Thursday, December 31, 2009

Hunger Strikers In Cairo

Hedy Epstein, 85, a holocaust survivor, and a Gaza Freedom Marcher, announced on December 26 that she would begin a hunger strike in solidarity with the people of Gaza. Of the approximately 25-30 people who have joined her,are nine of our own Hudson To Gaza affinity group: Helaine, Cheryl, Pia, Tarak, Laurie, Jen, Linda, Mauritzio, and Nic. Today, January 1 is the fifth day of our fasts. On December 28, we gathered, along with 200 other GFM'ers, on the steps of the Society of Journalists to announce our Hunger strike with the following statement:

We are doing this hunger strike in solidarity with the Palestinian People of Gaza who are hungry for food, shelter, and, most of all, for their freedom. We call upon people everywhere to join us in short fasts and other non violent actions to help end the siege of Gaza.

We were, as always, immediately blockaded by police in their usual riot gear.This didn't at all dissuade us from chanting,singing displaying our protest signs, and generally having a spirited protest that was even covered in the NY Times(at least a picture). .We disbursed peacefully after approx 3 hours.It was considered by all to be a very success protest.

We continue our fasts with many of us uncertain about how or when to end.The fasts have deepened our commitment to work for the freedom of the Palestinian People. We all acknowledge that this denial of sustenance to ourselves is only symbolic of the daily suffering of our oppressed bothers and sisters in Gaza. While our goal of breaking the siege has not been accomplished, and may not be for a great while, we do feel that, along with the other actions on this trip, this has been an important undertaking both politically and personally

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