Today in Bil’in

Israel/Palestine
on 16 Comments
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Today’s demonstration in Bil’in was joined by a large number of Palestinians, Israelis and internationals. Members of the Fatah party were also present.

The protesters walked together towards the Apartheid Wall, carrying posters of Yasser Arafat, in commemoration of the Fatah leader who passed away six years ago. Speeches were held by members of the Fatah movement, while Israeli soldiers were preparing to attack the peaceful demonstrators in the background.
The speakers were Sultan Abu Al Enanan from the Fatah movement, Kays Abu Leyla from the Executive Committee of PLO and the political office of the Democratic Front and Basel Monsur from the Popular Committee in Bil’in. They all promised to stay strong as Arafat would have wanted them to be and to fight the occupation together.

Even before the majority of the protesters were moving forward, the soldiers started firing tear gas from where they had taken position on the road leading to the village. Immediately the area was covered with tear gas, with canisters flying into the crowd from different directions. As a response a few youngsters threw stones to the Israeli soldiers, as a symbolic resistance to their violence. The soldiers moved into the field and continued to fire rounds of gas, and also chasing people back into the village. At one point live ammunition was fired, causing fear and the retreat of the protesters remaining in the area.

Also this Friday the tear gas canister sat fire to the ground several places, and was put out by some protesters before it spread. The demonstration lasted for about two hours.

The Popular Committee and the people of Bil’in thanks their international and Israeli supporters for standing side by side with them in their struggle against Israel’s occupation.

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16 Responses

  1. Avi
    November 12, 2010, 12:29 pm

    The air in Earth’s atmosphere is mainly comprised of 1 part Oxygen and 4 parts Nitrogen.

    In Bi’lin, air is comprised of 10 parts Carbon, 6 parts Nitrogen, 5 parts Hydrogen, 1 part Chlorine and 1 part Oxygen.

  2. Taxi
    November 12, 2010, 1:22 pm

    Hamde,

    ALL your photographs are incredible!

    Great eye and great foto-journalistic compositions!

    Keep on snapping, Ahmed. Record, record, record.

  3. Mooser
    November 12, 2010, 7:03 pm

    Cantor Told Netanyahu That GOP ‘Will Serve As A Check’ On Obama

    link to tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com

    Kampeas argued that he “can’t remember an opposition leader telling a foreign leader, in a personal meeting, that he would side, as a policy, with that leader against the president” –

  4. annie
    November 12, 2010, 7:35 pm

    The Popular Committee and the people of Bil’in thanks their international and Israeli supporters for standing side by side with them in their struggle against Israel’s occupation.

    sometimes i can’t explain why i cry. it blows my mind people who have sacrificed so much are thanking me. it is my honor, my great honor to stand beside you in spirit every day until palestine is free as it was my honor to march w/you in solidarity in bil’in and partake in your generous hospitality.

    it is me thanking you for being on the frontlines of world peace protecting human rights for all people. with my tears from my little town in california to your little town in palestine i salute you.

    • Taxi
      November 12, 2010, 11:14 pm

      You are so sweet-hearted and dedicated, annie, and I know exactly how you feel.

      Lately I’ve taken to supporting Palestinian artists, young musicians especially, because they are really brilliant and give me such a good sense of life-emotion and soul. Palestinian musicians are really creating some incredible art from rap to jazz to world music. And if I may, annie, I’d like to recommend you a British born young female Palestinian singer/songwriter/musician/composer/producer/musicologist and music historian, whom I’ve had the pleasure of listening much to lately. Her name is Reem Kelani and her album is ‘Sprinting Gazelle’. It is a collection of traditional Palestinian songs but with Reem’s own contemporary Arabic jazz arrangements, creating an exquisite and intelligent musical background to her sonorous and soaring vocal interpretations. There are also songs on Reem’s album which she considers to be from the Palestinian ‘diaspora’, with new musical arrangements she’s set to poems by Mahmoud Darwish and Rashid Husein.

      I can’t tell you how much I love this album – because through it even an old cynic like me can be transported to the higher and comforting realms of true beauty and essential hope. I listen to artists like Reem and Palestine stops being about sorrow and agony – because I realize that the Palestinians will be the eventual victors as evidenced by the sheer depth, beauty and purity of their artistic expression: artistic vision after artistic vision and all erupting right out of and despite the death and ruble of the occupation.

      I support Palestinian musicians by buying their music and sharing it with others. What I get out of it is the comfort of knowing that I’m directly supporting Palestinian culture and Palestinian culture is something the occupiers can’t touch or ‘occupy’.

      Art is a free spirit, impossible to capture or subjugate and young Palestinian artists are managing to channel it.

      I’m also a big fan of Palestinian cinema, but that’s another story for another time dear annie.

      • Sumud
        November 13, 2010, 12:33 am

        Thanks for the recommendation Taxi. Lovely sentiment.

        Sprinting Gazelle is out of stock @ Amazon but freely available on ePay:

        link to shop.ebay.com

      • annie
        November 13, 2010, 10:13 am

        eh taxi, i will get Reem Kelani’s album. lately i have been listening to lowkey (iraqi british) non stop when i’m in my car. i keep playing the two free palestine cuts over and over (i have some other favorite songs on my cd too, the one about ‘think about this when you dish her, she’s somebody’s your daughter mother and mother’) loud pulsing driving down the street w/the windows open (incredible warm weather in calif this november). and yesterday i was listening to shadia mansour on the youtude.

        i like the title ‘sprinting gazelle’.

      • Taxi
        November 14, 2010, 2:11 am

        Too california cool, annie, I’ll check out Lowkey and by the way I’m crrrrazy about Shadia!

        Yet you’ll find Reem’s musical energy and palate a different angel altogether. This album is musically and lyrically deep and epic. I have no doubt you’re gonna have the most touching experience listening to it, especially as you read about the songs from the beautiful bi-lingual (English/Arabic) CD Booklet.

        I would love to compare album notes with you or any other Palestinian music lover if the opportunity ever arises in the future. I hope it does. We spend too much time talking about the Palestinian struggle and not enough about individual Palestinian achievers.

        Long live Palestinian artists. Soldiers without stones or guns.

  5. DICKERSON3870
    November 13, 2010, 5:56 am

    RE: uppermost photo (top, first, #1)
    MY COMMENT: There is nothing quite as breathtaking as a vortex of razor wire! It reminds me of the Slinky™ I was so excited to find in my stocking on Christmas Day, 1978.
    Slinky ad 1946.jpg – link to en.wikipedia.org

    • Avi
      November 13, 2010, 7:34 am

      DICKERSON3870,

      That’s poetic on several levels. Thanks for sharing.

      • Walid
        November 13, 2010, 10:04 am

        An encouraging article (and a bit of mud in J Street’s eye)
        for the oppressed of Bil’in and other Palestinians, posted on TGIA’s blog from Electronic Intifada on another success for BDS:

        Major Dutch pension fund divests from occupation
        Adri Nieuwhof and Guus Hoelen, The Electronic Intifada, 12 November 2010

        The major Dutch pension fund Pensioenfonds Zorg en Welzijn (PFZW), which has investments totaling 97 billion euros, has informed The Electronic Intifada that it has divested from almost all the Israeli companies in its portfolio.

        PGGM, the manager of the major Dutch pension fund PFZW, has adopted a new guideline for socially responsible investment in companies which operate in conflict zones.

        In addition, PFZM has also entered into discussions with Motorola, Veolia and Alstom to raise its concerns about human rights issues. All three companies have actively supported and profited from Israel’s occupation of the West Bank (including East Jerusalem) and the Gaza Strip.

        Over the past few years, activists in the Netherlands have questioned the two largest pension funds PFZW and ABP about their holdings in companies profiting from the Israeli occupation of Palestine. In September 2009, the Norwegian State Pension Fund decided that it would no longer invest in companies that directly contribute to violations of international humanitarian law. By February 2010, ABP, the largest Dutch pension fund, informed The Electronic Intifada it had also divested from the Israeli company Elbit Systems. At the same time, PFZW confirmed that it held shares in Elbit Systems worth 1.6 million euros.

        However, the pension fund was reevaluating its investments in Israeli companies. At the time, PFZW held shares in thirteen Israeli companies, including four banks, several telecommunication companies, construction companies and Elbit Systems. In November 2009, PGGM informed The Electronic Intifada that the fund would approach divestment decisions on “Bank Hapoalim, Bank Leumi and other [Israeli] companies” in a structural manner. This was based on a “new policy on how to deal with investments in companies in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.” That month, PGGM announced that PFZW was divesting from Africa-Israel for “technical reasons.” Owned by Lev Leviev, Africa-Israel has been involved in the building of illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank.

        On 8 November, PGGM spokeswoman Diana Abrahams confirmed in a telephone conversation PFZW’s divestment from almost all Israeli companies. Abrahams could give no further details and referred to PFZW’s 2010 annual report, which will be published next year.

        During this period, PGGM has also contributed to the development of guidelines for the United Nations Global Compact. The Global Compact is a strategic policy initiative for businesses that are committed to sustainability and responsible business practices which started in 2000. The initiative is endorsed by chief executives and seeks to align their operations and strategies with ten universally-accepted principles in the areas of human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption. Last year PGGM was involved in developing a guideline for business operations in combat zones.

        The decision by the Dutch pension funds to divest from Israeli companies is yet another indicator for the success of the international boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign. It is likely only a matter of time before these funds and others divest from the international corporations which profit from Israel’s occupation.

        Adri Nieuwhof is a consultant and human rights advocate based in Switzerland.

        Guus Hoelen, secretary of Werkgroep Keerpunt, involved in divestment campaigns in the Netherlands.

        link to electronicintifada.net

        Now if only the Arab countries would get on board the BDS train!

      • DICKERSON3870
        November 13, 2010, 8:50 pm

        RE: “That’s poetic on several levels.” – Avi
        MY REPLY: Okie Dokie, if you say so. (lol) Thanks.
        RE: “Thanks for sharing.” – Avi
        MY REPLY: You are very welcome. I am always inordinately happy to share my grand optical allusions/delusions! “Twill be my theme in glory.”
        P.S. “I love to tell the story of unseen things…
        …It satisfies my longings as nothing else can do…
        …more wonderful it seems
        Than all the golden fancies of all our golden dreams.
        …it did so much for me;
        And that is just the reason I tell it now to thee…
        … ’tis pleasant to repeat
        What seems, each time I tell it, more wonderfully sweet…”

        [My sincerest apologies to Ms. A. Katherine Hankey, wherever she may be (or not).]
        I LOVE TO TELL THE STORY – link to cyberhymnal.org

  6. DICKERSON3870
    November 13, 2010, 8:05 pm

    RE: “Now if only the Arab countries would get on board the BDS train!” – Walid
    MY COMMENT: Fat chance, I fear.
    SEE – Bush: Mubarak wanted me to invade Iraq ~ By Mohammad Sagha, blog.foreignpolicy.com, 11/12/10

    (excerpts) In his new book, Bush writes that he was under pressure not just from hawks in the US to invade Iraq, but from Arab statesmen as well…Bush writes that President Mubarak of Egypt “told Tommy Franks that Iraq had biological weapons and was certain to use them on [American] troops,” a VOA article highlights. Bush goes on to say that Mubarak “refused to make the allegation in public for fear of inciting the Arab street.”…

    ENTIRE POST – link to blog.foreignpolicy.com
    VOA ARTICLE – link to voanews.com

    • Avi
      November 14, 2010, 12:35 am

      Bush goes on to say that Mubarak “refused to make the allegation in public for fear of inciting the Arab street.”…

      It reminds me of the coward Abbas who went behind the backs of Palestinians and actively sought to undermine the Goldstone report. War criminals the lot of them, the real axis of evil.

      • Walid
        November 14, 2010, 5:16 am

        Avi, the decision to withdraw the voting on the Golodstone Report’s acceptance by the UN Human Rights Commision wasn’t due to cowardice but to the cell phone network license for his son’s company that Israel had been witholding.

        Rachid Khalidi on Democracy Now:

        JUAN GONZALEZ: There have also been some reports in the Arab press of some—pointing to a possible corruption situation with Mahmoud Abbas’s son and a cell phone company that—

        RASHID KHALIDI: Yeah.

        JUAN GONZALEZ: Could you talk about that?

        RASHID KHALIDI: Sure. One element of the blackmail, which reportedly has been exercised by the Israelis on the Palestinian Authority in order to persuade them not to go forward with consideration of the Goldstone report in Geneva, was a denial of the granting of a license to a second Palestinian cell phone company in the Occupied Territories.

        link to democracynow.org

    • Walid
      November 14, 2010, 5:36 am

      Dickerson, I was thinking of Veolia/Alston that’s building desalination plants and fast rail lines between Saudi Arabia’s major cities. This is going against the BDS current.

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