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Rachel Corrie, Peace Activist - RIP
Sunday, March 16, 2003   By: Juan Paxety

How a US Peace Activist spent her time during the month before her death - by flag burning.

Rachel Corrie was in Gaza when, according to CNNRadio, she was struck and run over by an Israeli bulldozer that was tearing down a house. Later reports said she ran in front of the bulldozer to stop it from destroying the home of a terrorist.

From the Associated Press, here's what she was doing a month ago. The caption is the original from AP.


Rachel Corrie, 23, from Olympia, Wash., a member of the 'International Solidarity Movement,' burns a mock U.S. flag during a rally in the southern Gaza Strip (news - web sites) town of Rafah in this Feb. 15, 2003 file photo. Corrie was run over and crushed to death by an Israeli army bulldozer Sunday, March 16, 2003, while she was trying to stop it from tearing down a building in the Rafah refugee camp, witnesses said. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

The AP story, via Yahoo News is here.

Is it her? Here's a photo of her at home in the US as circulated by AP.


Peace activist Rachel Corrie is shown at the Burning Man festival in a photo from September 2002, in Black Rock City, Nev. Corrie, 23, a student at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash., died Sunday, March 16, 2003, in the Gaza Strip (news - web sites) city of Rafah while trying to stop a bulldozer from tearing down a Palestinian physician's home. She fell in front of the machine, which ran over her and then backed up, witnesses said. Israeli military spokesman Capt. Jacob Dallal called her death an accident. State Department spokesman Lou Fintor said the U.S. government had asked Israeli officials for a full investigation. (AP Photo/Denny Sternstein)

And here is the link to that story.

And another site has posted what it says is an email from Rachel to her family:

Currently, the Israeli army is building a fourteen-meter-high wall between Rafah in Palestine and the border, carving a no-mans land from the houses along the border. Six hundred and two homes have been completely bulldozed according to the Rafah Popular Refugee Committee. The number of homes that have been partially destroyed is greater.

Today as I walked on top of the rubble where homes once stood, Egyptian soldiers called to me from the other side of the border, "Go! Go!" because a tank was coming. Followed by waving and "what's your name?". There is something disturbing about this friendly curiosity. It reminded me of how much, to some degree, we are all kids curious about other kids: Egyptian kids shouting at strange women wandering into the path of tanks. Palestinian kids shot from the tanks when they peak out from behind walls to see what's going on. International kids standing in front of tanks with banners.

Israeli kids in the tanks anonymously, occasionally shouting-- and also occasionally waving--many forced to be here, many just aggressive, shooting into the houses as we wander away

The email is an interesting read. It seems to me to show an young woman who is genuinely concerned about the plight of the Palestinians, but wholly unable to see the plight as being the result of anything but Israeli oppression.

Updating this story for you - here's the story from the Seattle Times.

The International Solidarity Movement said Rachel Corrie of Olympia, Wash., was in the line of vision of the bulldozer driver Sunday as she stood in his path to try to prevent the demolition of a Palestinian home in the Rafah refugee camp.

"When the bulldozer refused to stop or turn aside she climbed up onto 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 a statement.

The Times notes Rachel's flag burning in the penultimate paragraph of the piece.

A Paxety Pages Update, including what is supposed to be a photo of the incident, is here.


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