Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Israel Occupation’

Days of Palestine, Memorial to Naji Al Ali- Palestinian cartoonist and journalist


Original posted at: Posted in Censorship and Freedom , Calls by paginatransversal on June 7, 2015

 

On Saturday June 5, In the Al-Andalus Library in the city of Cordoba, it was held the “Conference for Palestine. Memorial To Naji Al Ali.“ The event was organized by the International Organization Against Impunity, HOKOK, such event was structured around the memory of the famous Palestinian cartoonist killed in London in 1987, Naji Al Ali, and had as main themes besides: denouncing the brutal Palestinian occupation by the Zionist entity called Israel, the claim of freedom of expression and the free exercise of the right to information, both severely hampered by the Zionist occupation forces and their lobbyists groups throughout the world.

The relevance and the need to hold events like this were demonstrated even before the celebration of the event (Days of Palestine), by the repressive totalitarian attitude, and censorship by certain associations that takes the arrogant attitude of exclusivity  to address the Palestinian issue in Spain and, accompanied by the usual spokesmen ideological persecution from his journalistic tribunes, have highlighted the need to persevere in the defense of pluralism and freedom of expression and against the attacks of totalitarianism and ideological persecution, wherever they come from, whether from the international Zionism, since the allegedly democratic penal code, or from sectarian organizations and democratic proceed doubtful that, relying on the label “Red Solidaria”, intended to hijack the free and plural voice of the Palestinian people.

PALESTINE CONFERENCE HOKOK

However, the impunity, the nerve to use lies of victimization and hysteria that characterizes totalitarian regimes, are these Zionists in disguise or “solidarity,”  usually little or nothing can be doneagainst the will of those who are free enough to avoid being drag by hate and yes by compromise. Thus, those attending the ceremony in Córdoba could see first hand the terrible situation facing the Palestinian people and the difficulties of journalists to do their work in the occupied territories  – at least the truthers, and not the mere intoxicators that are the voice of their master.

Chérifa Serrajd, teacher and social educator opened the conference with presentations dedicated to gloss the figure and works of Palestinian cartoonist Naji Al Ali, and focused on the censorship of the media about the unprecedented situation that exists in Gaza, the situation of the Palestinian people following the recent acts of genocide perpetrated by the Zionist occupation forces, especially the attacks of 2014  that left about 2,500 dead and 11,000 wounded, and destroyed much of Gaza, whose reconstruction work have not yet begun.

Adnan Ezzeddine, lawyer and secretary general of HOKOK, denounced the impunity of the Zionist state called Israel and its strategy of applying the politics of fear and accusation of “anti-Semitism” in both the media and through the courts, as well of terror through military force, all under coverup by governments and institutions worldwide. Similarly he denounced the bigots who had called to boycott the event on absurd charges  of  “racism”, “anti-Semitism”, etc.  With whom he would rather sit at a round table to interexchange positions. He then proceeded to describe a brief overview of the current situation in the Middle East, and accused the US and the Zionist entity called Israel of being behind the terror of the self-proclaimed “Islamic State,” terror already used since the war in Afghanistan to achieve the geopolitical objectives and economic of their sponsors.

PALESTINE CONFERENCE MEMORIAl to AL Naji al SANCHEZ RAFAEL ALI AVELLO:

Rafael Sanchez Avello

Meanwhile, veteran journalist Rafael Sanchez Avello, professional TVE,  information coordinator and editor, specialized in scientific journalism and in the Sahara conflict. He focused his speech on the right of free expression, to ensure human rights and the need for a committed journalism (see journalists as “fetters of our consciousness” that only active solidarity will silence some day). Then he drew the raw data recorded in 2014 with regard to the exercise of journalism (128 journalists killed, 16 in the attack on Gaza, 13 in Syria, 12 in Pakistan, 10 in Iraq, 60 etc .; killed so far in 2015, etc.) and reported the situation of conflict, journalist that before were protected under the media outlet that them to report, and now mostly professionals independent (freelance) underpaid. In this sense he also denounced the installed prejudice in society regarding the exercise of journalism, which they attribute to journalists dishonesty or truth or misrepresenting it, prejudices and recalled what he heard from the mouth of the well-known journalist Ryszard Kapuscinski: “There are no more journalists but mediaworkers, “ so we should not blame the true professionals, but the media themselves and their owners. Avello Sanchez recalled that without free press there is no democracy and that the fundamental mission of the journalist is to give voice to the voiceless and to make visible the invisible.

Then spoke the young Palestinian Mohammed Matter, who came from Germany, where he lives and

Mohammed Matter-Palestinian political activist from Gaza, Palestine

studies, to tell this personal experience in daily life of Gazawans, especially during the criminal attack on Gaza in 2014 by the army of the Zionist occupation. He denounced the obstacles to the free movement of Gazawans locked in “the biggest prison in the world” and the complicity of the Egyptian authorities in collusion with Zionist and United States in relation to the closure of the borders and passage of supplies and people (when is not closed, the border opens and only can cross a maximum of 50 people a day from a list of more than 42,000 people who want to leave Gaza for some reason or other). Matter emphasized the heroism of Gazawans to defend their meager assets against the Zionist aggression ( for example arriving in mass to a private house after receiving the call in the same the occupation forces threatening to bomb it), and  by individual and communitarian examples of struggle and resistance by the Palestinian people, and more specifically by Gazawan in an area without water, without light, and controlled by the Zionists to the number of daily calories consumed  by every Palestinian. Matter expressed doubts about a possible peace between Israelies and Palestinians because, on the one hand, “the Israelies do not want peace” and on the other, the Palestinian people can not embrace the Israeli people as it is literally “amputated”  by bombing and Zionist aggression. He also denounced the Palestinian Authority for its collusion with the Zionists even though they consider the Palestinians as “terrorists.” To achieve any kind of peace, Matter stressed the need to do justice first and urged the audience and citizens in Europe and around the world to increase their support to Palestine and the Palestinian people, making this visible support through mobilizations on the streets, and by boycotting products of the Zionist entity called Israel.

With this call to commitment and denouncing the Zionist outrage, extended to other abuses, ridiculous in comparison but also fruit of the hatred of freedom, plurality and coexistence, the “Conference for Palestine were closed. Memorial Naji Al Ali “, in the city of Cordoba.

Celebrities for Palestine use their royalty status to seek justice; Queen Rania


Queen Rania of Jordan Coronation

by Marivel Guzman

 

Queen Rania, a Palestinian by birth, is an international celebrity and has been often noted for her commitment to charity work geared toward women’s education, but also Rania had dedicated her precious time to seek justice for Palestinians. As a first lady, consort to the King of Jordan, she probably can not speak broadly without diplomatic repercussions for her country, but she does it in her role of social activist and she does very well.  Her vocal support for Palestine has been latent in the news since she married king Abdullah of Jordan.

As a Jordanian, Queen Rania whose family is of Palestinian origin, she is concerned with the plight of Palestinians, On 2011, Queen Rania led a pro-Palestinian demonstration in Jordan’s capital, Amman. She urged the international community to end the massacres being committed in the occupied territories.

In Jordan, where nearly a third of the population is composed of Palestinian refugees, the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of Gaza and the West Bank is “a hurt we feel each day,” Queen Rania Al Abdullah told a packed audience at Yale on Sept. 22, 2009.  (Video attached)

“Larry King Live” on April 16, Queen Rania seemed to almost usurp Jordanian foreign policy from her husband. When King asked her about Jordan’s position on Palestinian attacks against Israeli civilians, she replied:

“Jordan has been very, very clear in this regard. We stand against any aggression committed against any innocent civilians, irrespective of the perpetrator or the victim. We do not approve of any aggression. We made that very clear.” Then — almost as an afterthought — she added, “King Abdullah also made that very clear.”  said the Globalist

On 27 July UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) Commissioner-General Pierre Krähenbühl met at UNRWA Headquarters in Amman with Jordan’s Queen Rania Al Abdullah to discuss the severe crisis and to express the Agency’s gratitude for the support of the Kingdom of Jordan.
During the meeting, which included several members of the UNRWA team, Her Majesty said that the attacks on helpless civilians on UNRWA premises and other humanitarian spaces in Gaza “demonstrate the blatant disregard for human life in this conflict. What more proof does the world need that there is no safe place in Gaza? No safe place for tens of thousands of desperate and defenseless civilians seeking refuge from the violence?”

Queen Rania addresses the audience during her visit to Yale University.
NY, USA/ September 22, 2009

 

 

Queen Rania makes an urgent plea on behalf of all the civilians living in Gaza for a “humanitarian ceasefire” and for the international community to do all it can to help alleviate the suffering.
Amman, Jordan/ January 5, 2009

 

 

 

Celebrities For Palestine standing tall for a just cause – Vanessa Redgrave

September 26, 2014 2 comments

by Marivel Guzman

'My politics have become rights-based. That’s my duty. I’m pledged to put children before anybody’s politics' … Vanessa Redgrave. Photograph: David Levene

‘My politics have become rights-based. That’s my duty. I’m pledged to put children before anybody’s politics’ … Vanessa Redgrave. Photograph: David Levene

It takes courage to speak about Israel’s crimes, but it takes integrity to speak for Palestine, Vanessa Redgrave the 1977 Oscar winner has been political activist for most of her life, during her Oscar acceptance speech in 1978, she took the opportunity to denounce the Zionist lobby, calling them “Zionist hoodlums”.

Redgrave is a well known actress that regardless of the Jewish lobby in Hollywood has managed to work in hundreds of films, just in United States she is being nominated more times for her acting roles more than any other actress in the US.
Howards End‘ (1993), The Bostonians  (1985), Julia (1977)  won her the Oscar, Redgrave has been nominated throughout her career 53 times, won 50 awards in diverse categories.

Hollywood is a big stage for worldwide actors and at the same time it is a place where you get blacklisted if you speak against Israel, for Vanessa Redgrave did not work she continued to work after that controversial speech at the Oscars.

This is a reminder to all celebrities that trade their integrity for stardom, a reminder to all celebrities that speak the truth about Palestine and then they retract themselves, Vanessa Redgrave should be your example of integrity, she has stand for her believes without fearing repercussions in here career.

Ms Redgrave is a hero that uses the stage for her roles as an actress and as the platform to speak for the voiceless.

Julia, The Palestinian and the Oscar controversy

In 1977, Redgrave funded and narrated a documentary film The Palestinian about Palestinians and the activities of the Palestinian Liberation Organization.
Vanessa Redgrave is a English actress of stage, screen and television, as well as a political activist.

“when Vanessa Redgrave took the stage at the Oscars in 1978 and nearly detonated her career by denouncing the Israeli government for its treatment of Palestine” from the Hollywood Reporter

This is part of her acceptance speech at the 1978 Oscars:

“My dear colleagues, I thank you very much for this tribute to my work. I think that Jane Fonda and I have done the best work of our lives, and I think this is in part due to our director, Fred Zinnemann.”

“And I also think it’s in part because we believed and we believe in what we were expressing–two out of millions who gave their lives and were prepared to sacrifice everything in the fight against fascist and racist Nazi Germany,” Redgrave continued.

She later added, “And I salute you, and I pay tribute to you, and I think you should be very proud that in the last few weeks you’ve stood firm, and you have refused to be intimidated by the threats of a small bunch of Zionist hoodlums whose behavior is an insult to the stature of Jews all over the world and their great and heroic record of struggle against fascism and oppression.”

 

Vanessa Redgrave talks about those who support Palestine and the right of self determination. NYC Ethical Culture Jan. 13, 2008.

 


Redgrave’s support of the Palestinian Arabs has reduced her opportunities in Hollywood and even back home in England, where such support was and is more common. Redgrave almost certainly would have been made a Dame by now but for her outspoken views.

She was once married to director Tony Richardson who once said about her, “Vanessa Redgrave is controversial, her enemies hate her, and her friends dislike her.” Others admire her belief of justice for the oppressed, which has led her to such places as Sarajevo and Tibet.

The Palestinian, a 1977 documentary, where Vanessa Redgrave funded and lends her voice premier was sabotaged by “Zionist hoodlums”  The cinema in which this film was to be shown (The Doheny Plaza theatre, Los Angeles) was bombed (15th June, 1978: 04.26am) prior to its screening that day. Causing some $1000 damage, the film was shown at the same cinema the following night.

“Put Gaza’s children before politics, says Vanessa Redgrave” reads the the Guarding headlines on August 1, when Israel was mercilessly killing Palestinian in Gaza.
“I believe in political solutions not in military solutions, like Uri Avnery in Tel Aviv. I fear for the lives of the Israelis who are rallying for peace every Saturday in Tel Aviv. Who go, like Uri Avnery, to the Palestinian villages to stop shootings and demolitions of homes.

Humanitarian agencies have to talk to governments that other governments categorise as “the bad guys”. Until governments agree to talk to the “bad guys” we can never have justice nor peace nor a future for our children anywhere.
Vanessa Redgrave
London, August 1, 2014

An open letter to the people of Gaza


An open letter for the people in Gaza

This letter is published under the Freedom of Information Act: “Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright.”

Paola Manduca aEmail AddressIain Chalmers bDerek Summerfield cMads Gilbert dSwee Ang eon behalf of 24 signatories

We are doctors and scientists, who spend our lives developing means to care and protect health and lives. We are also informed people; we teach the ethics of our professions, together with the knowledge and practice of it. We all have worked in and known the situation of Gaza for years.

On the basis of our ethics and practice, we are denouncing what we witness in the aggression of Gaza by Israel.

We ask our colleagues, old and young professionals, to denounce this Israeli aggression. We challenge the perversity of a propaganda that justifies the creation of an emergency to masquerade a massacre, a so-called “defensive aggression”. In reality it is a ruthless assault of unlimited duration, extent, and intensity. We wish to report the facts as we see them and their implications on the lives of the people.

We are appalled by the military onslaught on civilians in Gaza under the guise of punishing terrorists. This is the third large scale military assault on Gaza since 2008. Each time the death toll is borne mainly by innocent people in Gaza, especially women and children under the unacceptable pretext of Israel eradicating political parties and resistance to the occupation and siege they impose.

This action also terrifies those who are not directly hit, and wounds the soul, mind, and resilience of the young generation. Our condemnation and disgust are further compounded by the denial and prohibition for Gaza to receive external help and supplies to alleviate the dire circumstances.

The blockade on Gaza has tightened further since last year and this has worsened the toll on Gaza’s population. In Gaza, people suffer from hunger, thirst, pollution, shortage of medicines, electricity, and any means to get an income, not only by being bombed and shelled. Power crisis, gasoline shortage, water and food scarcity, sewage outflow and ever decreasing resources are disasters caused directly and indirectly by the siege.1

People in Gaza are resisting this aggression because they want a better and normal life and, even while crying in sorrow, pain, and terror, they reject a temporary truce that does not provide a real chance for a better future. A voice under the attacks in Gaza is that of Um Al Ramlawi who speaks for all in Gaza: “They are killing us all anyway—either a slow death by the siege, or a fast one by military attacks. We have nothing left to lose—we must fight for our rights, or die trying.”2

Gaza has been blockaded by sea and land since 2006. Any individual of Gaza, including fishermen venturing beyond 3 nautical miles of the coast of Gaza, face being shot by the Israeli Navy. No one from Gaza can leave from the only two checkpoints, Erez or Rafah, without special permission from the Israelis and the Egyptians, which is hard to come by for many, if not impossible. People in Gaza are unable to go abroad to study, work, visit families, or do business. Wounded and sick people cannot leave easily to get specialized treatment outside Gaza. Entries of food and medicines into Gaza have been restricted and many essential items for survival are prohibited.3 Before the present assault, medical stock items in Gaza were already at an all time low because of the blockade.3 They have run out now. Likewise, Gaza is unable to export its produce. Agriculture has been severely impaired by the imposition of a buffer zone, and agricultural products cannot be exported due to the blockade. 80% of Gaza’s population is dependent on food rations from the UN.

Much of Gaza’s buildings and infrastructure had been destroyed during Operation Cast Lead, 2008—09, and building materials have been blockaded so that schools, homes, and institutions cannot be properly rebuilt. Factories destroyed by bombardment have rarely been rebuilt adding unemployment to destitution.

Despite the difficult conditions, the people of Gaza and their political leaders have recently moved to resolve their conflicts “without arms and harm” through the process of reconciliation between factions, their leadership renouncing titles and positions, so that a unity government can be formed abolishing the divisive factional politics operating since 2007. This reconciliation, although accepted by many in the international community, was rejected by Israel. The present Israeli attacks stop this chance of political unity between Gaza and the West Bank and single out a part of the Palestinian society by destroying the lives of people of Gaza. Under the pretext of eliminating terrorism, Israel is trying to destroy the growing Palestinian unity. Among other lies, it is stated that civilians in Gaza are hostages of Hamas whereas the truth is that the Gaza Strip is sealed by the Israelis and Egyptians.

Gaza has been bombed continuously for the past 14 days followed now by invasion on land by tanks and thousands of Israeli troops. More than 60 000 civilians from Northern Gaza were ordered to leave their homes. These internally displaced people have nowhere to go since Central and Southern Gaza are also subjected to heavy artillery bombardment. The whole of Gaza is under attack. The only shelters in Gaza are the schools of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), uncertain shelters already targeted during Cast Lead, killing many.

According to Gaza Ministry of Health and UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA),1 as of July 21, 149 of the 558 killed in Gaza and 1100 of the 3504 wounded are children. Those buried under the rubble are not counted yet. As we write, the BBC reports of the bombing of another hospital, hitting the intensive care unit and operating theatres, with deaths of patients and staff. There are now fears for the main hospital Al-Shifa. Moreover, most people are psychologically traumatized in Gaza. Anyone older than 6 years has already lived through their third military assault by Israel.

The massacre in Gaza spares no one, and includes the disabled and sick in hospitals, children playing on the beach or on the roof top, with a large majority of non-combatants. Hospitals, clinics, ambulances, mosques, schools, and press buildings have all been attacked, with thousands of private homes bombed, clearly directing fire to target whole families killing them within their homes, depriving families of their homes by chasing them out a few minutes before destruction. An entire area was destroyed on July 20, leaving thousands of displaced people homeless, beside wounding hundreds and killing at least 70—this is way beyond the purpose of finding tunnels. None of these are military objectives. These attacks aim to terrorize, wound the soul and the body of the people, and make their life impossible in the future, as well as also demolishing their homes and prohibiting the means to rebuild.

Weaponry known to cause long-term damages on health of the whole population are used; particularly non fragmentation weaponry and hard-head bombs.45 We witnessed targeted weaponry used indiscriminately and on children and we constantly see that so-called intelligent weapons fail to be precise, unless they are deliberately used to destroy innocent lives.

We denounce the myth propagated by Israel that the aggression is done caring about saving civilian lives and children’s well-being.

Israel’s behavior has insulted our humanity, intelligence, and dignity as well as our professional ethics and efforts. Even those of us who want to go and help are unable to reach Gaza due to the blockade.

This “defensive aggression” of unlimited duration, extent, and intensity must be stopped.

Additionally, should the use of gas be further confirmed, this is unequivocally a war crime for which, before anything else, high sanctions will have to be taken immediately on Israel with cessation of any trade and collaborative agreements with Europe.

As we write, other massacres and threats to the medical personnel in emergency services and denial of entry for international humanitarian convoys are reported.6 We as scientists and doctors cannot keep silent while this crime against humanity continues. We urge readers not to be silent too. Gaza trapped under siege, is being killed by one of the world’s largest and most sophisticated modern military machines. The land is poisoned by weapon debris, with consequences for future generations. If those of us capable of speaking up fail to do so and take a stand against this war crime, we are also complicit in the destruction of the lives and homes of 1·8 million people in Gaza.

We register with dismay that only 5% of our Israeli academic colleagues signed an appeal to their government to stop the military operation against Gaza. We are tempted to conclude that with the exception of this 5%, the rest of the Israeli academics are complicit in the massacre and destruction of Gaza. We also see the complicity of our countries in Europe and North America in this massacre and the impotence once again of the international institutions and organizations to stop this massacre.

Click to toggle image size
Full-size image (24K) Associated Press
We declare no competing interests.

Supplementary Material

Supplementary appendix
Open file
PDF (63K)
 

References

1 United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)Occupied Palestinian Territory: Gaza emergency situation report (as of 21 July 2014, 1500 hrs)http://www.ochaopt.org/documents/ocha_opt_sitrep_22_07_2014.pdf(accessed July 22, 2014).
3 Gilbert MBrief report to UNRWA: The Gaza Health Sector as of June 2014.http://www.unrwa.org/sites/default/files/final_report_-_gaza_health_sector_june-july_2014_-_mads_gilbert_2.pdf(accessed July 22, 2014).
4 Naim AAl Dalies HEl Balawi M, et alBirth defects in Gaza: prevalence, types, familiarity and correlation with environmental factorsInt J Environ Res Public Health 201291732-1747PubMed
5 Manduca PNaim ASignoriello SSpecific association of teratogen and toxicant metals in hair of newborns with congenital birth defects or developmentally premature birth in a cohort of couples with documented parental exposure to military attacks: observational study at Al Shifa Hospital, Gaza, PalestineInt J Environ Res Public Health 2014115208-5223PubMed
6 Ma’an News Agency4 killed, over 50 injured as Israel targets al-Aqsa hospital.http://www.maannews.net/eng/ViewDetails.aspx?ID=715087(accessed July 22, 2014).
a New Weapons Research Group and University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy
b James Lind Library, Oxford, UK
c Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College, London, UK
d Clinic of Emergency Medicine, University Hospital of North Norway, Tromso, Norway
e Barts and the Royal London Hospital, London, UK

Time to End Apartheid-Again


Games Over-The world is too comfortable playing the game.
Gaza’s electricity problems is the last of the concern for the Palestinian people. If you look around, you will see that 25 percent of the population of the world does not have electricity. According to International Energy Agency 1.5 Billion people have no electricity, that is almost half of the world popular, majority of people lit themselves with other elements such: candles, charcoal, petrol, crude oil, and raw fire. Electricity is almost a 21 century invention.
To center our attention on Gaza’s electricity problem is to give Israel what they want, a diversión to the real problem that it is the occupation of Palestine.
Soon we will see the Royal Gulf Kings, coming with their offering-Three Wise Kings Biblical Story- of Petro-dirty-bloody dollars to alleviate Gaza’s electricity problem. Soon, we might also see a resolution calling for Egypt, to Ease, The Rafah Crossing blockade, but we won’t see the real solution, a real call for an end of the occupation. Every one seems to be missing the point.

It is time to call spades as spades and call Israel an Apartheid Entity an illegal usurper, an entity legitimized by British Rich friends in the UN in 1948.
A slowly genocide is taking place in the Land of Palestine; ethnic cleansing is methodically performed in Palestine; “ethnic cleansing, the attempt to create ethnically homogeneous geographic areas through the deportation or forcible displacement of persons belonging to particular ethnic groups. Ethnic cleansing sometimes involves the removal of all physical vestiges of the targeted group through the destruction of monuments, cemeteries, and houses of worship.” Encyclopedia Britannica

Israel is experimenting with its new weapons using Palestinians as a drills targets for its dirty wars, and the world is busy trying to brake Gaza blockade. Isn’t ironic that contingent of people are planing Gaza convoys, in a way to brake Israel Gaza siege? I’m not saying that this is not good, it is great that people show their compassion with the side of the weak. But the time has come to change the name of the game, we can not be using our energy on small battles. The problem is Israel and has to go, there is no other way.

The times has come to call for the dismantling the whole Apartheid Entity of Israel. The Zionist plan is being exposed. People stop being part of the game. The Holocaust was designed. The whole Nazi Party was part of the plan, the Vatican, The Rich Jews; all of them took part, and they have succeed, until the internet came to expose them.

Every one in Palestine fighting for the rights of Palestinians; should be fighting for the returning of the land to its owners and that means, to leave themselves the land taken from Palestinians. Everyone fighting inside of Palestine for the right of refugees, have to start looking for a place to go. All the resident of Palestine that holds an Israel citizenship, that came after the 1918 and 1948 exodus that resulted in the expulsion of a Palestinian family should be going back to their original countries; them and their children. It is just the right thing to do, for the sake of Justice and truth.
There is so much hypocrisy going on in between the Israelis that support Palestine; helping trying to ease the guilt of the occupation. An Israeli fighting shoulder to shoulder with a Palestinian, has only credibility if, he/she is original native of Palestine.
Time to End Apartheid Israel. History has no space for wars of conquest. The European Voyages of Exploration, were a salvage past of the human history. It’s time to evolve and modernize our thoughts.
There is no chosen race, there is no chosen people, there is no promise land, There is only Palestine. Viva Free Palestine.

Day 34 respectively .. Gaza without electricity, every time a few years ago to hear the Palestinian citizen and returns and plans to solve the electricity problem, but discovered it just lies citizen such as injection of anesthesia .. The question remains on the table in front of us .. How long will the world remain silent in front of the siege on Gaza??
Where the Security Council and human rights organizations, I think it’s best to cancel these organizations for their inability to carry its functions to human rights.
Palestinian people die a slow death and no ones lift a finger.

Refugee Status is no Game

December 10, 2013 1 comment

By Marivel Guzman in Collaboration with Omar Karem, from Turkey/Syrian border

 

Syria Refugee Camp Border Turkey
It is very difficult to be Palestinian. You have no rights in your land, and you have no rights in other people’s land.
The Palestinian Nabka since 1948 had left Palestinian without rights. They are denied visas to work, or to visit other countries on the ground of… being Palestinian. Most of the times they refuse them, just because they are Palestinians.

The word refugee is not new for Palestinians. The refugee status of Palestinians is wore as stigma. A painful one that follows them every where they go.

 

Omar Karem in Halab refugee Camp border Turkey Syria
Karem, that victoriously broke Gaza siege last year, had seen the end of his triumph. Now stranded in the border of Turkey/Syria in Alepo, Syria in a refugee camp for displaced people. What to do, when you are Palestinian? . Add your voice to the Palestinian Struggle, let’s help to end the Israeli Occupation of Palestine.

Gaza 2013 Olive Harvest


by Marivel Guzman
On August 10, International Solidarity Movement called the international community of Palestinians supporters to come to Palestine to help the residents to harvest the 2013 Olive Harvest. Every year the settlers makes the harvest almost impossible, the presence of ISM members with their cameras y their bodies as human shields help Palestinians to get to their groves without being molested by the settlers.
Every year hundreds of Olive trees are burn or uprooted by settlers, the IDFs presence is obsolete, they do not defend the rights of the Palestinians, for the contrary their presence strengthen the settlers bully attitude.

Harvesting the olives in Gaza, 2013

“We often post distressing news of settlers uprooting, burning or wrecking the olive trees of Palestinians.  There is such a report from Sarta, in the north-west West Bank at the foot of this post. But first,  we post some lovely photos from Palinfo.com of Palestinians – men and women, young and old – picking and sorting their olives in settler-free Gaza.” Jews for Justice for Palestine


Settlers burn olive trees in Sarta

From International Solidarity Movement, Nablus Team
September 27, 2013

Settlers burned around 35 olive trees in the Palestinian village of Sarta late on Thursday night, following the area being declared a closed military zone in preparation for the construction of a new settler road.

Around 60 settlers from the illegal Bruchin settlement and surrounding area, many armed with guns, set fire to the trees late on Thursday 26th September. At around midnight, the settlers arrived in Sarta. The town mayor asked the Palestinian Authority to liaise with the Israeli army in order to intervene, but when Israeli forces arrived on the scene they informed villagers that the area had been declared closed and told them to leave.

Two days earlier, town residents witnessed four bulldozers arrive in the village to prepare the ground for the construction of the road, which will connect the settlement with road five and is part of an expansion plan for the settlement which will take it from 40 houses to around 550.

The proposed road and settlement expansion is a source of concern to local Palestinians, who stand to lose much of their land under new plans, including local features such as a 500-year-old cemetery.

Palestinians I Love Your Smiling Face: You Overshadowed Gandhi by thousands miletones


Posted on August 03, 2013 by Akashma Online News

While being arrested against Prawer Plan

Palestinians I love your smiling Face.

I love your sweet attitude, your non violent front. You Overshadowed Gandhi by thousands milestones.
Bring it on you Cowards.
Every affront you cause to us, it is a new weapon in our arsenal.
Every insult you deliver, it is a new supporter we recruit for our fight.
Keep them coming Israel, keep digging your grave.
You’re giving the final touches for your grand Finale.
Very proud of our Palestinians brothers/sisters and its supporters taking every day blows of tear gas, dirty boots on their faces, detentions, incarcerations, torture and more.

Adalah

Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel

On 24 June 2013, the Israeli Knesset approved the discriminatory Prawer-Begin Bill, with 43 votes for and 40 votes against, for the mass expulsion of the Arab Bedouin community in the Naqab (Negev) desert in the south of Israel. If fully implemented, the Prawer-Begin Plan will result in the destruction of 35 “unrecognized”Arab Bedouin villages, the forced displacement of up to 70,000 Arab Bedouin citizens of Israel, and the dispossession of their historical lands in the Naqab. Despite the Arab Bedouin community’s complete rejection of the plan and strong disapproval from the international community and human rights groups, the Prawer Plan is happening now.
The Prawer-Begin Bill is an unacceptable proposition that entrenches the state’s historic injustice against its Bedouin citizens. Adalah and our NGO partners have been challenging the Prawer Plan before courts, government authorities and the international community, but we need your help to stop what would be the largest single act of forced displacement of Arab citizens of Israel since the 1950s!
Please sign our petition and visit our Facebook page to find out what you can do to Stop the Prawer Plan!
Sign up for Adalah’s Newsletter to stay informed.

What is the Prawer Plan?
Arab Bedouin citizens of Israel, inhabitants of the Naqab (Negev) desert since the seventh century, are the most vulnerable community in Israel. For over 60 years, the indigenous Arab Bedouin have faced a state policy of displacement, home demolitions and dispossession of their ancestral land. Today, 70,000 Arab Bedouin citizens live in 35 villages that either predate the establishment of the State in 1948, or were created by Israeli military order in the early 1950s. The State of Israel considers the villages “unrecognized” and the inhabitants “trespassers on State land,” so it denies the citizens access to state infrastructure like water, electricity, sewage, education, health care and roads. The state deliberately withholds basic services from these villages to “encourage” the Arab Bedouin citizens to give up their ancestral land. If Israel applied the same criteria for planning and development that exist in the Jewish rural sector, all 35 unrecognized villages would be recognized where they are.
In September 2011, the Israeli government approved the Prawer Plan, the brainchild of former Deputy Chair of the National Security Council, Mr. Ehud Prawer. The Prawer Plan will result in the destruction of the unrecognized villages and the forced displacement of up to 70,000 Arab Bedouin citizens. This plan was completed without consultation of the local community, and is a gross violation of the constitutional rights of the Arab Bedouin citizens to property, dignity, equality, adequate housing, and freedom to choose their own residence.
Prawer is Happening Now
Despite complete rejection of the plan by the Arab Bedouin, and strong disapproval from the international community, Prawer is happening now. More than 1,000 houses were demolished in 2011 alone, and civil society observed the same practices in 2012.  Since Prawer was announced, the government announced plans that will displace over 10,000 people and plant forests, build military centers, and establish new Jewish settlements in their place.
The Prawer Plan is today being turned into an Israeli law. On 6 May 2013, the Ministerial Committee on Legislation approved the proposed “Law for the Regulation of Bedouin Settlement in the Negev – 2013” (“the Prawer-Begin Bill”, after recommendations by Minister Benny Begin were included). On 24 June 2013, the Knesset approved the Prawer-Begin Bill with 43 votes for and 40 votes against. The bill will now be sent to the Committee for Interior Affairs and Environment to be prepared for the second and third readings.
The international community has repeatedly expressed its opposition to the Prawer Plan. In March 2012, the UN Committee on the Elimination for Racial Discrimination called on Israel to withdraw the proposed implementing legislation of the Prawer Plan, on the grounds that it was discriminatory. In July 2012, the European Parliament passed a historic resolution calling on Israel to Stop the Prawer Plan and its policies of displacement, eviction, and dispossession.
Adalah calls on the Israeli government to:
  • Cancel the Prawer Plan
  • Recognize the “unrecognized villages” and the land claims of the indigenous Arab Bedouin community
  • Halt home demolitions and forced evictions
  • Engage in meaningful dialogue with the Arab Bedouin community and the Arab political leadership to justly resolve the land claims
  • Invest in greater health, education, and employment opportunities for Arab Bedouin citizens of Israel
Find out More:
Introduction
Factsheet: Myths and Misconceptions about the Arab Bedouin in the Naqab
Article: Four Reasons to Reject the Prawer Plan, by Dr. Thabet Abu Rass and Professor Oren Yiftachel
Briefing/Position Papers:
Briefing Paper: Understanding the Prawer Plan Law, 2012
Briefing Paper: Analysis of the Prawer Plan, October 2011
Videos:
International responses
EMHRN Statement: Time for EU action on Prawer Bill, 2 July 2013
UN CERD Calls on Israel to Withdraw the Prawer Plan Law, 15 March 2012
European Parliament Passes Resolution Calling on Israel to Stop the Prawer Plan
Press Releases

EU consuls recommend imposing sanctions on Israeli settlements


Nonbinding Heads of Mission report for 2012 focuses on Israeli construction in E-1, policy in East Jerusalem and endangering of two-state solution; call to actively encourage European divestment from settlements is particularly severe.

By | Feb. 27, 2013 | 8:08 AM |
Published on Haaretz

West Bank settlement Modi'in llit

West Bank settlement Modi’in llit Photo by AP
The European Union’s consuls general in East Jerusalem and Ramallah are recommending economic sanctions against settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Among the recommendations made in the nonbinding Heads of Mission report for 2012, which has been obtained by Haaretz, is to “prevent, discourage and raise awareness about problematic implications of financial transactions including foreign direct investments, from within the EU in support of settlement activities, infrastructure and services.”

Seven of the report’s 10 recommendations deal with imposing direct or indirect sanctions by the European Union on bodies and organizations involved in construction in the settlements. The recommendation to actively encourage European divestment from the settlements is particularly severe, compared with previous internal EU reports.

The consuls recommend that the EU ensure strict application of the free trade agreement between the EU and Israel so that products manufactured in settlements do not benefit from preferential treatment. Another clause recommends encouraging efforts to enforce existing legislation requiring products made in the settlements to be labeled as such at sales points.

Efforts must be made to “ensure that imports of settlement products do not benefit from preferential tariffs and guarantee the consumers’ right to an informed choice” with regard to the origin and labeling of products, the report states. The annual mission report, which is written by all the heads of diplomatic missions of EU member states in the Palestinian Authority, does not compel practical steps, but serves as a basis for internal discussions of the Israel-Palestinian situation.

The 2012 report, which was handed in early January to the EU institutions in Brussels and to the foreign ministries of the 27 member states, also advocates closer supervision of cooperative programs between the EU and Israel with regard to technological research and development to ensure that no research grants, scholarships or other technological investments assist settlements, either directly or indirectly.

The diplomats gave the example of Israel’s participation in a cooperative program called Horizon 2020, through which the EU invests hundreds of millions of euros in Israeli high-tech firms. They noted that some of this funding goes to firms like the research laboratories of the cosmetics company Ahava, which are located in the Jordan Valley kibbutz Mitzpeh Shalem, near the Dead Sea. If the EU consuls’ recommendations are accepted, such investments will stop, since the kibbutz is seen as a settlement.

The report takes Israel to task over the decision to move ahead on construction plans in Area E-1, the corridor meant to link Jerusalem to the nearby West Bank settlement of Ma’aleh Adumim. The decision was made in late November, after the Palestinians’ statehood bid in the United Nations. The implementation of the E-1 project “threatens 2,300 Bedouin with forcible transfer” and “would effectively divide the West Bank into separate northern and southern parts,” the report states, adding that it would also “prevent Palestinians in East Jerusalem from further urban development and cut off East Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank.”

The consuls recommend to the EU member states to “coordinate EU monitoring and a strong EU response in order to prevent settlement construction in E1, including opposing forced transfer of the Bedouin communities in E1.”

The consuls state that the continuation of Israel’s policy in East Jerusalem could thwart the possibility of the city serving as the Israeli and Palestinian capital and therefore put the entire two-state solution at risk.

According to the report, Israel is “systematically undermining the Palestinian presence” in Jerusalem, through policies including “restrictive zoning and planning, demolitions and evacuations, discriminatory access to religious sites, an inequitable education policy, difficult access to health care, the inadequate provision of resources.”

A large portion of the report deals with Israeli restrictions on Muslim and Christian religious practice in Jerusalem and accuses Israel of attempting to change the character of Jerusalem as a city sacred to the three faiths. The Israeli government “selectively enforces legal and policy restrictions on religious freedoms and on access in particular for Christian and Muslim worshippers to their holy sites in Jerusalem/Old City,” the report states.

The consuls direct special attention to the cooperation between the right-wing group Elad and the Israel Antiquities Authority, determining that the purpose of this collaboration is to promote “a partisan historical narrative, placing emphasis on the biblical and Jewish connotations of the area while neglecting the Christian/Muslim claims of historic-archaeological ties to the same place.”

The authors said it seems that an attempt is being made to use archaeology to erase Muslim and Christian connections to the city, and that the “overreaching purpose of such a pre-programmed approach to the presence of archaeological evidence in the area seems to be a concerted effort by pro-settler groups to use archaeology to enhance an exclusively Jewish narrative on Jerusalem.”

The consuls say 2012 saw a rise in the number of violent incidents on the Temple Mount and a sharp increase in “the frequency and visibility of visits by Jewish radical political and religious groups, often in a provocative manner.” According to the report, the Palestinians fear that Israel is trying to change the status quo on the Temple Mount and create “Hebronization” there by arrangements similar to those in force at the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron.

In the report the consuls say that construction of Jewish neighborhoods in East Jerusalem is “systematic, deliberate and provocative” and presents as an example Israel’s announcement that 3,000 new housing units were approved by the government, a statement that came shortly after the Palestinians had their UN status upgraded to non-member observer state.

The consuls noted in particular three construction plans they view as problematic: the eastward expansion of the Jerusalem neighborhood of Har Homa, the southward and westward expansion of Gilo and housing construction in the Givat Hamatos neighborhood in between.

“The construction of these three settlements is part of a political strategy aiming at making it impossible for Jerusalem to become the capital of two states,” the report states.

EU diplomats propose boycotts, divestment, and sanctions against Israeli colonialism


by on January 19, 2012
Published on Mondoweiss
bethlehemharhoma
The Israeli settlement of Har Homa overlooking Bethlehem. (Photo: IMEMC)

A report sent to the European Union on Monday by its member countries’ top diplomats in Jerusalem and Ramallah proposed state-level boycotts, divestment, and sanctions against Israel’s illegal colonial infrastructure in the occupied West Bank. These recommendations, unprecedented among Western nations, herald a breakthrough for the growing Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

Like most efforts opposing only the West Bank settlements, they appear somewhat myopic about the state policies of ethnic cleansing and apartheid that stand squarely behind settlers’ walls and guns, while also denying refugees their homes and Palestinian citizens of Israel equality under its laws. But high-level backing for even modest steps can afford many new opportunities.

The Independent reports:

 The European Commission should consider passing legislation to prevent finance generated within its member states being used to support illegal Israeli settlements in occupied territory, the bloc’s top diplomats in Jerusalem and Ramallah have advised …

The finance recommendation has been worded with deliberate vagueness to maintain a consensus among sharply differing views within the EU. But the clear implication is that some of the European Consuls General – ambassador-rank representatives to the Palestinians – want the Commission to consider for the first time whether it has an obligation to legislate on the grounds that the settlements contravene international law.

Under one interpretation of the proposal, the Commission would use legislation to force companies in Europe to break their links with businesses involved in settlement construction and commercial activities. This follows some high-profile voluntary examples like that of Deutsche Bahn, which last year pulled out of electrification of the Tel Aviv-Jerusalem rail link because it cut through the West Bank.

The Guardian says that the document

calls on the European commission to consider legislation “to prevent/discourage financial transactions in support of settlement activity”.

Legislation should prohibit trade and business with settlements based on their illegality under international law, rather than a politically-driven boycott, said one EU diplomatic source.

And Ynetnews panics:

The recommendations include the preparation of a “blacklist” of settlers considered violent, in order to later mull the option of banning them from entering the European Union. The document also seeks to encourage more PLO activity and representation in east Jerusalem.

Moreover, the European report advises senior EU figures visiting east Jerusalem to refrain from being escorted by official Israeli representatives or security personnel.

A Western diplomat told Ynet that the Europeans are well aware of the implications of the latest recommendations.

Talk is cheap, of course. But careful organizing and determined action by Palestinians and solidarity activists could make the next steps quicker and more comprehensive. Whatever we think of the two-state “solution” these proposals aim to bolster, they offer us a valuable new arsenal in the struggle against Israeli apartheid.

And speaking of a two-state resolution to Israel’s 63-year occupation of Palestinian land, and ongoing displacement and subjugation of its indigenous people, it appears that these same diplomats, many of whom have spent their lives pursuing it, are nearing despair as its infeasibility becomes undeniable. In an article provocatively entitled “EU on verge of abandoning hope for a viable Palestinian state,” The Independent says:

The Palestinian presence in the largest part of the occupied West Bank – has been, “continuously undermined” by Israel in ways that are “closing the window” on a two-state solution, according to an internal EU report seen by The Independent …

With the number of Jewish settlers now at more than double the shrinking Palestinian population in the largely rural area, the report warns bluntly that, “if current trends are not stopped and reversed, the establishment of a viable Palestinian state within pre-1967 borders seem more remote than ever” …

The 16-page document is the EU’s starkest critique yet of how a combination of house and farm building demolitions; a prohibitive planning regime; relentless settlement expansion; the military’s separation barrier; obstacles to free movement; and denial of access to vital natural resources, including land and water, is eroding Palestinian tenure of the large tract of the West Bank on which hopes of a contiguous Palestinian state depend …

Area C is one of three zones allocated by the 1993 Oslo agreement. Area A includes major Palestinian cities, and is under the control of the Palestinian Authority. Area B is under shared Israeli-Palestinian control.

Although Area C is the least populous, the report says “the window for a two-state solution is rapidly closing with the continued expansion of Israeli settlements and access restrictions for Palestinians in Area C [which] compromises crucial natural resources and land for the future demographic and economic growth of a viable Palestinian state”.

It says the EU needs “at a political” level to persuade Israel to redesignate Area C, but in the meantime it should “support Palestinian presence in, and development of the area”. The report says the destruction of homes, public buildings and workplaces result in “forced transfer of the native population” and that construction is effectively prohibited in 70 per cent of the land – and then in zones largely allocated to settlements of the Israeli military.

While predictably mincing words, the diplomats’ statements coincide with King Abdullah of Jordan, Israel’s last ally in the region, dropping the a-bomb to The Washington Post:

If we haven’t crossed that line, we’ll cross the line sooner or later where the two-state solution is no longer possible, at which point the only solution is the one-state solution. And then, are we talking about apartheid or democracy?

The French parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee also accused Israel of using water as “a weapon serving the new apartheid” two weeks ago. And all of this comes shortly after Israel’s public condemnation by every bloc of the United Nations Security Council – with the predictable exception of the United States – in December.

As the one-state reality seeps into the world’s consciousness, we can expect increasing numbers of Israel’s current allies to slowly inch – or, perhaps, quickly run – away from it. These developments offer a moment of opportunity, for Palestinians and all supporters of human equality. What can we do but try to make use of it?

About Joe Catron

Joe Catron is a US activist in Gaza, Palestine, where he works with Palestinian groups and international solidarity networks, particularly in support of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) and prisoners’ movements. He co-edited The Prisoners’ Diaries: Palestinian Voices from the Israeli Gulag, an anthology of accounts by detainees freed in the 2011 prisoner exchange, blogs at joecatron.wordpress.com and tweets at @jncatron.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

  1. American says:

    Looks like a baby BDS statement. A baby step…boycotting the settlements instead of Israel itself.
    I don’t doubt the EU would like to be stronger on Israel but so far they have haven’t been willing to use their teeth.
    Still it’s better to have statement like this from the EU, along with all the other statements and warnings to Israel previously to build on, when and if Israel pushes their last button also and the statements become calls for sanctions on Israel itself.
    I don’t think they are ignoring the Palestine plight in this, after all that is the main issue with Israel.
    They are, like I said taking baby steps. But will probably be a day late and dollar short as always.

  2. FreddyV says:

    I don’t see why people say the 2SS is no longer viable.

    ’67′ borders. Kick the settlers out. Address the right to return issue. Done.

    I see a 1SS as far less viable with the ingrained racism and mutual distrust. You’ll end up with rich Jews buying land from vulnerable Palestinians.

    It’ll be like going back to the early 20th Century.

    In asking for a One State Solution, you’re asking for a bunch of megalomaniacs with a serious God complex to treat other people equally. That isn’t going to happen and given the ingrained indoctrination they’ve had and total belief that God gave them that land, I think it’s safe to say that as long as my bumhole points downwards, that isn’t going to change.

    The reality will be that Gaza will be Palestine.

  3. pabelmont says:

    FreddyV says it all when he says: “I don’t see why people say the 2SS is no longer viable. ’67′ borders. Kick the settlers out. Address the right to return issue. Done.”

    UNSC-465 (1980) demanded that the (then) settlers be removed and the (then) settlements be dismantled.

    The EU should lead the way to [1] make the same demand agin, today, w.r.t. to today’s much worse situation and [2] to impose such sanctions as seem proper to achieve this.

    But we must also call for removal of the wall, lifting the siege of Gaza, renmoval of internal check-points. And as FreddyV says, address the question of “return”. To this list one must add, equitable sharing of water.

  4. Peacefan says:

    What’s incredible is that there is not mention of this in French speaking medias. At the exception of the assembly report on water, nothing, neither in left nor right press.

  5. I appreciate the effort by those diplomats. Unfortunately, mainstream politicians and media figures in the key EU countries (Germany, France, UK) are just as uncapable of treating Israel as they would have treated South Africa as are their counterparts in the US.

Statement by Samer Issawi on ‘deportation deals’


Posted on March 23, 2013 by Akashma Online News

A new note from the cause

Palestinian Refugees Right to Return – Al-Awda

Monday, 18 March 2013 15:39

The following statement by Samer Issawi was posted on his Facebook page by his lawyer Fawwaz Shloudy. It was translated from Arabic to English by Shahd Abusalama.

Issam Issawi

“Regarding the Israeli Occupation offer to deport me to Gaza, I affirm that Gaza is undeniable part of my homeland and its people are my people. However, I will visit Gaza whenever I want or I feel like it as it is within my homeland Palestine which I have the right to wander whenever I like from the very north to the very south. I strongly refuse to be deported to Gaza as this practice will just bring back bitter flashbacks from the expulsion process which our Palestinian people were subjected to during 1948 and 1967.

We are fighting for the sake of freedom of our land and return of our refugees in Palestine and exile, not to add more deportees to them. This systematic practice which Israel aims to empty Palestine from Palestinians through and bring strangers in their place is but a crime. Therefore, I refuse being deported and I will only agree to be released to Jerusalem as I know that the Israeli Occupation is aiming to empty Jerusalem of its people and turn Arabs to become a minority group of its population. The issue of deportation is no longer a personal decision. It is rather a national principle. If every detainee agrees to be deported outside Jerusalem under pressure, Jerusalem will eventually be emptied of its people.

I would prefer to die on my hospital bed to being deported from Jerusalem. Jerusalem is my soul and my life. If I was uprooted from there, my soul would be uprooted from my body. My life is meaningless away from Jerusalem. No land on earth will be able to embrace me other than Jerusalem. Therefore, my return will be only to Jerusalem but nowhere else. I advise all Palestinians to embrace their land and their villages and never succumb to the Israeli Occupation’s wishes. I don’t see this issue as a personal cause that is related to Samer Issawi. It is a national issue, a conviction and a principle that every Palestinian who loves his homeland’s sacred soil should hold. Finally, I reaffirm for the thousands time that I continue my hunger strike until either freedom and return to Jerusalem or martyrdom!”

Bil’in protesters oppose a ‘horrible, horrible wrong’ — Michael Moore

January 12, 2013 2 comments

Posted on January 12, 2012 by Akashma Online News

by UPDATED By Marivel Guzman

5 Broken Cameras Documentary Film

I have been activist for few years now.  I consider myself part of the Palestinian Solidarity Movement and like Bil’in resistance fighters, I m an advocate for non-violence movement. It is difficult to witness the struggle of Palestinians fighting their battle with a Palestinian Flag  and a camera.
Bil’in residents decided to wage a Non violent resistance war against the stronger army of the Middle East.

They started this war 7 years ago, protesting the Land grab for Settlements and the construction of the Apartheid Wall. They are not deterred by the gas, arrests, the bullets, the bullying and the death. Every Friday after prayer they gather by the Wall pacifically protesting the stealing of the Land.
I have been sharing photos and videos taken from the villages in West Bank, Gaza and West Jerusalem, images that could be rated R by the MPAA(Motion Picture Association of America) by its violent content. The violence is recorded in every one of the videos shoot by the residents and by the International Community of activists volunteering to be live witness of the Israel Occupation, internationals that take their own doses of beating, gas, bullets, arrests, and sometimes death.  5 Broken Cameras Exposes Israel True Colors

Bassem Abu Rahmah

Phil was known as The Elephant, his Name was Bassem Abu Rahman RIP
Killed April 07, 2009

 

Michael Moore tweeted his followers to watch the film about Palestine that launched earlier in the departed year called 5 Broken Cameras. Twice. The chieftain of cinematic guerrilla activism sings it up as “one of the best films of the year” and “that rare documentary that has the power to move many. Pls watch!”

“Watch one of the best films of the year, “5 Broken Cameras,” the story of a Palestinian farmer who picks up a camera” MMFlint

Moore reveals a deeper connection to the film than suggested by those lonesome tweets. It took home the best picture award at the Traverse City Film Festival founded by Moore in his native Michigan. And he’s spoken at a number of screenings in the US. A video of one such pre-screening talk shows the extent of his directorial admiration for Emad Burnat’s film and the significant Israeli obstacles he has had to climb to showcase the debut Palestinian talent.

I was able to get Emad to Traverse City, Michigan. He’d gone to the airport in Tel Aviv and they wouldn’t let him leave. And so we had to get him to Amman to get on a plane there. But because I run a large international network of terrorists we were able to make this happen (laughs). I have been a huge advocate for this film for the better part of the last year. I was just telling Tom (the event’s co-organizer) downstairs that if I were the third Koch brother and had their resources … I would send a copy of this film to every home in America. And I believe that within 24 hours, if people would watch it, public opinion on this issue would change dramatically. This film is so powerful in its humanity, in its heart, its belief in non-violence as the way to succeed.

When Emad and his family were in Traverse City, Terry George, who made Hotel Rwanda, and I were introducing the film and then we did a Q&A afterwards and Terry said something I thought was really very true: every now and again a documentary comes along that after you see it you won’t discuss it as a documentary, you will discuss it as a work of art, a work of cinema, a movie. And we feel very strongly that this is one of those movies. This is one of the best movies I’ve seen this year, of all movies, not just documentaries. And their struggle goes on as you will see. This man is not a documentary film maker – he’s a farmer. And the film that you are about to watch is a film made by a farmer. With no training whatsoever. And I don’t even think that they have a theater in their town so I don’t even know what he’s seen.

So that makes it even more amazing as you watch this film, and you’re realizing that sometimes if you have that, whatever that is in you, whatever you have to say, you want your voice heard, and he found the medium to do that, quite accidentally: because his son, Jibreel, was born in 2005 and he picked up a used home video camera; and started you know wanting to film his son growing up but things started happening, they (Israel) started building the wall to bleed their town, so he started filming that, and the title of the film, as is probably self-evident, in terms of what happens to his cameras. One thing we did in Traverse City town is that when he left we sent him a brand new camera (laughs) so he can keep filming. A small price to pay for trying to right a horrible, horrible wrong.

So I’m really happy that he came here tonight to watch this; and I encourage you in terms of not only your appreciation of the art of this film, but also when you leave here, when you think about this tomorrow, to do what you can to help other people who don’t have five broken cameras, don’t have a voice. We (Americans) are the funders of what you are about to see.

“As Israeli settlers begin building homes and erecting a barrier wall in the West Bank village of Bil’in, a Palestinian farm worker documents the town’s resistance to the new settlement.  Over the course of several years, the townspeople clash with the Israeli Defense Force, and tensions mount as the wall remains and the building continues.” 5 Broken Cameras

Discover Bil’in

Bil’in is a Palestinian village that is struggling to exist. It is fighting to safeguard its land, its olive trees, its resources… its liberty.

By annexing close to 60% of Bil’in land for Israeli settlements and the construction of Israel’s separation wall, the state of Israel is strangling the village. Every day it destroys a bit more, creating an open air prison for Bil’in’s inhabitants.

Supported by Israeli and international activists, Bil’in residents peacefully demonstrate every Friday in front of the “work-site of shame”. And every Friday the Israeli army responds with violence, both physically and psychologically.

Bil’in residents have continued to withstand these injustices despite the frequent night raids of Israeli soldiers in the town followed by an increasing number of arrests of inhabitants and of activists. But now, the army has toughened the oppression by systematically arresting members of the Bil’in committee in charge of organizing the non-violent resistance actions. The aim of the arrests is to discourage Bil’in residents and reduce their resistance to the occupation.

By supporting Bil’in, you will help its inhabitants to continue their struggle and maintain hope in their fight for liberty. This site is dedicated to all people of good will – Palestinian, Israeli and the internationals who fight side by side against the injustices endured by the people of Bil’in.

Since I watched the trailer of 5 Broken Cameras I got inspired to shared as a great film without knowing, that this reality film was being nominated for the best documentary in our Oscar 2013.  5 Broken Cameras it is simple, real, painful as Palestinian reality is. If you have the chance “watch it”, go to Alive Mind Cinema and download it, Group Screen it, show it in your College Campus. Reality sting, but this is the only way to educate the public regarding Occupied Palestine.
Alive Mind Cinema shares a large chunk of the proceeds with the filmmakers, who are often the best spokespeople for their cause, as in the case of 5 Broken Cameras. We also support many organizations through partnerships, free screenings, education, etc.” Elizabeth Sheldon from Alive Mind Cinema.
Emat Burnat Palestinian Filmaker take you on a road of desperation, occupation, outrage and tears. In 5 years IDF (Israel Soldiers) destroyed 5 cameras, but he continue filming Palestinian Struggles.
Now for first time in history, Palestine Occupation has come out to the light of an audience silenced by Israel Propaganda Machine. 5 Broken Cameras in the hands of a Palestinian farmer bring you the painful Palestinian truth.

An extraordinary work of both cinematic and political activism, 5 BROKEN CAMERAS is a deeply personal, first-hand account of non-violent resistance in Bil’in, a West Bank village threatened by encroaching Israeli settlements. Shot almost entirely by Palestinian farmer Emad Burnat, who bought his first camera in 2005 to record the birth of his youngest son, the footage was later given to Israeli co-director Guy Davidi to edit. Structured around the violent destruction of each one of Burnat’s cameras, the filmmakers’ collaboration follows one family’s evolution over five years of village turmoil. Burnat watches from behind the lens as olive trees are bulldozed, protests intensify, and lives are lost. “I feel like the camera protects me,” he says, “but it’s an illusion.”

Democracy Now interview  with Palestinian Filmmaker/Farmer/Activist Emat Burnat and Israel Filmmakers/Activist David Davidi, they walk us to the making of 5 broken cameras, which it is an everyday reality in Bil’in Palestine.

Repression and Arrest on Videos Everyday Bil’in Struggles

Journalist arrested by Israeli Soldiers

October 12, 2012 2 comments

Posted on October 12, 2012 by Akashma Online News
UPDATED
Nabi Saleh journalist ‘arrested in Israeli raid’
Published yesterday (updated) 12/10/2012 18:49
Source Maan News
RAMALLAH, West Bank Palestine — Israeli authorities arrested a Palestinian journalist from Ramallah area in the village of Al Nabi Saleh on Thursday and was taken to unknown location, local sources said.
“Israel Occupier Soldiers raided the home of Mohammad Atallah Al Tamimi , 24 years old, and vandalized the house before arresting the journalist, who works for the Tamimi Press Agency,” local witnesses said.
Mohammad Atallah Al Tamimi is also active with the village’s popular committee media office.
An Israeli army spokeswoman said she had no record of the incident.
The local popular committee said in a statement that it held Israeli forces responsible for the journalist’s well-being, and it condemned a series of arrests and invasions of the village’s homes, in the last 3 years they have been more than 500 incidents, that have resulted in 64 arrests.
“All these policies aim to pressure the Palestinians and kill Palestinian resistance, but we will never stop. We will keep fighting and struggling against the occupation,” the statement said.According to a Palestinian media advocacy group, Israeli forces have committed 559 violations against media freedoms in the West Bank and Gaza in the last four years.

Look that beautiful Smile, we say; “Who does not own anything, should not fear anything” 🙂 Being arrested on January 23, 2011

“Since December 2009, when An Nabi Saleh began their non-violent protests against the continued stealing of their land by the illegal Israeli colony of Halamish, more than 13% of the village’s residents – 64 people – have been arrested and jailed as of 31 March 2011.    All but three were tried for participating in the non-violent demonstrations.  Of those imprisoned, 29 have been minors under the age of 18 years and 4 have been women”  Read More on Nabi Saleh Solidarity and Resistance Committee in their Web Blogs,

“Tamimi Press have reported via Facebook: [translation via google translate]:  Tamimi Press | – Urgent – injured citizen Omar al-Tamimi, 25, more than 8 bullets metal in the side, abdomen and hands during launch indiscriminate bullets carried out by the occupation forces against the village of Nabi Saleh shortly before when storming of the village and arrested a number of citizens.  The  Popular Resistance have said Occupation Forces carry full responsibility for Tamimi life especially as it is still being held and the ambulance which are moving at a checkpoint at the entrance of the village”  September 22, 2012
Join them in their Facebook Page Tamimi Press and stay informed on the weekly Non Violent protests to raise awareness.
Intifada Media have reported: The IOF [Israeli Occupaption Forces]  invaded the village of Nabi Saleh Monday night, broke into the home of the martyr Mustafa Tamimi and arrested his brotherZiad ‘Abd al-Rizaq (25) as well as Muhammad ‘Atiyah Tamimi (28). Soldiers broke into several homes and terrorized residents. Clashes with the village’s youth ensued, and the invading army used live ammunition. One resident, ‘Ummar Tamimi, was then seriously injured by a bullet but the army detained the ambulance carrying him to Ramallah hospital, and arrested the injured and another man accompanying him. September 11, 2012

The Activists of Palestine and the Hasbarist Machine


Posted on October 11, 2012 by Akashma Online News

The Mission is the Estelle Freedom Boat, sailing to Gaza! 🙂

By Marivel Guzman

Let me first tell you something that I have noticed in the world of activism, specially in facebook community.
There is jealousy, ego centrism, and  love for audiences, specially the guys that are in the business of selling books, conferences and travels around the world activating for a cause.
In the case of Palestine, had been a fertile ground for writers and University Professors to make a name out of themselves discussing Palestine/Israeli Conflict. The aware knows that there is not about strategy, not about “Peace Talks”, we know the peace talks are conducted by the guilty party of the Conflict, and by the supporters of this Party, namely Israel.
The case of Finkelstain, Chomsky and others that are public figures, they are being using Palestine as trampoline, they may be sincere in their support for Palestine but lately I starting to doubt the end goal of this public support. I have to apology if I m wrong, specially in the case of Norman Finkelstain that it is known for 30 years to be a Palestinian supporter. Sometimes I think that these heavy weight Professors in their integrity as a humans being they have to support the cause because it is Just, but in their inner heart, the Noblezed idea of the chosen land for the Jews still permeates out and they can not really decide when it comes to radical positions in favor of Palestine. If they were put  in the position  to vote to dismantle Israel, would they be able to give that vote and walk away confident that they did the right thing? ..Sometimes I wonder the same for every Israeli Jew that support Palestine, but that came whose ancestry is from Europe or else where, Would they be able to vote for the dismantleling of Israel and go back to their original mother lands? I have asked myself these questions many times.
Now Palestinians; like Abu Abuminah, Omar Bargoutti and other important figures of the movement are being continuously attacked by other activists, and attacking each other as well. If they know that Unity is the key for a stronger movement, I asked them why do they engage in this back and forth attacking each other and dividing the International community with their arguments?…
Now, the latest  controversy arises when Greta Berlin which it is a very respected activist, not only in the Palestinian Movement but also in other areas of peace, well she got publicly defended by Gilad Atmoz, which by the way it is kind of close supporter of Ken O’keefe,  (which it is a key player in the Palestinian Solidarity) Movement.
Now let’s back up a little..Ali Abuminah wrote an article and got the support of almost hundreds schoolars and activists around the world against Gilad Atmoz..
Now…Gilad Atmoz has been activating for Palestine..but he has a flaw…his approach to the Jewish indentiry has created lots of revolt in the Zionist and Palestinian Movement…(controversial) I mot not sure if he is using that made up and purposely controversy to clime in the ranks of popularity and sell books and conferences , which it is very common these days..
On the other side Mr Atzmon also criticized Omar Bargoutti calling him Anti Semitic…By now I see that Mr Atmoz is being caught up in two instances of Palestinians Activist having to defend themselves instead to concentrating on the Palestinian issue..media attack, need to respond to media inquires, to make articles in response to the public attacks..
Also Mr Atzmon was in the need to ask media inquires, and make many articles defending his position when he was “attacked” by Ali Abuminah and the schoolars, that went to the extent to sign a letter of Disavowing Gilad Atzmon, which made headlines all over England and inside the Palestinian Solidarity Movement, which conveniently made Gilad Atzmon sell more books of his Title “The Wonderering Who” .
Now, we have 3 actors in scene, Gilad Atzmon, Ali Abuminah, Omar Bargoutti..
Then it came a heavy weight actor to the scene Prof Norman Finkelstain, making the argument that the BDS movement was a self cheer leading movements with shaky basis,  using a no no go strategy that will have no support from the International organizations and Jews around the world.
At this point we have a mix of controversies all clashing each other..
So we have the enemies of the BDS against Omar Bargoutti, the supporters of Gilad Atzmon with internal conflict with Alu Abuminah supporters, Norman Finkelstain supporters against Omar Bargoutti supporters..so at this point we have a Chaos inside the Palestinian Solidarity Movement that have not help at all..Well good for the books writers that most probably saw their sales raised, and the Pubic speakers saw their conferences booked ..
Then we have this charismatic long time activist that is known to be integral part of the Palestinian Movement and more specially in the Gaza Flotillas Voyages, but here we have another controversy arising. Greta Berlin say few statements about Ken O’keefe when the Road to Hope got stranded in Libya for weeks and end up in the MV Strobes Greek boat kidnapped at sea.
Immediately the controversy started against Ken O’keefe, and the statements of Greta Berlin did not help at all, they made the rumors run wild in between the Palestinian activist community, not only her statements, there were other 2 statements, and a variety of rumors without facts that almost killed the mission.
So by now we have Gilad Atzmon, Ali Abuminah, Omar Bargoutti, Greta Berlin and Ken O’keefe all of them peace activists, some of them published authors, public speakers and Mr. O’keefe that have not published works but has been invited to dozens of TV and Radio shows to speak about Palestine-Israel Conflict..
Now, what happen last week it is unfortunately because again as it has been a trend now, every time that one of this controversies arises in the media, is when there is a Palestinian Mission in the making.
Now as I write this notes, The Estelle Freedom Boat is at sea in its mission to reach Gaza and break the illegal Israel Blockade..
So, how is this started, well nothing really important happened to start this show. But a video that has been controversial in nature is the center of this Media Frenzy.
Greta Berlin shared something in this lines that Zionist were to be blame for the holocaust in a tweeter, but in the National Post appears by Triten Hopper, “Gaza flotilla sponsor publishes tweet blaming Jews for Holocaust”, off course that was not what was tweeted that it is the “Catchy” Headlines that Mr Hopper used to make big fuzz and headlines and divert the attention of Greta Berlin’s Gaza Sailors Greta Berlin Talks About “Freedom Sailors” and the Story of the Free Gaza Movement and its tour promoting the book  in Californian and her role behind the Gaza Flotillas, and the most important the Estella Freedom Boat Voyage.
WE know the hasbaras trick of the Israel Paid Media, they distorted anything that needs to be twisted to serve their propaganda..I saw it since the first article..but what made the thing worse at least in facebook was the article of Gilad Atzmon defending Greta Berlin, 3 days later Gilad Atzmon distributed his article “Abuminah Did It Again”, off course Gilad Atzmon enjoy of great readership in his blogs, and that was another started controversy that span wild in the internet. By now we have all the Israel Propaganda Machine making headlines of something without merit..The video that had so much horrorized the Israel supporters is ProffesorEustace Mullin RIP, a well respected Professor, journalist that dedicated his life

As far as Zionism is concerned, the founder of Zionism and apostate, Theodor Herzl, sought to intensify hatred of the Jew in order to enhance the cause of political Zionism and with this advance with the plan to transfer the great majority of Jew to Palestine. In essence this is what is stated in the video and that is not Anti semitic, but the uncover truth

Going back to Greta Berlin, according to Avi Mayer “discovery” on freegaza tweeter she saw this tweet: ““Zionists operated the concentration camps and helped murder millions of innocent Jews,” read a Tweet posted Sunday to @freegazaorg, the official Twitter feed of the group, which includes Canadian author Naomi Klein and Bishop Desmond Tutu on its board of advisers.

WOW, the end of the world, the world Jew and Zionists in the same statement rang the bells of the internet filters and in no time the whole Israel hasbara propaganda machine raise their antennas and started working round the clock..
I do not understand why the Free Gaza Movement had to publish an apology for what Greta Berlin tweeted, I believe that the video it is worth to be analyzed, and raising issues that we think could be possible than have happened is not a crime or reason to call any one Anti Semitic, Besides we all know that this is the hasbara way to operate why give them time and space and with this making bigger something that is not…besides Greta Berlin did not blame jews for the holocaust as the Headline title of Tristan Hopper advertised “Gaza flotilla sponsor publishes tweet blaming Jews for Holocaust” , I m not even going to cite the source of his article, because he did it with the purpose to inflame the Jews Community, and that it is wrong. So I refuse to send one reader to his publication.

1933 connection between Jews and Zionists to transfer the Jews to Palestine…The transfer Agreement the book.Edwin Black Author.

Now, we have another person Greta Berlin, Pro Palestinian, and according to Gilad Atzmon article Ali Abuminah did it again “Is it really possible that not a single Palestinian or Palestinian solidarity activist would stand for Greta Berlin, one of the founders of the Free Gaza Movement and its spokesperson for the last several years? Is it possible that not a single peace activist would rush to defend the person who was directly and physically involved in every naval attempt to break the siege on Gaza? Gilat Atzmon in its vendetta with Ali Abuminah again bring the sour wound that Ali Abuminah opened with that letter…Ay Ay Ay! this look like a soup opera of activist fighting for ratings..

So as you see in this Note, we have Gilad Atmzon against Ali Abuminah, and Omar bargoutti and at the same time against the BDS movement.
We have Greta Berlin against Ken O’keefe, but we have Gilat Atzom in the middle because Gilat Atzmon wrote an article defending Greta Berlin of the Israel Mad Machine of Hasbarists and none of the  Palestinians and Palestinians Activists are coming in her defense. Well he deserve merit for defending Greta but at the moments when the Estelle is sailing alone without any exposure from the Media and absent from facebook walls, and people in facebook posting only about Greta Berlin being slandered, he completely took the attention away from the Gaza Flotilla Mission, and in doing this way,  Gilad  make mention of Ali Abuminah it looks illogical, I do not want to discredit Gilad Atzmon but he chosen the wrong issue, at the wrong time to try to get even with Abuminah.
Then we have Greta Berlin endorsing Gilad Atzmon book, ‘The Wondering Who”, but we know by now that Ken O’keefe have some resentment with Greta Berlin for her statements regarding Ken O’keefe during some Gaza missions that they were part activists.
Now when Ken O’keefe was cleaning his name after being slandered by some activists, and some hasbarists, the old scars surface again on the social networks whole thing seems as being purposely scripted to derail the mission of the Samouni Project that again is being revived, the Estelle Mission and The publication of Gaza Sailors of Greta Berlin.
So what this left us?, A triangle of three loving and hardworking Peace activists divided by the support and nonsupport of each other..
On the other hand, he have Gilad Atzmon and Omar Bargoutti defending their opinion of the BDS, which by the way needs to defense because the BDS Movement is so gigantic and have moved so well that at this pace the Israel boycott will be total in few years, and with this the dismantlement of the Apartheid State. And make sure not to twist these words, I did not say the destruction of the State of Israel, NO! Israel will self destruct very soon, not by the BDS or the global Palestinian Solidarity Movement, or the Palestinian Resistance inside and outside of Palestine, but own Israel hands, her arrogance have no name, and the leaders will have no other but to cut ties with Israel, and Israel with no International support and no free money is nothing but I bunch of guys yelling “Anti Semitic” …

Well I think I have summarized what it is going on in the Activist Community of the Palestinian Solidarity Movement.

Please remember all the blood spilled in Palestine, the thousands of ancients olive tress uprooted, the destruction of ancients Palestinian homes, the millions of Palestinians exiles in other countries, the millions living in refugee camps, the Palestinian children tortured in Israel Jails, the thousands in Israel Jail, the hunger strikers, the Besiege Gaza, All the Palestinian Martyrs. Remember Palestine is still occupied.

 It is not about me, about you, is not about Ken O’keefe, Gilad Atzmon, Omar Bargoutti, Ali Abuminah, Greta Berlin, Norman Finkelstain, is not about selling books, about popularity, facebook buddy support, is not about selling conferences, is not about making money blogging, or selling the stories to the Big Media, is not about being on TV or Radio…is about PALESTINE, is about Free Palestine, about Justice, Fairness, Truth, and above all and all is about PEACE, not just in Palestine but in the whole world, because by this time many have come to the conclusion that unless Israel be brought to justice and in the road to justice Israel be completely disarmed, and stop creating conflict around the world, not before all that happen there won’t be World Peace.

Now I leave you with The Video that have Israel hasbarists fuming in the Internet. Please take the time to watch it and make your own mind. At the End the readers are the opinion makers.
And this little excerpt of Eustace Mullins Ideas on Israel and the Federal Reserve

Many of Mullins’ writings show a preoccupation with the idea that the Jews of the world are in a state of war with Christianity and Western civilization, and that Communism, Zionism, and International finance were Jewish tools to subjugate gentile populations. He also believed that in general the interaction between Jews and gentiles was parasitic. He believed that the Rockefellers were also parasitic, but that ultimately the World Order was controlled by Jews and that the end goal of this Jewish oligarchy is “World Zionism.”

Mullins believed that the French Revolution and the Congress of Vienna were key events in which Jews, via conspiratorial machinations, overpowered Gentile governments. He believed that other key moments in the establishment of Jewish power were the creation of the Federal Reserve, the Bolshevik Revolution, and the establishment of the state of Israel.

Berlin Jewish Museum event calls for Israel boycott; Judith Butler hosted the event

September 28, 2012 2 comments

Posted on September 28, 2012 by Akashma Online News

Source: JPost
Original Posted on 09/16/2012 17:41

The original Jewish Museum in Berlin was founded on Oranienburger Straße in 1933, but was closed soon thereafter, in 1938, by the Nazi regime. In 1975 an “Association for a Jewish Museum” formed and, three years later, mounted an exhibition on Jewish history (1978). Soon thereafter, the Berlin Museum, which chronicled the city’s history, established a Jewish Department, but already, discussions about constructing a new museum dedicated to Jewish history in Berlin were being held.

Jewish institution hosts Judith Butler, who renews support of BDS movement; 700-strong audience cheers boycott call.

Judith Butler.

Photo: Wikipedia

BERLIN – The internationally renowned Jewish Museum in Berlin hosted a podium discussion on Saturday with US academic Judith Butler, who renewed her calls to boycott Israel. It appears to be the first anti-Israel event held in the Jewish museum since its opening in 2001 with the aim of exhibiting the 2,000- year history of Germany’s Jews. At least 700 people attended the event.

The German taxpayer-funded museum’s decision to showcase the speaker Butler in the capital city, which during the Nazi period served as the launching pad for a boycott movement against German-Jewish businesses, has raised eyebrows about the management’s direction of the museum.

In an email to The Jerusalem Post on Saturday, Professor Gerald Steinberg, who heads the Jerusalem-based NGO Monitor, termed the cultural institution the “Berlin anti-Jewish Museum.”

Butler, a professor in the rhetoric and comparative literature departments at the University of California, Berkeley, told a sold out audience in the courtyard of the museum that she accepts a “version of a boycott” against Israel, and stressed that the Boycott, Sanctions, and Divestment (BDS) movement is “non-violent resistance” against Israel. She claimed that “1,000 Jewish groups” agree with her.

The largely German audience frequently showered Butler with applause during the two hour podium discussion titled “Does Zionism belong to Judaism?” The panel discussion with Butler sparked controversy ahead of Saturday, prompting the scheduled moderator Jacques Schuster, a journalist with the daily Die Welt, to walk away from the event because a “balanced discussion” with Butler is not possible and her views toward Israel are more than “odd.”

The city of Frankfurt has been engulfed in a nearly three week row over the city’s cultural agency decision to honor Butler on September 11 with its prestigious Theodor Adorno award for excellence in the field of humanities.

Steinberg, whose organization serves as a watchdog of publicly and privately funded anti-Israel organizations, wrote to the Post that “the award of the Adorno prize to Judith Butler is a moral travesty, and the Berlin Jewish Museum’s decision to host her is an additional gross insult to the Jewish people.” He added: “Butler espouses causes such as the BDS campaign, erasing mass terror (‘ her version of non-violence‘) and, like Hamas and Hizbollah, explicitly seeking Israel’s destruction. This platform embodies the antithesis of the universal human rights principles adopted in the shadow of the Holocaust.” In an email to the Post, Cilly Kugelmann, the museum’s director, wrote “We understand ourselves… as a forum for discussion and debates with respect to historical and relevant topics.“ She wrote that the museum views its mission to address “Jewish life at home and abroad, as well as the relations between Jews and non-Jews.”

When queried by the Post about Butler’s support for boycotts against Israel and her ostensibly cordial words for Hamas and Hezbollah, Kugelmann added that “in our team there are certainly many attitudes and positions.” She declined to return calls and additional email queries about whether museum team members share Butler’s pro-BDS views and descriptions of Hamas and Hezbollah as progressive left-wing groups.

Katharina Schmidt-Narischkin, the Jewish museum’s spokeswoman, told the Post on Friday that attendees are not allowed to ask Butler questions about Hamas and Hezbollah. She wrote the Post on Saturday that ”audience questions” will not take place. The museum did , however, collect written audience questions at the end of the event and assessed which questions to permit.

Butler triggered intense criticism in Germany, Israel and the US because of her 2006 comment at a “Teach-in Against War “ event that “Understanding Hamas/Hezbollah as social movements that are progressive, that are on the Left, that are part of a global Left, is extremely important.” In an August email to the Post, she watered down her assertions and said her description does not mean she endorses Hamas and Hezbollah and she rejects violent movements. “I have never taken a stand on either organization,” wrote Butler. She declined to answer Post queries about her exact view of the two radical Islamic organizations.

Read Also: Mobilizing Movements, Mobilizing Contemporary Islamic Resistance: Movements in Algeria, Palestine and the Philippines by Rachael M Rudolph

In a letter to the Post, Michael Blumenthal, the American who oversees the executive direction of the museum, wrote “the museum takes no positions on political issues, whether in Germany, Israel or anywhere else.“ He added that “we believe a balanced and fair discussion of issues related to our mission is important and in the public interest. The Berlin Jewish Museum always makes it unmistakeably clear, however, that the opinions they express are the speakers’ own—and only their own. ” Steinberg responded that “Blumenthal’s attempts to justify such behavior on the grounds of‚ balance, democratic debate and free speech are as morally hollow as Butler’s defense. As long as Blumenthal remains, this institution will be known as the Berlin anti-Jewish Museum.”

Blumenthal noted in his letter that the appearance of Dr. Micha Brumlik at the discussion serves as a counterweight to Butler. Brumlik, a liberal German Jewish professor of pedagogy, argued against BDS actions targeting Israel at the event but was drowned out and not taken seriously by the largely pro-Butler audience.

A German Jewish academic at the event expressed dismay over the discussion at the museum. She told the Post that “Anti-Zionism is enormous in Germany,” and the political and historical context is different in Germany.

Critics in the Federal Republic have long argued that non-Jewish organizations and politicians frequently award prizes to anti-Zionist and anti-Israel Jews to vent their biases against the Jewish state and thereby avoid accusations of anti-Semitism or prejudice.

Phyllis Chesler, an emeritus professor of psychology and women’s studies at City University of New York, wrote the Post via email ,”What Berkeley and the Adorno Prize committee do understand are her very high profile and public anti-Zionist politics which, in these historical times, constitute part of what the ‘new anti-Semitism‘ is about.”

Chesler, who has written about anti-Israel professors, added that academics like Butler “are being rewarded for their political views—which is their real work.”

Judith Butler is the recipient of this year’s Adorno Prize, a highly coveted German award that recognizes outstanding achievement in philosophy, theater, music or film. The prize, which brings 50,000 Euros or about $64,000, was established by the city of Frankfurt in 1977 to commemorate sociologist and philosopher Theodor Adorno. It is conferred every three years on Sept. 11, Adorno’s birthday.

A tribute to the truth. Not every Museum in the world is dedicated exclusively to spread Israel propaganda. The holocaust is exhibited in the Berlin Jewish Museum in its fair proportions.

Most of the Professors that teach Middle Easten Studies and Political Sciences had to come to terms with history and the truth and they are carefully analyzing what it is being passed in the Text books.

The BDS Movement and PACBI (The Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel) it is taking momentum, where more university professors add their voices to the Palestinian Solidarity Global Movement.

Reality is the best school to learn, and recent events have giving us the opportunity to be part of this process of Education thru observation.

Judith Butler Biography

Judith Butler is Maxine Elliot Professor in the Departments of Rhetoric and Comparative Literature and the Co-director of the Program of Critical Theory at the University of California, Berkeley. She received her Ph.D. in Philosophy from Yale University in 1984 on the French Reception of Hegel. Judith Butler is the author of Subjects of Desire: Hegelian Reflections in Twentieth-Century France (Columbia University Press, 1987), Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity (Routledge, 1990), Bodies That Matter: On the Discursive Limits of “Sex” (Routledge, 1993), The Psychic Life of Power: Theories of Subjection (Stanford University Press, 1997), Excitable Speech (Routledge, 1997), Antigone’s Claim: Kinship Between Life and Death (Columbia University Press, 2000), Precarious Life: Powers of Violence and Mourning (2004); Undoing Gender (2004), Who Sings the Nation-State?: Language, Politics, Belonging (with Gayatri Spivak in 2008), Frames of War: When Is Life Grievable? (2009), and two recent co-authored volumes: Is Critique Secular? (2009) and The Power of Religion in Public Life (2011).  She is also active in gender and sexual politics and human rights, anti-war politics, and Jewish Voice for Peace. She is presently the recipient of the Andrew Mellon Award for Distinguished Academic Achievement in the Humanities.

Related:

Whose Cause! The BDS Controversy
Judith Butler Wins Adorno Prize
Frankfurt to award US advocate of Israel boycott
Judith Butler and the Theodor Adorno Prize

My Israel Question


Posted on September 20, 2012 by Akashma Online News

by Antony Loewenstein

Antony Loewenstein during his presentation of 'My Israel Quesiton'

Antony Loewenstein during his presentation of ‘My Israel Quesiton’

Jamie Glassman is a British Jewish writer on The Ali G show, a comedy program known for intentionally offending deserving establishment figures. Glassman recently attended the Edinburgh Arts Festival and was disturbed. He wrote in the London Times:

“There have always been anti-Semitic jokes. But you know times are changing when you go along to a stand-up show at the Pleasance Courtyard at the Edinburgh Fringe and you hear audience members shouting ‘Throw them in the oven’ when the comic suggests kids should stop playing Cowboys and Indians and replace it with Nazis and Jews.”

His conclusion was perhaps understandable but thoroughly inaccurate. There was, he noted:

“a growing trend among left-thinking people in this country and around the world to accept as dogma that those on the Left should hate Bush, Blair, American imperialism, Israel and, while we’re at it, the Jews. It is a cultural trend that I’ve found increasingly evident but never before has the Jew-hating element been so overt. This week has confirmed that my Jewish paranoia is not entirely unfounded. As the old saying goes: ‘Just because I’m paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get me.’” Counter Punch

I’m encouraged to hear Barghouti say that in the last 12-18 months, BDS is suddenly taking off across the world. He says he can’t keep up with the number of university campuses wanting to initiate programs against Israel firms and campaigns to convince Western musicians and artists not to play Israel. I’m told that Israeli music promoters are paying 2-3 times the normal rate to convince foreigners to come because the political price for doing so is growing.

Cultural isolation for Israelis is far from complete but it’s undeniably on the rise. For example, the fact that Madonna recently felt the need to try and bring peace activists from both sides during her show – Israeli liberal Zionists came while anti-occupation activists refused – shows the campaign is starting to bite. Mondoweiss  August 24, 2012 Palestine Occupied Territories

I am in Israel and Palestine for an independently organised tour of my new book, After Zionism (co-edited with Ahmed Moor). It’s a collection of new essays on today’s reality and examines the ways in which a one-state solution could be implemented. It features chapters by John Mearsheimer, Sara Roy, Jeff Halper, Omar Barghouti, Diana Buttu, Joseph Dana, Jonathan Cook, Phil Weiss and many others.

I don’t have any Israeli stamp in my passport because I requested at the airport for the officials to stamp a separate piece of paper to avoid troubles when travelling around the Muslim world. A customs official took that paper as I exited and I’m told by activists that this is an increasingly utilised tactic that only affects people who want to travel back and forth between Israel and the occupied territories.

Even when I arrive at the airport I am held and questioned for more than one and a half hours and asked why I have recently visited places such as Pakistan and Afghanistan and “how many Muslims did you speak to there?”

Of course, none of this harassment comes close to what Palestinians and minorities face on a daily basis in Israel proper and Palestine.

After Zionism, published in 2012 by Saqi Books with co-editor Ahmed Moor, brings together some of the world s leading thinkers on the Middle East question to dissect the century-long conflict between Zionism and the Palestinians, and to explore possible forms of a one-state solution.

Time has run out for the two-state solution because of the unending and permanent Jewish colonization of Palestinian land. Although deep mistrust exists on both sides of the conflict, growing numbers of Palestinians and Israelis, Jews and Arabs are working together to forge a different, unified future. Progressive and realist ideas are at last gaining a foothold in the discourse, while those influenced by the colonial era have been discredited or abandoned. Whatever the political solution may be, Palestinian and Israeli lives are intertwined, enmeshed, irrevocably.

This daring and timely collection includes essays by Omar Barghouti, Diana Buttu, Jonathan Cook, Joseph Dana, Jeremiah Haber, Jeff Halper, Ghada Karmi, Antony Loewenstein, Saree Makdisi, John Mearsheimer, Ahmed Moor, Ilan Pappe, Sara Roy and Phil Weiss.

After Zoinism One State for Israel and Palestine book available in Amazon.com

The Shifting Sands of the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict: An Australian Perspective

Australian Labor Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, speaking in March this year at a United Israel Appeal fund-raiser in Melbourne, said he was “a friend of Israel” and referred to its creation in 1948 as “Australian Labor government handiwork.”

In the same month, in an unprecedented move in the country’s history, Rudd praised Israel’s democratic achievements as federal parliament commemorated Israel’s 60th anniversary and highlighted the need for an independent and economically viable Palestinian state.

The majority of parliamentarians supported the motion, but one Labor backbencher dissented. Julia Irwin could not “congratulate a nation which commits human rights abuses each day and shows blatant disregard for the UN.” Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government/Centre for Middle Eastern Studies
ME Forum, 24 November 2008

Antony Loewenstein is a Sydney-based independent freelance journalist, author, documentarian, photographer and blogger.
Antony contributed a major chapter to 2004′s Australian best-seller, Not Happy, John! on the Middle East. His best-selling book on the Israel/Palestine conflict, My Israel Question, was released by Melbourne University Publishing in 2006. A new, updated edition was released in 2007 (and reprinted again in 2008). The book was short-listed for the 2007 New South Wales Premier’s Literary Award. Another fully updated, third edition was published in 2009. It was released in all e-book formats in 2011. An updated and translated edition will be published soon in Indonesia and the Muslim world in Arabic.

He was a con­trib­u­tor to the 2008 Verso Books re­lease, A Time to Speak Out: On Is­rael, Zion­ism and Jew­ish Iden­tity.

Articles written by Antony Lowenstein

Articles

Huff­in­g­ton Post
Wash­ing­ton Post

Web­di­ary

Whose Cause!? The BDS Controversy!


Posted on April 29, 2012 by Akashma Online News

By Marivel Guzman Edited by  Gail Baker

BDS The Non Violent Movement That Can Change The Odds

Whose Cause!.. Gilad Atzmon, Norman Finkelstein, Ali Abunimah, Omar Barghouti or Palestine? The BDS Controversy!

 

What Does it mean to be a Pro Palestinian Activist?

– 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.  The international community of peace activists has been preoccupied with boycotting Israeli products, goods, and services;  and also, has taken up the campaign for Cultural/Academic Boycott.  However, some blocks of the solidarity movement participate only if the products were exported from the settlements inside the occupied territories, namely the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Essentially, BDS is not a uniform or homogenous movement with a strict set of standards which would end up being restrictive and narrow in focus.  Some may view this as a weakness. And yet many others put another spin on it where the BDS is seen as holding out much promise due to its open, versatile, and dynamic appeal to a diverse range of groups. It is this versatility that allows for broad-based support that can only strengthen the movement all the more. As such, it would be a mistake to think that the BDS has to strike a consensus in order to work.  We really cannot expect such a consensus since the movement has so many different branches, strategies, goals, and supporters.  Nonetheless, one thing is clear in the minds of all supporters:  inspired by the South African  BDS campaign,  most people simply want to put an abrupt halt to the apartheid practices of Israel!  On this, I believe, there is a consensus and so it represents the rallying point that shall galvanize the movement into a potent force.

So it is we witness various scenarios where you have Israel citizens who support BDS because they want peace and know that for this to happen, there needs to be compliance with international law to the extent that rights of Palestinians within occupied territories are upheld. Therefore, they will not engage in talks or entertain the ideas of one or two-state solution. Their main concern is to maintain stability within Israel. Meanwhile, other activists take the stance that it is morally wrong to purchase any Israeli-made products;  simultaneously, they will target any companies known to have ties with the apartheid state, especially those corporations associated with providing arsenal and weaponry which are used to kill Palestinians.  This in turn will weaken the financial empire that continues to support Israel.  Whatever the goal of the BDS participants,  I personally think that it is a moral duty of every citizen in the world to support the BDS movement! This movement is not exclusive to any one leader or faction.  Even Omar Barghouti, often credited as the founder, does not claim a monopoly on BDS;  he does not own the movement but prefers to follow and act on the direction of the Palestinian BDS factions.  This in no way diminishes the value of the BDS movement!  On the contrary, BDS has become massive and global in it’s appeal and  should inspire us all the more as active participants, realizing that each and everyone of us has an important integral role to play.

We are already observing the inroads made.  Not only has BDS tarnished the false image of Israel as a progressive democratic state,  but it has been successful in financially crippling certain sectors of the economy.  Furthermore,  every time a company comes public in its support of BDS and severes its economic ties with Israel,  this captures the attention of the media and serves to act as counter-propaganda to that once-well oiled Zionist machine.  Every time we hear of these BDS triumphs,  awareness is stepped up a notch or two so that more is known about how Israel’s apartheid system really operates.  Subsequently, we cannot discount the achievements nor diminish the value of this campaign based on the opinion of one group, organization, or a handful of high profile activists.  While everyone is entitled to their opinion and deserves to be heard, we should take precautions not to restrict our own perspective to one particular position when it comes to BDS, or any issue for that matter.  It would help to put the movement, itself, in proper context and consider the implications.  For instance, recall that in South Africa it took more than 20 years for the BDS to gain some recognition around the world until finally it did take root as to have moral effect on the conscience of the people. Compare this to the contemporary situation where, with the assistance of technology, the Palestinian BDS campaign, since it’s inception, took only 5 or 6 years to be known at a global level.  By this time,  the BDS already has taken on a life of its own;  the ideology of the founders and/or their political aspirations have nothing to do with BDS anymore. There is no office at this point that can control or organize what people around the world do to support Palestine, so the rhetorical question of the two -state solution that some want to use against the founders or against the movement, itself, cannot undermine the global support for Palestine that BDS is awakening in the people of conscience.

WHAT IS BDS

BDS stands for Boycott and Disinvestment Sanctions and it is aimed primarily at Israel. This movement is intended to pressure Israel economically, financially, and culturally.  By no means was it created with the intention to undermine Israel’s legal status as an official recognized State. But as the movement has grown and thousands of organizations and universities across the globe are being more and more involved in the BDS movement, the perception of Israel is changing rapidly and many important academic figures that have been following the development of the conflict over the years are drawing the conclusion that Israel  is losing its legal status in the world.

In 2005 the Civil Society of Palestine called the attention of the world when they founded a movement that is known globally simply as BDS and every sector of the population is participating, whether on a small or a grand scale.

“Boycott – basically is a tool of the weak, who individually are weak but collectively can have some strength against overweening power. The first use of the word [originated] with tenant farmers in Ireland against their land agent.  Famous cases are the Montgomery Bus boycott and, more recently, the sporting boycott and other boycotts against South Africa. There are differences between all these boycotts, and I would stress that by taking the archetypal case of that of the tenant farmers who resisted the land agent Charles Boycott, who gave his name to the whole process, in the 1880s in Ireland.  Boycott was the land agent for an absentee English noble. And what they did, when he became too domineering, is they denied him labour to save the harvest, they put him into isolation -refused to talk to him under any circumstances, the shops wouldn’t serve him, the workers wouldn’t go and look after his house for him, and the person wouldn’t deliver him letters. And in reasonably short order, by the end of the year Boycott had been forced out and returned to England. So very direct.” Professor Jonathan Rosenhead, Novemeber11, 2011

Professor Jonathan Rosenhead is chair of the British Committee for the Universities of Palestine (BRICUP) which is the main organization in the UK supporting the academic and cultural boycotts of Israel, it parallels PACBI in Palestine. Professor Rosenhead is also an activist, took part in the flotilla, sailing to Gaza to break the Israeli siege.

If we take this case as an archetype, or at least one standard by which to view the BDS movement in general, it reminds us to use our own critical thinking whenever high-profile people as intellectuals, writers, emeritus, professors, Nobel Prize laureates, politicians, scholars, and internationally-acclaimed activists speak on a issue.  Many of us may be tempted to automatically think and feel that our support for an issue is validated merely because someone of high stature takes a stand in favor. On the other hand, if these same people speak against a campaign that we support, we may feel betrayed and angry. Some of us even go to the extreme of doubting our own convictions and moral standing and then we prematurely switch sides.  It is, at that moment, we become followers and lose our ability to think independently for ourselves. This should be taken as a precautionary note, especially when we are addressing the issue of the BDS movement since the campaign is so immense and, therefore, cannot be accepted as a uniform doctrine expected to fit all necessities. Rather it is versatile, diverse, and dynamic in appeal. What we can say in terms of technicalities, it is not a movement that necessarily seeks the liberation of Palestine, because at its CORE, it was founded on 3 main premises:  rights of return for refugees, equality for Arabs in Israel, and the end of occupation. These three points, if satisfied, will comply with international law! Even as we consider this official position, it is important to realize that the movement, itself, has evolved, the ideas have evolved as well, and by natural effect, the goals have changed, at least for some.

For pro-Palestinians that seek the liberation of Palestine, it is not enough to satisfy the 3 points, because such according to their interpretation would be akin to recognizing and legalizing Israel as a one-state solution. Palestinians and non- Palestinians alike, who take this line of reasoning, refer to the partition of

Palestine as illegal and thereby,  will never accept Israel as legitimate state. While we may understand this position, the concern and grievances are misplaced:  the original founders of BDS and the fulfillment of the three premises, does not entail  debating the one or two-state solution; nor does it imply recognition of Israel as either legal/legitimate or illegitimate.  One could argue to the contrary, that the original founders of the movement,  whether they accept Israel as legitimate or not, nonetheless view the BDS goals as a beginning for a broader movement with effective outcomes that perhaps could eventually lead to dissipation of Israel. Consider the various variables at work here,  such that the population growth of Palestinians is on the rise and could imply the best tool to defeat Israel.

Norm Finkelstein’s Position on BDS:

On his Interview with Frank Baratta, a well known Human Rights Activist, on February 9, 2012 attended the Imperial college London,  and delivered astonishing statements that left us all surprised and wondering “what got into him????”.

Norm Finkelstein is now famous for repeating The Law is Clear, and he shields his views on BDS charging the founders of the movement as dishonest that Israel it is a State and that it is the law, but sadly he forgets easily how Israel had disregarded the law thousands of times when it comes to respect the life and property of Native Palestinians.

“When the law is criminal, you must break it to be human.” – FendLOTRO youtube user responded to Norman Finkelstein

Norman G. Finkelstein received his doctorate in 1988 from the Department of Politics at Princeton University.For many years he taught political theory and the Israel-Palestine conflict. He currently writes and lectures.

The controversy arose when Professor Finkelstein slammed the BDS movement as a cult!  I heard his argument and he does not mean the literal definition of a cult;  but rather is referring to the centralized idea that forcing Israel to comply with the 3 points of the BDS movement will destroy Israel. He goes on to say that he will support the BDS movement if the organizers will honestly speak on their goals, because he senses that they are not being genuine due to what he considers “vague” statements made by Barghouti. In this sense, Finkelstein’s interpretation imparts a misleading and inaccurate appraisal of the BDS movement.  Meanwhile, Ali Abu Nimahk, from the electronic intifada who has been a harsh critic of  Finkelstein, started a campaign against him by drawing the line on disinformation coming from Finkelstain side, accusing Finkelstain on supporting Israel on the two state solution.  When every body knows that it is not possible, but this point does not discredit Finkelstain as a pro-Justice man,  Subsequently, Ali Abu Nimahk supporters,  fell for his arguments, without question, and failed to seriously consider the words of Finkelstein where he stated  “I support the BDS, but I said that it will never reach a broad public, until and unless they’re explicit on their goal, and their goal has to include recognition of Israel, or it is no starter. It won’t reach the public, because the moment it goes out there, Israel will start to say, what about us? and they won’t recognize our right, and it fact that is correct, you can’t answer the Israelis on that, because they are making a statement that is factually correct. It is not an accident and unwitting omission that BDS does not mention Israel….you know that and I know that…is not that OH! we forgot to mention Israel!”  Professor Norman Finkelstein.

I highly respect the point of view of these personalities and their approach to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict because each of them have worked tirelessly for the Palestinian cause! Nonetheless, all of them have their own goals, and because their goals differ in nature, their arguments also differ. It becomes problematic, however, where this turns into a “mud-slinging” fest and divides the various supporters affiliated with each of these high-profile personalities, as those aforementioned. We all can be peace activists and be pro-Palestinians and not have an opinion on the one or two-state solution – that has been the center point for Ali Abu Minah. Yet when he criticizes Finkelstein, he ignores the position regarding the legal question  of Israeli actions against occupied territories. Furthermore, he fails to pursue the probable outcome of the BDS movement where we could envision the prospect of an eventual dissipation of Israel as a legitimate state according to international law.

Ali Hasan Abunimah is a Palestinian American journalist and co-founder of Electronic Intifada, a not-for-profit, independent online publication about the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

I make mention of these disparate views above because they have played a role in disseminating rumors regarding the BDS. Furthermore, it would be unfair to give credit to or to discredit the words of any of these heavy-weights, without first analyzing their background, their profession, their nationality, and ultimately, the real motives behind the positions they promote in public forums.  Take the case of Norman Finkelstein where many questions arise regarding his recent, often contradictory and confusing arguments.  What goals does he have in mind?  He has been a peace activist for years and out of moral duty has stood firmly behind the Palestinian cause to defend truth, justice, and law.  He has in the past taken enormous professional risks to do this.  But now he is in the process of selling his image as a writer, political scientist, scholar, and activist, as well as his books.  This means his integrity is at stake and once again he is taking a risk and has to step cautiously into the Mid East arena regarding BDS. When he bashes Israel, we give him credit for his courage. And yet, we must be skeptical here since, of recent, he has taken the position that “the law, it is clear.  We cannot be selective with the law”. Moreover, he slams the BDS for not staying within the bounds of the law because the movement doesn’t explicitly give recognition to the state of Israel.

Did Finkelstein forget the stipulations placed on Israel by the League of Nations during the time that Palestine was partitioned to create Israel?  And it isn’t it true that Israel, in order to have legitimacy, would have to respect the rights of the inhabitants of the land with particular emphasis on all groups including Palestinians  Muslims, and Palestinians Christians?  Now it is obvious to human rights watch groups and it should be obvious to Finkelstein, himself,  that since the moment of it’s inception,  Israel has violated every international law in the books and was never held accountable! Due to this violations, it’s status as a legitimate/legal state should be considered dubious, at best.  Ironic it is, then, that Finkelstein criticizes the BDS movement due to it’s failure to make an official statement in recognition of Israel.   Why should the founder/s be pressured to do so, in the first place?  especially when Finkelstein stresses the idea that “the law is clear and is not selective”?  What he fails to address is the obvious –  why when it comes to Palestine, is the law selective and why are those legally-binding resolutions (in favor of Palestinians rights) NOT enforced?  Disturbing about this is the fact that he takes a legal stance against BDS, but in this case he appears to use it selectively in favor of Israel. Below I provide two screen shots of the original documents of the United Nations – Resolution 194-8 and 194-11 agreed and signed

All things being equal, the truth will prevail. When given a fair chance, the truth should survive, because it is more natural, more attractive, and less contrived than falsehood. In a democracy, certain rights are inalienable, so that all men are equal before the law. On that assumption we must pressure Israel to adhere to it’s own propagated idea that as “the only democracy in the Middle East”, it must abide by the law. Since this stands as a fundamental principle of democracy, defending the truth will reach a conclusion.  The anti-BDS propaganda must be challenged at it’s source.  The fact that such heavy-weights as Ali Abu Nimah, Omar Barghouti, Norm Finkelstein, and Gilad Atzman have all entered the fray and media frenzy,  opinions have likely been taken out of context and the issues have  been blown out of proportion.

Gilad Atzmon’s Position on the BDS:

Gilad Atzmon: “For more than a while, myself and others are very suspicious of the BDS. For some peculiar reason the BDS in the West is dominated by Jewish activists. Though the BDS’ principle is valid and worth a fight, it has become clear to many of us that something went wrong along the way. Last month we have seen BDS calls to stop Norman Finkelstein; this month we see BDS calls to stop me. Great, isn’t it. The BDS is now used to stifle freedom within the solidarity discourse.”

I m not blaming Gilad Atzmon for the anti-BDS sentiment that is circulating! Rather, I am quoting those words that were picked up by media and likely contributed to the the controversy that arose following the interview of Norman Finkelstein,  as well as, Ali Abu Nimah‘s heated debate on the issue. I think we can trace the roots here. In addition, the people pushing hard on the surface of the BDS movement, are hijacking the campaign where we observe attempts to silence the dissident Jews as Gilad Atzmon and Norman Finkelstein. Because they are taking center stage in the Palestine Justice Movement, many people followed the line being pushed by an anonymous group that seems to operate behind the scenes, implying that there may well be a few spy rings. (Where these spy rings arise, they can do damage because they plant “ideas” that are hurting the BDS). Many of the same dynamics mentioned above were also witnessed during the Jewish global boycott of Germany goods to weaken Hitler’s economic power during WWII, as well, to force the government to finance the Jewish Transfer to Palestine. Additionally, we saw similar factors at work in South Africa during the horrible apartheid era.
I  agree with Gilad Atzmon where he criticizes certain groups that have infiltrated the BDS and have been used to silence Jewish dissidents as himself.  Unfortunately, though, his defensive position has become offensive and imparts a false impression that the BDS campaign in general is not trustworthy. Sadly, I have seen good friends and pro-Palestinian activists write against BDS,  without considering the consequences of doing so. We must put this in a broader perspective and push aside the infighting upon realizing that this is an immense movement in which millions of people are doing their level best to keep up the campaign against apartheid.  Meanwhile, I can only hope that those people of high-profile who have great influence over public opinion reflect upon the damage that could be done to Palestine whenever they overgeneralize their personal opinions in attempt to defend themselves against rogue BDS elements/agents.

With this in mind, I cite Gilad’s own words to remind us to stay focused on the real issues:

“For more than ten years I have been writing about Israel, Zionism and Jewish identity. I am engaged in a process of deconstruction and critique of different Jewish texts, ideas, politics and practice. My intent is aiming towards some deeper realization of what Zionism is. In my opinion, Zionism is one of the most dangerous political movements. It is a global operation that threatens world peace on a daily basis.” Gilad Atzmon

 

When citing any position, it is important to keep in mind that the BDS movement is not the property of few persons. This is a global campaign of awareness, to pressure Israel to end her apartheid practices inside the occupied territories and to force Israel to respect the human rights of Palestinians that live in West Jerusalem, Gaza and West Bank.

Boycott is a real complicated issue. For years we’ve been arguing in favour of divestment and boycott. At the time I supported any form of boycott in Israel, its products and its culture.There are some elements in the boycott that are obviously very welcome. For instance, the fact that UK unions are standing up against Zionist evil is a major shift in the very right direction. The Boycott is certainly bad news for Israel and this is wonderful news in itself. Yesterday, I went to a reading of a play, it was actually a theatrical adaptation my latest book. The producer is Jewish, and at a certain stage when we were discussing the meaning of the play he stood up and said. “You see, we had a Jewish State, it is now sixty years later, and it is a very horrible place, it is so horrible that it has now been boycotted. And this is there to make us think, where did it go wrong?” This is the most positive impact of the boycott. It makes people reflect.” Gilad Atzmon July 2007

Gilad Atzmon is an Israeli-born British jazz saxophonist, novelist, political activist, Pro Palestinian Peace Activist, and writer. Atzmon’s album Exile was BBC jazz album of the year in 2003.

When Gilad Atzmon refers to the Jewish, you have to understand his philosophy and point of view regarding the modern Jewish sentiment of ” the chosen ones”. This mentality is more intrinsic and is best exemplified by the Jewish Only political spectrum in Israel, as well as, powerful Jewish lobby groups around the world. But let us not confuse Israel Jewish Only Policies with Judaism. “Jewish” refers primarily to ethnicity while “Judaism” refers to religion. For instance,  those who support “Jewish only” policies in line with apartheid, play upon the concept “the chosen few”, not as  a matter of religious principles, but more so, a matter of political arrogance. Furthermore, it is notable that there are a number of Jewish groups of orthodox faith who take offense to Israeli Zionist practices of apartheid and occupation. Neturei Karta Orthodox Jews are but an example.

Recently a group of intellectuals, and pro-Palestinians endorsed Ali Abu Minah in a letter against Gilad Atzmon. I think that some people are using the spotlight of others to upstage their popularity within the Palestinian movement. Meanwhile, there are thousands of pro-Palestinians who have invested their time and sometimes their money without thinking twice. Additionally, there are those who have and continue to make a profession out of the Palestinian cause, dedicating much of their life to this. Such is to be respected where and when these people are clearly focused on the objectives to serve justice. Moreover, it is only fair that they be paid for their time and service since they, as anyone else, need money to live and support themselves and families. Sometimes the tasks do involve various campaigns for private donations, or setting up Non-Profit Organizations where the structure is similar to the official NGO’s that participate in charities (unlike many NGO’s, this participation in charities is not merely a means to deduct taxes). Then, too, there is a group of individuals who have thrown their support behind Palestine, not out of love for Palestine, but more so as a matter of fighting injustice due to violation of human rights. Chomsky and Finkelstein may very well fall into this camp since they do not want to see Israel wiped off the map; rather, they would prefer to see an Israel that behaves democratically by working inside the parameters of international law. Like Professor Horowitz,  Finkelstein engages in discussions with pro-Israeli supporters. BUT UNLIKE Horowitz, Finkelstein cites factual information regarding atrocities against Palestinians and also clearly recognizes the need for Israel to put an end to human rights abuses. As mentioned earlier, the argument may initially sound appealing. However, delving further into Finkelstein’s various discussions and interviews,  many contradictions arise and are worthy of further examination if we are to assess his position on BDS.

Assessing the Implications of the Key Players Involved in the Controversy:

On February 2012 a video clip was released on youtube entitled “Arguing the BDS Movement: Interview with Frank Barata and political Scientist, Writer, and Activist Norman Finkelstein“.  According to Finkelstein,  international law is unambiguous and could be used as a tool to compel Israel to adhere to human rights.  Meanwhile, he sees little value in the so called Palestinian Authority’s efforts to conduct peace talks and negotiations that have led nowhere, and also implies  that the P.A. is a collaborator of Israel since the leaders often strike bargains that actually come at the expense of the Palestinians, themselves. In a sense, he is right!  This rather cozy relationship became more evident especially after Abbas’ presidency. For instance, corruption is observed in many instances, among all things, the criminalization of protests against the occupation.  Given the P.A.’s collaboration with Israel,  along with U.S. aid to the Zionist entity, it is hard to envision the possibility of a peaceful outcome. According to Finkelstein, Palestine will never win the conflict since it is inconceivable that Israel will give an inch.  Not only is it equipped with one of the most technologically advanced military and powerful armies, Israel too has the moral and financial backing of the United Sates, as well as other nations.  The fact that the U.S. provides more than 3 billion dollars a year in military aid and loan guarantees makes the prospects for Palestine look all the more bleak, especially considering this one-sided war, if it can even can be called a war.  In reality this is unprecedented and unwarranted aggression against the virtually defenseless Palestinian population. As such,  Israel would have to be extracted by force,  either through the Palestinians use of militancy or through strict judicial procedures within the bounds of international law.

It is on the point of international law that Finkelstein makes his case for Palestine, but in the meantime, also applies the argument to undermine the legitimacy of the BDS campaign. What unravels in his position, is an argument replete with serious  flaws, contradictions, assumptions, and confusion.  It is no wonder then that many of his own supporters have been left bewildered. The major criticism regards the three  strategies put forth by the BDS. To Finkelstein,  while these may be “ideologically possible”, on pragmatic terms and according to international law, the three-pronged approach can’t work since it excludes Israel as a viable state.  Even if these strategies did have effect,  eventually this would culminate in the end of Israel.  This is particularly problematic to Finkelstein because the scenario is feasible given that the return of 6 to 7 million Palestinian refugees will shift the balance of power due to disproportionate representation in terms of a diminished Israeli population. This prospect, accompanied by the BDS’ call for equal rights to Arabs within Israel will quite likely result in a panorama view where Palestinians as majority will be the major political players. On these grounds,  Finkelstein accuses the BDS of being dishonest since it does not acknowledge this possibility nor officially claim it as a goal.  Subsequently, he believes the campaign will never take root because the international community simply will not accept these terms, whether they are explicitly stated or not.

The bewilderment and confusion arising out of Finkelstein’s stance can be traced to the manner in which he takes comfort in citing the 1967 borders that are supposedly the legal borders of Israel!  Disturbing about this argument is the failure on behalf of Finkelstein to acknowledge those disenfranchised Palestinians who were illegally driven and forced out of their homeland prior to 1967.  Did he forget the history,  the Nakba for instance, which violated international law prior to 1967?  Did he forget how the so The State of Israel was created through war crimes when it was violently inserted into the heart of the Middle East?  There is reason for concern insofar he draws scarce attention to and virtually ignores the atrocities and plight forced upon Palestinians who became refugees in neighboring countries where they are not accepted as citizens, and on the other hand Majority of Israelis enjoyed double Nationality.  If it is so as Finkelstein reiterates over and over that “the law is clear”,  why is it that he ignores the resolutions adopted by the General Assembly at it’s third session on  November 27, 1948? (refer to illustration 1 and 2). Moreover, if he is going to use the stance that “the law is clear”,  it is incumbent on him as a political scholar, to admit that Israel violated most of the U.N. resolutions and was never held accountable since the moment of it’s inception.

Yes, the law in this case is clear, but it is unfair and unjust, because it has not been enforced!!!!  By all standards then,  Israel’s legitimacy as a state, is dubious and up for question.  So we are left to ponder why Finkelstein places the burden of proof upon the Palestinians rather than on Israel.   And why does he uses such a flawed argument to slam the BDS campaign?  If anything, one could turn the tables here and apply “the law is clear” premise to work in favor of the BDS.  Finkelstein’s argument would be far more credible had he used it to acknowledge that, by all international standards/UN resolutions,  Israel technically is  not a legal nor legitimate state.  In this sense, the BDS movement, could satisfy the three pillars, and could very well become a potent force enough to garner the attention of the international and global community.  It could reach a climax of mass proportions in which the international players will no longer have the luxury of appeasing Israel.  The world will soon become weary and tired of Israel arrogance and impunity.  Sooner or later, Israel will be forced to follow the path of South Africa!

Upon revisiting controversy surrounding Gilad Atzmon’s position, it is important to note that he is very critical of the Zionist ideology,  insisting with reason, that the state of Israel has instilled exclusivity of “the chosen few” in the minds of Jewish citizens to advance colonial rule in Palestine.

Meanwhile, Atzmon’s detractors are working hard to undo the work that he has done on behalf of Palestine. They are using the wrong arguments for the wrong reasons for the right cause, that is Palestine. Some of these people get entangled in the criticism,  some are genuine pro-Palestinians, and some are misled by the well- oiled Zionist propaganda that is trying to destroy the career of Gilad Atzmon, that it is being cemented on the Palestine Conflict and Zionism. It is no secret, after all, that

has published in favor of the Palestinian cause and due to his fame and popularity, has much influence. Subsequently, Zionist groups have an obvious motive for bashing his work.  But the move to do so may be premature, ill-conceived, and in fact, may backfire.  As with any issues that come under the spotlight due to controversy, the media attention can serve both sides of the divide: on one hand it reinforces arguments by the detractors, and on the other, it inspires greater interest and curiosity in Atzmon’s work. The same could be said of  Finkelstein as well. So the question comes to mind, whether or not this anti-BDS campaign is actually a stunt employed to sell books, or at the very least, an  opportunistic ploy conveniently playing in the hands of the authors and publishers.

The claims articulated by both Finkelstein and Atzmon, strongly suggest both are pro-justice, pro-peace, and ultimately, pro-Palestine.

“For me to be Jewish is, above all, to be preoccupied with overcoming injustice and thirsting for justice in the world, and that means being respectful toward other peoples regardless of their nationality or religion, and empathetic in the face of human suffering whoever and wherever victimization is encountered” (Gilad Atzmon, “On Jewish Identity,” 1/15/2011).

In Atzmon’s words, we find credibility in his cause and struggle for justice. However, if this trumped up anti-BDS campaign has been used as a propaganda scheme to gain free advertizement for books recently published, then this is disturbing, to say the least. To attack the BDS campaign as a means of serving one’s own interests is beyond irresponsible and irreproachable since authors of high stature have great influence on the pro-Palestinians.  I would hope that these are not the motives here. Whatever the case, there is no doubt that the controversy did have spin-off effects that have undermined BDS proponents and, meanwhile, divided the solidarity movement. For instance, I recently heard some statements against the BDS movement asserting that the strategies have not worked since Israel’s economy is more “economically solvent than ever”.  Yet pursuing this at greater length,  tells us that nothing can be farther from the truth –  the economic meltdown is a global phenomenon and it’s to a point where even Israel is not immune. Taken in this context, we can quite confidently assume that certain sectors of the economy will inevitably be hurt, as some already have suffered losses. Add to this, the Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel.   Many high-profile personalities, as internationally-acclaimed author and activist Alice Walker,  have already entered the fray, inspiring the BDS campaign once again with enthusiasm and optimism; meanwhile, striking fear into the heart of Zionist lobby groups. Indeed Zionist Israel has reason for concern; and it is high time that the key political players are shaken enough to take note!  Economic collapse may be more imminent than they are willing to admit! And if this is what it takes to put an end to apartheid, occupation, and genocide; then we owe at least some credit to the BDS movement.

Consider too, how the average Israeli citizen is impacted by the government’s heavy investment into security and weaponry used against Palestinians. Simultaneously, the middle class is beginning to feel the crunch as elsewhere in the world. Growing inequality, in terms of both socioeconomic status and political policies, is the first sign spotted by the ordinary citizen.  The Occupy movement has actually reached the Holy Land and has stirred up protests. Change is on the horizon. Even Israel can no longer afford it’s own arrogance. Moreover, there is no magical wand that can grant them immunity from global or economic evolution where society is evermore awakening to mass consciousness. The conditions exist and the time is ripe for the BDS to make inroads and impact enough to dismantle apartheid Israel.  On this optimistic note,  it is relevant to examine the ideas of Omar Barghouti.

Revisiting the Controversy Surrounding Omar Barghouti’s Position on BDS:

It would be remiss not to assess the credibility of Omar Barghouti also,  since he too has become central to this BDS debate and as mentioned earlier,  he did emerge on the scene to espouse the values and the 3 main objectives of the campaign against apartheid Israel: right of return for refugees, equal rights for Arabs within Israel, and termination of the occupation. Barghouti, also emphasizes that the direction of  this movement is to be in the hands of the Palestinians themselves.  While other affiliated groups and participants across the globe are recognized as major players, the movement must not be monopolized by any set of elites.  It belongs to the grassroots people, particularly guided by the Palestinians. While statements have been embraced by most in the BDS movement, he too has come under attack by both Finkelstein and Atzmon. According to Finkelstein, the goals are too vague and cannot work. Atzmon makes similar claims but stepped it up a notch when he unfairly referred to Barghouti as a racist against whites . Such an accusation, however, should not be taken seriously since Atzmon took Barghouti’s words out of context without giving accurate representation to the postmodern argument from which Barghouti implied that those of Euro centric ethnicity/background have no right to dictate the terms or set the agenda for the Palestinians. Here, Barghouti was making reference to the colonial mentality where white supremacy is still very much a denominator in international relations between the imperialistic “colonizers/occupiers” and the “colonized/occupied”.

In yet another instance, March 7/2011, the London Review Bookshop was host to Barghouti’s launch of the work entitled “BDS: Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions – The Global Struggle for Palestinian Rights”. Here Barghouti again came under attack, accused of taking a “hypocritical position on academic boycott” simply because he had attended an “Israeli University” to obtain his Ph.D.. Even so, Barghouti’s rebuttal was swift, to the point, and “very rational” which according to staff of Inminds.com suggests “that unless someone is being dishonest with themselves, they will have no choice but to accept the arguments”. The integrity with which Barghouti replied is nicely captured in the following excerpt:

 

Audience Question: Omar, you are living in Israel, you are doing a PhD, you are

studying in an Israeli university. How does that equate with your boycott campaign, isn’t that hypocritical to live in Israel and consume everything Israeli, then call for a boycott of Israel? And secondly, if God forbid, you ever needed a life saving medicine, or a member of your family in Israel, would you accept that medicine or would you reject that life saving medicine?

Omar Barghouti: I think Mandela went to an apartheid university, when you are living under apartheid you have no choice. You pay taxes to the apartheid regime, you accept services from the apartheid regime, how else can you survive? You go to hospitals, you go to universities, you go to the post office, you go to government offices in the apartheid regime. You are a ‘subject’ of that colonial system, there is no other way. Gandhi studied at a British university as well. The point is that when you are under occupation, when you are under apartheid, you have no moral choice. There is no choice. We ask people from outside to boycott because they have a moral choice. Responsibility comes with choice. Germans under Nazi rule who couldn’t open their mouths were cowards; but we can perhaps forgive them for not opening their mouths when you think you would be shot by the Nazi genocidal regime if they opened their mouths. Israelis that stay silent are far more cowardly because they do have a choice and they wont get shot if they stand up against the occupation. So we measure this with how much choice you have. When you have no choice what do you do? So there is absolutely no double standard for people under oppression to call on people who are not under oppression, standing in solidarity with them, to oppose and boycott a completely the oppressive regime. What we cannot do, you can do in the UK.  The second part of your question.. of course we do not boycott Israeli medicines in Israel. What else can we buy? We are not irrational. I don’t know your view of the Arabs.. but you know we are not suicidal..

A Q. [interrupts]: Why do you live there if you don’t like it there?

Omar Barghouti: Its my country, I’m a Palestinian.

A Q: You were brought up in Egypt

Omar Barghouti: I’m a refugee. Refugee’s have a right to go home. I’m a Palestinian. The two-state solution, besides having passed its expiry date, it was never a moral solution to start with. In the best-case scenario, if UN resolution 242 were meticulously implemented, it would have addressed most of the legitimate rights of less than a third of the Palestinian people over less than a fifth of their ancestral land. More than two thirds of the Palestinians, refugees plus the Palestinian citizens of Israel, have been dubiously and shortsightedly expunged out of the definition of the Palestinians. Such exclusion can only guarantee the perpetuation of conflict.”

If Israel doesn’t want to obey international law then why should Israel be recognized as a legitimate state? Israel can’t have it both ways! The Case for BDS:

Reflecting upon the controversies, debates, and the infighting, we are left to assess and evaluate the merits of the BDS campaign. Essentially, we need to do some of our own soul-searching, put aside petty disputes, and ask the key question: What variables  should we consider in using our discretion either in favor or against the BDS? Because Omar Barghouti says we should? because Ali Abu Minah says it is the right thing to do?  because Gilad Atzmon has been unfairly accused of anti-Semitic by some rogue boycott members? or because Gilad Atzmon has unfairly accused Barghouti of racism? or because the highly respected Norman Finkelstein suggests that the boycott has no clear goals and is unworkable?  Do these questions make your head spin,  and confuse the issue rather than clarify it?  If so, then we need to get beyond the ambiguity and propaganda that the infighting and divisiveness has created.  If we really are focused on the goal of serving the interests of Palestine, then it is necessary to put an end to the “mudslinging” and dirty politicking.  After all, this is playing into the hands of Zionist tactics of divide and conquer.  Wouldn’t we fair much better if we refused to be followers,  used our own critical thinking, and put an abrupt stop to the ungrounded attacks that deflect from the goal to end injustice?  The BDS campaign, in a sense, has become a battleground, a war zone.  And now is the time when we can refuse to enlist in that war and instead, become conscientious objectors as we collaborate under the banner of BDS to restore justice to Palestinians.  By doing so, we shall partake in the movement, doing so for Palestine only for Palestine! To restore their rights, to help them to be heard by a world that for years has turned its back and failed to listen.

Letter from Palestinians To the World

“The goal of the Palestinian people has always been clear: self determination. And we can only exercise that inalienable right through liberation, the return of our refugees (the absolute majority of our people) and achieving equal rights to all through decolonization. As such, we stand with all and any movements that call for justice, human dignity, equality, and social, economic, cultural and political rights. We will never compromise the principles and spirit of our liberation struggle. We will not allow a false sense of expediency to drive us into alliance with those who attack, malign, or otherwise attempt to target our political fraternity with all liberation struggles and movements for justice.

As Palestinians, it is our collective responsibility, whether we are in Palestine or in exile, to assert our guidance of our grassroots liberation struggle. We must protect the integrity of our movement, and to do so we must continue to remain vigilant that those for whom we provide platforms actually speak to its principles.

When the Palestinian people call for self-determination and decolonization of our homeland, we do so in the promise and hope of a community founded on justice, where all are free, all are equal and all are welcome”.
Until Liberation and Return

Signed:

  • Ali Abunimah, Naseer Aruri, Professor Emeritus, University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, Omar Barghouti, human rights activist
  • Hatem Bazian, Chair, American Muslims for Palestine, Andrew Dalack, National Coordinating Committee, US Palestinian Community Network, Haidar Eid, Gaza. Nada Elia, US Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel. Toufic Haddad, Kathryn Hamoudah
  • Adam Hanieh, Lecturer, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), London, Mostafa Henaway, Tadamon! Canada
  • Monadel Herzallah, National Coordinating Committee, US Palestinian Community Network, Nadia Hijab, author and human rights advocate. Andrew Kadi, Hanna Kawas, Chair person, Canada Palestine Association and Co-Host Voice of Palestine
  • Abir Kobty, Palestinian blogger and activist, Joseph Massad, Professor, Columbia University, NY, Danya Mustafa, Israeli Apartheid Week US National Co-Coordinator & Students for Justice in Palestine- University of New Mexico
  • Dina Omar, Columbia Students for Justice in Palestine, Haitham Salawdeh, National Coordinating Committee, US Palestinian Community Network, Sobhi Samour, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), London
  • Khaled Ziada, SOAS Palestine Society, London, Rafeef Ziadah, poet and human rights advocate

Other Voices

It is my hope that the non-violent BDS (Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) movement, of which I am part, will have enough of an impact on Israeli civilian society to change the situation. In that regard, I offer an earlier example of THE COLOR PURPLE’s engagement in the world-wide effort to rid humanity of its self-destructive habit of dehumanizing whole populations. When the film of The Color Purple was finished, and all of us who made it decided we loved it, Steven Spielberg, the director, was faced with the decision of whether it should be permitted to travel to and be offered to the South African public. I lobbied against this idea because, as with Israel today, there was a civil society movement of BDS aimed at changing South Africa’s apartheid policies and, in fact, transforming the government. Alice Walker

Israelis have many other ways to show their dissatisfaction with the status quo: They can boycott institutions that profit or take part in the occupation, avoid the draft, take part in Palestinian-led protests or lead their own demonstrations. Ultimately, this debate will also lead to dealing with the question of BDS, though it’s clear that actual support for BDS will remain very marginal in Israeli society. Still, as long as no real alternative for the occupation is brought from the Israeli side, I think it’s very important not to oppose any form of Palestinian non-violent resistance, even if one is not taking part in it personally. Noam Sheizaf

In the frenzy to discredit BDS, it’s perversely easy for critics to forget these facts, to get lost in the abstraction (and sometimes distraction) of arguments about the uplifting effects of transnational corporations, the benevolence of 1948 Israel and the lurking anti-Semitism of the BDS agenda. These arguments are not just misleading but often downright dangerous and offensive; the anti-Semitism charge in particular is probably the most often cited and potent. So let’s be clear: vile and frightening anti-Semitism certainly exists, but BDS is not an example of it. As a nonviolent movement dedicated to human rights and nondiscrimination it is, in many ways, its opposite: the lesson of “Never Again” interpreted universally, a reminder that in the face of extreme horror, it is incumbent upon people of conscience to rally around the inalienable rights of the abused. Lizzy Ratner

Some BDS Triumphs

250 European academics call for exclusion of Ahava and Israeli arms companies from EU research projects – Article 3 of the Treaty on European Union obliges the EU to uphold human rights and to strictly observe and support the development of international law in all of its external
relations.

The largest Presbyterian group in the US is considering divesting from three major global companies over the Israeli military’s use of their products in the Palestinian territories.Pension funds in Norway and Sweden have divested themselves of holdings in some firms involved in building settlements or helping to erect Israel’s contentious West Bank separation barrier. European activists have stepped up pressure on companies by exposing their West Bank ties and picketing stores that sell goods produced in Israeli settlements.

Last week, the US investment firm MSCI Inc. announced it had removed Caterpillar from three of its popular indexes that track socially responsible investments, leading mutual fund giant TIAA-CREF to divest $72 million in Caterpillar stock.

Israel cited in Caterpillar’s delisting from influential investment index – The sale of Caterpillar tractors to Israel was a factor, but not the determining one, in the delisting of the company from an influential index that prioritizes good governance and human rights.The move, however, is poised to further complicate the difficult ongoing conversation about Israel taking place between American Jewish gruops and the Presbyterian Church (USA).

BDS it is the Only Hope For Palestine to Become Independent

Palestine Treasure Land; Holy Land Economic Independence

Do you know that Palestine will be self sufficient if Israel stopped stealing the natural resources?

Palestine will be rich if allowed access and control over the minerals in the Dead Sea or the Natural Gas recently discovered in Gaza Shores?

If Israel would stop uprooting The Olive Trees that have been one of the sources of income for Palestinians – they have commercialized the olive oil and olives for hundreds of years.

If Israel would would remove the physical barrier that separated Palestinians from their farms and business, this alone will save them thousands of hours that are wasted on walking great distances to cross the check points illegally installed by Israel in Palestine.

Just the time saved in removing barriers and checkpoints, itself means money. Ultimately, efforts and resources to be fighting a worthless occupation will be employed to restore people’s  properties and revive the Palestinian economy. Just Imagine the possibilities!!!! These are just some of the issues that the BDS is trying to resolve for Palestinians.  Of course, there are more pressing  issues yet that need to be acknowledged by the international community;  but we should not underestimate the capacity of BDS to play a pivotal role in these very factors.


Right now under apartheid Israel, Palestine loses close to 7 billion dollars every year:

“The economy of the Palestinian suffers annual losses of seven billion dollars because of the occupation, which has turned these territories into one of the most aid-dependent economies in the world. In this respect, the ambassador of PNA in the UN, Riyad Mansour, said in an interview with Prensa Latina that the cost of domination is easily quantifiable, so that if this policyends, “we will be able to be self-sufficient and not need external help.”The seven billion dollars lost to the Palestinian economy in 2010 amounts to almost the entire Gross Domestic Product (GDP) annually, and this damage was produced by depriving the residents in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza from using their natural resources.” Correspondent for Prensa Latina in Egypt.Palestinian numbers, a despicable occupation – Translated from the Portuguese version by: Lisa

KarpovaPravda.Ru

 

Follow your conscience. Follow what you feel is right. Propaganda is cheap and costs great division. Use your own mind, heart, judgement on this matter and try not pin your hopes and faith exclusively on one source or person of influence. What ever works to create awareness counts; any efforts aimed to let the world know that Palestine has been suffering under apartheid for 60 plus years.  We know BDS is working. We know that boycotting Israel is one means of reigning in this rogue state! It is a human duty and obligation to rally together against any state that continually uses brutality and violates human rights and international law, in the manner that Israel has done, to the point of genocide. The BDS is beyond reproach, and trying to stop us from exercising a rightful humanitarian cause is a treason against our own human nature.

“The end of the Cold War, moreover, changed the West’s attitudes towards Africa. Western governments no longer had strategic interests in propping up repressive regimes merely because they were friendly to the west. Along with the World Bank, they concluded that one party regimes lacking popular participation constituted a serious hindrance to economic development and placed new emphasis on the need for democratic reform” The Struggles for Democracy- Martin Meredith -The Fate of Africa

At The End The US and Britain were forced to Boycott South Africa Apartheid: Library of Congress 1987

References

The Fate of AFRICA – Martin Meredith -Public Affairs Series – 2005

How Israel was won – – June 17, 1999

Palestinians Civil Society Calls for BDS- BDS National Committee- July 9, 2005 –

BDSmovement.net

Gilad Atzmon Interviewed: Each Village is a Reminder by Brian Lenzo- July 13. 2010 –

Palestine Chronicle

Why Is BDS a Moral Duty Today? A Response to Bernard-Henri Levy – Omar Barghouti

– January 11, 2011- Huffington Post The Blog

Boycott Divides Jews In Britain, The New York Times, March 26, 1983 -0 Pasadena Library

Opening Chris Hedges-Norman Finkelstein, Talk, 6 December 2011 – Video-Cultural

Freedom,Nonfiction,Video-Recorded at the James A. Little Theater in Santa Fe, New

Mexico on December 6, 2011.

Alice Walker Stand on BDS: She has visited many places that have suffered injustices like Post Apartheid South Africa and knows of the terrible life the Afrikaans had it, and because she knows thru her own experiences the real story, she adds her voice to the people of Palestine, which sufferings are very similar to the blacks of the south where she grew up, or the South Africans of the Apartheid Era.

On Gilad Atzmon-Disavowal: “…a mental act that consists in rejecting the reality of

a perception.”by William A. Cook

Jerusalem My Other Side of Palestine


This Poem is Dedicated to The Arab Jews Palestinians in Jerusalem, The Arab Muslims Palestinians, The Arab Christians Palestinians all that ones that have been disposed of their homes, their lands, the ones in jail, the ones exiled, the ones fighting in Israel courts to keep their homes and businesses, the ones harassed by the Settlers and the Occupying Forces,  for the ones that died waiting for liberation, the ones that died fighting the occupation, for the Martys, and for the ones that have not yet born.

The Great City inside the Mother Land,

Stand with patience…………. in silence,

With pain ………. with tears in her eyes,

Oh! Jerusalem my other half of Palestine.

 

The land of the Prophets, land of prayers,

Land of peace, Land of the brave, that know no fear,

That is my City,……. My Holy Land

Oh! Jerusalem my other half of Palestine.

 

The tears of the sons have salted your Sea

The blood of the martyrs are part of your soil

Their prayers are mixed with their cries

Oh! Jerusalem my other half of Palestine

 

Proud Jerusalem………….. standing time…

Your History is written with the reddest blood,

Your dreams and my dreams are all but one

Oh! Jerusalem my other half of Palestine

 

Elegant Dress you have for tonight,

Full of colors, to shine! my dreams of tomorrow,

Dreams of Freedom..for peace to come,

Oh! Jerusalem my other half of Palestine.

 

The Warrior is blowing, the trumpet of triumph

Victory is coming, …One day at the time,

Stand with patience……on the green line

Oh! Jerusalem my other half of Palestine

By Marivel Guzman

Dream of Peace: View from Gaza


Posted by Marivel Guzman
On September 24, 2010

By:Issam Sammour

During the Israeli War on Gaza in 2009, we were so terrified. I prayed for God to save our lives. AlhamdulAllah, He did.
I am a Gazawi, from a large family of eleven brothers and one sister. My father is a poor farmer, but as is the case of so many of us here, he is now unemployed.
Living in Gaza has been difficult since the Israeli Assault of 2009, and the inhumane Siege that have affected so many Gazan families.
The lack of basic services such water and electricity are shocking us, medical supplies and medicines indispensable to treat our sick are in short supply creating a double humanitarian crisis.
But my dreams of peace for my land stay in my heart and mind.
My Goal is to inform people outside of Gaza, about the situation that we live in and to raise international awareness about the blockade of the Gaza Strip and to send a message to the international community to stop the support to Israel and stop the occupation of our land.
We Gazawes along with all Palestinians are dreaming to break the siege and stop the suffering for Gaza.
Gazans dreams to break the siege and stop the suffering is shared by all our Palestinians brothers in West Bank and in the world.
May this year be a year of peace in Palestine!
We Palestinians have the dream of live in peace, despite of having terrible experiences and reactions to the war, the siege, and the occupation.
We have no borders, no life, we are all walled in and blockade.
Life is full of difficulties and constant danger, and we are forced to live with so little and some of us with nothing.
With the checkpoints and so many restrictions, there is no way out. We are trapped inside our own Land.
However, I personally believe things can change, and I work toward that goal in every way I am able.
I refuse to allow hope to die in me. I have dreams of finishing my degree in PT conflict resolution and of spreading the news about Gaza widely in such a way as to help my people and my land.
I pray day and night to see my people’s face cheer up, expressing the love for each other in a peaceful condition.
I have worked with the youth project in Khan Younis for demonstrating our rights in jobs, expressed in study. The EU youth Parliament nominated me as the member from Gaza to represent Gaza Youth in the “Berlin Conferences” in 2007 I was unable to attend due to the border restrictions and the Siege.

Life for nearly all refugees in the Khan Younis Camp is more difficult because of the blockade of Gaza, with much higher unemployment. Fewer families can provide for themselves, leaving a staggering proportion of the population dependent on UNRWA’s food and cash assistance. Ninety per cent of the camp’s water is unfit for human consumption, so basic hygiene is another big concern.
I worked for the American Friends Service Committee, training for responding to conflict situations, transforming the conflict to opportunities for young people, and encouraging peace on our side, so we can live our lives with various other trainings and experiences.

I am now the Project Coordinator with Catholic Relief Services CRS, basically the Gaza Emergency and Recovery Project. as it is. In Catholic Relief Services we work with local partners in Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza and for nearly half a century.
Our projects aim to support peace with justice for all people in this troubled region, while responding to the humanitarian and sustainable development needs of Palestinians.
I do believe there is always a reason to hope and dream of peace despite whatever horrors are surrounding us. I am learning and hope to continue learning the tools needed to meet conflicts with resolution, teaching people to have hopes and dreams of peace, reconstructing peoples’ lives.

 

Issam Sammour
Gaza Strip, Palestine
Email :Sammour.issam@Gmail.com

****************************************************************************************
Issam Sammour like thousands of young Palestinians cherish the dream to Study Abroad, it should not be a hard quest, why they have to see their future with so many obstacles?, from the signing of documents to the visa request, they have to go through hell is there no better word to designated their troubles.

Israel makes almost impossible to fulfill the basic requirements to obtain the Passport and Visa, the check points on Ramallah and the blockade of Gaza are in the way. They can not travel to to other side of Palestine, there is a blockade a permanent check point on Erez. the point that divide Gaza Strip from the West Bank. And in Ramallah the friends that volunteer to help with the documents encounter countless obstacles as well.

You need to live the everyday struggles to understand their state of mind. With an alarming rate of underemployment, preparing themselves for a better future is not a luxury but a necessity. They need to obtain higher education to be able to compete in so tight market. The situation in Gaza is worsened since Israel imposed a blockade, where does not let export or imports to cross and in complicity with Egypt have kept Gaza Strip impoverished to the point where more than 80 % of the population is in public assistance.

Fighting occupation in Palestine: Palestine is facing an unprecedented humanitarian crisis.


The UN reports that 70% of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza are now living in acute poverty, a figure comparable to poverty levels in sub-Saharan Africa. Over 50% are now dependent on food aid.

Palestinians are not victims of a natural disaster. The poverty they are suffering is an acknowledged product of the Israeli occupation. According to the UK government’s Department for International Development: “Poverty in the Occupied Palestinian Territories is a product of occupation and conflict.” Only by ending the occupation can the root causes of poverty be addressed.

Israel’s recent assault on the people of Gaza in late 2008/early 2009 demonstrated the brutality of Israel’s army. The assault left over 1400 people dead and thousands more injured. It marked the culmination of a policy of collective punishment practised by Israel against the people of Gaza over the past 2 years.

Israel imposed a state of siege on Gaza in 2007 turning the world’s most densely populated area of land into the world’s most densely populated prison. John Dugard the former UN special rapporteur for human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territories described the situation in Gaza before the attack as “collective strangulation” of a people.

Yet this is nothing new. Over the last 61 years Israel has continuously acted in defiance of UN resolutions, international law and global outrage. Through the continuing occupation, Israel has engaged in excessive and disproportionate force, house demolitions, targeted assassinations, detention of minors, detention without trial, attacks on water supplies, violation of the right to food and attacks on medical personnel and equipment. This, alongside the systematic and deliberate destruction of schools, hospitals, water systems, farmland and the building of an illegal Separation Wall, has destroyed any semblance of a Palestinian economy.

In addition, millions of Palestinians are still living with human rights abuses and crushing poverty in refugee camps as a result of the ‘nakba’, or catastrophe in which hundreds of thousands of Palestinians were driven from their homes 61 years ago in the displacement that made the state of Israel possible.

The international community has largely ignored international law with respect to Israel’s crimes. Instead the British government amongst others has rewarded Israeli aggression with financial, military and diplomatic support.

The British government continues to license the sales of arms of Israel and in the first nine months of 2008 licensed the sale of 27 million pounds worth of military equipment.

As Israel’s principal trading partner, the European Union has been called on to suspend the trading preferences which Israel enjoys as a result of the EU-Israel Association Agreement. The Agreement is based upon respect for human rights, yet UN representatives have made clear these rights are regularly violated by Israeli forces.

Palestine is in crisis. We must put pressure on our government to play its part and end the injustice.

source:http://www.waronwant.org/campaigns/fighting-occupation-in-palestine

Do not forget that on 30 March 2009 is the Global Day of Action for Boycott Divestment and Sanctions against Israel. All over the world demonstrations and actions will be taking place calling for an end to Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestinian and in solidarity with the Palestinian people.

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: