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About the Author: Rachel Corrie

Early life

Corrie was born on April 10, 1979, and raised in Olympia, Washington, United States. She was the youngest of the three children of Craig Corrie, an insurance executive, and Cindy Corrie. Cindy describes their family as "average Americans—politically liberal, economically conservative, middle class".[5][6][7]
After graduating from Capital High School, Corrie went on to attend The Evergreen State College (TESC), also in Olympia, where she took a number of arts courses. She took one year off from her studies to work as a volunteer in the Washington State Conservation Corps; other volunteer work included making weekly visits to patients with mental disorders for three years.[7] In her senior year, she proposed an independent-study program in which she would travel to Gaza, join protesters from the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), and initiate a "sister city" project between Olympia and Rafah.[8] Before leaving, she also organized a pen-pal program between kids in Olympia and Rafah.[9]
[edit]Activities in the West Bank and Gaza

See also: House demolition in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict and Gaza Strip smuggling tunnels
After flying to Israel on January 22, 2003, Corrie underwent a two-day training course at ISM West Bank headquarters, before heading to Rafah to participate in ISM demonstrations.[6][8] During her training, Corrie studied tactics of direct action. Basic rules about avoiding harm were given, which a later article on the Corrie incident summarized as: "Wear fluorescent jackets. Don't run. Don't frighten the army. Try to communicate by megaphone. Make your presence known."[8] On January 27, 2003, Corrie and William Hewitt (also from Olympia), traveled to the Erez checkpoint and entered the Gaza Strip.[8]

Corrie with Israeli bulldozers in background
While in Rafah, Corrie acted as a human shield in an attempt to impede house demolitions carried out by the IDF using armored bulldozers.[4] On Corrie's first night there, she and two other ISM members set up camp inside Block J, often a target for Israeli gunfire. Israeli troops fired bullets over their tent and at the ground a few feet away. Deciding that their presence was provoking the Israeli soldiers, not deterring them, Corrie and her colleagues hurriedly dismantled their tent and left the area.[8]
Qishta, a Palestinian who worked as an interpreter, noted that: "Late January and February was a very crazy time. There were house demolitions taking place all over the border strip and the activists had no time to do anything else."[8] Qishta also stated of the ISM activists: "They were not only brave; they were crazy."[8] The confrontations were not without harm to the activists; a British participant was wounded by shrapnel.[8]
Palestinian militants expressed concern that the "internationals" staying in tents between the Israeli watchtowers and the residential neighborhoods would get caught in crossfire, while other residents were concerned that the young activists might be spies. Corrie worked hard to overcome this suspicion, learning a few words of Arabic, and participating in a mock trial denouncing the "crimes of the Bush Administration."[8] With time, the ISM members were taken into Palestinian family homes, and provided with meals and beds. Even so, in the days before Corrie's death, a letter gained wide circulation in Rafah, casting suspicion again on the ISM members. "Who are they? Why are they here? Who asked them to come here?" it asked.[8] The letter caused the activists to be preoccupied and frustrated, and on the morning of Corrie's death they planned ways to counteract its effects. According to one activist, "We all had a feeling that our role was too passive. We talked about how to engage the Israeli military."[8]
On March 14, 2003, during an interview with the Middle East Broadcasting network, Corrie said:
"I feel like I'm witnessing the systematic destruction of a people's ability to survive ... Sometimes I sit dow

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Find the best price forMy Name is Rachel Corrie

Goodreads rating: 4.14

Paperback, Published in Apr 2009 by Nick Hern Books

ISBN10: 1854599461 | ISBN13: 9781854599469

Page count: 57

I have been in Palestine for two weeks and one hour now, and I still have very few words to describe what I see. I don't know if many of the children here have ever existed without tank-shell holes in their walls. You just can't imagine it unless you see it. And even then your experience is not at all the reality... [due to] the fact that I have money to buy water when the army destroys wells, and of course, the fact that I have the option of leaving. I am allowed to see the ocean.
On March 16, 2003, Rachel Corrie, a twenty-three-year-old American, was killed by an Israeli bulldozer in the Gaza Strip as she was trying to prevent the demolition of the Palestinian homes.
My Name is Rachel Corrie is a one-woman play composed from Rachel's own journals, letters, and e-mails-creating a portrait of a messy, skinny, articulate, Salvador Dalí-loving chain-smoker (with a passion for the music of Pat Benatar), who left home and school in Olympia, Washington, "to support Palestinian non-violent resistance to Israel's military occupation."
The piece premiered at London's Royal Court Theatre, with an award-winning, sold-out run, before its transfer to the West End.

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