April 9- 26, 2007

Chicago Events: April 10 - 11
Does your audience know what it means to live in Palestine and Israel? Do they know what it takes to build peace after years of war, occupation and conflict? How often have they heard of Israelis and Palestinians working together to build a new future?Three women, a Christian, a Jew, and a Muslim, who are living the realities of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict can answer these questions and many more. These women bring their unique voices to the United States to call for an end to occupation and the ongoing violence between Israelis and Palestinians. They will share their experiences and hopes for a just peace with American audiences.The women are working professionals, educators and activists, all involved in their own way in resolving the conflict and charting a brighter future for their region.Each woman lives the hardships of conflict and the tragedy of occupation in unique ways. Each has also witnessed decades of Israeli-Palestinian violence and the intermittent attempts to rekindle peace talks. They have made a commitment to address American audiences about their work for a peaceful future and what must be done to improve today’s deteriorating situation.

What does an Israeli of South African descent, whose parents were involved in the founding of the state of Israel, think of President Carter’s description of Israeli policy as “Apartheid”?

What does an Educational Consultant with the Palestinian Ministry of Education face when accessing schools and communities surrounded by Israeli settlements and checkpoints?

How has one Christian Palestinian family used their contested land as a means to bring Israelis and Palestinians together?

How do Palestinians and Israelis work together in spite of the ongoing violence and animosity that surrounds them?

These three women can address these issues and more. The three will travel together on a national speaking tour for three weeks (April 9-26) to address realities of the conflict – the loss of family, the demolition of homes, persecution, occupation, violence, the separation barrier currently being constructed in the West Bank, Israel’s unilateral “disengagement” from the Gaza Strip, recent escalations of the conflict in Gaza and Lebanon, and more. They are here to demonstrate that working together for peace, while difficult, is possible.

The April tour is the Thirteenth National Jerusalem Women Speak Tour organized by Partners for Peace. The response to the tour in past years has been remarkable. Audiences have been fascinated and thrilled to hear their stories and see that even today in the midst of the ongoing conflict there are Palestinians and Israelis willing to travel together to talk about their lives, their fears, their hopes and their work for a just and sustainable peace.We refer to these individuals as “extraordinary ordinary women” for they are real women that deserve international recognition. If there is to be a real and lasting peace, everyday people like them will make it happen. The speakers for the Thirteenth National Jerusalem Women Speak Tour:

Huda Abu Arqoub, a Muslim Palestinian from Hebron, Palestine

Tal Dor, a Jewish Israeli from Haifa, Israel

Amal Nassar, a Christian Palestinian from Bethlehem, Palestine

Photos availableInterviews, talk shows appearances, editorial appearances and community presentations are currently being scheduled. They may be arranged by contacting Partners for Peace. Partners for Peace is an NGO based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to help bring about a just and lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This is the thirteenth tour since 1998.

Chicago Schedule:Tuesday, April 10

12:00 – 2:00 PMPresbyterian Church of Western Springs5250 Wolf RoadWestern Springs, Illinois 60558Sponsored by the Presbyterian Church of Western Springs, the American Friends Service Committee and the Chicago Interfaith Work Group on Middle East PolicyLocal Media

Contact Person

Jennifer LewisPresbyterian Church of Western Springs

jlewis@presbyws.org708-246-5220 6:00 – 8:00DePaul University
Richardson Library, Rosati Room
2350 North Kenmore Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60614
Sponsored by Global Voices, the Islamic World Studies Program, the Women’s Center, the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, the Department of Modern Languages, the Department of Religion, the Department of Political Science, the Department of Peace, Conflict Resolution and Social Justice and the Irwin W. Steans Center for Community-based Service Learning

Local Media Contact Person
Nicole Zimmerer
Global Voices773-325-7407
nzimmere@depaul.edu

Wednesday, April 112:00 - 3:30 PMThe Chicago School of Professional PsychologyRm. 412325 N. Wells StreetChicago, Illinois 60610Sponsored by The Center for International Studies

Local Media Contact Person
Nancy Dubrow
Center for International Studies, Chicago
Schoolndubrow@thechicagoschool.edu
773-327-8817 (work)

5:00 – 7:00 PM

Northwestern UniversityMcCormick Tribune Center
Room - McCormick Tribune Center Forum
1870 Campus Drive
Evanston, Illinois 60208
Sponsored by The Roberta Buffett Center for International and Comparative Studies and the Department of Women's and Gender Studies
Local Media Contact Person
Brian T. Hanson, Associate Director
Buffett Center for International and Comparative Studies
Phone: 847-491-5058 Email: bhanson@northwestern.edu

Full schedule details available at www.partnersforpeace.org.

Speakers’ Biographies:Huda Abu Arqoub (Age 36):A Muslim Palestinian, Ms. Abu Arqoub is an Educational Consultant with the Ministry of Education of the Palestinian National Authority. A resident of Dura in the occupied West Bank, Ms. Abu Arqoub’s work takes her to schools throughout the district of Hebron where she documents the unique situation students and teachers face as they endure Israeli military and settler violence. She sees overcoming these daily injustices as a key component to peacebuilding and conflict transformation in Israel/Palestine. One of twelve children, Ms. Abu Arqoub was born in Jerusalem.† She is currently denied Jerusalem residency, however, and cannot travel freely to the city of her birth or visit relatives there because of Israeli-imposed restrictions.† Ms. Abu Arqoub’s family has lost 250 acres of land planted with olive trees and vineyards to Israeli confiscation and settlement construction. She has only visited the land once, in 1988, when her father took the family to see the property. Ms. Abu Arqoub’s parents are both teachers and she followed in their footsteps, obtaining her diploma for teaching English as a Second Language and a degree in Education and English Literature from Al Quds Open University in Palestine. A Fulbright Scholar, she now holds a Masters Degree in Conflict Transformation from Eastern Mennonite University in the United States.Ms Abu Arqoub is also active in grassroots Palestinian initiatives focusing on issues related to gender equality and human rights. She is a member of several local Palestinian organizations that work on empowering women to be more active in building a healthy society.† Ms Abu Arqoub’s advocacy has also brought her in contact with many international groups and she has worked with organizations like Doctors Without Borders, Save the Children International and the University of the Middle East Project.† Most recently, she has joined the faculty of AL Quds Open University as a part time professor in the Departments of Language and Social Studies. The land Ms. Abu Arqoub calls home is saturated with Jewish Israeli settlements built illegally on Palestinian territory.† As a result, Ms. Abu Arqoub works in areas that endure Israeli military and settlement policies that privilege Israeli Jewish settlers over the indigenous Palestinian population.† Her commitment to peace between Israelis and Palestinians necessitates her opposition to these Israeli policies, which she describes as apartheid.† Such policies will never result in peace, Ms. Abu Arqoub argues, because ultimately "human interaction is needed to bridge gaps created by distance, cultural difference and politics."Tal Dor (Age 29):A Jewish Israeli, Ms. Dor’s work urges her society to critically examine both its past and its present. For the past six years, Ms. Dor worked for Mahapach-Tagier, a joint Jewish-Palestinian grassroots organization developing leadership and social justice in disempowered communities throughout Israel. She left the organization last year after serving as Executive Director. She is also active in many other organizations, including serving on the Board of Directors of Zochrot, an association working to develop a critical consciousness in Israel of the history and current reality of the Israeli War of Independence and Palestinian Nakba (Catastrophe) in 1948.Ms. Dor was born in Haifa, on the edge of the Mediterranean Sea. Her parents were Zionist immigrants from South Africa, one of whom came in 1948 to fight in the war to establish the state of Israel. Her identity and activism have been influenced by South Africa’s struggle to overcome its own conflict. The challenge to come to terms with both her family’s Zionism and her South African heritage led Ms. Dor to search for new and creative ways to address the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians.Ms. Dor graduated with a BA in Social Work from Tel Hai College and holds advanced degrees in Community Organizing and Facilitating Groups in Conflict. In 1996 and 1997, she served in the Israeli army as a trainer for soldier-teachers working with at-risk youth in Israel. The experience opened her eyes to the reality of poverty in Israel, but her political activism began several years after her service ended. Following the outbreak of the second Intifada in late 2000, Ms. Dor joined thousands of other Israelis in peace rallies and actions across Israel and in the occupied West Bank. Meanwhile, she continued her work with the disempowered in Israel proper. In the fall of 2006, Ms. Dor moved to France where she is currently writing a book with Palestinian colleague Manal Al Tamimi. The book documents and analyzes their dialogues as two women activists against the occupation- one Israeli and one Palestinian.Ms. Dor's work draws important links between the struggle for peace and justice among Israelis and Palestinians and the struggle for a more just and equitable Israeli society. Her work with disempowered communities and at-risk youth in Israel informs her work with Palestinian colleagues and contributes to her analysis of the broader trends in the region. Ms. Dor believes that peace between Israelis and Palestinians is within reach, but to achieve that peace, political awareness and activism has to spread to a larger cadre and in an equal civic partnership between Israelis and Palestinians. "I don’t think we can speak about peace in a situation of occupation," Ms. Dor argues. "I believe we have to speak about justice, equality and ending the occupation. We cannot live at the expense of other peoples and speak about peace."Amal Nassar (Age 46):A Christian Palestinian, Ms.. Nassar is a physiotherapist for infants and a nurse at the Caritas Baby Hospital in Bethlehem. Concern for the next generation of Palestinians also extends to her volunteer activism. Ms. Nassar is a founding member of Tent of Nations- People Building Bridges, a project inviting Palestinians, Israelis and international visitors to take part in programs focusing on coexistence, peace and nonviolence. Her work with Tent of Nations is motivated by the belief that Palestinians and Israelis, especially young people, must participate actively in shaping their society and building a peaceful future based on principles of justice and sharing the land.Ms. Nassar and her family founded Tent of Nations on the 100 acres of land her family owns near Bethlehem, in the occupied West Bank. Her grandfather purchased the property in 1917 and moved his family from the Old City of Bethlehem, where his ancestors had lived for generations. The family lived in a cave that they extended into a full stone house and tended the fruit trees and vineyards they planted.Ms. Nassar’s land is now surrounded by four illegal Israeli settlements built after Israel occupied the West Bank in 1967. In 1991, the Israeli military left notices on the property announcing that it had been classified as Israeli "state land" and would be confiscated. Ms. Nassar’s family began a legal battle to keep their land that continues today. In 2002, Israeli settlers attacked her family. The settlers beat two of her brothers and entered their home to threaten her 65 year old mother at gunpoint. Meanwhile, the attackers uprooted 250 olive trees. Ms. Nassar’s family has never been granted compensation. In light of such assaults on her family’s very presence on their own lands, Ms Nassar views Tent of Nations as more than an educational project. It is also a form of nonviolent resistance against the confiscation of her heritage.Ms. Nassar’s father taught his children that the land is an integral aspect of their identity as Palestinians and dreamt that the property would become a meeting point for people from around the world. Today, thirty years after her father died, Ms. Nassar is working to make his dream a reality. She organizes programs for youth and women that focus on peace education and nonviolence. Meanwhile, she fosters an understanding in Palestinian children of the vital connection between their people and the land.Through her work, Ms. Nassar has forged lasting friendships with Israeli peace activists who join Tent of Nations activities and support the family’s resistance. Ms. Nassar stays in contact with them through e-mails and phone calls. She cannot visit them, however, unless she is granted a special permit from the Israeli military.Despite the enduring efforts to dispossess her and her family of their land and heritage, Ms. Nassar remains optimistic that Israelis and Palestinians will live together in peace. "My dream is to see the youth of Israel and Palestine working together for a better future and a better quality of life for both nations," she explains. "I am looking forward to our young generation living together in peace without hatred and with an understanding that we must work for a new society based on democracy and justice."

GW Associates702 S. BeechSyracuse, NY 13210315-476-3396 603-590-8273 faxpwirth2@verizon.nethttp://www.peterwirth.net

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Metro Detroit Leaders Respond to New Immigration Bill

Metro Detroit Leaders Respond to New Immigration Bill
New Bipartisan STRIVE Act Initiates Action in Congress

Detroit, MI – Clergy from MOSES and a diverse group of community leaders from across Metro Detroit came together on Thursday to praise action in Congress on comprehensive immigration reform. Representative Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) and Representative Jeff Flake (R-AZ) introduced bipartisan comprehensive legislation today that will replace an immigration system that is unregulated, chaotic and abusive with one that is secure, controlled and fair.

The STRIVE Act (Security Through Regularized Immigration and Vibrant Economy) includes principles and elements that are needed to fix our broken immigration system. These principles include restoring the rule of law, providing a path to earned citizenship, protecting immigrant and American workers alike, reuniting families, respecting due process, and helping newcomers become new Americans while helping the communities in which they settle.

“A comprehensive solution must include solutions to many problems, including fundamental due process protections. Many of the enforcement measures introduced in the last Congress involved increasing the use of secret evidence in immigration processes and removing judicial discretion. Such provisions represent a particular threat to our community and, in general, a threat to the core principles on which our country was founded,” said Noel Saleh, President of the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS).

“We welcome the STRIVE Act because it moves us in the direction of our goal: to get our Federal government to act decisively to get comprehensive immigration reform done this year, to get it done right, and to make it work on the ground once it is implemented,” said Rev. Kevin Turman of 2nd Baptist Church.

There are an estimated 12 million undocumented people who are working and living in the US, and deportation would be an extreme and unworkable alternative. Comprehensive immigration reform legislation along the lines of the Gutierrez-Flake proposal offers a realistic way of dealing with this issue.

It gives families the opportunity to be united with family members in a timely manner. The legislation also makes the changes needed to satisfy the needs of our economy for workers.
“We hope Congress will work together like these two Representatives because America will finally have an immigration system that serves our national interests through increased security, an improved economy and a renewal of the values that define our nation.” Father Tom Sepulveda, Ste Anne Catholic Church.

“Metro Detroit has experienced a renaissance and tremendous growth by the investments made by immigrants, some of whom are undocumented, and are trapped in the complex tangle of immigration backlogs and extended waiting periods.” Kathy Wendler, President and CEO of the Southwest Detroit Business Association.”

###

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Dr. Maya Angelou joins Israeli-Palestinian Comedy Tour at May 29 Toronto show

Famed poet Dr. Maya Angelou to open for Israeli-Palestinian Comedy Troupe

Chicago -- Poet, playwright, producer, director, conductor, actor, author, and social activist, the remarkable Dr. Maya Angelou will make a special appearance May 29 in Toronto, Canada to launch The Israeli-Palestinian Comedy Tour in North America.

The show is being booked by Howard Szigeti, producer of the acclaimed Unique Lives & Experiences Women's Lecture Series, and features Daily-Herald Columnist and standup comedian Ray Hanania.

A veteran journalist named "Best Ethnic American Columnist for 2006/2007" by the New America Media in November, Hanania entered standup comedy as an effort to promote peace between Palestinians and Israelis, Arabs and Jews. Hanania has performed around the country including at Carolines on Broadway, the New York Comedy Club, and in the Chicago area at the Schaumburg Comedy Spot and Riddles Comedy Club in Orland Park.

Dr. Angelou recently learned of this new "Peace Through Comedy" initiative called The Israeli Palestinian Comedy Tour and asked to be a part of the landmark event, which premiered before sold-out audiences Jan. 23 to Israeli and Palestinian audiences in Tel Aviv and West Jerusalem in Israel, and in East Jerusalem.

Hailed as one of the great voices of contemporary literature, Dr. Angelou travels the world, spreading her legendary wisdom of peace and love through the sheer beauty of her words and lyrics.

Hanania is joined by Israeli American comedian Charley Warady, former Irish Catholic convertand Israeli citizen Yisrael Campbell and African American convert Aaron Freeman, who is a veteran of Chicago area comedy clubs and the famed Second City. It is the first time Palestinian and Israeli comedians have ever toured together.

Warady and Hanania met on the Internet when Warady was researching his former Chicago neighborhood, Pill Hill, on the city's Southeast Side. As it turned out, Warady and Hanania attended the same school, only a few years apart. When Warady, who is an Israeli citizen and has been living in Israel for th epast 10 years, emailed Hanania to note the ties, Hanania asked Warady if he would perform comedy on the same stage as a Palestinian.

"Warady immediately accepted and together, we were able to enlist several other comedians including Yisrael Campbell, who is very popular in Israeli comedy clubs, and Chicago's very own Aaron Freeman," Hanania said.

"This tour differs from other Middle East comedy groups because most Arabs will not appear with Israelis, although they will appear with 'Jews.' I think that is hypocritical and decided to break the Arab taboo, performing not just with Jewish comedians but also Israeli comedians," Hanania said. "The audiences, Israeli and Palestinian, overwhelming agreed that this is needed."

The group is hoping to plan performances in Chicago. Hanania's first venture into standup comedy in August 2002 exploded in international headlines when Jewish Comedian Jackie Mason refused to allow him to perform on the same stage at Zanies Comedy Club because Hanania is Palestinian.

The group's web site is www.IPComedyTour.com.

END

JUST FYI: PRESS RELEASE DETAILS

For Immediate Release: March 20, 2007 • Please include in listings/announcements

Three Jews, an Arab and Dr. Maya Angelou walk into a bar …

MAYA ANGELOU TO MAKE SPECIAL INTRODUCTORY REMARKS AT THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN COMEDY TOUR

Peace Through ComedyLive on Stage at Roy Thomson Hall

One Night Only, May 29, 2007

TICKETS ON SALE NOW!

"We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike."
Human Family, Maya Angelou

Poet, playwright, producer, director, conductor, actor, author, and social activist, the remarkable Dr. Maya Angelou will make a special appearance in Toronto to christen THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN COMEDY TOUR in North America.

A long time friend and colleague of presenter Howard Szigeti (producer of the acclaimed Unique Lives & Experiences Women's Lecture Series), Dr. Angelou recently learned of this new Peace Through Comedy initiative, THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN COMEDY TOUR, and wanted to be part of the landmark event.

Hailed as one of the great voices of contemporary literature, Dr. Angelou travels the world, spreading her legendary wisdom of peace and love through the sheer beauty of her words and lyrics.

Israeli American Charley Warady, Palestinian American Ray Hanania, former Irish Catholic convert Yisrael Campbell and African American convert Aaron Freeman will grace the same stage, the first time Palestinian and Israeli comics have ever toured together, for THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN COMEDY TOUR, launching in Toronto at Roy Thomson Hall on May 29, 2007.

I note the obvious differences/in the human family. Some of us are serious,/some thrive on comedy.

… We are more alike, my friends,/than we are unalike. Human Family, Maya Angelou

THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN COMEDY TOUR
With Special Guest Dr. Maya Angelou
Live on Stage at Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe Street
One Night Only, Tuesday, May 29, 2007 @ 8pm
Tickets range from $49 - $69 (incl. taxes) and can be purchased at http://www.roythomson.com or by calling 416.872-4255or in person at Roy Thomson Hall box office
Peace Through Comedy!
www.ipcomedytour.com

Media Contact: Carrie Sager, FLIP Publicity & Promotions Inc., 416.533.7710X224
carrie@flip-publicity.comwww.flip-publicity.com

end

MEDIA ADVISORY: Metro Detroit Leaders Respond to new immigration bill

MEDIA ADVISORY: Metro Detroit Leaders Respond to new immigration bill

Contact:
Hannan Deep, ACCESS
Juan Escareno, MOSES
313-842-7010
hdeep@accesscommunity.org

IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WHAT:
Press conference to address the introduction of the Strive Act of 2007 - - the Bill deals with comprehensive immigration reform.


WHEN:
Thursday, March 22 at 9:45 a.m.


WHERE:
Central United Methodist Church (corner of East Adams/Woodward - in front of Comerica Park)
23 East Adams Street
Detroit, MI 48226
(Inside Sanctuary)


SUMMARY:
STRIVE Act authored by Representative Luis Guiterrez (D-IL) and Representative Jeff Flake (R-AZ) is a bi-partisan response to the demands of millions of immigrants and their supporters for comprehensive immigration reform.

The following speakers will comment on the impact of this Bill on Michigan and on millions of immigrants around the country. Fr. Tom Sepulveda of St. Anne's Church, Rev. Kevin Turman of Second Baptist Church, Noel Saleh of ACCESS, Kathy Wendler of Southwest Detroit Business Association, and Dawud Walid of CAIR-MI.


###

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Israeli Palestinian Comedy Tour Toronto, Canada May 29 Roy Thompson Hall

For Immediate Release: March 13, 2007 • Please include in listings/announcements
Three Jews and an Arab walk into a bar …
Sumrey and Let’s Talk Entertainment present
THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN COMEDY TOURLive on Stage at Roy Thomson Hall
One Night Only, May 29, 2007
TICKETS ON SALE TOMORROW!
Peace Through Comedy
If we can laugh together, we can live together!

Performing for the first time outside of Israel, an Israeli American, a Palestinian American and two converts to Judaism, one African American and the other ultra-Orthodox, will take the stage at Roy Thomson Hall for one night only, Tuesday, May 29, 2007 at 8pm.
The brainchild of Charley Warady (American ex-pat comedian and Israeli since 1996) and Ray Hanania (Palestinian American comedian since forever), THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN COMEDY TOUR was borne of a conversation about peace in the Middle East. "How hard could it be? First peace in the Mideast, then the Nobel Peace Prize."
THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN COMEDY TOUR is full of jokes that test political and religious limits. There are cracks about settlers, occupation, Jewish circumcision and suicide bombers. One may wonder how anyone could laugh about these things, but after four SRO shows in Israel so far this year, one in a synagogue, the comedians will tell everyone who will listen, humour can help any warring relationship!
It's the first time Palestinian and Israeli comics have toured together; instead of pointing fingers at one another and blaming each other, they are laughing; they are pointing fingers at themselves and laughing; and they are pointing fingers in indiscriminate directions and laughing … it's never been done before. "Well, except for the peace talks," adds Charley Warady.
The Jerusalem Post recently reported, "Protesters outside Jerusalem's American Colony Hotel last Thursday night couldn't halt the peals of laughter emanating from the historic inn, where a group of Israeli, Palestinian and Jewish American comics calling themselves 'The Israeli-Palestinian Comedy Tour' were staging their two-hour show."
"I don't think humour or comedy by itself resolves conflicts," reflected Hanania, "Israelis and Palestinians need to see each other as human beings. I don't think the shows can do more than be funny and successful. But in doing that, it has to leave an impact on people that's positive."


- more -
The Israeli-Palestinian Comedy Tour Release, Pg 2.

Israeli American Charley Warady headlined comedy clubs and colleges across the U.S., and appeared on NBC and Comedy Central, before immigrating to Israel ten years ago where he has continued his career targeting every aspect of life and politics in Israel.
Palestinian American Ray Hanania is a columnist, former political operative and current stand-up comedian making his Jewish audience laugh at themselves and at the luckless, ordinary Arabs living in the U.S. after 9/11, who are often branded as terrorists by their countrymen.
A former Irish Italian Catholic from Philadelphia, Yisrael Campbell made aliyah six years ago. Campbell appears on stage much as he dresses every day around the holy city — wearing a long black coat, a hat and a Moses-like beard. "Is it warm in here or am I the only one dressed for Poland in the 1700s?"
African American Jewish convert Aaron Freeman is a standup comedian, popular columnist, and radio commentator. His views on being a black, Jewish convert, have made him a hit all across America. "Are you trying to give an extra merit badge to a KKK sniper?" queried Freeman's friends upon learning of his conversion plans.
With a message of hope in the midst of hatred THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN COMEDY TOUR uses comedy to help people in conflict find a way to co-exist since "it's not possible to aim a rifle when you're laughing."

Sumrey and Let’s Talk Entertainment present
THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN COMEDY TOURLive on Stage at Roy Thomson Hall
60 Simcoe Street
One Night Only, May 29, 2007 @ 8pm
Tickets on Sale at 10am on Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Tickets range from $49 - $69 including taxes
and can be purchased at http://www.roythomson.com or by calling 416.872-4255 or in person at Roy Thomson Hall box office
Peace Through Comedy!


Media Contact:
Carrie Sager carrie@flip-publicity.com
416.533.7710 X224
FLIP Publicity & Promotions Inc.
www.flip-publicity.com

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Bil'in Palestine Conference April 18-20, 2007

The Palestinian summer celebration 2007June 20 - August 18th 2007

Come and celebrate Palestine, learn Arabic, study history, know the people and their culture, share some time with local families and volunteer with a local community organization
The Palestinian summer celebration is a unique annual program that gives people from all over the world the chance to encounter the life and culture in Palestine in addition to donating some of their time to a local community organization through voluntary work and internships. The Palestinian summer celebration 2007 will take place in the Bethlehem area in Palestine, between Wednesday June 20th and August 18th 2007. the annual celebration is organized by Siraj Center for Holy Land Studies www.sirajcenter.org in partnership with Bethlehem University www.bethlehem.edu and the US based Society for Biblical Studies, www.sbsedu.org.

Participants will also have the opportunity to listen and question high level speakers of various positions and expertise. Educational opportunity:An Arabic language Course and a Modern Palestine Course are offered by Bethlehem U as apart of the program. Three credits hours will be given for each course, upon the participant’s request.

An opportunity to serve a good cause: Voluntary work in over 50 different organizations in Bethlehem and the surrounding towns of Beit Sahour, Beit Jala and Doha, also in the three refugee camps in the vicinity Dehaisheh, Aida and Azza who have been suffering the longest tragedy in the history of humanity.

Where to go home to:Accommodation will be in the hospitality of local families in the Bethlehem and the vicinity depending on the voluntary work place. Participants will have the chance to share the lives of the local family’s and get exposed to real life situation where they can practice there freshly learnt Arabic and Palestinian culture, experience the tasty traditional Palestinian dishes and all other aspects of Palestinian extended family life. Such an experience will give the participants the chance to build relations with their host families that may last for ever. Never the less accommodations at guesthouses are available for daily, weekly or monthly rates.

For more information: http://www.sirajcenter.org/courses.htm

YOU ARE INVITED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE
SECOND ANNUAL CONFERENCE IN BIL'IN, PALESTINE
18 – 20 APRIL 2007

February 2007 marks the second anniversary of the weekly non-violent protests in opposition to the "work-site of shame" for the Apartheid Wall that has annexed almost 60% of the land of Bil'in village in the West Bank. Bil'in has become a symbol both of the theft of land across Palestine and of the power of non-violent grassroots movements in building local and international resistance to Occupation.

The International Conference will follow upon a Palestinian conference to be held in March to extend the Popular Non-Violent Struggle across Palestine and offers Israelis and Internationals opportunity to join their Palestinian partners in spreading non-violent resistance to the injustice suffered by Palestinians: land confiscation, home demolitions, checkpoints, and imprisonment behind the Wall.

The year between June 2007 and May 2008 provides an effective framework for highlighting the ongoing Palestinian catastrophe: 90 years since the Balfour Declaration, 60 years since the Nakba, 40 years of Occupation, 25 years since Sabra/Shatila, 20 years since the First Intifada, 5 years of building the Apartheid Wall. Join us in strategizing effective, concerted non-violent action in Palestine and across the globe!

WHEN: 18 – 20 APRIL, 2007 with a major non-violent action on the final day
WHERE: BIL'IN VILLAGE near Ramallah, Palestine
SPEAKERS:

Dr. Azmi Bishara, Palestinian Israeli Knesset member
Mairead Corrigan Maguire, Irish Nobel Peace Prize recipient
Dr. Ilan Pappe, author of The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine
Luisa Morgantini, Italian EU Parliament member and Peace Activist
St├ęphane Hessel, former French Ambassador
Jean-Claude Lefort, French parliament member
Amira Haas, author and journalist, Ha'aretz
Sam Bahour, Palestinian activist and entrepreneur
Representatives of the Bil'in Popular Committee

WORKSHOPS: NON-VIOLENT STRATEGIES TO OPPOSE OPPRESSION
Boycott, divestment, and sanctions
Building economic independence
Media & Advocacy
Direct Action

COST: Accommodations per night, 20 Euros plus Conference Registration, 20 Euros per day (April 18 -19)

TO REGISTER and for information on options for pre-and-post conference activities see: www.bilin-village.org

For Pre and post Confrence tours: http://www.sirajcenter.org/bilin.htm