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Cana and Qana: Bible and DemocracyNow intertwined...

by BalkanIdentity Tue Aug 1st, 2006 at 03:57:56 PM EST

Robert Fisk's narrative and John 2  description of the Cana wedding diverge in strangely parralel ways:

1 On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there.

When I arrived there, there were a number of, maybe 20, 30 children, the corpses of children, lined up outside the government hospital, hair matted, still in their night clothes.

2 Now both Jesus and His disciples were invited to the wedding.

The bomb that killed them was dropped at 1:00 in the morning.

3 And when they ran out of wine, the mother of Jesus said to Him, "They have no wine."

And they ran out of plastic bags. They were trying to put the children in plastic bags, their corpses, and they would put on it, you know, "Abbas Mehdi, aged seven," and so and so, aged one, and use a kind of sticking tape on it.

4 Jesus said to her, "Woman, what does your concern have to do with Me? My hour has not yet come." 5 His mother said to the servants, "Whatever He says to you, do it."
6 Now there were set there six waterpots of stone, according to the manner of purification of the Jews, containing twenty or thirty gallons apiece. 7 Jesus said to them, "Fill the waterpots with water." And they filled them up to the brim.

But then they ran out of plastic bags, so they had to put the children's corpses in a kind of cheap carpet that you can buy in the supermarkets, and they roll them up in that and then put their names on again. I was having to go around very carefully and write down, from the Arabic, their names and their ages. It would just say "Abbas Mehdi, aged seven, Qana."

8 And He said to them, "Draw some out now, and take it to the master of the feast." And they took it. 9 When the master of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom. 10 And he said to him, "Every man at the beginning sets out the good wine, and when the guests have well drunk, then the inferior. You have kept the good wine until now!"

One by one the children's bodies were taken away from the courtyard of the government hospital on the shoulders of soldiers and hospital workers and were put in a big refrigerated truck, very dirty, dusty truck, which had been parked just outside the hospital. The grownups, the adult dead, including twelve women, were taken out later. The children were put in the truck first. Pretty grim. As I said, the children's hair, when you could see the bodies, were matted with dust and mud. And most of them appear to have been bleeding from the nose. I assume that's because their lungs were crushed by the bomb, and therefore they naturally hemorrhaged as they died.

I do not know what this diary is supposed to say. The two texts, John 2 and Robert Fisk's report just struck me as having one too many parallels to ignore. Maybe it is just a sign of my seeming impotence to say anything more. Many analyses have been written already so what else can it be added?

How can we proceed from weddings to massacres is still unfathomable to me. I am not innocent as long as I keep on silent, yet I guess I will carry the burden of that great sin (keeping on with my life as if nothing happened) until circumstance forces otherwise.

The world is not black and white but unfortunately too many times it takes the grey of "hair matted with dust and mud."

If, in a thought experiment, we accept that Christ or Mahdi or Vishnu as Kalki do return, hopefully our chances of hearing: "Come, enter the Kingdom. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was sick and you visited me." will not rely solely on writing diaries...

First diary here ... (crossposted from dKos)
and I guess a pretty emotional one for that matter.

Next one, I promise, will be more analytic...

Orthodoxy is not a religion.

by BalkanIdentity (balkanid _ at _ google.com) on Tue Aug 1st, 2006 at 04:03:34 PM EST
A very interesting and effective juxtaposition.
by Richard Lyon (rllyon@gmail.com) on Tue Aug 1st, 2006 at 06:08:37 PM EST
Poignant. Thank you!

"Once in awhile we get shown the light, in the strangest of places, if we look at it right" - Hunter/Garcia
by whataboutbob on Wed Aug 2nd, 2006 at 06:53:43 AM EST
Thank you for the kind words! In case anyone is interested in the 1996 incident (or more properly massacre) in the same village, this is a narrative by by Robert Fisk.

Btw. your R. Hunter signature is really heartening.

Orthodoxy is not a religion.

by BalkanIdentity (balkanid _ at _ google.com) on Wed Aug 2nd, 2006 at 09:32:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I have decided to change name to the committee that follows the peace
appeals that I am launch.  I have given the name of one of the children
killed from the Israelis to CAna in Lebanese.  This to perennial memory of
the pain that door the war, is just, unjust, humanitarian, unilateral,
declared or not declared it, against the terrorism or whichever thing that
we are not.  Abbas al-Shalhoub was a child of a year.  I have two
sons, one of three years and means and one of seven months, knowledge that
only a small cold them can hit makes badly me star, this renders me the
pain immense that can have tried the parents of that child who did not
have no guilt.  It could not not ask itself because for that war.  The
smile had to be the only expression that had to pass on its ace, the joy
of the games, the affected look of a father whom it sees if same, the hope
of a mother had to be the images in front of its eyes.  But someone has
decided launch a missile, strafregandosene that some civilian could die,
would have been "damages collaterals"... But we think that child, with to
the other trentasei that are died with to he...  Because a number does not
remain, because its name remains imperituro in our memory, as it it is
that one of our sons here, because it is a our son always, because I have
given its name to my engagement, to my committee...    You pardon to me but
the tears come down me...  Ettore Lomaglio Silvestri
by outafghanistan on Wed Aug 2nd, 2006 at 10:41:55 AM EST
Mixed feelings about posting this, considering what just happened, but when I think 'Kana' what comes to mind is a Polish Christmas carol that doubles as a drinking song. A somewhat loose translation (archaic peasant Polish).

The true Messiah came to earth
A mighty prophet with great wonders
Who through his signs
Gave water the taste of wine
In Galilean Kana

They brought the food with great fanfare
Asked Lord Jesus to eat
Plenty of everything
Only lacked wine
In Galilean Kana

His momma when she saw that
Wanted to make the groom happy
Asked her son
To turn water into wine

Soon they recognized the true God
When instead of water they drank wine
Hey wine, wine, wine!
Getting better all time
In ...

The most holy Virgin when she took a taste
Filled her cup to the brim
Hey wine, wine, wine!
Gonna drink it tonight.

Peter the apostle, standing by the jug
Called out to John, drink up man
Hey, wine, wine wine!
Getting better all the time

Simon chugged with Mathew
Phillip poured it down with Thaddeus
Hey wine, wine, wine!
Getting better all the time

And so on and so forth

Yes, this really is a Christmas carol, sung around the table on Christmas Eve, found on standard Christmas CD's. Always found it a bit strange but fun.

by MarekNYC on Thu Aug 3rd, 2006 at 12:20:55 AM EST

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