In spite of the dark news from so many directions, I feel compelled to write my thanks today. Thanks to you and so many other people who believe in Mondoweiss, I feel deeply fortunate, humbled and yet—yes—proud, for the community and work I’ve been drawn into these past several years.
For decades as a journalist, I operated as a loner. I interviewed people about their lives, and did my best to convey their experiences accurately and vividly for readers. But then I retreated to my own private world. My personal ties were to a fairly small set of others also living in atomized, privileged circumstances.
Today, I feel that I am part of a joyful, creative, energetic movement and community. You are among thousands, tens of thousands of people around the world who share my passion for telling the truth about Palestine and U.S. policy. You and I work daily to channel our grief and outrage at intolerable acts into meaningful information and action that can lead to changes on the ground.
I am lucky. Lucky to have found the cause that penetrated my bubble, awakened me to the real difference I could make using the skills I’ve developed. Lucky to have found partners in the work who have taken the blog I created, thirteen years ago, and helped grow it to become an institution: a trusted news source and forum for broad discussion. And deeply grateful to be accepted as an ally and a friend by those whose world has been damaged beyond belief—destroyed in key ways—by people and a state who claim to represent me.
Because of you, Mondoweiss has grown to serve beyond what I imagined it could. Because of you, I can describe with immense pride the work we’ve done this year to tell the truth of the Great March of Return. The New York Times should have been at the fence, telling the stories of people like Anas Minerawi and Dalia Khalifa. Instead, they chose to repeat the lies of the oppressors. But we found ways—thanks to you—to get firsthand stories of Gazans who risked their lives for freedom.
I am proud that we published these stories, and that we paid the people who reported on these essential facts. Thanks to the remarkable community who believes in this work, we have hired talented journalists and helped emerging writers and photographers in Palestine spread urgently needed information while also developing their skills.
I never dreamed that in my sixties, I would be part of a scrappy little organization, strengthened by others who would work with me to jab constantly at the injustices and hypocrisies of powerful establishments. I liked the description of journalism’s mission as “comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable,” but I did not see myself working for this mission side by side with others who know and are among the afflicted.
Sometimes in the past I have been shy about asking for donations. There are so many wonderful organizations that deserve your support, and mine. But when I look at the function Mondoweiss performed this year—at the stories we shared and the brave people we paid for their work, using your contributions!—I realize that the time for shame or shyness has passed.
I ask you today, as I have before and will in the future, to invest in Mondoweiss as a community and as a tool for change. So many people in Palestine and around the world depend on our work, and we depend on you. Thank you for all you’ve made possible, and please—give now.