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FATTENING WALL STREET — Mike Whitney reports on the rapid metamorphosis of new Fed Chair Janet Yallin into a lackey for the bankers, bond traders and brokers. The New Religious Wars Over the Environment: Joyce Nelson charts the looming confrontation between the Catholic Church and fundamentalists over climate change, extinction and GMOs; A People’s History of Mexican Constitutions: Andrew Smolski on the 200 year-long struggle of Mexico’s peasants, indigenous people and workers to secure legal rights and liberties; Spying on Black Writers: Ron Jacobs uncovers the FBI’s 50 year-long obsession with black poets, novelists and essayists; O Elephant! JoAnn Wypijewski on the grim history of circus elephants; PLUS: Jeffrey St. Clair on birds and climate change; Chris Floyd on the US as nuclear bully; Seth Sandronsky on Van Jones’s blind spot; Lee Ballinger on musicians and the State Department; and Kim Nicolini on the films of JC Chandor.
for Sundus Shaker Saleh, Iraqi Mother, with my love. In our despair that justice is slow we sit with heads bowed   wondering how even whether we will ever be healed.   Perhaps it is a question only the ravaged the violated seriously ask. And is that not now almost all of us?   But […]

Hope of Healing

by ALICE WALKER

for Sundus Shaker Saleh, Iraqi Mother, with my love.

In our despair that justice is slow

we sit with heads bowed

 

wondering

how

even whether

we will ever be healed.

 

Perhaps it is a question

only the ravaged

the violated

seriously ask.

And is that not now

almost all of us?

 

But hope is on the way.

 

As usual Hope is a woman

herding her children

around her

all she retains of who

she was; as usual

except for her kids

 

she has lost almost everything.

 

Hope is a woman who has lost her fear.

 

Along with her home, her employment, her parents, her olive trees, her grapes.  The peace of independence; the reassuring noises of ordinary

neighbors.

 

Hope rises, She always does,

did we fail to notice this in all the stories

they’ve tried to suppress?

 

Hope rises,

and she puts on her same

unfashionable threadbare coat

and, penniless, she  flings herself

against the cold, polished, protective chain mail

of the very powerful

the very rich – chain mail that mimics

suspiciously silver coins

and lizard skin –

and all she has to fight with is the reality of what was done to her;

to her country; her people; her children;

her home.

All she has as armor is what she has learned

must never be done.

Not in the name of War

and especially never in the

name of Peace.

 

Hope is always the teacher

with the toughest homework.

 

Our assignment: to grasp

what has never been breathed in our stolen

Empire

on the hill:

 

Without justice, we will never

be healed.

Alice Walker’s most recent book is The Cushion in the Road.

The organization, Iraq Witness, has filed suit against the Bush Administration on behalf of an Iraqi single mother, Sundus Shaker Saleh. Saleh alleges that the Iraq War was a premeditated war against the Iraqi people — and now she is the lead plaintiff in a class action lawsuit against six key members of the Bush administration. 


For more information about this inspiring standing up of a mother of five, visit the CODEPINK website, www.codepink.org.