Students for a Democratic Society hosted Palestinian journalist Mohammed Omer Wednesday April 7th. Mohammed Omer has reported for numerous media outlets, including the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, Pacifica
Radio, Electronic Intifada, The Nation, and Inter Press Service. He is also founder of the Rafah Today Blog. In 2008, he was awarded the prestigious Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism. His ambition is “to get the truth out, not as pro-Palestinian or anti-Israeli, but as an independent voice and witness.”
Omer spoke about his personal experiences reporting from the Gaza strip, in addition to the personal hardships he has faced. SDS would like to thank the many students, professors, and people from the community who came out to listen to his brilliant presentation.
And published this article in the Monday April 12th issue:
International journalist and Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism award winner Mohammed Omer presented “Reflection on Life and War in Gaza,” at the University Center as part of his international speaking tour.
The ongoing Palestinian-Israeli conflict affects the Gaza Strip, home to 1.5 million Palestinians, in many ways, but Omer said on this speaking tour he wants to talk about life more than war.
Omer emphasized that not all stereotypes put on this region are true. For example, Omer said unlike many religious clashes that occur in this area, the accusation that Palestinian Muslims and Christians don’t live together peacefully is false.
“My news editor in Norway told me that there is a lot of attention in the American media that the Christian community in Gaza are oppressed,” Omer said. “I asked them (Christian students in Palestinian schools) if they experience any problems … they didn’t mention any difficulties.”
Omer mentioned that Father Manuel Musallam, the senior Roman Catholic priest in Gaza, told him that is, “absolutely not the case here. We are all Palestinians.”
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