"My Name Is Rachel Corrie:" Its Not Against Israel, Its Against Violence
Three years ago, on March 16th I was horrified to hear the story and see the gruesome pictures of Rachel Corrie’s death. This unlikely American hero from Olympia, WA, was 23 when she was crushed to death under an Israeli bulldozer in Gaza while in the midst of a nonviolent direct action to protect the home of a a Palestinian doctor, his wife, and three children from demolition.
LA Times columnist Katherine Viner describes her as a “young, middle-class, scrupulously fair-minded American woman, writing about ex-boyfriends, troublesome parents and a journey of political and personal discovery that took her to Gaza. She worked with Palestinians and protested alongside them when she felt their rights were denied.”
Last April a play entitled “My Name is Rachel Corrie” was staged in London. The play ran to sold out houses and won several awards. This year this unique American woman’s story was coming to the United States. It was due to play at the New York Theater Workshop: the home of “Rent.” But about two weeks ago, the Workshop cancelled its booking. Viner writes: “The political climate, we were told, had changed dramatically since the play was booked. As James Nicola, the theater's 's artistic director, said, ‘Listening in our communities in New York, what we heard was that after Ariel Sharon's illness and the election of Hamas in the recent Palestinian elections, we had a very edgy situation.’”
Viner writes: One night in London, an Israeli couple, members of the right-wing Likud party on holiday in Britain, came up after the show, impressed. "The play wasn't against Israel; it was against violence," they told Cindy Corrie, Rachel's mother.
Click to read more about Rachel Corrie and http://www.criticalconcern.com/rachelcorrie.html
Click to read Katherin Viner’s column in LA Times
Click to read an Open Letter to New York Theater Company by Warren Guykema