Mar 10, 2011

Israel Apartheid Week/Month

The Israel apartheid events* are already being attacked ahead of the events.  We are now writing from Colorado where we had our first US stop and where the local groups arranged a number of appearances for us to launch the apartheid Month. In three days we have  public lectures at a church, two universities, a bookstore, interview with two radio stations, informal meetings with community leaders, and a meeting with a congressman.  Some anti-Semitic Ashkenazi Zionists have been writing to organizers telling them that we are “anti-Semitic” and sending them the link to the ferociously right-wing and settler supporting and misnamed “Anti-Defamation League” (ADL should be called Arab Defamation League). The link they send is this that includes a serious of quotes from me (I have no problem with the quotes, only that some of them are truncated and out of context).

*For more on the Israeli Apartheid Week events held in over 50 cities worldwide, see and this interesting and rather balanced article in Haaretz about this activity

March 15 is Palestine’s moment to join the other struggles in Arab countries gfor freedom and people power.  All Palestinians and their supporters are encouraged to get down to the streets in all cities and towns wherever they occur.  We also demand an end to the West Bank Gaza Split but I personally do not use terms like reconciliation. There are many Palestinian factions on the ground similar to the number of factions that existed in South Africa when it was struggling to end apartheid.  The problem lies in the confusion and damage done by the Oslo process which created a "Palestinian authority" (now 2) without any real authority.  It relieved the pressure on the occupiers by administering people and controlling their anger while really making the occupation cost-free to the occupiers.  I am not big on "reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah" as that implies that they have drifted apart and need to be brought back together.  I think it is just fine that they always had differing political ideologies (like in Europe there are parties with differing political ideologies). Our problems as Palestinian people stem from drifting away from the original charter and goal of our movement (return of refugees, liberation, self-determination) to notions like a state on (part of) the West Bank and Gaza (less tahn 22% of Palestine) or discussing the form of government without reference to letting people decide AFTER liberation and return.  In this, there are trends now to reconstitute the Palestinian National Council to represent all 11 million Palestinians around the world. There is also a growth in popular resistance towards a new uprising (which I discuss in detail in my new book) which like in 1928 has to contend with both Palestinian security forces and colonizer/occupier forces.  But it has succeeded in the past and will succeed again. Our movement is alive, vibrant, and diversified. It is also being helped now internationally with hundreds of thousands of activists engaged in media work and in boycotts, divestments, and sanctions (BDS).  Like in South Africa, apartheid will not succeed.

TV Interview: Nonviolent resistance in Palestine: including interview with Eyad Burnat and Mazin Qumsiyeh

Action: Diamonds are Israel’s single most important export commodity, accounting for over 30% of Israel’s exports in 2008. In evidence to the Russell Tribunal on Palestine, Israeli economist Shir Hever stated - “Overall the Israeli diamond industry contributes about $1 billion annually to the Israeli military and security industries ... every time somebody buys a diamond that was exported from Israel some of that money ends up in the Israeli military so the financial connection is quite clear" The Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign have been promoting the idea of a boycott of Israeli diamonds for some time.
 A new, closed Facebook working group, GPS (Global Palestine Solidarity),  has just launched a petition calling for a review of the Kimberley Process definition of a conflict or blood diamond so all diamonds that fund human rights violations are included. Cut & polished diamonds, the sector of the industry which Israel dominates, are excluded from the existing definition of a conflict diamond.

Videos of Sheikh Jarrah demo and arrests:

McClatchy, the Sacramento Bee, Darrell Steinberg and Islamaphobia: Denying Nazi-Zionist Collusion By ALISON WEIR

Join us in Palestine July 8-16

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