Do you know children in Palestine fly kites to prove that they are still free?
Can you imagine how that string must feel between their fingers
as they kneel in the cinders of our missile heads
I wonder what the dead in warsaw would say about the taxes we pay without thought
of funding another holocaust.
The bough is breaking.
The cradle is falling.
Right now a six-year old girl is crutched in a ditch in Lebanon
wishing on falling bombs.
Right now our government is recording the test scores of black and Latino 4th graders
to see how many prison beds will be needed in the year 2015.
Right now there’s a man on the street outside that door
with outstretched hands full of heart beats no one can hear.
He has cheeks like torn sheet music,
Every tear a broken crescendo falling on deaf ears.
At his side there’s a girl with eyes like an anthem
that no one stands up for.
Doctor, our insanity is not that we see people who aren’t there.
It’s that we ignore the ones who are.
Till we find ourselves scarred and ashamed
walking into emergency rooms at two a.m.
flooded with a pain we cannot name or explain
because we are bleeding from the outside in.
Skin is not impervious.
Cultures built on greed and war do not pick and choose who they kill.
We all fill the graves.
This one is angry.
My name is Ghalia Elkerdi I am a fourth year Electrical Engineering student at McGill. This past year I’ve taken two of your courses: Control Systems (ECSE 404) and Numerical Methods (ECSE 443).
This is the first time I email a professor for a purpose other than begging for a deadline extension or a curve. I am actually merely writing to thank you for your outstanding research efforts!
As I was walking in the street yesterday, a man handed me a flyer telling me “If you know someone who attends McGill University, give them this so they can act on it.” I took the paper and read the first paragraph and it said: “Canada is complicit in Israeli apartheid, and its elite research universities are no exception. In Montreal, McGill University collaborates with the army and with weapon manufacturers to develop some of the technologies that are essential to Israel’s murderous incursions in Gaza.”
I continued reading: “[…] McGill’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering collaborated with Lockheed Martin, the Canadian military, and military researchers in Haifa, Israel, to improve missile guidance systems used by Israel, the US, and their allies”
Being in the Electrical and Computer Engineering department of McGill for the past 4 years, my natural reaction was to refute what I had just read. I hastily went home to do my own research on the matter and came across all your publications on missile guidance systems, I recalled you bragging about your work during some of the Control Systems lectures, all the dots suddenly connected.
This morning I’ve decided to share with you a piece of my mind.
I figured, your publications are great! But they’re missing something… perhaps a “Results” section. So I am volunteering my Sunday morning to help you write it. Please find attached just a few pictures & videos showing the results of “improved guided missiles” on innocent civilians in Gaza, the world’s largest open-air prison.
I figured you and your colleagues and PhD students worked so hard on these projects, but you might be too busy and consumed with your productive & prosperous lives to catch today’s headline. After all, it’s only fair for you to see the fruits of your labor and impeccably “guided missiles”.
Take time to watch the videos and photos, watch them more than once and take a close look at what has been targeted. Humanity.
Today more than ever we are reminded of the atrocities of Nazi Germany, as Israel unleashes hell on innocent human beings and crushes their daily lives with “improved guided missiles”, surely we must ask what has become of “lest we forget”…
What most people don’t know is that back then Germans were the best educated people on Earth. Perhaps they had “elite” research institutions like McGill, but still, their education did not serve as a barrier to barbarity. Why is that? Because, quoting Wiesel, a brilliant professor, activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner: “it emphasized theories instead of values, concepts rather than human beings, abstraction rather than consciousness, answers instead of questions, ideology and efficiency rather than conscience.” I believe that the foundation of everything that’s wrong with education and research nowadays is laid in those honest words he spoke. When education just doesn’t guarantee a bright future anymore… When we get lectured about “academic integrity” by professors who fail to respect human integrity in the first place…
I’d like to know what standards is the worth of your “research” measured against in the eyes of McGill and your own eyes. Violations of international law? Crimes against humanity?
Here is a link to the Engineering Code of Ethics, I invite you to read it with your colleagues, http://www.engr.usask.ca/classes/GE/449/notes/Codes_of_Ethics_various_orgs.pdf
I refer you to Article 2.01 on page 12, which you’ve particularly paved hell with:
2.01 In all aspects of his work, the engineer must respect his obligations towards man and take into account the consequences of the performance of his work on the environment and on the life, health and property of every person.
As we watch humanity crumble to dust and feel hopeless in the face of obscene massacres we have directly and indirectly contributed to, an “elite” institution like McGill, and a “respectable” professor like yourself, should be investing in a peaceful world that we can all be proud of. Before it claims international ranking and prestige, McGill should be a shelter that promotes a holistic, humane view of the world where people, starting from its own professors and students, aspire to the highest standards of what it means to be a human being. Yes we are top-notch, and we have the brains and the funding to develop earth-shattering technologies (literally), but that does not give us the right to do so, or to even collaborate with terrorists and criminals.
Everybody around here knows how “things” work. So many professors who cannot even deliver a proper, comprehensible and coherent lecture are still hired and kept for the research they do, and apparently, in some cases, the agenda they serve.
As a student, I expect change. I expect change to emanate from this corner of the world, I expect professors to be messengers to mankind.
Hope you are enjoying your weekend as “improved guided missiles” rain down on innocent children in Gaza.