London Palestine Action kicks off Israel Apartheid Week by plastering the Tube with pro-BDS ads

Activism
on 23 Comments

Over the weekend London Palestine Action, kicked off Israeli Apartheid Week by pulling off the amazing feat of plastering underground tube trains with 150 unauthorized posters screaming “APARTHEID IS GREAT BRITAIN” explaining in the remaining text:

British-made arms were used by Israel to massacre Palestinians in Gaza in 2014. Over 100 UK companies continue to supply military equipment to Israel. They directly profit from Israeli apartheid and contribute to the militarised collective punishment of Palestinians.

A separate ad targeted the BBC, the UK’s national broadcast renown for its bias towards Israel, citing Tim Llewellyn, former BBC Middle East correspondent  “We have become used to the fact that, in the BBC newsroom, and Israeli life is worth the lives of an infinite number of Palestinians” and highlighting how the extrajudicial execution of Dania Irsheid by Israeli forces went unreported by the BBC:

London Palestine Action plasters over 500 unauthorized advertisements on underground trains kicking off Israel Apartheid Week

London Palestine Action plasters over 500 unauthorized advertisements on underground trains kicking off Israel Apartheid Week

Prime Minister Netanyahu and opposition leader Yair Lapid responded swiftly, both taking credit for the signs’ removal. Lapid bragged how he asked his friend, London’s mayor Boris Johnson to remove the the advertisements and Netanyahu demanded the British government to take them down.

One of the ads targeted G4S, a British multinational security company (the world’s largest) headquartered in London operating prisons in Israel and the West Bank:

Targeting G4S: London Palestine Action plasters over 500 unauthorized advertisements on underground trains kicking off Israel Apartheid Week

Targeting G4S: London Palestine Action plasters over 500 unauthorized advertisements on underground trains kicking off Israel Apartheid Week

According to the London Evening Standard a spokesperson for Transport for London called the London Palestine Action’s Israel Apartheid ad campaign “an act of vandalism” and stated “Our staff and contractors are working to immediately remove any found on our network.”

London Palestine Action, told Mondoweiss “Israel’s reaction has been obscene. The fact that MKs are calling the London mayor to talk about some posters makes it clear just how scared Israel are of being delegitimised. They’re scared of BDS, and terrified people will see their regime for what it is: occupation and apartheid.”

There no better way underscore that fear than the revelation of the Israel’s Ministry of Tourism secret anti-BDS summit (no journalists allowed) with p.r. mastermind Frank Luntz brainstorming with 150 pro Israel activists, scrambling to counter Israel’s crumbling image and the rapid spread of BDS.

However, since Israel refuses to change their policies and end the occupation, it appears every action taken to counter their image backfires:

The Jerusalem Post reports MK Tzipi Livni called for “the entire political spectrum” to fight the anti-BDS movement:

“Israel has to isolate them and not let other protest movements join them,” she said. “Israel is not an apartheid state and we in the Zionist Union will make sure it will not be one, because we will separate from the Palestinians. We will have a Jewish and democratic state, and they will have their own state.”

When Livni? Because that would go along way towards improving Israel’s image. Maybe they could consider that during the next anti-BDS brainstorming summit. 

The action comes days after the British government announced plans to criminalize support for BDS and block the boycott of Israeli products.

UK BDS activists have a history of creative Tube train advertisements. See last September’s Dismaland Artists Hack London Ad Spaces In Anti-War Protest:

About Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is Editor at Large for Mondoweiss, a mother, a human rights activist and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani

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23 Responses

  1. Bumblebye
    February 22, 2016, 3:15 pm

    Ahem, you have it that jpost claims Livni will fight the *anti*-BDS movement? I suspect she wants the whole political (Israeli Jewish) spectrum to fight BDS! Just a tiny error.

  2. pabelmont
    February 22, 2016, 6:45 pm

    Don’t those Brits have style! How I admire them.

    Of course, putting up signs in that manner is illegal, but sooooo ethical! And I’m sure quite a few British straphangers will have noticed both the signs and the pull-down.

  3. Kay24
    February 22, 2016, 8:19 pm

    So when will the American public be able to see similar posters in big cities too? It is always countries in Europe that initiate a campaign to release the Palestinian people from zionist occupation, stop the land thefts, and give these poor people who live in limbo, a state to call their own. Our entire nation should be flooded with posters and huge billboards.
    We need to be released from zionist influence very badly, since they are stifling free speech and well deserved criticism of their apartheid policies.

    • Steve Grover
      February 23, 2016, 9:32 am

      Well Kay24, SeaMAC put up an Israel hating billboard by the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) near OHare airport in Chicago. People in Chicago complained and we got it taken down right away even though SeaMAC bought and paid for it. BDS crap just isn’t welcome in Chicago.

      • Kay24
        February 23, 2016, 8:22 pm

        The apartheid mafia at work again, eh?

  4. JWalters
    February 22, 2016, 8:45 pm

    Great signs of the times!

  5. Steve Grover
    February 23, 2016, 9:25 am

    Not only are they vandals, they are thugs too. The thugs threatened Bassam Eid at University of Chicago.

    https://www.algemeiner.com/2016/02/21/palestinian-human-rights-activists-receives-death-threats-from-anti-israel-protesters-during-u-of-chicago-lecture-video/

    • a blah chick
      February 23, 2016, 11:10 am

      Oh, Grover, don’t you know that Eid is a well known collaborator who NEVER has a bad thing to say about Israel. And there is a very good reason for that, they pay him! He’s chairman of the Center for Near East Policy Reasearch. This is from their own mission statement:

      “The Nahum Bedein Center for Near East Policy Research uncovers facts that lie beneath the surface of mainstream media news coverage of Israel, paying particular attention to the human face of all those affected by the continuing Israeli-Arab war.

      The Center engages experts who are fluent in both Hebrew and Arabic, commissioning documentary films, news reports, analytical pieces and monographs for the foreign press. These works are disseminated in public briefings for members of governments and their staffers worldwide, opinion makers, journalists and any venue which can impact positive change for Israel.”

      Note that last line, they are dedicated to venues “which can impact positive change for Israel.” So they’re a Zionist outfit which might explain why a guy from Gaza might take exception to a Palestinian spewing their bile. Just take a look at the videos that Eid’s people put out:

      Iran: Billions for Terror

      Children’s Army of Hamas

      Camp Jihad- which claims to show “…UNRWA summer camps, interviews with staff and youth showing the promoting of a violent ‘right of return’ and hatred of Jews.”

      Nothing about house demolitions or lynch mobs or the day to day horrors of life in Gaza. I can perfectly understand why a guy from Gaza would have a problem with Eid given the company he keeps, why can’t you?

    • John O
      February 23, 2016, 11:36 am

      Thanks for the fascinating link, Steve. I’m intrigued by the dinner honouring UK Justice Minister , Michael Gove. He is the sort of man his fellow Scots call a “balloon” (it’s not a compliment). In his previous job as Education Minister, he managed to antagonise the entire teaching profession. He’s done a bit better as Justice Minister, but only insofar as he has spent most of his time undoing the catastrophic decisions of his predecessor. Why anyone should want to honour him is unfathomable. Still, it will get him out of the country for a few days.

    • Mooser
      February 23, 2016, 2:12 pm

      Don’t miss the comments at “Alzenheimers”. They are precious.

  6. hophmi
    February 23, 2016, 10:32 am

    Interesting that the poster quotes Tim Llewellyn, professional lobbyist for the Arab world in Great Britain.

  7. Steve Grover
    February 23, 2016, 11:55 am

    So it is OK with you blah that he is threatened with violence? Or, maybe you think he should be hanged as a “collaborator”?

    • Mooser
      February 23, 2016, 12:24 pm

      “So it is OK with you…”

      Pssst! Hey, “Steve”! Lemme give you a pro-tip on commenting at Mondo: In general, try not to sound like your fondest ambition in life is to be an IDF goon interrogating a Palestinian child.

    • John O
      February 23, 2016, 12:27 pm

      Can we take it then that you will be protesting about Donald trump’s latest thuggish threat to punch one of his hecklers in the face?

      http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/feb/23/donald-trump-nevada-caucus-republican-cruz-rubio

    • a blah chick
      February 23, 2016, 12:42 pm

      Now, Grover, when have I ever advocated violence against anyone? I am against the death penalty, in fact I don’t think that kids should be blown away for wielding scissors, but that’s me.

      As for that Gaza man threatening Eid I can imagine what he has been through that would cause him to resent a Quisling like Eid. Maybe he’s lost family or seen his home destroyed. Maybe his family is suffering from the recent floods. Given the horrors that Israel daily rains upon Gaza I fully sympathize with this man’s anger. Eid is collaborating in the whitewashing of the crimes against his people, there should be a special place in Hell for such souls.

      As for Eid being hanged as a collaborator the Zionists in the thirties and forties shot collaborators so it must be okay. Light onto nations.

      But thank you for that link, it provided me with access to the comments that were comedy gold! This one was my favorite:

      “ESLombard
      February 22, 2016
      12:58 pm
      Indigenous? Although at one time there were peoples from at least 50 other places speaking 35 different languages the present Palestinian Arabs are chiefly from Arabia.
      In 1948, the Palestinian Arabs, even with British aid, fled the Jews. Their Husseini helped Hitler soften up North Africa for German forces under Rommel which led to the 1948 expulsion of almost a million Jews and their lands two times the size of Israel.
      Husseini escaped the Nuremberg trials, but inspired his nephew, Arafat, to carry on with his anti-Jewish, anti-Zionist zeal in Israel.
      Most of the original Palestinian refugees are now deceased and, according to treaties all that is left now is to compensate their heirs AND those of the Mizrahi Jews.”

      The mufti, the Holocaust, Rommel AND Arafat all crammed into one diatribe. I have met my match.

  8. John O
    February 23, 2016, 12:02 pm

    Here is the current Guardian online article about this:

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/feb/23/netanyahu-israel-apartheid-tube-posters-removed-london

    Note that the photo at the top, with clearly clearly legible text, has been supplied by the Israeli Embassy.

  9. Juan R.
    February 24, 2016, 3:36 pm

    There is absolutely nothing equivalent to Apartheid in the dispute that rages between the Palestinians and Israel today. Within Israel itself, Arabs and Jews share the same shopping malls, benches, hospitals, theatres and, in many cases, suburbs. The educational institutions do not have a deliberately “dumbed down” Arab curriculum and the privilege of voting is given to all. The Israeli Knesset has Arab members of parliament, and Jews, Arabs and Palestinians often work together at construction sites, businesses, hotels and elsewhere. Most important of all is the fact that Israel is a democratic state. Though not a perfect one, it does have democratic institutions and it is definitely not governed by a totalitarian minority!

    It is quite astonishing to witness how a lie told often enough can eventually be accepted as truth! Most of these people have no knowledge of the “inner workings” of the Apartheid regime and couldn’t even tell you the basic facts about it. It is just a very powerful weapon to use when discharging their hatred of Israel.

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