Rumors of Wars: Holding my Peace

Last Friday I wrote THIS POST explaining the sudden developments in Israel, and their we-are-ready-to-declare-war-on-Iran declaration.

So far this Monday morning, the US has closed its Damascus embassy and pulled it’s diplomats out of Syria, a UK judge granted bail to radical cleric Abu Qatada (who wants to return to Jordan), Fatah and Hamas have joined forces (Gadianton Robbers style) and are trying to decide on a new prime minister for the Palestinian Authority in Gaza and the West Bank, and Obama just signed an executive order to freeze all Iranian assets (confirming us as backing Israel’s declaration of war).

Allegedly, I leave for Israel in a week.

On Friday, I thought, “wow, this is significant, but is it worse there? Or am I just paying better attention?”   As of this morning, it is officially worse.

Israel is ready to go to war.

I really need to work on my timing.

My ballroom dance teacher told me that a thousand times.

Obviously, the Syria-Lebanon-Jordan-Egypt portion of my trip has been cancelled.

But let me back up, so we can catch up, because things are happening fast.

All of this happened within about an hour and a half this morning (central time).

First, the US closed its embassy in Damascus (Syria), and pulled out all diplomats.  Ambassador Ford still holds his position, but will work from DC until Syria addresses security concerns.  This is in response to continued violence since Russia and China went against a UN resolution (that the US agreed with) that called for President Bashar al-Assad (of Syria) to give up power.  State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said, “Together with other senior U.S. officials, Ambassador Ford will maintain contacts with the Syrian opposition and continue our efforts to support the peaceful political transition which the Syrian people have so bravely sought.”

This means Syria’s revolution for peace has changed back to violence as the refused-government aligns with Iran in preparation for war.

Second, the Palestinian Authority (the government for Gaza Strip and West Bank) have elections coming up in May.  Today they are talking about who the new Prime Minister will be.  There are two groups: Fatah (think PLO, Yasser Arafat, nationalists) and Hamas (officially declared a terrorist organization by the US, the European Union, Israel, and Japan).  They have just announced brokering a deal that combines the two groups, which essentially makes all of Palestine considered “terrorist” by default.  This morning Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu said that this was a “mortal blow to peace” and that Palestine can’t have it both ways because “Hamas is a terrorist organization that strives to destroy Israel, and which is supported by Iran… you cannot hold the stick by both ends.  It is either peace with Hamas or peace with Israel; you cannot have it both ways.”

This means that the war Israel wants to declare on Iran was just brought to its own boarders through Iran’s-ally-Palestine (Gaza Strip and West Bank).

Third, Obama signed an executive order this morning freezing Iran’s assets.  Lots of reasons for freezing money were given to Congress.  The message sent, however, was that the US is going to back Israel’s declaration of war against Iran.

This means Israel isn’t waiting six months to declare war on Iran.

If that isn’t exciting enough, while I was writing this post, the UN announced that Tehran (Iran) is stalling out on talks again (circa 2007), though Iran says it will answer any questions the UN has but wants the UN to stop accusing them of doing naughty things.  When is the next big chat scheduled?  February 21 and 22, when I will be right there, next door, in Israel (who is done playing nice).

This means Emily may or may not be going to Israel next week (because that is a lot to happen in less than two hours, so a week seems ages away), and if she does go, then it may be the biggest adventure in Emily World thus far.

Either way, it makes me grateful – in a new way – for my quiet little life, where life is sweet and calm and good and peaceful.  It makes me more aware of how distressing it is not to have peace, and challenged to do what I can in little ways to make peace and keep the peace.

Maybe that is working hard, so my clients get better and my bills are paid.

Maybe that is holding my tongue and practicing being kind.

Maybe that is learning forgiveness and letting go of senseless trauma-drama.

Maybe that is not being at war with myself, and just being me, and doing my best, and enjoying the process of learning how to do so.

Maybe that is spending time with myself when I need to, just resting or playing or reading or learning or studying or worshiping (God, not me).

Maybe that is spending time with my family, which is more important than anything, and the deepest kind of love.

Maybe that is enjoying times with friends, whether laughter together at lunch or out on a date to the ballet or a brutal game of racquetball.

Maybe that is being aware of what is happening far away, and knowing that wars and rumors of wars were part of the deal, and still being okay with doing my best to make peace here, where I am, on this day.

Maybe that is keeping Emily World a happy and peaceful place, no matter what is happening around us.

That is faith, I think, and maybe the only way to hold my peace.

About Emily

I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since 2009. I serve as a Chaplain, and work as a counselor. I got bilateral cochlear implants in 2010, but will always love sign language. I choose books over television, and organics over processed. Nothing is as close to flying as ballroom dancing - except maybe running, when in the solo mood. I would rather be outside than anywhere else, especially at the river riding my bike or kayaking. PhD in Marriage and Family Therapy, and currently doing a post-doc in Jewish Studies and an MDiv in Pastoral Counseling. The best thing about Emily World is that it's always an adventure, even if (not so) grammatically precise. The only thing better than writing is being married to a writer. Nathan Christensen and I were married in the Oklahoma City temple on 13 October 2012, and have since fostered more than eighty-five children. We have adopted the six who stayed, and are totally and completely and helplessly in love with our family. Nathan writes musical theater, including "Broadcast" (a musical history of the radio) and an adaption of Lois Lowry's "The Giver". He served his mission in South Korea, has taught song-writing in New York City public schools, and worked as a theater critic for a Tucson newspaper. This is not an official Web site of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


Rumors of Wars: Holding my Peace — 1 Comment

  1. Well, Emily, I don’t know how you do it! keep so many balls in the air at once. How in the world do you do all you do and still keep track of and work to increase world peace? You are very amazing (even tho just amazing would be quite enough). I hope you get to make your trip, but more important stay safe.

    Also, I enjoy your picture essays. 1000 words/picture makes them very good economics.