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Carlos Chavez - The Rachel Corrie without fanfare

Today a man who came to work in peace, to help realize the dream of an egalitarian socialist society, or perhaps just to have a new experience, was murdered by Arab snipers. His death was hardly noticed, it seems.

A few years ago Rachel Corrie came to Israel to defend terrorists from "Zionist aggressors." She was killed by accident while trying to stop a bulldozer from destroying a building used for smuggling or terror attacks. Her death was trumpeted all over the world as an example of Zionist mentality. We know who she is and what she looked like and why she claimed to have come to Israel. We knew all about her views of the oppressive and evil Zionists.

Today's victim was a righteous victim. He was murdered while planting potato seeds on a communal farm insider Israel. Carlos Chavez was not a reactionary imperialist warmonger illegal settler messianic fanatic - just a man growing food in a communal farm. For whatever reasons, he was planting potato seeds, not seeds of hatred.

For idealistic or frivolous or random reasons, Carlos Chavez came here to help us and be with us, and he paid for it with his life. It is wrong perhaps to ape the path of exploitation of his death for incitement and demonification as Rachel Corrie's "supporters" did. Perhaps there should be no demonstrations about Carlos, and perhaps there should not be any plays about Carlos. Perhaps Carlos was just a fellow looking for an interesting way to spend a few months of his life. Perhaps that is not as praiseworthy as the ideal of helping terrorists. But at least, we should honor our friend who came in peace and died in our war.

I do not know enough about Carlos Chavez from Quito Ecuador to tell you much about him, because the media do not tell us much - why he came, who he was, or what he was like. Most journals did not bother to show a picture of him, and the one that appears in Jerusalem Post is a bad joke.

Here is what we know of his story:
Ecuadorian volunteer Carlos Chavez, 21, was killed when a Palestinian sniper fired from the border area into Israel.

Chavez had been working in a potato field near the kibbutz border fence, Ein Hashlosha's security chief said. He was hit in the back and taken by his friends to the kibbutz infirmary.

A Magen David Adom ambulance arrived on the scene shortly after, but paramedics were unable to resuscitate him...

Yochai Kopler, a potato grower who worked with Chavez, said "sniper and mortar fire opened up. We didn't have luck this time, as we did the other times. Every day they shoot at us, and we run away like rabbits."

"It's tough for us to receive news like this," said Annie Rotman, who is responsible for the kibbutz's volunteers.

She said that Chavez came to the kibbutz two months ago. "Only yesterday, we spoke with him, laughed with him."

"Everyone here is afraid," she said. "The volunteers do the work, and when there is shooting, they go into hysteria. We are finding it difficult to digest what has happened."

David Lanos, 19, also a volunteer on the kibbutz, said the sniper fire came as they were preparing to plant potato seeds. "I told him, 'Sit down, they're shooting at us.' We managed to hide behind a car. When he stood up to get into it, he was hit in the back."

Lanos then told Chavez not to go to sleep. "He answered 'I'm not able,' and then I lost him."

Rest in peace, dear friend. I am sorry that I haven't a fancy bouquet to offer in your memory, only a few daisies I found in the path.

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Rachel Corrie's parents were going to sue the state of Israel for her death. It is a great pity that Israel didn't sue the parent for allowing the hate filled silly bitch to go overseas without first teaching her not to play in traffic. On a more serious note, it is remarkable how "activists" used Corries coming down to earth to call for divestment from Caterpillar, but that the same rent-a-crowd never called for divestment from crane manufacturers, when such machines are used to lift people by the neck in Iran. It really is past time when the IDF employs free fire tactics used by the USA in Viet Nam and shoots anyone in a specified zone. And, by the way, Carlos' sister does not regret what he was doing, because what he did, made him happy.

Posted by paul2 on 2008-01-16 12:39:08 GMT

Dear Anon (popular name, that) Rachel Corrie chose to put herself splat in the middle of a conflict she saw herself as a major player in ... she chose to become a "soldier" with the inherent risks. Carlos Chavez, who is probably not Jewish, chose a cheap holiday to experience kibbutz life, as so many young travellers do, and was probably not even given the choice between planting onions or working with chickens or whatever. As part of the volunteer program he went where he was sent, not into a conflict zone, but to a peaceful agricultural community. He was shot in the back from across the border for ... well, planting onions. One a tragic accident the other deliberate murder. How can you possibly compare the two?

Posted on 2008-01-16 05:38:42 GMT

Hi time you featured the true picture of the reality on the ground. One, a terrorist groupie from Washington State hangs out with killers (same NGO hosting Mike's Cafe's U.K Islamist suiciders) and in her after-life makes it on the stage in London and N.Y. as Jean D'Arc of Palestine. The other, a hard working, innocent Ecuadorian volunteer, gets picked by a murderous Islamic sniper.

Posted by ARamy on 2008-01-16 05:11:23 GMT

Corrie was standing behind a high dirt pile, unseen by the bulldozer operator who had a small window (to keep bullets from entering). When she was hurt she was taken, alive, to an Arab hospital. Either she was too injured, or the doctors were not capable, or (and this is very likely) she was allowed to die to create an "American martyr." She was to be used in death as in life - to further the false claims of the Arabs, regarding the Israelis. Many articles have been written about her, a play (quite poor) has been shown in several US cities - all probably underwritten by Arab money. The play would not attract audiences on its own. Corrie lost her life either by an Israeli accident, or by Arab incompetence or intent. Carlos Chavez lost his life by deliberate Arab intentional murder. Arabs are taught to hate, to maim, to kill Israelis - no provocation is needed. We mourn for a good young man who should have had his whole life ahead of him. His life was deliberately stolen from him and his family. When will the world wake up to the menace of the Arab World?

Posted by Roberta E. Dzubow on 2008-01-16 04:04:33 GMT

Rachel Corrie died, while trying to stop a giant IDF Caterpiller bulldozer from demolishing Palestinian house. It is the usual form of retribution for the acts of violence by palestinians. It works something like this - if you spill Jewish blood you and your family lose your house.There is no death penalty in Israel. Rachel Corrie knew all this. Her heart was full of anger towards Zionists. Just like the heart of David Hicks. Both were quite sincere. Rachel Corrie was photographed standing in front of a bulldozer's blade. Her face, convulsed by hatred, was excellent advertisement for the sincerity of Jewish enemies, of the deep seated nature of this hatred, thinly disguised as anti-Zionism. Looking at the photograph I was astonished by the reactions of the palestinians , which surrounded her. Everyone in the group, consisting almost entirely of the young palestinian males, was looking at the fearless Rachel with bemused contempt. One could feel that the next photoframe would be the same men and boys twirling their fingers around their temples, in the internationally recognised sign of , shall we say, mental instability. My impression is, that people like Rachel are willingly and knowingly used by palestinians in their never ending media war against Jews. Palestinians use people like Corrie, even if they despise them. Rachel Corrie came to Israel to saw the seeds of hatred. I guess she succeeded in reaping what she has sawn. Carlos came to saw the seeds of peace. To farm. To help. To grow. True to their nature, Arabs killed the man, because they are terrified of peace. What would they do with piece? They produce nothing. They create nothing. They hold the world hostage to oil and exist on fear, violence and the threat of instability. They have no idea what to do with peace. So they kill peacemakers. Vale, Carlos, the Man of peace.

Posted by Michael Galak on 2008-01-16 02:40:26 GMT

Morry, it's unfair to say that she died on account of choices she made, but he died on account of choices others made. Neither chose to die. Both made choices which knowingly placed them in danger. The similarity ENDs there.

Posted by anon on 2008-01-16 02:33:07 GMT

Carlos Chavez didn't die in "our war" but in "their war" ... the same hate-infested war Rachel Corrie came to fight. The contrast is stark. She died because of choices she made, he died because others chose to kill. If there was any justice in the world, it is Corrie's hatred that would pass unnoticed, and Chavez be deeply mourned ... it is the potato planters that this world desparately needs. RIP!

Posted by Morry on 2008-01-16 01:39:53 GMT