Published on Tuesday, December 29, 2009 by CommonDreams.org
Hunger Strike for
But when we arrived here in Gaza, we learned that the Egyptian government had categorically banned our entry into Gaza, banned any attempt to get to Gaza, banned any public gatherings, and banned our initial orientation evening at the prestigious Jesuit College of the Holy Family.
What to do? Many nonviolent demonstrations and actions have been undertaken over the last few days. 300 French people surrounded the French embassy and remained camped out there. Sit-ins have taken place in various other embassies. Some five hundred of us camped out in front of the U.N. offices along the
On Monday, 85 year old Hedy Epstein began a hunger strike as a modest gesture to call upon the Egyptian government to let us go to
And so, for several days now, we have been fasting, praying and vigiling, not just to be allowed into
None of us expected to spend this Christmas-New Year's Week in
Even so, the efforts and attempts of the
As the fast continues here in Cairo, we urge everyone to stand in solidarity with the people of Gaza, and to explore their own nonviolent actions, as together, we speak out for an end to the seige and occupation, and the coming of a new world of nonviolence.
John Dear is a Jesuit priest, activist and author of 25 books, including most recently, "A Persistent Peace ," "Put Down the Sword ," and "Daniel Berrigan: Essential Writings ." He writes a weekly column for the National Catholic Reporter at www.ncronline.org  For information, see www.johndear.org 
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