Flowers Cease Fire: Buy Carnations Tomorrow!


25 000 freshly-cut carnations have left the flower fields of Gaza for the first time in a year. At the specific request of the Dutch government, Israel permitted the blooms, destined for Valentines Day bouquets in Europe, to pass the borders and be airlifted out for export. Before the crippling Israeli economic blockade, imposed in June 2007 when the Hamas came to power, Gaza used to export 60 million flowers a year. 

It is important to note that the carnations, most of them vivid red, are not only a symbol of love and desire, but also, and especially, of revolution. During Portugal’s Carnation Revolution of 1974, revolutionaries and the general population brandished red carnations, not firearms, and thus convinced the dictatorship’s soldiers to trade their guns for flowers, ending–in the space of several days–the longest authoritarian regime in Europe. 

Flowers or firearms? It would be fantastic (though admittedly insanely idealistic) if flowers could help re-create peace and democracy in Israel and Palestine.

In any event: buy carnations tomorrow.




~ by lisacwhite on February 13, 2009.

2 Responses to “Flowers Cease Fire: Buy Carnations Tomorrow!”

  1. Ok I will Do buy a bunch of red carnations, but how do I know for sure there from Gaza???? is there a certicicat : )) and then again i should buy loads while when carnations do not come in a huge bunch they are incredible ” TRUTTIG”

  2. Dear Lisa, I love the picture of the Arab women in their traditional black working with the carnations and the little boy left on the ground. Did you make that picture ? It’s beautiful.
    It reminds me of the poppies that used to flower on the plain of the Bekaa, in Lebanon, another land of war. What a nice way of linking politics to St Valentine’s day !

    Yes, I shall buy carnations if I find some nice ones ! I love their intense color.

    Bon week-end.


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