By Sarah Irving
Dubbed "the poster woman of Palestinian militancy," Leila Khaled's photograph flashed the world over after she hijacked a passenger jet in 1969. the image of a tender, made up our minds having a look lady with a checkered shawl, clutching an AK-47, was once as era-defining as that of Che Guevara.
In this intimate profile, according to interviews with Khaled and those that be aware of her, Sarah Irving provides us the life-story in the back of the picture. Key moments of Khaled's turbulent existence are explored, together with the dramatic occasions of the hijackings, her involvement within the Marxist well known entrance for the Liberation of Palestine, her competition to the Olso peace technique, and her activism today.
Leila Khaled's instance offers distinct insights into the Palestinian battle through one amazing lifestyles – from the stress among armed and political fight, to the decline of the secular Left and the increase of Hamas, and the function of girls in a mostly male movement.
Sarah Irving offers an excellent portrayal of a compelling and mysterious determine from a tumultuous interval in Palestinian heritage, blending biography and historic critique to convey a worthy perception into Leila Khaled's personality in addition to her striking attraction as a progressive icon.
-- Nicholas Blincoe, co-editor of Peace less than hearth: Israel/Palestine and the overseas team spirit Movement
About the Author:
Sarah Irving is a contract author whose paintings has seemed in digital Intifada, dad or mum on-line and New Internationalist. She has held editorial roles at purple Pepper Peace information and moral customer journal. She is writer of the
• Bradt advisor to Palestine (2011) and
• co-author (with Sharyn Lock) of Gaza: underneath the Bombs (Pluto 2010).
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Additional resources for Leila Khaled: Fighting for Palestine (Revolutionary Lives)
While, on the party’s fourth convention in 1981, girls from in the move approached the Irving T01992 01 textual content 106 02/04/2012 08:26 progressive girls 107 management with an offer to prohibit polygamy among the PFLP club, they have been challenged via comrades who requested them, “do we now have participants within the PFLP who're married two times? ” “And we stated, probably one or two,” says Khaled. The get together it sounds as if feared that, by way of addressing what males inside of it observed as a marginal factor instead of a state of affairs of frequent oppression of ladies in the circulate, it should fire up controversy and attainable competition to the PFLP for rejecting a right away Islamic spiritual ruling, “so we don’t point out it in our files now,” says Khaled. “We speak about it on a case via case foundation, however it isn't an reputable place of the occasion, simply because our records, our guidelines, are open to the loads and if we wrote it in them it'd be identified. So we needed to settle for that. ” And, even though she cites the rise within the variety of girls in senior PFLP positions, Khaled additionally recognizes that the PLO hasn't ever swimsuit. “We mentioned this stuff with the others, the Fatah ladies, yet I don’t imagine lets have a rfile for the PLO itself, because the PLO, facing women’s imaginative and prescient, as the girls there are elected from different events and factions, no longer as girls, and so they have many various perspectives. And at the query of why we didn’t achieve the management of the PLO? we'd like extra girls to be selection makers, to arrive the better positions, and within the PLO that hasn’t occurred but. We mentioned it yet we have now by no means reached a coverage, a rfile, on how we see our liberation socially, its reference to the nationwide fight. we have to recognize extra approximately this, there's plenty written approximately women’s matters yet we have to understand extra approximately historical past, approximately ladies in our background. ” in response to calculations made by way of Amal Kawar within the mid Nineties, of the most PLO factions, girls fared top within the DFLP, the place they made up 28 percentage of the club, 17 percentage of the imperative Committee and thirteen percentage of the Political Bureau. within the PFLP, they represented 15 percentage of the cadre and held five percentage of valuable Committee seats and none of these within the Political Bureau (in 2008 this replaced, with Leila Khaled, Khalida Jarrar, and Mariam Abu Dagga all at the Political Bureau). The poorest exhibiting got here from Fatah, the place ladies made up simply 7 percentage of delegates to the organization’s Fourth Congress in Irving T01992 01 textual content 107 02/04/2012 08:26 108 Leila Khaled 1980; the 5th Congress elected six women—up from one— to the 80-member innovative Council. 34 in the PNC, Kawar later famous that the small variety of ladies status intended that ladies have been heavily under-represented, and that practices similar to quotas for different teams, comparable to Christian Palestinians, and bargains made to enhance Fatah’s energy base made it in particular tough for girls to get onto its electoral slate. In 1996, the PFLP brought gender quotas for its 6th Congress yet, says Kawar, “a major lady member of the secretive renowned entrance famous her shock at researching how a lot tribalism ruled the management ranks, as glaring by way of the truth that male leaders selected their woman family members for sure women’s management roles.