Sunday, June 15, 2008

Tel-Aviv Pride 2008

As I mentioned earlier this month, this year the Gayglers are taking part in many Pride events around the Globe. (full list at the photo below)

From TLV-Pride08

I happened to be in Israel for Tel-Aviv Pride. It was by far the best Pride the city have known. It started with a cool happening in Gan Meir where the amazing LGBT center is located. Many organizations and groups had small booths with their work / recruit volunteers etc. The LGBT center was open for the public and presented an art exhibition.

The Googlers gave-away Gayglers themed caps and Google stickers. Later on we joined the march with our banner and colorful balloons.

The Parade ended up with a great beach party with concerts by the best Israeli singers (Ivry Lider, Maya Buskila, Henry&Nikka...)

From TLV-Pride08

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

some facts about the history, Israel and discrimination

This post is a bit "heavier" than the usual suspects such as BBQ or a trip report I was busy with recently . So watch out and only keep on reading if you’re interested in knowing something about Israel.

I’m on my way from Dublin to Tel-Aviv and browsing the Haaretz special edition section called “Photo’s from our private Albums” that Milli gave me the same morning. I have tears in my eyes.

Going through the papers reminds me how grateful I should be for everything I have in life. Every bit of myself is shaped from every bit of my being an Israeli Jewish Gay person.

I put no dates on most of the stories as I feel these are all relevant to the present and the future of many human-beings in many places.

Although there are many things I would really want to change in our history and in present times I admire the people of Israel for constantly criticizing, self-criticizing, objecting, speaking up and are part of the history. Their inputs shed light on the reality and shape people's minds. I wish I can be as brave...

Past – Holocaust :: “Without a word”
Hannah Senesh’s family looking at her burial that was brought from Budapest to Israel. Hannah is a great example for the bravery during world war 2. She wrote a private diary while hiding in an attic which entrance was concealed by book-case in Amsterdam.

Israel – early days
One of the leaders that shaped Israel’s future -- David Ben-Gurion. I guess I need to say no more. People were afraid of him but respected him at the same time.

Israel - depression :: “And then they all left”
A story by an Arab who lived in what is now one of the most sought after neighborhoods in Tel-Aviv. Tells the story of a wealthy family and their run-away from the village they lived in.

Israel - discrimination :: “The black panthers”
Pretty much the first demonstration by Sefaradim against the discriminatory government which was ruled by Ashkenazim. Black (Schwartze in Yidish) - for their darker skin. Sefaradim are the Jews from Africa, Asia and the Arab world while Ashkenazim are Jews origin from America and greater-Europe.

Israel - homophobia :: “The Israeli mini-Stonewall -- Wigstock”
Not long after Dana International won the Eurovision song contest an organized gay gathering in the independence garden in Tel-Aviv was suddenly stopped by the police and banned for no good reason. It got only a bit physical but nonetheless shocking.

Israel – its fallen sons and daughters
"20 years old Benny Avraham with his sisters one to each of his sides."
Benny was one of the 3 Israeli soldiers murdered and kidnapped by Hezbollah to Lebanon and more than 3 years later was brought for burial in Israel. Unfortunately like him there are many more.

Anya Kazkatchov was 16 when murdered in a Tel-Avivian night club by a suicide bomber. 21 teenagers (mostly Russian newcomers) were murdered that night when a suicide bomber exploded in the queue-in; when crowded to help the survivors another suicide bomber got closer to them to double the effect. Bloody night...

real photos to come up later.