"Peace is everyone’s business, war is just a business."
Robby Gordon and Dolly Hishmeh getting an award for Peace Work on behalf of the Cousin's Club.
Dr. Robby Gordon was born in Israel and lived there until the age of 21. He was active in the Peace Movement from the early age of 14. Afterwards, in the United States, he has been active in a whole array of the Peace Movement for the Middle East from Tikkun organization, Peace Now, Seeds for Peace and a lot of other peace oriented organization. He has been the co-chair of the Cousin Club, an organization of Palestinians, Arabs, Jews, Israelis, and affiliates who are interested in the Middle East. He is on the board of Al Amal School which is the only school that teaches about peace in the West Bank. Dr. Robby Gordon lives in Irvine. He is the father of two children. He has a mortgage company and he is a fee only financial planner.
Belief + Behavior = Peace.
Robby, pictured here in Washington DC with Senator Dianne Goldman Berman Feinstein, is the Co-Chair of the Orange County Cousin's Club in California, as well as a member of the Democratic Party on behalf of Tikion, working for Peace with Congress.
We create, promote, or allow anything that happens in the world.
"You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist."
-- Indira Gandhi, Indian prime minister (1917-1984)
We can either create a beautiful:
or hell ↓
Colors used: Black, Red, White, Green = Palestinian flag
Holocaust, Genocide, Incinerators
Wall, Separation, Darkness
Past Speeches by Robby Gordon
Middle East Sep 2002
Now, the situation in the Middle East is terrible and both sides are losing. If one family loses a son, a daughter, a father, an uncle or even if someone loses a hand or an eye it is a terrible loss. We do not like what we hear from the Middle East but this is what we have and this is what we have to deal with, so if we cannot change the situation, we can only change our feeling towards the situation. One of the problems of human beings is that we do not change until the pain of change is less than the pain that we suffer from in the present. The United States stopped the war in Vietnam only when the death toll became unbearable. Is not it unbearable now? In an article about the situation in Northern Ireland it was written; "In 1975 we were close to a settlement, but it was for the fast-learners. We needed 25 more years of violence for the slow learners.” In regard to the Middle East, I hope we will not need another 25 years for the very slow learners. Can we not learn from history? Do we have to wait until the pain will be so strong and unbearable that we won't have a choice but to create peace. Do we need thousands more of casualties before we will be ready to be sincere in creating a real peace in the Middle East.
Sharon claims victory. He claims that he can stop terror (at least partially and temporarily) by using excessive force without too much international protest, regardless of the economic and human tolls that Israelis, and the Palestinians pay for in return. Instead of talking about peace the only thing that we talk about or think about is taking revenge. On one hand we act powerful and machoistic, we ready to show the Palestinians what we can do and on the on the other hand we cry as victims. The same as Golda did not want to recognize Palestinians, we take another step by making Palestinians into our enemies instead of making peace with our neighbors, our cousins What is an enemy? An enemy is someone that you did not hear his story. Abraham Lincoln said that the best way to deal with your enemies is to make them your friends. So I call on both sides and say: let us be friends. We are all human being unfortunately we have leaders on both sides that do not listen to the children.
Last year in Tyrol Italy they showed Paintings painted by kids from all over the world. Our children, both Israeli and Palestinian were invited to do this in that small village. They sat for a few days and designed a painting made of three parts: the Palestinian part, the Israeli part and a joint part in the middle. The Palestinian children painted Muhamad Al-Dura, who was killed at the beginning of the Al-Aqsa Intifada, while his father tried, unsuccessfully, to protect him from the shootings. The Israeli children painted a girl sitting bent head and clenching arms, full of fear, all alone with a red background. In the middle they painted a kind of a flower with the words in Hebrew and Arabic “hoping for Peace.” When journalists interviewed them about the meaning of their painting, two of the kids (an Israeli and a Palestinian) explained that in the current situation the adults are not able anymore defend their children. If we want to think of what has to change in the current situation in the Middle East I would take this painting as a model: We want to have a situation in which adults can defend their children, but in peaceful way. Right now we are in a violent situation in which some children seem to be wiser than their parents.
This holiday is one of peace. Let us start at home and take peace every where. We are all human, we are all one, let us be one in peace. Lets open our heart to peace and we will create what we are ready to create. There is no anger in the world that is not chosen. If we am angry we choose to be angry.
We have to get out of the situation of being victims and martyrs and start creating a new future. As long as we will look into excuses we will stay in the excuses and won’t be able to create anything else so what we need to do is to shift our way of thinking and create something new. We have to get out of the past and create a new future. We can't solve the problems that we have created with the same thinking that created them. Let us solve the problems like the children want us to solve them. WE have to start listening to each other. WE are used to listen only to ourselves. Or while we listen to the other side we already know the answer. If anyone is interested in working for the peace mission please contact me.
Open microphone about the situation in the Middle East the 1997
The situation in the middle east has deteriorated since last year, this is what some of you are probably saying And for sure that what my poor children think having to sit here and listen to their father speaking again . Our problem with the situation in the middle east is the same as our problems with relationship in our families we want it to be perfect; and guess what it is not perfect, the same way that we want our children to be perfect and they want us to be perfect and unfortunately the situation is not always perfect. and it is not going to be perfect for long time. But this is what we have and this is what we have to deal with, so if we cannot change the situation lets choose what we have.
One of the problems of human beings is that we do not change until the pain of change is less than the pain that we suffer from in the present . United states stopped the war in Vietnam only when the death toll became unbearable. It was the same situation that caused the end of world war one and two. Can we not learn from history? Do we have to wait do till the pain will be so strong and unbearable that we won't have a choice but to create peace. Do we need thousands more of casualties before we will be ready to be sincere in creating a real peace in the middle east.
We have to understand that the situation changed in the middle east. In 1948 the Israeli defense force , operated more as a defense force using soldiers that just came from the holocaust some of them were full of revenge and didn't care to sacrifice their life. At that time they tried to defend their dreams that couldn't afford to loose. The Israeli army continued to keep the name of Israeli defense forces however it transformed into an attacking force which continued to be very successful, not all due to its merit but because Israel chose the right enemy who was not as organized and equipped army. Since then the Hizballa and the other Arab armies have improved tremendously they received huge contributions ,donation and immense budgets that allowed them to become very good fighters with the best ammunition and excellent intelligence. The results are very clear we see that the best units of the Israeli army are constantly losing in the war. Do we want to repeat our mistakes again and again hoping to get different results. Is not this the definition of craziness.
The Arabs are in the same situation that we were in 1948 more motivated and they do not have nothing to loose. We have to get out of the situation of being victims and murders and start creating a new future. As long as we will look into excuses we will stay in the excuses and won’t be able to create anything else so what we need to do is to shift our way of thinking and create something new. We have to get out of the past and create anew future.
A Report On the Peace Process in the Middle East 1996
Life is like a roller coaster. We all have our ups and downs. However, we must always remember, that when we experience a DOWN, we must strive for the UP. Looking at the situation in the middle east now, we as Jews and Israelis, as well as the Palestinians and Arabs, alike should strive for the UP.
It is interesting to observe that we all, at one time or other, fall into the victim game. The Jews, on one hand, feel that the Palestinians have planted bombs, the Palestinians , on the other hand, feel that they have been driven to despair, and now both sides actually raise their hands as victims of the new regime in Israel. When one plays the victim game, no one can find a solution. The victim falls into a triangle looking for a rescuer, who becomes the perpetuator of the victim. We should ask ourselves why it is happening repeatedly that we again become the victim.
We create our own life. Our life is a mirror of who we are. We should ask ourselves why we create the problem and not create the solution. We should recognize the problem in ourselves, and realize that our problems mirror our own vulnerabilities. We should try to challenge our problems, our lack of security and not hold on to it and not keep it as an obstacle to peace and thereby create the solution.
When we get to the point of looking for a “fair” solution we mean” DO IT MY WAY “.The “my way fair” creates an extremely selfish reality.
We got used to having wars, and our solutions to conflicts are creating tensions and explosions. This became the norm . War is the ultimate form of control. In an effort to control every thing, to create safety ,we create the opposite. War or complete control of other people is an insane behavior, the problem with an insane behavior is that when one is in the midst of this behavior he cannot see how absurd it is. One has to get out of the pattern of this behavior in order to see it.
We must remember that a just / fair ruling over other people is an oxymoron in itself. When we treat those around us with tolerance, we create honest and content surroundings. When we rule through repression, we create a society that is depressed and revengeful. When we seek power over others, the result is sheer misery for both sides.
Only by letting go, our own freedom will emerge. By now we should realize that there is more to life than creating tensions, crises, quarrels and wars, which in themselves create very negative feelings. We should learn to create peace and positive energy around us. We deserve more than being in a conflict and feeling bad about being a victim. We need to stronger and believe in ourselves in order to admit and realize the issue that did not work out, face them and start a new process of resolution .
We saw the Berlin Wall come down, a transformation in the Communist block, ion, and a change of governments in South Africa, without more bloodshed. Let us try to create a similar evolution in the middle -east. Let it be peace, and let it start with us. Only when we will change, will the situation around us change.
When we will create positive feelings, and peace within us, it will have a ripple effect that will bring with it peace and justice around us. We should try to perpetrate these concepts around us, among us, and portray these to our Government. Let us become the initiator and not the passive bystander who becomes a victim.
Palestinian children fly kites during at an event organized by UNRWA on a Mediterranean beach in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip on Thursday. Thousands of children in the Gaza Strip attempted to set a new world record Thursday by flying colorful homemade kites in a rare display of joy in the isolated seaside territory ruled by Hamas militants. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Colors used: Black, Red, White = Nazi flag
Martin Luther King said: Hate → Fear → Unknown → Lack of Communication
The Heart is Longing for Peace and the Tears are Still Falling
Fire Can be a Lighting or Devastating; choose which one you want to create.
Peace or war is created by us; choose which one you want to ignite.
No finger pointing; it all depends on us.
We're Only One. No Separation.
First they ignore us;
then they laugh at us;
then they attack us;
finally we win!
The sky is the limit. Let’s achieve peace on Earth.
Origin of Palestinians:
We are all brothers, cousins and sisters.
The sky is on fire when there is no peace.
They are never alone
that are accompanied
with noble thoughts.
– Sir Philip Sidney, British poet (1554-1586)
If opportunity doesn`t knock,
build a door.
-- Milton Berle, comedian (1908-2002)
Most of the plants were gifted to me by Michael Ale: a member of the cousin club from an Arab background.
This shows nice relationship between Arabs and Jews.
According to Michael: “It is easy to hate, it takes extraordinary effort to overcome these feelings, and maybe they will always be with you, but its important not to forget that there are always people 'on the other side' who are compassionate and kind, and people on "your side' who are not”.
Fair play is not blaming others for anything that is wrong with us.
We tend to rub our guilty conscience against others the way we wipe dirty fingers on a rag.
– Eric Hoffer, writer (1902-1983)
My paintings represent emotions, beliefs and convictions and I hope to convey to the audience
Let's plant seeds for peace
Robby Gordon is active in http://www.seedsofpeace.org/
Tires are used everywhere:
Old tires and mud used to build school for West Bank Bedouin By Amira Hass, Haaretz Correspondent Tags: West Bank, Palestinian
Covering a 300-square-meter plot of land southeast of Jerusalem is an eco-friendly building made solely of used tires and mud. The Jahalin tribe is planning to use the make-shift structures as a grade school and kindergarten. That is, if the Civil Administration, which is subordinate to the Defense Ministry, does not raze the four-and-a-half room educational facility.
Marazzi, an Italian architect, was asked how it was possible to build a school in the desert with no money. His immediate answer: "Used tires." When he saw that his friends were questioning his judgment he sent them links describing the "Earthships" invented by architect Michael Reynolds: tires filled with local soil and covered with dried mud which made up the "bricks" of thousands of structures in South America.
To cut costs, Marazzi and engineer Diego Torriani planned the school and kindergarten from their Milan home using a map they downloaded online. A fistful of local soil was sent to Marazzi, who was deeply impressed by its quality: clay studded with large pieces of gravel. Ideal for stability and perfect for making mortar.
Look at the weaknesses of others
with compassion, not accusation.
It’s not what they’re not doing
or should be doing that’s the issue.
The issue is your response to the situation
and what you should be doing.
– Stephen R. Covey, author, speaker
Movies that influenced my paintings:
Why We Fight (2005), directed by Eugene Jarecki, is a documentary film about the military-industrial complex.
Lord of War is a 2005 political crime thriller written and directed by Andrew Niccol which starred Nicolas Cage.
Robby Gordon with Mayor of Santa Ana and Peace Activists
Listening → Understanding → Compassion → Peace
Hope Flowers School
AL AMAL CHlLD CARE CENTER - THE HOPE FLOWERS SCHOOL
PEACE & DEMOCRACY POB 732 Bethlehem, Palestine * Via Israel
Robby Gordon is a boardmember of the Hope Flowers School.
Robby Gordon has been the co-chair of the Cousins cub since 1988.
Robby Gordon with the Palestinian Co-Chair and founder of the Cousins Club, Angela Odei, conducting a workshop about conflict resolution (click to see).
The Cousins club of Orange County serves as a 503(b) non-profit organization to collect money for this school.
Robby delivering words of condolences to in an
interfaith service after the attack on Gaza.
“The Riddle of Iran,” a panel discussion with Dr. Hooshang Meshkinpour, UCI professor, Sunny Zia of Humanity Unites, and Ali Shakeri from the UCI Center for Citizen Peace Building. Mr. Shakeri was released from an Iranian jail in 2007 after false allegations of espionage, and the charges were dismissed in Oct. 2008. Audience questions and comments will follow.
Green Party of Orange County
General Meeting Announcement for Sunday, August 2nd, 2009 2:00 PM
August General Meeting will highlight one of Green Party's four pillar values of Non-Violence, as we discuss peaceful solutions for the Middle East.
• Irvine resident Robby Gordon, co-chair of the Cousins Club, a group of Orange
County Jews and Palestinians, who’ve worked for Middle East peace since1988.
• OC Green Nader Haghighat will share perspectives for peace in Iran. He and
other expatriates organized protests against the recent Iranian national elections.
• Middle East Policy consultant Gabe Davis (University of London, School
of Oriental and African Studies) will speak on his Middle East experiences.
• Rabbi Haim Beliak, from Fast for Gaza, a group of Rabbis, Jews and people
of conscience across the U.S., who're organized a strong symbolic movement
to assert dignity of all humanity and awaken compassion for Palestinians.
We view this Middle East Summit as opportunity to model nonviolence, social justice, grassroots democracy, ecological wisdom, all Green Party Key Values. We invite your participation and attendance!
The Party of grassroots democracy, social justice, sustainability, non-violence –
The Green Party!