Rachel Corrie: Martyr for Peace
- Activist's memorial service disrupted
Chris McGreal in Jerusalem
Wednesday March 19, 2003
Israeli forces fired teargas and stun grenades yesterday in an
attempt to break up a memorial service for Rachel Corrie, the
American peace activist killed by an army bulldozer in Gaza on
Witnesses including several dozen foreigners and Palestinian
supporters say Israeli armoured vehicles tried to disperse the
gathering at the spot in Rafah refugee camp where Ms Corrie was
crushed to death.
The 23 year-old activist with the International Solidarity Movement
(ISM) was trying to prevent the destruction of Palestinian homes by
the Israelis when she was hit by the bulldozer.
Joe Smith, a young activist from Kansas City, said about 100 people
were gathered to lay carnations and erect a small memorial when the
first armoured personnel carrier appeared.
"They started firing teargas and blowing smoke, then they fired sound
grenades. After a while it got hectic so we sat down. Then the tank
came over and shot in the air," he said. "It scared a lot of
Palestinians, especially the shooting made a lot of them run and the
teargas freaked people out. But most of us stayed."
Another witness said the army failed to break up the service.
"People were laying carnations at the spot where Rachel was killed
when a tank came and fired teargas right on them. Then a core group
of the peace activists took an ISM cloth banner to the fence and
pinned it up.
"The tank chased after them trying to stop them with teargas but the
wind was against the army," she said.
Tensions rose further when a convoy of vehicles, including the
bulldozer that killed Ms Corrie, passed the area.
"I don't think it was deliberate but it was pretty insensitive," said
"I think they had been destroying some buildings elsewhere and had to
pass by to get back to their base."
The army said it was investigating the incident.
FRIENDS SAY ACTIVIST'S GAZA DEATH MAKE HER A MARTYR FOR PEACE
David Ammons, Associated Press, 3/18/03
OLYMPIA, Wash. - American peace activist Rachel Corrie's death in a
Palestinian refugee camp could be a catalyst for change in U.S.
policy toward Israel, friends and professors on Corrie's college
Corrie, 23, was crushed to death by an Israeli bulldozer on Sunday
while protesting the destruction of Palestinian homes. Her death
makes her a martyr to the cause of justice, acquaintances and fellow
activists said Monday.
"She was the heart and soul of the local resistance (movement) and a
light of inspiration in an unjust world," said Therese Saliba, a
professor at The Evergreen State College and a fellow activist in
Olympians for Peace in the Middle East.
"She was killed by a bulldozer paid for by U.S. tax dollars. We will
not let her sacrifice be swept away. In our sadness over Rachel's
death, we need to continue her work."
Corrie's parents headed to the Gaza Strip to bring back her body to
Olympia, said Colin Reese, 23, who read a sorrowful letter from the
parents and a recent e-mail from Corrie about her "peacekeeper" work
in the troubled region...
PEACE ACTIVISTS SAY PROTESTER WAS KILLED DELIBERATELY
Ibrahim Barzak, Independent, 3/18/03
A group of international peace activists has disputed a claim by
Israel that an American who was trying to block the path of an
Israeli bulldozer in a Gaza refugee camp was crushed accidentally.
The International Solidarity Movement said yesterday that Rachel
Corrie was in the line of vision of the bulldozer's driver on Sunday
as she stood in his path to try to prevent the demolition of a
Palestinian home in the Rafah camp.
"When the bulldozer refused to stop or turn aside she climbed up on
to the mound of dirt and rubble being gathered in front of it ... to
look directly at the driver who kept on advancing," the group said in
Ms Corrie's parents are travelling to Rafah, where she will be
cremated, said Charles Smith, a member of the International
Solidarity Movement. Her father, Craig Corrie said: "Rachel was
proud, and we are proud of Rachel that she was able to live with her
convictions. Rachel was filled with a love and sense of duty to our
fellow man, wherever they lived, and she gave her life trying to
protect those that could not protect themselves..."
This weekend 23-year-old American peace activist Rachel Corrie was
crushed to death by a bulldozer as she tried to prevent the Israeli
army destroying homes in the Gaza Strip. In a remarkable series of
emails to her family, she explained why she was risking her life...
SEND CONDOLENCES TO RACHEL CORRIE'S PARENTS
Send condolences to Craig and Cindy Corrie, parents of Rachel Corrie,
by writing to cbc1flute@...
Tuesday March 18, 2003
Family of Rachel Corrie to Attend Vigil
in Front of Israeli Embassy
The family of the 23 year old peace activist who was
deliberately crushed to death by an Israeli army
bulldozer on Sunday in the Gaza Strip, will be
attending a candlelight vigil in front of the Israeli
Embassy in Washington D.C. this evening at 5:30 P.M.
(EST). Parents Craig and Cindy Corrie, along with
their son, Chris Corrie said that they will attend
the candlelight vigil in memory of their daughter
Rachel was protesting the Israeli policy of
demolishing Palestinian homes and was standing in
front of a home in Rafah, located in the Gaza Strip,
urging the bulldozer driver to stop, when the Israeli
Army driver ran over her forwards and backwards.
The bulldozer crushed her head and chest and she died
a few minutes later in a Palestinian hospital. A
number of witnesses said that the Israeli Army
bulldozer driver ran over Rachel Corrie on purpose.
The public in the area is encouraged to attend the
vigil to commemorate the life and protest the tragic
death of the courageous American peace activist,
Rachel Corrie. Her friends and family will not let
her death go in vain and will continue to fight the
inhumane Israeli policy of destroying Palestinian
homes, and for the freedom and justice that Rachel
gave her life for. The Israeli Embassy in Washington
D.C. is located at International Drive and Van Ness
In addition, today at 2pm, residents of Los Angeles
who have been to Palestine as human rights observers
will hold a Press Conference at the Offices of
Zionist U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer located at 312 N.
The organizers of the press conference are calling on
the United States Government to: 1) Conduct a Full
and Independent Inquiry in the Death of Rachel Corrie
at the hands of the Israeli Military; 2) Take
Responsibility for the Role that United States
Military Aid played in her death; 3) End all US
Military Aid to Israel; and 4)Condemn the violent
escalation of Israeli military actions in Palestine
that have claimed hundreds of lives in the past few
Other Israeli Embassies and Consulates
that may see protests in the near furure:
6380 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 1700
Los Angeles, CA 90048
456 Montgomery Street, Suite 2100
San Francisco, CA 94104
800 Second Avenue (between 42nd and 43rd)
New York, NY 10017
111 E. Wacker Dr., Suite 1308
Chicago, IL 60601
20 Park Plaza, Suite 1020
Boston, MA 02116
24 Greenway Plaza, Suite 1500
Houston, Texas 77046
100 North Biscayne Blvd. Suite 1800
Miami, FL 33132
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