Friday, July 07, 2006

Andover High Teacher Says Palestinian Terrorism "Completely Understandable."

On the anniversary of the murder bombings that killed 52 Londoners, Andover High physics teacher Ron Francis says that condemning all terrorism is wrong.

"I don't condemn the Palestinian people because they actions they are taking...are completely understandable and withing the bounds of normal human behavior," Francis told the Andover Townsman regarding the Intafada that has claimed hundreds of innocent Israeli (and a few American) lives.

Francis is part of the Somerville Divestiture Project which, in turn, is allied with the New England Committee to Defend Palestine. Some of the writing you'll find from the NECDP:

The Palestinian resistance—the ones they call "terrorists"—had the ingenuity
this past week, under absolute closure, economic strangulation, and starvation
to tunnel under the ground and attack a military installation and capture an
enemy soldier. They are now trying to negotiate the release of women and
children Palestinian prisoners who constitute only a portion of the over 10, 000
Palestinian political prisoners held in Israeli jails. Imagine the creativity,
the steadfastness, the risk, and the sacrifice that is involved in carrying out
such an operation to free the women and children of your movement locked in
Israeli prisons. Where is the international support for such courage and
selflessness in the face of so much suffering?
Yes, those courageous men who kidnapped a 19-year-old standing guard duty and are threatening to cut off his head. Such least in the eyes of Ron Francis and his friends.

What makes Dr. Francis's story so interesting is that he is a public school teacher and has gotten his students involved in his activism on behalf of the Palestinian "Israel must be destroyed!" cause. He also declines to recite the Pledge of Allegiance in his classroom (American flag? Too racist!) and has turned his back on the flag at Somerville Town Council meetings.

He's scheduled to join us in the 4pm hour today. Trust me: You don't want to miss it.