No books, no writers, no words for Gaza

Israel/Palestine
on 3 Comments

Next time you hear someone criticizing cultural boycott of Israel, please remember the persecution of Gaza, the siege on young minds. Palfest, the literary festival in Palestine, has never been able to bring the world to Gaza. From the Guardian:

Egyptian authors, bloggers, journalists and revolutionaries are calling on their government to issue permits for them to enter Gaza and participate in the Palestine festival of literature, which is scheduled to start on Saturday in the embattled territory.

Although PalFest, a travelling festival established in 2008, has tried to reach Gaza in the past, it has never been successful. This year it applied to the Egyptian ministry of foreign affairs on 18 April for 43 travel permits for writers and artists to enter through the Rafah crossing from Egypt. Organisers say they were told it could take up to 10 days to process the permits, but they have yet to be issued.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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3 Responses

  1. marc b.
    May 3, 2012, 9:18 am

    OT. gershom gorenberg has a good article on the settlements and bibi.

    The decision broke with a policy that Israel has held for 20 years: no new settlements will be established. Right-wing Israeli governments, in particular, have broadcast that policy as part of their international PR efforts. Yet Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his most senior ministers granted official approval last week to three West Bank settlements. No big deal, say government spokesmen.

    “This is only a technical matter,” Netanyahu’s staffers told U.S. Ambassador Dan Shapiro, the Daily Ma’ariv reported on Sunday. There’s actually a measure of truth in that claim—but that dollop of truth is an indictment of 20 years of settlement policy.

    The settlements of Rehelim, Brukhin, and Sansanah already exist. They are just three of the settlements erected over the last two decades with the government’s aid and abetment. The ministerial decision merely relabels a rogue operation as an official action. If hypocrisy is tribute that vice pays to virtue, this is the moment when vice stops coughing up the tribute. Or, in diplomatic terms, it is the moment when the client state decides that it no longer needs to pay any attention to the preferences of its patron in Washington.

    link to prospect.org

  2. dimadok
    May 3, 2012, 10:26 am

    Is it just a knee-jerk reaction or more symptomatic case of myopia when it comes to Israel-related and non-related issues? Egypt controls Rafah crossing, it has cancelled gas sales to Israel, it’s presidential candidates calling for the renouncement of Camp David agreements, Israel embassy is virtually closed, the lowest number of Israelis visit Sinai etc. But still Israel is to blame for Egypt not issuing the travel permits?!
    Are you serious and would like to be taken as an educated person beyond the cozy groupies here? And please, do not invoke the US aid to Egypt and Zionist lobby power over it, otherwise I would argue that Zionist lobby has their grip on the Egyptian government, it’s military and on the half-a-dozen other states (e.g. Pakistan) who receive US aid financial and military support. Sounds ridiculous, isn’t it? But that is exactly the conclusion one may reach after reading your piece here.

  3. OlegR
    May 3, 2012, 11:06 am

    /Palfest, the literary festival in Palestine, has never been able to bring the world to Gaza.
    Egyptian authors, bloggers, journalists and revolutionaries are calling on their government to issue permits for them to enter Gaza /

    So Egypt is denying them entry to Gaza strip
    and therefore Israel should be culturally boycotted.
    That’s your argument?
    Why not Egypt as well then?

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