Category Archives:
Activism

South Africa High Court rules in favor of BDS South Africa billboard

Annie Robbins on
Billboard- Johannesburg,  South Africa (Photo: BDSSouthAfrica)

After a months long court battle BDS South Africa (BDS-SA) won a “precedent-setting” freedom of expression court case last Thursday, September 11. In October 2012 BDS-SA along with the Palestine Solidarity Alliance purchased advertisements on billboard’s across South Africa. With no warning South Africa’s Con­ti­nen­tal Out­door Media removed two BDS South Africa (BDS-SA) ads prior to their contractual expiration date without giving any notice to BDS-SA or the Palestine Solidarity Alliance. A judge of the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg ruled in favor of BDS South Africa, declaring that the removal of the billboards was both “unlawful and unconstitutional” and ordering Continental to re-erect the billboards within 10 days and pay all court costs. The court also ordered the City of Johan­nes­burg to amend their bylaws.

The elephant in the room, in Marin County

Annie Robbins on
Elephant in the room (Graphic by Zoe Goorman)

When Zoe Goorman tried to explain to Democratic politicians in Marin County, California, that Israel is the elephant in the room that they’re not talking about, she let them know graphically: with a poster of an elephant in the room. Maybe others should follow suit?

‘Stop$30Billion’ coalition unveils new digital billboard in Albuquerque, NM

Annie Robbins on
Albuquerque digital billboard

It’s been a busy time for Palestine solidarity folks in Albuquerque. Five and half years ago after Israel’s 08-09 massacre in Gaza, the Coalition to Stop$30Billion to Israel, a grassroots group of ordinary citizens, launched a campaign erecting 10 billboards in their city that inspired campaigns in Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Portland, Washington DC, Boston, Arizona, and Seattle, just to name just a few. They’re at it again. Last Monday Sept.8 the coalition up their first digital billboard in response to the recent carnage in Gaza.

Dutch activists disrupt Israeli apartheid whitewashing event in Amsterdam

Annie Robbins on
Promotional Israeli apartheid whitewashing event in Amsterdam (Graphic: On Spot Threatre/Amsterdam)

Saturday night activists in Amsterdam pulled off a fantastic action at an Israeli whitewashing event promoted as “Israel=Culture” the first Israeli theatre mini-festival in Amsterdam, “three days of presenting the rich and vibrant theatre culture of Israel.”

Five lessons from the struggle to reinstate Steven Salaita at the University of Illinois

Tithi Bhattacharya and Bill V. Mullen on
Protester at the University of Illinois Board of Trustees meeting. (Photo: Facebook)

Tithi Bhattacharya and Bill V. Mullen share five lessons they learned from the efforts to reinstate Steven Salaita at the University of Illinois. As they watched the protests over Salaita’s firing they saw protesters connecting the dots between Apartheid Israel and the violation of labor rights at home and realized that the protesters at UIUC were showing us the way to a new social movement that could constitute a fighting force against neoliberalism, both at home and abroad

The rise of ‘If Not Now’ and the collapse of the pro-Israel consensus

Alex Kane on
If Not Now members hold up a banner at a New York City protest. (Photo: BUD KOROTZER/DESERTPEACE)

Meet If Not Now: a new, Jewish group that emerged out of the wreckage of the Gaza conflict. Dedicated to demanding that mainstream Jewish leaders take an anti-occupation stand, the group’s grassroots, social media-savvy messaging has lead others around the nation to take up its banner. The rise of If Not Now, a group whose founding members are deeply rooted in Jewish communal life, is just one of the latest signs that dissent on Israel is rising amongst young people.

Some thoughts on the Cornell-Technion partnership in light of the 2014 Israeli invasion of Gaza

Eric Cheyfitz on
Young men look for their belongings in the remnants of a Gaza apartment building, August 2014. (Photo: Dan Cohen)

Cornell professor Eric Cheyfitz writes: “It is no secret that Cornell’s institutional partner in the New York City tech campus is Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. It is also no secret that Technion is substantially involved in the development of systems used in the militarization of the Occupied Territories. The question might arise, then, at least in some minds, as to Cornell’s possible complicity in Israeli state policy in the Territories, including the latest invasion of Gaza and the ongoing blockade.”

Toronto activists intensify campaign against SodaStream

Haseena Manek on
(Photo: CAIA)

On Sunday, August 31st, the Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid (CAIA) gathered to share information with members of the Toronto community about the current campaign to boycott SodaStream, a carbonated beverage company whose main production facility is in Ma’ale Adumim, an illegal Israeli settlement in the occupied Palestinian West Bank. “In the wake of Israel’s deadly assault on the people Gaza we must intensify our BDS campaigns,” said CAIA member Kat Lapointe. “We know for a fact that the global campaign against SodaStream is having a significant impact. People will no longer tolerate companies that profit off of Israeli apartheid.”

The real issues in the Salaita case: Palestine, neoliberalism, and the corporate university

David Green on
Campus_entrance_marker_at_Wright_Street_and_University_Avenue_University_of_Illinois_at_Urbana-Champaign

It’s not all about academic freedom: Steven Salaita is targeted because of what he has said about Palestine. He is targeted because he was to be the first Palestinian voice at the University of Illinois. He’s targeted at a national level because the Israel lobby is afraid that it’s losing its control of the narrative. For even the Jewish community in Illinois has been divided by the Gaza onslaught and leaders hope that the rifts won’t be exposed

Cycling4Gaza to stage Philly to DC trek in mid-September

Annie Robbins on
Cycling4Gaza 2013 Berlin Ahmed Abu Chaaban, Lina Abu Chaaban, Alia Mobayed and Reema Attyeh (Photo:C4G)

Cycling4Gaza began in 2009 as four London friends recruited cyclists to raise funds for Gaza. Now it is teamed with the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund and coming to the U.S., with a Philadelphia to Washington trip on Sept. 18-21.

As protest over Gaza grew, so did attacks on speech supporting Palestinian freedom

Radhika Sainath on
Brooklyn Bridge, NYC (Photo: @SanduKanKanack)

Palestine Solidarity Legal Support offers a roundup of summer incidents in which people lost their job, were investigated or otherwise sanctioned because they were critical of Israel’s policies, or merely expressed support for Palestinian rights. These incidents share much in common including that Israel advocacy groups frequently demand that individuals supporting Palestinian rights be investigated and punished relying on false accusations of anti-Semitism.

The checkpoint is burning

Badee Dwaik on
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Shuhada Street in Hebron has been closed to Palestinians for many years. In August a military checkpoint on the street was set afire. The Israeli occupying forces cracked down on Palestinians for the fire, further limiting their movements

Thirteen arrested as protesters tell Senators Menendez and Booker: ‘No more blank check for Israel’s crimes’

Stephen R. Shalom on
Outside the Gateway Center, where Menendez and Booker have offices. (Photo by Tom Bias)

On Tuesday August 26, 2014, more than 50 demonstrators protested outside the Newark, New Jersey, offices of U.S. Senators Robert Menendez and Cory Booker demanding that the legislators stop providing a blank check for Israel’s crimes. Thirteen demonstrators were arrested inside the building as they read out the names of some of the nearly 500 Palestinian children killed in Gaza

Bay Area gets radio ads about Gaza

Annie Robbins on
Noura Erakat

The Bay Area chapters of Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP-BA) and Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-SFBA) have teamed up on a great radio ad campaign that began airing locally yesterday morning on KCBS. The ad will run on KCBS for the next 2 weeks Monday through Thursday, 16 times a week during commute time (5am

40 Holocaust survivors condemn ‘massacre’ of Palestinians, call for BDS against Israel

Alex Kane on
Holocaust survivors printed an ad in the New York Times condemning Israel's attacks on Gaza. (Photo: Alex Kane)

A group of Holocaust survivors and descendants of those targeted by Nazi Germany have harshly criticized Israeli actions in Gaza and called for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel. Following a letter from survivors of the Holocaust printed in the New York Times on Saturday, the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, which helped coordinate the

As Salaita’s case becomes a cause, U of Illinois issues declarations on ‘civility’

Philip Weiss on
Steven Salaita with his son

There have been several developments in the Steven Salaita firing case at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The university is obviously concerned that Salaita is becoming a cause celebre. Yesterday it issued two long statements describing Salaita’s alleged infraction as a violation of “civility.” Salaita is now without a job, a home, and health insurance.

Watch: Huge pro-BDS Palestinian flag unfurled on Manhattan Bridge

Alex Kane on

Hundreds of New Yorkers marched over the Brooklyn Bridge Wednesday in a rally for Gaza. Demonstrators called for boycotting Israel and chanted for a free Palestine. The video above was shot by the MTL Collective. It shows that as demonstrators streamed over the bridge, a huge Palestinian flag with the words “Boycott, Divest, Sanction” and

My personal BDS

Uri Horesh on

Within the course of my academic work as a linguist who researches Arabic dialects, I was recently asked by a colleague at an Israeli university if I would be willing to answer a few questions that a couple of her students had while writing a paper. Though I am committed to the Boycott, Divestment and

Weapons fired in Ferguson come from companies supplying Israel, Bahrain and Egypt

Alex Kane on

When tear-gas was first fired into the streets of Ferguson, Missouri at people angry at the police killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown, Palestinian activists sent out messages on Twitter giving people tips for how to deal with tear gas’ effects. And there was another direct connection between events in Missouri and the West Bank, as Palestinian activist Mariam