Liberal Jews stage sit-in to block annual ‘Jerusalem Day’ march into Muslim Quarter

Israel/Palestine
on 36 Comments

As Israelis marked “Jerusalem Day,” a commemoration of Israel’s capture of the eastern half of the city in 1967 with a parade through the Old City, a group of left-wing American Jews and Israelis blocked their path with a sit-in. Annually the “march of the flags” starts with rallies in the western half of the Jerusalem, followed by tens of thousands of mostly teenaged Israelis marching with banners through the Muslim Quarter, ending at the Western Wall.

For Palestinians, it is a bitter day. Israeli police close shops in the Muslim and Christian quarters early, clearing a path for the flag parade.

Traditionally the march is accompanied by Palestinians protesting outside of the Old City walls, voicing dissent against what is regarded as a celebration of Israel’s occupation of Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Israel views Jerusalem as its capital, first taken by force during the June 1967 war, and then formally annexed by a Knesset law in 1980.

This year the parade was obstructed by liberal Jews for the first time in recent memory.

The organization IfNotNow, responsible for staging a protest outside of AIPAC’s annual policy conference earlier this year with thousands taking part in the demonstration, headed up the action.

Israeli police disbanded the sit-in a confrontation that was captured on social media. Police broke the arm of one activist, IfNotNow confirmed over social media.

IfNotNow released a statement today explaining they were “stormed by a group of right-wing Israeli extremists” and “violently dispersed” the protesters:

More than 50 Jewish anti-Occupation activists from around the world joined with Israelis on Wednesday in a non-violent demonstration in opposition to the annual March of the Flags, a violent event that celebrates the Israeli capture and occupation of East Jerusalem following the Six-Day War in 1967. During the course of the protest, ​several Israeli and international Jews were injured — including at least one person who suffered a broken arm — after refusing to allow the police to force Palestinian shops in the Old City to close.

The activists intentionally formed a blockade as right-wing Israeli marchers began assaulting Palestinians outside the Damascus Gate. Once the blockade was formed, the protestors were stormed by a group of right-wing Israeli extremists. The Israeli authorities violently dispersed the activists. At least one American Jewish activist may have a broken arm and is en route to the hospital.

Palestinians also protested the parade:

About Allison Deger

Allison Deger is the Assistant Editor of Mondoweiss.net. Follow her on twitter at @allissoncd.

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36 Responses

  1. Citizen
    May 24, 2017, 4:03 pm

    Thanks Allison, nothing on this in US mainstream news

    • CigarGod
      May 26, 2017, 9:09 am

      Cops/soldiers breaking arms of children seems to be a new thing.
      Watched videos of brutes very deliberately break the arms of children on a school bus, street, etc. in usa, too. Must be part of training.

  2. Annie Robbins
    May 24, 2017, 5:13 pm

    bless them.

    • gamal
      May 24, 2017, 8:27 pm

      Dear Annie,

      Bless them, I want to do something wicked and underhand, you know i lived in Jamaica some years, I want to hit you with Ratty, i swear ( as you are a woman and mother, you can’t resist Ratty, we get no prizes we are simple people) women tell me Ratty is irresistible.

      https://youtu.be/sbPMR2dmILo

  3. Mooser
    May 24, 2017, 5:38 pm

    I hope “Jon s” didn’t get badly hurt at the demo.

  4. JosephA
    May 24, 2017, 6:58 pm

    Oh boy, a picture is really worth a thousand words. Thanks for sharing! I guess the Jewish State does have to break a few Jewish bones from time to time.

  5. JoeSmack
    May 24, 2017, 7:11 pm

    So now liberal Zionists can co-opt Palestinian resistance in Palestine too? Fuck INN, just go away.

    • jd65
      May 24, 2017, 11:59 pm

      I’m not too familiar w/ INN. So I took a quick look at their website and read a few things. Did I miss where they called themselves “Liberal Zionists?” If so, I honestly would like for you to direct me to some stuff for me to read/watch that will better acquaint me with their views. Their statement on their website that said something like “We don’t take a unified stance on BDS, Zionism, or statehood” is admittedly weak (to put it lightly). And while I understand your comment about ‘co-opting of resistance,’ “Fuck INN, just go away” seems a bit much. Oh well…

      • echinococcus
        May 25, 2017, 9:24 am

        You seriously did not expect them to write on their shingle something like: “We’re liberal-Zionists, working to control and deviate solidarity with Palestinian resistance and extend our illegal presence in Palestine”, for example? Would you even expect many among their rank and file to be conscious of that?

      • jd65
        May 25, 2017, 4:54 pm

        @ echinonococcus:

        “You seriously did not expect them to write on their shingle something like: ‘We’re liberal-Zionists, working to control and deviate solidarity with Palestinian resistance and extend our illegal presence in Palestine’, for example?” Sarcasm aside, I’m fairly certain that many individuals and groups/organizations openly refer to themselves as Liberal Zionist[s]. As much as most of us here @ MW believe that term to be oxymoronic (included),not veryone in the world shares our views/attitudes. And like I mentioned in my previous comment, I’m not that familiar w/ INN, so I thought that maybe they self-identified as Liberal Zionist. I didn’t see that self-identification at their website and I certainly don’t intend to spend time searching as I don’t really care. As I mentioned to Joe above, if you’d like to point me to something that shows me this organization is “working to control and deviate solidarity with Palestinian resistance and extend [their] presence in Palestine” (apparently this is a working definition of “Liberal Zionism”), I’m glad to see it. Or if you simply see their above protest/sit-in as evidence of their desire to control Palestinians’ resistance, I’d end my participation in a discussion about this with you as that would be just as silly as the concept of Liberal Zionism itself…

      • JoeSmack
        May 25, 2017, 7:31 pm

        jd65, first of all that is a silly thing to ask for. No group that purposely punts and takes unprincipled stances is going to admit that they are unprincipled.

        As for being a liberal Zionist organization, the fact that they “don’t take a unified stance on BDS, Zionism, statehood” is their admission. In practice, nobody takes a stance on any of those matters by default, and by refusing to endorse BDS they are effectively saying they oppose it for all intents and purposes. Indeed it would be difficult to see what else not supporting BDS would look like. Likewise, when you contrast their principled support for other things, the effect of punting on Zionism is to say that Zionism is acceptable, and any opposition to it is not representative to the group. These are matters where the lack of an affirmative position/statement/organizational policy effectively signifies the opposite policy.

        As for telling INN to go away — this is the THIRD time I have seen INN actively freeze out protests by Palestinians and people of diverse backgrounds. During an anti-ZOA protest, they allowed activists to hold up pro-Israel and pro-Zionist slogans (including the fascist “Am Israel Chai”) while ejecting Palestinian students and other anti-Zionists. In DC, they staged a sit-in against AIPAC while Palestinian community organizers had been organizing their own demonstration for weeks and INN had been asked repeatedly to support that instead. And now they are holding a flashy sit-in while Palestinian community groups were protesting both next to them in Jerusalem specifically and throughout Palestine generally for weeks. The sole effect of these kinds of interventions is to reset the discussion to diversity of opinions within the Jewish community, freezing out the Palestinians from having any agency even in Palestine itself. So I repeat: fuck INN. This is what one step forward, two steps back looks like.

      • echinococcus
        May 25, 2017, 11:01 pm

        JD,

        For a more detailed look at INN, pleas look at this discussion on Mondoweiss:
        http://mondoweiss.net/2017/04/ifnotnow-promising-problems/

        There you’ll find links to better characterized positions of INN (including about the support for a “Jewish State”, the presence of a strong contingent of avowed “Liberal Zionists”, the refusal to say boo about anything but the post-1967 occupation, etc.) Several contributions indicate that it is a mix of avowed “Liberal” Zionists and other, mostly unspecified positions. The narrow objective is part of the demands by the resistance, while it is a vital target for the “Liberal” Zionists: limit the potential losses of the Zionist occupier by extracting a guarantee that they can stay in the frame of a two-state solution and continue to reign over Palestine.

        My subjective characterization of the intent of such groups is based on the impossibility to accept even the idea of a legitimate resistance solidarity organization that is founded on the tribal basis of the invader. Instead of participating as individuals out of the general public and working under the direction or at least according to the needs and requests of some resistance organization, they act for their own objectives, as a tribally exclusive organization (that has multiple family bonds with the occupiers.)

        This indicates to me that their primary objective is in any case about themselves, not Palestinian liberation from the occupier Example: “antisemitism” hunt and reaffirmation of “Jewish” as an ethnonym for JVP, that has caused a certain amount of disruption. Not that some of their achievements are not positive for the resistance, they are but it all depends on the final balance of negative and positive.

        This should of course require more detailed discussion, but as you indicate that you are interested in evidence rather than discussion, so we’ll discuss it if you ever feel like it.

      • jd65
        May 26, 2017, 9:05 am

        @ Joe S. & echino:

        I REALLY appreciate both of your responses. Busy all day w/ work, so I won’t be able to take the time needed to respond fully until later tonight. For me (and I think broadly), this is an important and tough subject. Didn’t want you to think I was blowin’ off…

      • jd65
        May 28, 2017, 12:30 am

        @ Joe S.:

        jd65, first of all that is a silly thing to ask for. No group that purposely punts and takes unprincipled stances is going to admit that they are unprincipled.

        I assume my asking if I’d missed where INN referred to their organization as “Liberal Zionist” and suggesting you could point me in a direction to where they refer to themselves as such is the “silly thing” I’d asked for. I don’t think it’s silly. Plenty of people refer to themselves as Liberal Zionists. Not sure why you’d think it’s silly for me to think that maybe they refer to themselves that way when you yourself call them that and I mentioned to you that I knew not much about them.

        …by refusing to endorse BDS [INN is] effectively saying they oppose it for all intents and purposes.

        I don’t agree w/ this. And I completely support BDS. It makes just as much sense to say that by refusing to condemn BDS, one endorses it. And that actually makes more sense, in my mind, than that inverse that you’re saying. Keep in mind, I am personally all for BDS. Big time.

        This is similar to the issue of endorsing/condemning Zionism. If you don’t “take a stand” on Zionism, are you opposed to it? Or if you refuse to take a stand on Zionism, are you endorsing it? I would call myself an anti-Zionist. And unless you’re Gilad Atzmon, it should be fairly clear essentially what that means. Brant Rosen, on the other and, would (and does) refer to himself as “non-Zionist.” I personally dislike that term. I think it’s milk-toast. I think it’s something Gil Scott-Heron would say an “Oatmeal Man” would say. However, I know for certain that Brant Rosen is not “pro-Zionism.”

        So while, as I said the other day, while INN’s failure to put out a unified statement supporting BDS and condemning Zionism as an organization is WEAK, I personally don’t think it necessarily means they’re “pro-Zionism” or “anti-BDS” either. I kinda understand how one may think it does mean that. But I’m not one of them. It feels too much like putting words into someone else’s mouth.

        During an anti-ZOA protest, they allowed activists to hold up pro-Israel and pro-Zionist slogans (including the fascist “Am Israel Chai”) while ejecting Palestinian students and other anti-Zionists. In DC, they staged a sit-in against AIPAC while Palestinian community organizers had been organizing their own demonstration for weeks and INN had been asked repeatedly to support that instead.

        Now this is the kind of stuff that needs to be said and dealt with. And thank you for writing it. Allowing folks you’re protesting with to hold up pro-Israel and pro-Zionist signs at an anti-ZOA protest is not only fucked up, it borders on unbelievable. Quite plainly it simply doesn’t make any sense. This happened? Wow… And INN “ejecting Palestinian students and other anti-Zionists” from this protest? What in the world was the reason they gave for doing that? And INN not supporting/following the lead of their Palestinian brothers and sisters in the DC is a total drag as well. Do you have any stuff you can point me/us to to read more about those events?

        As to INN “holding a flashy sit-in” having “[t]he sole effect of… reset[ting] the discussion to diversity of opinions within the Jewish community, freezing out the Palestinians from having any agency even in Palestine itself,” did INN actually “freeze out” Palestinians from this action? I’m not saying they didn’t, but I haven’t heard you, or anyone else, specifically say they did for this specific action. And this particular action could’ve been very dangerous for Palestinians to have participated in. So maybe it was just as well that this wasn’t a joint action. Yes it’s admittedly disgusting that Jewish Privilege resulted in one broken arm when the same action likely would’ve resulted in multiple fatalities and many worse injuries had the participants been Palestinian. But, assuming in this particular event there was no “freezing out” of Palestinian participants, the reason the result could be the discussion of difference of opinion within the Jewish community instead of a broader discussion of why “The Jewish State” is bullshit, is not necessarily the fault of the protesters themselves. Jews, just like everybody else on the planet, have the right to protest. There are good ways to go about it, and bad ways. This we know…

  6. Ossinev
    May 25, 2017, 7:32 am

    These Jerusalem Day marches bear an uncanny similarity to” traditional ” Loyalist parades in Belfast and elsewhere in Northern Ireland passing by and sometimes through Nationalist Catholic areas with the marchers singing racist songs and shouting racist slogans – basically colonisers asserting their colonial superiority. Up until recent times the authorities at best stood idly by but as with the IOF would often violently break up any protests by the Nationalist residents. In Northern Ireland times thankfully have moved on and with the Peace Process and shared government there are still parades but the Loyalists are prevented from passing through Nationalist areas and any illegal marches are blocked or broken up.

    Can the same happen in Zioland. No I don`t think so. The Zios are drunk on power and self delusion and the illusion/dream call it what you like of full entitlement to all of Jerusalem is fundamental to their racist fanaticism. In Northern Ireland the Peace Process came about largely because of the Hunger Strike which focused world attention on the blatant discrimination there but also to a very great extent because within the Loyalist community leadership there were a significant number of individuals who had basic humanitarian values and who recognised that the situation was untenable. In other words they were “Centrists”. In Zioland by contrast the middle or “Centrist” political ground has collapsed and it would appear that all of the political “leaders” whichever their party and perceived position ie far left,left,centre,right wing or fa right wing are climbing over each other to grab the Far Right wing flag.

    • Maghlawatan
      May 25, 2017, 2:06 pm

      Northern Ireland Protestant culture belongs to a wider reality. Zionism is makey uppy. If Palestinians have rights Israelis lose their identity.

  7. Mayhem
    May 25, 2017, 9:10 am

    In Australia if protesters would take to the streets to oppose ANZAC Day they would be lynched. I have always felt that it is unfortunate that Jews don’t practise excommunication because these left-wing deluded Jews deserve it.

    • Misterioso
      May 25, 2017, 10:38 am

      @Mayhem

      Get used to it .

      Israel is increasingly losing Jewish youth everywhere and it’s only the beginning.

    • talknic
      May 25, 2017, 10:59 am

      @ Mayhem May 25, 2017, 9:10 am

      “In Australia if protesters would take to the streets to oppose ANZAC Day they would be lynched.”

      Strange none have been https://www.google.com.au/search?q=protests+anzac+day

      BTW your support for an idiotic rogue state acting outside of its borders is so touching

      • Mooser
        May 25, 2017, 6:26 pm

        “BTW your support for…”

        His ‘support for’ seems to consist mainly of malicious fantasies.
        I think he is trying to impress us with his implacability, or something.

      • Mayhem
        May 25, 2017, 6:44 pm

        @talknic, to prove my point after doing your Google search – Man charged over alleged protest during Anzac Day dawn service
        If you have pride and honor for your country and its values you don’t behave offensively like these left-wing Jews have.
        If you disagree with what Israel is doing there is an appropriate way to protest and Israel being the democratic country that it is provides the freedom to do so. You can’t say the same for the despotic regimes that surround it in the Middle East. We all saw how the so-called Arab Spring become the Arab Winter.

      • talknic
        May 25, 2017, 10:02 pm

        So no lynchings. Just goes to show how wrong Ziofools can be.

        I fully support our armed services protecting Australia BTW. I do not however support a narrative that blatantly lies about our forces dying in far away lands at the behest of British and American interests. Turkey never threatened Australia, tens of thousands of our country’s finest were slaughtered for imperial gain. Nothing to do with protecting Australia. Our forces are in the M East again, slaughtering people we don’t know, in countries who have never harmed Australia and our gutless leaders are supportive of a vile little rogue state in breach of International Law beyond its borders.

        What countries around Israel do within their own territories has absolutely no legal bearing on Israel’s illegal activities outside of its self proclaimed borders. Go spout your Ziopoop somewhere else. BTW you and your kind are a disgrace to Australia

      • Mooser
        May 25, 2017, 10:20 pm

        “Mayhem” look, once you’ve ‘branded’ a person you really can’t kick them out. It’ll make people hesitant to adopt the brand. I mean, if that don’t give you life-long member ship, what does?

      • talknic
        May 25, 2017, 10:26 pm

        ZioIdiot demonstrates how twisted Zionist values can be

        @ Mayhem May 25, 2017, 6:44 pm

        “If you have pride and honor for your country and its values you don’t behave offensively like these left-wing Jews have”

        Oh I get it. War is peace, black is white, asking that one’s country adhere to its legal obligations is offensive whereas supporting the illegal activities of that country in someone else’s territories is not offensive.

        I didn’t know we still had cretinism in Australia. Need a GP?

    • eljay
      May 25, 2017, 2:08 pm

      || Mayhem: … I have always felt that it is unfortunate that Jews don’t practise excommunication because these left-wing deluded Jews deserve it. ||

      Curious: How, exactly, would a “left-wing deluded Jew” – or any other Jewish person – be “excommunicated” from his ethnicity, culture and civilization?

      “I gots to know!”

      • RoHa
        May 25, 2017, 6:13 pm

        Try this:

        http://web.mnstate.edu/mouch/spinoza/excomm.html

        It says Spinoza isn’t a Jew anymore, so he isn’t ethnic, and that no Jew should have anything to do with him, so he has no contact with Jewish culture.

        And I know you threw in “civilization” as a joke.

      • eljay
        May 25, 2017, 8:57 pm

        || RoHa: Try this:

        http://web.mnstate.edu/mouch/spinoza/excomm.html

        It says Spinoza isn’t a Jew anymore, so he isn’t ethnic, and that no Jew should have anything to do with him, so he has no contact with Jewish culture. … ||

        That’s pretty harsh. So essentially Mayhem is wishing that the power still existed for some Jews to anti-Semitically strip other Jews of their self-determination as Jews. Why do Zionists hate Jews so much?

        || … And I know you threw in “civilization” as a joke. ||

        Nope. Had I thrown in dessert topping and floor wax, that would have been a joke.

      • Mooser
        May 25, 2017, 9:16 pm

        “It says Spinoza isn’t a Jew anymore…”

        All Spinoza has to do is go down the street to a different Synagogue, or another Jewish denomination, and they will sign him right up.

        Besides, let’s be frank. Excommunication from Judaism doesn’t mean much if the Gentiles don’t care of you are Jewish or not.

      • Mayhem
        May 25, 2017, 10:43 pm

        Excommunication could be:
        You don’t invite them to participate in community events. You don’t accept their membership at a synagogue. You publicly expose the fact that they are Jews to be disdained. You refuse to circumcise their male offspring etc etc.

      • eljay
        May 26, 2017, 8:44 am

        || Mayhem: Excommunication could be: You don’t invite them to participate in community events. … You publicly expose the fact that they are Jews to be disdained. … ||

        OK, those are social elements.

        || … You don’t accept their membership at a synagogue. … You refuse to circumcise their male offspring … ||

        And those are religious elements.

        As you have described it, excommunication appears not to affect a Jewish person’s ethnicity, culture or civilization.

        But it does seem that excommunication could be used against Zionists just as easily as it could be used against non-Zionists. Careful what you wish for.

      • echinococcus
        May 26, 2017, 10:02 am

        You refuse to circumcise their male offspring etc etc.

        There goes one or more counts of damn lucky male offspring, stepping into the world with undamaged dicks.

        Speaking of which, could you supposed Ayatollahs excommunicate all independent thinkers while they’re still young, so as to stop harassing them with your nonsense while they can still enjoy life?

      • Mooser
        May 26, 2017, 12:35 pm

        “You refuse to circumcise their male offspring…”

        OH MY GOD!!!! You wouldn’t really go that far, would you? Why, not being circumcised might change a man’s sex life and stuff! Affect his health!
        What possible offense could merit sooooo severe a punishment?
        You could be Dr. Lewis Sayre’s evil twin!

        (“Mayhem” has got, got, got to be a parody.)

      • Mooser
        May 26, 2017, 12:42 pm

        ,” stepping into the world”

        Maybe not. Not being circumcised can paralyze your legs! And cause any number of conditions! Including idiocy. (Google Lewis Sayre)

        and etc,etc” (“Mayhem”)

        Yes, we have certainly added a lot of “etc,etc” to it.

    • Mooser
      May 25, 2017, 4:11 pm

      “I have always felt that it is unfortunate that Jews don’t practise excommunication because these left-wing deluded Jews deserve it”

      “Mayhem” thinks there are too many Jews. And he has a point. Surely 180 million is enough to get the job done. It’s ‘quality’, not ‘quantity’ we should be concentrating on.

  8. Ossinev
    May 26, 2017, 9:21 am

    @Maghlawatan
    “Northern Ireland Protestant culture belongs to a wider reality. Zionism is makey uppy”

    Have to disagree on this one I`m afraid. “a Protestant State for a Protestant people” sounds very much like “a Jewish State for a Jewish people”. Paisley and all the other “Loyalist” morons lived in a very similar made up bubble. And although they are in their death throes they are increasingly demonstrating their “common values” by flying Israeli flags alongside their own flags and sometimes even incorporating the Star of David into their own flags. Great Fascist minds think alike.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/sep/13/ian-paisley-enemy-of-peace-in-northern-ireland

    • Maghlawatan
      May 26, 2017, 10:03 am

      I agree they are not normal but on the settler colonial scale they are closer to equilibrium than Israel. The US is settler colonial and still has signs of it such as gun availability. Northern Ireland has 400 years of settler history. Israel has 70. A lot of Israeli culture is made up. Eg history taught in schools.
      Unionist kids are educated rather than brainwashed. They can hold down jobs in normal countries.
      Israel is a mess.

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