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Posts Tagged ‘BDS’

Cornel West speaks for Palestinians


By Marivel Guzman

 

Cornel West photo credit CornelWest.com

SACRAMENTO, Calif.– Sept. 29, 2016.  Cornel West at Press Conference at Sacramento State University.

I was aware of  West’s role in advising the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign, particularly on the Palestine Issue. For over 40 years, West has been a vocal advocate and supporter of the Palestinian people in their struggle against the Zionist occupation of their nation; Knowing West’s position on this important issue-of-the-day, I was intrigued by his deep concern about the plight of the Palestinian people and the need for people in this country to gain an objective and historical understanding of the roots of the current plight of Palestinians.

In my familiarity with West’s books, he has almost maintained a very progressive stance by tying their oppression to foreign occupation of their country. Therefore, I was eager to hear more about his views when I attended his lecture and press conference at Sacramento State University.

Knowing that the mainstream media would not only shy away, but ignore the conflict in the Middle East, particularly in regards to the Palestinian issue, I made it a point to ask  West about his role in advising the Sander’s campaign regarding the rights of Palestinians that live under Israel’s occupation. His response made it clear that he remained firm in his conviction that the people of this country must understand and support the Palestinian struggle to regain statehood.

When I asked why the Democratic Party after the primaries refused to acknowledge the Palestinian issue, his reply was unequivocally clear,

“If they didn’t address it, they were just wrong, this was cowardly and too indifferent, too unwilling to engage the level of suffering and misery and injustice of precious Palestinians brothers and sisters.”

West went on to explain that the position of the Democratic Party has been “tied too long to American-Israeli Public Affairs Committee.” He went on to explain that “AIPAC is not representative of Jewish-Americans, it represents a slice of centrist and conservative Jewish-Americans.” He then went on to explain that the AIPAC is “very powerful, like the NRA, and any other powerful lobby that is shaping U.S. policy … and for too long the kind of policies that the AIPAC promotes has not recognized the humanity (of the Palestinians) and the evil of Israeli occupation …. I am against foreign domination, I think what we are about is that every human being has some security from domination.”

The topic went on to highlight Assembly Bill 2844 which Governor Brown recently signed into law opposing the boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel.

There is a broad campaign both nationally and internationally to boycott, divest and impose sanctions upon companies that financially benefit from the Israeli seizure of Palestinian lands and resources.

This campaign included a boycott of those products from the occupied territories. The intent of Governor Brown bill is to protect the Israel by silencing and suppressing the groundswell support of an ever-growing number of people in this country and worldwide of the Palestinian people. Therefore, I asked West for his opinion of Assembly Bill 2844 and whether he thought groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union would challenge it on the basis of a denial of free speech. He felt that there would be legal challenges to this bill because he considers himself a libertarian when it comes to freedom of speech.

He went on to state that “there’s no doubt that there are many brothers and sisters in the BDS movement who are being targeted and demonized because they have a critique of not just Israeli occupation, they have a critique of the Israeli state that is perceived by very powerful elite at the top as being anti-Semitic …” “It is very difficult to have that conversation in the United States and so those of us who are part of the BDS we get demonized, we get viewed as if we are anti-Jewish, anti-Semitic and we just have to make it clear that we have to rob that kind of shallow characterization of the substance, we have to be very explicit about that fact that we take principled stance against anti-Jewish hatred and anti-Jewish prejudice and anti-Jewish sensibilities and still have fundamental commitment to the self-determination of Palestinians…”

I was very heartened by West’s formulation of the Middle East conflict and his wholehearted opposition to bigotry of any type. It was evident that he has pondered the issue long and hard or in his words for “30 to 40 years.” I found that his comments about President Obama’s neoliberal identity that leads him to support the State of Israeli to be on-target. He bravely criticized President Obama for his support and allowing himself to be captive to the right-wing elements in Israel. This included the passage of the $38 billion bill to the State of Israel. West concludes that the Middle East conflict is a very complex issue that demands “that we have enough people who are willing to tell the truth the best way they know it.”

Operation #BDS Israel it is happenning all over the world


by Marivel Guzman
Thanks to Jacob Cohen for sharing the story in his facebook’s page
The Boycott Divestment and Sanctions of Israel it is happening all over the world. Operation “Boycott” was launched in France before French’s courts declared it illegal on October 20, action that is being challenged as a serious attack on freedom of expression.
If you want to know more about the stores that carry Illegal Israel’s products and want to support for Palestinian society in its BDS campaign, add the following store to your boycott’s list.

Carrefour Nice Tnl
Hypermarket · Centre Commercial Nice TNL

Rue de Roquebillière · +33 4 92 17 74 79

Operation boycott in French supermarket. Photo/Sahra Laurent

Operation boycott in French supermarket. Photo/Sahra Laurent

A Carrefour TNL, pro-Palestinian activists have led a boycott operation of Israeli’s products yesterday. The products were removed from shelves and piled into shopping carts installed in the corridors of the supermarket.
About thirty activists who support the campaign “Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions” (BDS), launched in 2005 by the Palestinian civil society, have emptied the shelves of Carrefour TNL last Saturday morning.
In their sights: was a brand name machine that adds oxygen and flavor to the water, this product is made in East Jerusalem in an illegal settlement.

Activists have emptied the shelves and they crammed the products in carts in the aisles of the supermarket. Without causing crowding.

“We are for peace,” the activists said.

“We are here to denounce Israel colonialist’s policy and this action is to ask the supermarket not to offer for sale products from the illegal Israeli settlements in Palestine,” said Michel Abada, BDS member. “We are for peace.” We want this conflict to end and It is not intended to boycott Israeli society or its members,” adds Ismaël Bendjeffal, BDS member.

The punch action operation lasted about twenty minutes before management intervened without confronting the activists. The operation “Boycott” was launched all over France, but declared illegal since 20 October this year. The Supreme Court sentenced 14 BDS activists. “A serious attack on freedom of expression is to be challenged in France’s courts,” according to BDS campaigners.

Story originally published at nice-matin in French and translated by Marivel Guzman with google help


Third Intifada Manifesto


By Marivel Guzman

With sad heart I share the #ThirdIntifada manifesto published on Palestinian websites today.
The Palestinian political parties excluding Palestinian Authority in accordance with the situation on the ground have decided to launch the #ThirdIntifada. Palestinians have shown so much restrain on the face of the latest assassinations perpetrated by the #Apartheid illegal entity of Israel and under the consent and total silence of the International Community (leaders) and including the worthless apparatus of the United Nations.
Israel by its actions pushed for this revolution of liberation.
There is so much a nation can take. Palestinians patiently and with resilience pace took on non-violent approach to stop
#Apartheid Israel from taking more land and from killing more Palestinians,  but they see no other way but to uprise, mimicking South Africa uprisings that ended the #Apartheid Regime of South Africa with the help of the International Boycott Divestment and Sanctions that took place against the Apartheid regime.
Palestine starts mourning the martyrs in anticipation of the massacre that approaches.
Remember we have a nation with no army, no tanks, no planes, no apache helicopters, no naval ships or anything that say that this battle will be equal . Palestinian militias only count with rifles and the civilian population only have kitchens knives and stones.
October 10, 2015 is the official date for the #ThirdIntifada 😥

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Third Intifada: Barghouti’s Manifesto
By Uri Avnery
Marwan Barghouti has spoken up. After a long silence, he has sent a message from prison.
In Israeli ears, this message does not sound pleasant. But for Palestinians, and for Arabs in general,
it makes sense.
His message may well become the new program of the Palestinian liberation movement.
I first met Marwan in the heyday of post-Oslo optimism. He was emerging as a leader of the new
Palestinian generation, the home-grown young activists, men and women, who had matured in the
first Intifada.
He is a man of small physical stature and large personality. When I met him, he was already the
leader of Tanzim (“organization”), the youth group of the Fatah movement.
The topic of our conversations then was the organization of demonstrations and other non-violent
actions, based on close cooperation between the Palestinians and Israeli peace groups. The aim was
peace between Israel and a new State of Palestine.
When the Oslo process died with the assassinations of Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat, Marwan and
his organization became targets. Successive Israeli leaders – Binyamin Netanyahu, Ehud Barak and
Ariel Sharon – decided to put an end to the two-state agenda. In the brutal “Defensive Shield
operation (launched by Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz, the new leader of the Kadima Party) the
Palestinian Authority was attacked, its services destroyed and many of its activists arrested.
Marwan Barghouti was put on trial. It was alleged that, as the leader of Tanzim, he was responsible
for several “terrorist” attacks in Israel. His trial was a mockery, resembling a Roman gladiatorial
arena more than a judicial process. The hall was packed with howling rightists, presenting
themselves as “victims of terrorism”. Members of Gush Shalom protested against the trial inside the
court building but we were not allowed anywhere near the accused.
Marwan was sentenced to five life sentences. The picture of him raising his shackled hands above
his head has become a Palestinian national icon. When I visited his family in Ramallah, it was
hanging in the living room.
In prison, Marwan Barghouti was immediately recognized as the leader of all Fatah prisoners. He is
respected by Hamas activists as well. Together, the imprisoned leaders of Fatah and Hamas
published several statements calling for Palestinian unity and reconciliation. These were widely
distributed outside and received with admiration and respect.
(Members of the extended Barghouti family, by the way, play a major role in Palestinian affairs
across the entire spectrum from moderate to extremist. One of them is Mustapha Barghouti, a
doctor who heads a moderate Palestinian party with many connections abroad, whom I regularly
meet at demonstrations in Bilin and elsewhere. I once joked that we always cry when we see each
other – from tear gas. The family has its roots in a group of villages north of Jerusalem.)
Nowadays, Marwan Barghouti is considered the outstanding candidate for leader of Fatah and
president of the Palestinian Authority after Mahmoud Abbas. He is one of the very few personalities
around whom all Palestinians, Fatah as well as Hamas, can unite.
After the capture of the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, when the prisoner exchange was discussed,
Hamas put Marwan Barghouti on top of the list of Palestinian prisoners whose release it demanded.
This was a very unusual gesture, since Marwan belonged to the rival – and reviled – faction.
The Israeli government struck Marwan from the list right away, and remained adamant. When Shalit
was finally released, Marwan stayed in prison. Obviously he was considered more dangerous than
hundreds of Hamas “terrorists” with “blood on their hands”.
Why?
Cynics would say: because he wants peace. Because he sticks to the two-state solution. Because he
can unify the Palestinian people for that purpose. All good reasons for a Netanyahu to keep him
behind bars.
So what did Marwan tell his people this week?
Clearly, his attitude has hardened. So, one must assume, has the attitude of the Palestinian people at
large.
He calls for a Third Intifada, a non-violent mass uprising in the spirit of the Arab Spring.
His manifesto is a clear rejection of the policy of Mahmoud Abbas, who maintains limited but all-
important cooperation with the Israeli occupation authorities. Marwan calls for a total rupture of all
forms of cooperation, whether economic, military or other.
A focal point of this cooperation is the day-to-day collaboration of the American-trained Palestinian
security services with the Israeli occupation forces. This arrangement has effectively stopped violent
Palestinian attacks in the occupied territories and in Israel proper. It guarantees, In practice, the
security of the growing Israeli settlements in the West Bank.
Marwan also calls for a total boycott of Israel, Israeli institutions and products in the Palestinian
territories and throughout the world. Israeli products should disappear from West Bank shops,
Palestinian products should be promoted.
At the same time, Marwan advocates an official end to the charade called “peace negotiations”. This
term, by the way, is never heard anymore in Israel. First it was replaced with “peace process”, then
“political process”, and lately “the political matter”. The simple word “peace” has become taboo
among rightists and most “leftists” alike. It’s political poison.
Marwan proposes to make the absence of peace negotiations official. No more international talk
about “reviving the peace process”, no more rushing around of ridiculous people like Tony Blair, no
more hollow announcements by Hillary Clinton and Catherine Ashton, no more empty declarations of
the “Quartet”. Since the Israeli government clearly has abandoned the two-state solution – which it
never really accepted in the first place – keeping up the pretense just harms the Palestinian struggle.
Instead of this hypocrisy, Marwan proposes to renew the battle in the UN. First, apply again to the
Security Council for the acceptance of Palestine as a member state, challenging the US to use its
solitary veto openly against practically the whole world. After the expected rejection of the
Palestinian request by the Council as a result of the veto, request a decision by the General
Assembly, where the vast majority would vote in favor. Though this would not be binding, it would
demonstrate that the freedom of Palestine enjoys the overwhelming support of the family of nations,
and isolate Israel (and the US) even more.
Parallel to this course of action, Marwan insists on Palestinian unity, using his considerable moral
force to put pressure on both Fatah and Hamas.
To summarize, Marwan Barghouti has given up all hope of achieving Palestinian freedom through
cooperation with Israel, or even Israeli opposition forces. The Israeli peace movement is not
mentioned anymore. “Normalization” has become a dirty word.
These ideas are not new, but coming from the No. 1 Palestinian prisoner, the foremost candidate for
the succession of Mahmoud Abbas, the hero of the Palestinian masses, it means a turn to a more
militant course, both in substance and in tone.
Marwan remains peace oriented – as he made clear when, in a rare recent appearance in court, he
called out to the Israeli journalists that he continues to support the two-state solution. He also
remains committed to non-violent action, having come to the conclusion that the violent attacks of
yesteryear harmed the Palestinian cause instead of furthering it.
He wants to call a halt to the gradual and unwilling slide of the Palestinian Authority into a Vichy-
like collaboration, while the expansion of the Israeli “settlement enterprise” goes on undisturbed.
Not by accident did Marwan publish his manifesto on the eve of “Land Day”, the world-wide day of
protest against the occupation.
“Land Day” is the anniversary of an event that took place in 1976 to protest against the decision of
the Israeli government to expropriate huge tracts of Arab-owned land in Galilee and other parts of
Israel. The Israeli army and police fired on the protesters, killing six of them. (The day after, two of
my friends and I laid wreaths on the graves of the victims, an act that earned me an outbreak of
hatred and vilification I have seldom experienced.)
Land day was a turning point for Israel’s Arab citizens, and later became a symbol for Arabs
everywhere. This year, the Netanyahu government threatened to shoot anybody who even
approaches our borders. It may well be a harbinger for the Third Intifada heralded by Marwan.
For some time now, the world has lost much of its interest in Palestine. Everything looks quiet.
Netanyahu has succeeded in deflecting world attention from Palestine to Iran. But in this country,
nothing is ever static. While it seems that nothing is happening, settlements are growing incessantly,
and so is the deep resentment of the Palestinians who see this happening before their eyes.
Marwan Barghouti’s manifesto expresses the near-unanimous feelings of the Palestinians in the
West Bank and elsewhere. Like Nelson Mandela in apartheid South Africa, the man in prison may
well be more important than the leaders outside.
– Uri Avnery is an Israeli writer and peace activist with Gush Shalom. He contributed this article to
PalestineChronicle.com. He contributed this article to PalestineChronicle.com.

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People’s voices and consumer power have Israel worry for its future


by Marivel Guzman

Neturei Karta member in Jerusalem holding a Palestinian flag with the text, “Boycott Israel”.

Israel loves the spotlight of the cameras but this time the spotlight is for Boycott Divestment and Sanction, which recently has been taking center stage in every major news outlet, alternative media and blogging systems. Everyone is writing about BDS and its power over Israel. This time Israel can not control the camera and the narrative, this time consumer power and aware people are making the waves.

“The Israeli government is dependent on a strong export-orientated economy. Europe is Israel’s largest trading partner. Almost 200 organizations representative of a broad spectrum of Palestinian civil society – trade unions, professional bodies such as all the academic unions and associations, medical unions, and most of the major NGOs – have called on the international community to endorse the call for a campaign of boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel, similar to that which helped to end the apartheid regime in South Africa.” Ireland BDS campaign

Peace activists are directing the tune of the BDS campaign. There is no big money behind the efforts of boycotting Israel products, artists, academia and or financial Israel supporters but a broad movement of activists using social media like twitter, facebook and youtube between others to spread activities of boycott: products produced in any of the 125 illegal settlements like SodaStream

“Israeli Extremism Will Encourage Global Boycott-Israel has elected the most fanatic government in its history. But many Palestinian human rights activists and politicians expect this government, an unpalatable cocktail of right, far-right and fundamentalist Jewish parties, to be the mother of all silver-lined clouds.” NYTimes.com, May 11, 2015

Never in the past newspapers dared to publish news that would tarnish Israel public relations but now days Israel arrogance had made impossible for newspapers and even governments to keep quiet in front of the facts.

“Israel’s Rightward Shift Helps Make It Its Own Worst Enemy,” said Anne-Marie Slaughter, a former director of policy planning for the State Department, It is a difficult and immensely frustrating time to be a friend of Israel, Salughter said for an opinion piece for the NYTimes.com

The boys killed in the beach in front of the international media are images difficult to make up.

The bodies of the four children Mohammed Baker, 9-year-old; Ahed Baker, 10-year-old; Zakaria Baker, 10year-old; and Mohammed Baker, 11-year-old, are seen here being mourn by his male relatives.

The bodies of the four children Mohammed Baker, 9-year-old; Ahed Baker, 10-year-old; Zakaria Baker, 10year-old; and Mohammed Baker, 11-year-old, are seen here being mourn by his male relatives.

Images such this had changed people’s perception of Israel. Last massacre in Gaza put Israel face in the news under its true colors. No public relation campaign could change the images of children killed and entire families wiped out of the map.

Israel Missiles destroys buildings in Gaza city, July 2014, Gaza, Palestine

Israel Missiles destroys buildings in Gaza city, July 2014, Gaza, Palestine

 How can Israel justify bombing entire neighborhood killing entire families and expect the world to support its actions

Finally people said; enough!
When tax time rolls around each year, every American citizen gives $21.59 in military aid to Israel, according to the U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation. But that’s not the only way American citizens contribute to the Israeli military, which has occupied Palestinian land for 46 years, and the West Bank settlement project that accompanies the occupation.

Consumers may not know it, but buying products like Sabra hummus and Sodastream helps fuel Israel’s military control over Palestinians. Some companies have factories located in one of the 125 officially recognized settlements in occupied Palestine, which are illegal under international law. Other companies contribute to the maintenance of an occupation through cooperation with the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), whose main goal is to protect illegal settlements and exercise dominion over the lives of millions of Palestinians. Buying these products gives profits to companies who exploit Palestinian land and resources. Alternet.org

Israel is suffering the fruits of its intransigence, arrogance and criminal activities in Occupied Palestine. Its friends are abandoning the boat before it sinks.
There should be no surprise, history repeat itself, but, lets be clear on Israel intentions; it will try its gimmicks until the end. There wont be two-state solution, because Israel will be dismantled the same way Apartheid South Africa did. The criminals will start running for cover like the Nazi did after Germany felt to the allies. They will change their names, their religion and will try to disappear into friendly countries  and is doubtful that there will be another Operation Paperclip for Israelis scientists, because as its stand now thousands of Israelis enjoy double nationality. You can have a glimpse of the operation paperclip in the CIA webpage.

Last year the mood was already changing in Czech Republic; the winds of change were started being blown in the press, “At present the Czech Republic’s approach to the Middle East is slowly changing. The nascent Cabinet of the Social Democrats (ČSSD) and the centrist ANO and Christian Democrats (KDU-ČSL) no longer intends to give preferences to the Prague-Tel Aviv axis, Šídlová said in her Analysis: Czech gov’t to shift from Israel


Czech Republic minister in its recent visit to occupied Palestine left some very clear to Israel government,  “As a close friend of yours, it is important for the Czech Republic to say that if the situation does not change it will be hard to maintain our position,” Zaorálek, who was visiting Israel, warned. “We want to avoid initiatives against Israel, but it is getting more difficult with the current government and with the opposition to the two-state solution,” he said. “What is the alternative, to deteriorate towards apartheid?

Israel long time allies are finding more difficult every day to support Israel in the international arena. United States the closest Israel supporter had put the cards on the table.

Haaretz published last week Obama’s interview where the president said that “Stalled peace process makes it harder for U.S. to defend Israel at UN” and showed slights indications that the U.S. won’t veto French resolution on ending Israeli-Palestinian conflict at the United Nations Security Council.

“Indulging Israel hasn’t worked – maybe the boycott will

How long will Netanyahu act like Putin, Erdogan and Berlusconi, but ask to be rewarded like Nelson Mandela?” Haaretz.com

“Suddenly, again, Israel is seeing new threats everywhere. The latest come not from rockets, the Israelis say, but from students armed with petitions and Palestinians seeking sanctions against the Israeli soccer team.” WashingtonPost.com

Israel is unable to make peace. It has to go forward in domination, expansion, apartheid, and its legitimacy will be more and more contested. And I believe the zioniste state will come to en end.Jacob Cohen, Jewish Moroccan author said in a facebook interview.
The stories are building Israel’s case in front of the world. Israel’s shows of racism, oppression, repression, murder, crimes against humanity, ethnic cleansing, genocide, extreme violence, apartheid, segregation and the wall are sinking Israel’s long propaganda of the only democracy in the middle east.

A report from the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem [link]: “IDF soldiers expel Palestinians from pool in Palestinian village to Enable Settlers to Bathe”

Also mobile Apps are helping in the BDS campaing. Buycoott the mobile is designed to find products in the list of boycotted products. Long Live Palestine boycott Israel campaign has the first place in the buycott app with 417,410 members. Buycott is a tool that lets you organize your consumer spending to help causes that you care for, and to oppose those that you don’t.

Ultimately Israel is its worse enemy and will fall by its own hands.
“When those in power refuse to act to stop this injustice(All of Palestinian occupation) we need a Global Citizens Response to stand along side Palestinians in their struggle for freedom, justice and equality” ‪#‎BDS‬ but this is just the beginning of restoring complete Palestinian’s rights to their land.

Celebrities for Palestine; Cultural Activism with Ben Rivers


by Marivel Guzman

A talk by Ben Rivers on Playback Theatre and Popular Struggle in Occupied Palestine. Photo: Bhagya Prakash. K

A talk by Ben Rivers on Playback Theatre and Popular Struggle in Occupied Palestine. Photo: Bhagya Prakash. K

Since December 2011, The Freedom Theatre’s Freedom Bus has engaged thousands of Palestinians and people from abroad in cultural actions that address Israel’s practice of settler colonialism, military occupation and structural apartheid. The Freedom Bus partners with village cooperatives, popular struggle committees and grassroots organizations to hold multi-day “solidarity stays” and “freedom rides” in villages, towns, refugee camps and Bedouin communities throughout the occupied West Bank. These events involve community visits, interactive seminars, guided walks, Hakawati (traditional storytelling), building construction, and protective presence activity.

A central feature of Freedom Bus events is the use of Playback Theatre. Through this method, a troupe of Palestinian actors and musicians invite stories from the audience and subsequently transform each account into a piece of improvised theatre. By sharing stories about the realities of life under colonization and apartheid, community members aim to mobilize audience members in the broader struggle for freedom and equality in historic Palestine.

Irene Fernández Ramos writes for her Storytelling, Agency and Community-building through Playback Theatre in Palestine What is Playback Theatre?
Playback Theatre is a form of non-scripted, interactive community-based theatre created in the 1970s in the United States by Jonathan Fox. A Playback Theatre event usually lasts around seventy-five minutes and it is constructed from the stories of members of the audience who are invited by a conductor to share short or long stories, or ideas, with the rest of the audience. The new storyteller steps forward and sits on the edge of the stage, where he or she is seen by the performers and by the audience. With the help of the conductor’s questions, this new ‘storyteller’ narrates his or her experience allowing the performers to understand the personal feelings lying behind the story and to translate them into improvised theatrical language. Read more on her essay here 

Endorsers of the Freedom Bus include personalities such Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Alice Walker, Angela Davis, Judith Butler, Maya Angelou, Noam Chomsky, Omar Barghouti and Peter Brook. (Click for the full list of endorsers).
The Freedom Bus is also endorsed by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC), Jewish Voice for Peace, Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI), Code Pink in between other organizations.

Freedom Bus The heart and art of playbackUsing stories, photographs and video, Ben Rivers speaks about the Freedom Bus initiative and its role within the popular struggle movement.

Palestinian Solidarity Committee in India and 1 Shanthiroad last February organised a talk (Video) by Ben Rivers, a British-Australian drama therapist and co-founder of The Freedom Bus Initiative with The Freedom Theatre in Palestine, on playback theatre and popular struggle in Occupied Palestine. In the talk Ben focused on the cultural activities of the Freedom Bus Initiative, including ‘solidarity stays’ in which the team resides in a village for some days, acting as a protective cover or re-building homes . “We also work very closely with grassroots, popular struggle groups and organisations. We organize political actions together.” Excerpt from the Hindu.com

In his talk, Ben narrated some of his experiences working with the communities in occupied Palestine.

“In the South of the West Bank, in a region known as South Hebron Hills, we were on the outskirts of a village called Atwani, where a very small community lives. A lot of their land was stolen by people of a settlement nearby who were hostile. Palestinians who are grazing their sheep on the hills are regularly attacked by them. Palestinian children used to be stoned by the settlers as they walked to to school.”

Celebrities for Palestine shows their support through cultural boycott – Junot Diaz

November 9, 2014 2 comments

by Marivel Guzman

Artists and Intellectuals Including Junot Díaz, Chuck D, and Boots Riley Call for Boycott and Divestment from Israel

Junot Diaz, becoming an author in Oprah.com Photo: Nancy Crampton

Junot Diaz, becoming an author in Oprah.com Photo: Nancy Crampton

More #Celebrities4Pal openly coming out endorsing Palestine, the voices are growing louder and thicker. Every day we discover more celebrities adding their voices to Cultural Boycott against Israel.
Junot Diaz, the 45-year-old Dominican-American Professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology,  fiction editor at Boston Review. He also serves on the board of advisers for Freedom University, a volunteer organization in Georgia that provides post-secondary instruction to undocumented immigrants. Diaz is Pulitzer winner author of several books; This is How you Lose her, Drown, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, (Wikipedia)

Last September  Diaz called on the Brooklyn Book Festival to reject sponsorship from Israel’s Office of Cultural Affairs. In an open Letter to the Brooklyn Book Festival advising against accepting Israeli Sponsorship

Tell the Brooklyn Book Festival to no longer accept partnerships with the Israeli government or complicit institutions.

“It is deeply regrettable that the Festival has chosen to accept funding from the Israeli government just weeks after Israel’s bloody 50-day assault on the Gaza Strip, which left over 2100 Palestinians – including 500 children – dead, displaced a fourth of the population, destroyed homes, schools, and hospitals, and involved numerous potential war crimes. Sustaining a partnership with the Israeli Consulate at this time amounts to a tacit endorsement of Israel’s many violations of international law and Palestinian human rights.” An excerpt from the open letter to the Brooklyn Book Festival

 

On September 30,  during his Lecture at Clark University he made mention of the pressure scholars feel when they speak out for Palestine, and shared his personal experiences as a call to support the Palestinian people.

“We are extremely excited to have an author of Diaz’s stature visit Clark,” said Paul Posner, director of the University’s Latin American and Latino Studies concentration and faculty organizer of the event.  “His work deals with issues – colonialism’s legacy in Latin America, cultural identity and language, immigration and gender relations, among others – that are of central importance to many of our students and faculty.”
Endorsing The U.S. Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel a statement from Diaz was published as a Press release saying that Diaz joins Chuck D and Boots Riley as prominent artists who have recently endorsed the boycott

” If there exists a moral arch to the universe then Palestine will eventually be free but that promised day will never arrive unless we, the justice-minded peoples of our world, fight to end the cruel blight of the Israeli occupation. Our political, religious and economic leaders have always been awesome at leading our world into conflict, only we the people alone with little else but our courage and our solidarities and our invincible hope can lead our world into peace.” Junot Diaz

 

Every day we discover a new Celebrities4palestine showing either they disgust for Israel Apartheid policy of segregation or their open support for Palestine.
It is commendable to recognize their openness, knowing that they are risking their careers. In the US it is career suicide to support Palestine, but when in comes to persons of integrity they can’t hide it, it is against their moral compass.

Celebrities in another kind of cultural work, article published in the Blog of huffingtonpost.com

Celebrities for Palestine doing the right thing – Beach Boys remove Israel from their list

October 22, 2014 1 comment

by Marivel Guzman

 

The Beach Boys cover of their second cd

The Beach Boys
cover of their second cd

Beach Boys Band had cancelled their concert In Tel Aviv scheduled for November 29. ‪#‎BDSIsrael‬  movement supporters  had been pressuring artists from performing in the Apartheid Entity of Israel since 2005 that the ‪#‎BDSmovement‬ was funded. ‪#‎BDS‬ had grown up globally and it is out of the control of Zionists organizations, and hasbarist.

For now we claim victory and claim the The Beach Boys belong to our camp ‪#‎Celebs4Pal‬ until otherwise is published. We know from past news on artists that had canceled their concerts in Apartheid Israel don’t want to publish the real reason, but we must recognize that Israel is losing the Public Relations campaign and its credibility is really low.
Companies are cutting ties with the Zionist entity, governments are showing their dissatisfaction with Israel’s latest atrocities in West Bank and the well known Gaza genocide that many in the media don’t talk about, but the pictures, videos from news agencies and the facts on the ground are all to tell a tale of genocide.

Show your support to Beach Boys by sending thanks notes to their twitter and facebook accounts like their page at The Beach Boys, and follow them @TheBeachBoys.
BDS all the way until Israel is dissolve form the map.

The global movement for a campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel until it complies with international law and Palestinian rights was initiated by Palestinian civil society in 2005, and is coordinated by the Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC), established in 2007. BDS is a strategy that allows people of conscience to play an effective role in the Palestinian struggle for justice.”  BDSmovement.org

The boycott is hurting Israel and its supporters where most hurt, the money!

Want to know more about Beach Boys like their facebook page, thanks them for being in the right side of history.
“The Beach Boys have called off a concert they had been scheduled to give on November 29 in Tel Aviv, the local promoter of the cancelled concert, Gad Oron, said on Tuesday.

He said he received a brief note informing him that the band had decided to cancel the concert at Tel Aviv’s Nokia Palace Arena.

Oron told media that he was not informed of the reasons behind the decision. He said ticket sales were satisfactory, and that he could not see any reasons for the concert being called off.”  more on the story at hispanos servidornoticis
Some activists and public speakers had spoken on the BDS movement as something not good for Palestine, well we seen that the those feeling are at odds with the reality we have in front of us.

“To be pro-Palestinian does not necessarily mean you want the state of Israel to be wiped off the map; nor does it imply that you agree with either the two-state or one- state solution. The pro-Palestinian movement embraces many ideas and offers much diversity in way of critique and pro-active solutions.  For instance, some activists take a stand, drawing upon the premise of Human Rights and International Law while others pursue different strategies outside of U.N. sanctions, precisely because the legal precepts have never been enforced. Similarly, it is with this context in mind,  that we can view the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement where we witness much diversity in terms of strategy and goals.” Marivel Guzman from Akashma News

 

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