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UN takes first concrete step to hold Israel accountable for violating Palestinian human rights

Palestinian BDS National Committee on

The UN is sending letters to 150 companies around the world warning them that they could be added to a database of complicit companies doing business in illegal Israeli settlements. U.S. companies that received letters include Caterpillar,, TripAdvisor, and Airbnb. Omar Barghouti, co-founder of the BDS movement, says, “this UN database of companies that are complicit in some of Israel’s human rights violations may augur the beginning of the end of Israel’s criminal impunity.”

Palestinian appeal to ICC seen as last hope to ‘bring justice for the victims’ of Israeli violations

Sheren Khalel on

Four Palestinian human rights organizations submitted their fourth “substantive communication” to the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court. The 700-page evidence file submitted alleges that high-level Israeli civilian and military officials have committed “war crimes and crimes against humanity” in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem. Tahseer Alayyan, a spokesperson for the Ramallah-based independent Palestinian human rights NGO, al-Haq, told Mondoweiss that the NGOs believe the ICC is the “only remaining window” for Palestinians to “bring justice for the victims” of Israeli violations.

At Native American prayer camp, Palestinian refugees share stories and build connections

Amith Gupta on

Palestinian refugees from the refugee camps of Lebanon met with members of the Ramapough Lenape tribe on Friday, September 15 for a communal dialogue about joint indigenous struggle, tactics, and future collaboration. The stop was at the inaugural event of the 2017 North America Nakba Tour, which brings Palestinian refugees Khawla Hammad and Amena El-Ashkar to visit communities in North America.

New York TV stations smear Roger Waters– who praises BDS as ‘one of most admirable pieces of resistance world has seen’

Philip Weiss on

Roger Waters brought his national tour to New York this week. Tonight he is on Long Island, and regrettably the New York media have given a platform to Israel fanatics to smear the songwriter/bassist. Local TV stations have passed on outrageous statements, that Waters is an anti-Semite and that Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) is bigoted.

Senator Cantwell, are you listening?

Alice Rothchild on

Washington Senator Maria Cantwell is a co-sponsor of the Israel Anti-Boycott Act that the Israel lobby has pushed in Congress, and she claims to be a supporter of human rights and free speech. Six of her constituents meet with a Cantwell staffer to explain that the boycott movement is trying to free Palestinians living under occupation and is not anti-Semitic.

Anonymous anti-BDS group publishes ‘blacklist’ of boycott supporters in New York

Jesse Rubin on

An unidentified group has launched a shadowy website identifying New Yorkers believed to support the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement for Palestinian rights—placing their photos, social media links and email addresses on a “blacklist” located at The list features ninety-seven individuals divided into the categories Campuses, Public & NPOs and Private Sector Activists. Project OutlawBDS claims it was established by a group who “consider themselves to be analytical in their approach to the BDS movement,” whose stated intention is to “provide support for New York State Senate Bill S2492,” the latest attempt to pass anti-BDS legislation in the state.

Changing the narrative, from BDS to antifa

Nada Elia on

The confluence of fascism and Zionism is becoming more obvious by the day, with alt-right leader Richard Spencer describing himself as a “white Zionist,” while the Zionist Organization of American invites Steve Bannon as a speaker at its annual gala.  And as the two forms of racial supremacy merge seamlessly together, the Palestinian struggle for human rights and dignity can set the model for discursive changes, the rejection of racism as status-quo, no matter how powerfully endorsed by the state and its militarized apparatus, and an understanding that together, we are greater than the sum of our parts.

Palestinians protest new ‘segregation fence’ in Hebron

Ella Hattey on

On August 28, Palestinians in Hebron took to the streets to protest a newly-extended fence that divides the road leading to the Ibrahim Mosque in half; two-thirds of the street is divided off and allocated to the Israeli settlers, with the remaining third left for the Palestinian community. Ella Hattey writes, “The segregation fence of Salayma makes life intolerable for its residents, it imprisons a community guilty of no crime-except that of being born Palestinian.”

Jordanian companies end their contracts with G4S

Jordan BDS on

Jordan BDS thanks the private and public companies in Jordan that have discontinued their contracts with the security company G4S in response to a global boycott call against the company for its role in the Israeli occupation.

Ramzy Baroud and Rima Najjar on identity and resistance

Yoav Litvin on

Rima Najjar: “I don’t know what it means to be Palestinian Jordanian, which is how I began my life, nor do I really understand what it means to be Palestinian American, which is my current status. But I know in my bones what it is to be Palestinian.”

On boycotts, Palestine, and resistance: a review of ‘Assuming Boycott’

Kim Jensen on

Kim Jensen writes: Why do critics of cultural boycotts insist on framing them as a form of censorship, rather than as an invitation to imagine and enact more principled forms of engagement? Are cultural and academic boycotts an effective strategy when some artists and allies may be marginalized in the process? These are the kinds of questions that are explored in a useful new collection of essays, “Assuming Boycott: Resistance, Agency, and Cultural Production,” which offers a rich and lively analysis of historical and present-day boycotts and the ethical, political, and practical issues they raise.

Chomsky on what ‘everyone knows’

Jonathan Ofir on

Noam Chomsky has said something that even Israeli officials haven’t – that Israel would use nuclear weapons to avert the Palestinian right of return. Is he threatening? And why?

Portuguese photographers launch Israel boycott pledge

Comité de Solidariedade com a Palestina on

“Among the pledge supporters are João Pina, winner of the 2017 Prémio Estação Imagem Viana do Castelo, Portugal’s only photojournalism award.”–Comité de Solidariedade com a Palestina

New network leads the fight against fascism on campus

Nada Elia on

The Campus Anti-Fascist Network is a new grassroots, multiracial collective of faculty, students and staff committed to fighting the presence of fascists, white supremacists and nationalists on University campuses. One of the network founders, American Studies Professor Bill Mullen of Purdue University, says the network has exploded since the confrontation in Charlottesville, “We have nearly 200 members nationally and internationally.  Nearly 1,000 people joined our [closed] Facebook page within 48 hours when it went live.”

Rabbi Rosen’s shift from insider to outsider was sealed by Gaza 2014

Liz Rose on

Rabbi Brant Rosen’s 2012 book, Wrestling in the Daylight: A Rabbi’s Path to Palestinian Solidarity, is out in a second edition, detailing his decision to leave an Evanston, Ill., congregation over Israel issues. His friend Liz Rose– who once came into his office and announced, “I’m losing my fucking mind” over Israel — says the book is a powerful guide for Jews setting out on the journey away from Zionism.

Bay Area stands with Reem’s Bakery in face of pro-Israel attacks

Carol Sanders on

It is a familiar scenario. A Palestinian voice that defies a rigidly enforced popular narrative rises and is heard. Gatekeeper pro-Israel organizations, purporting to represent the entire Jewish community, spring into outraged action and whip up Islamophobic hysteria that terrorism and antisemitism lurk where Palestinian political expression is allowed. This scenario is playing out today, as the right-wing, pro-Israel brigade vilifies Reem’s California, an Arab street-corner bakery in Oakland, CA, as promoting terrorism and hatred of Jews and seeks to drive it out of business. Against this background, the local community, as well as social justice organizations, have rallied to Reem’s side.

Megaphones and picnics — Ron Wyden’s limited ideas on the right to free speech

Peter Miller on

Imagine that the women’s liberation movement was relegated to back yard barbecues? Imagine if the boycott campaign against South African Apartheid amounted to writing an op-ed and carrying a megaphone? Deep expressions of free speech and activism are absent from Senator Ron Wyden’s circumscribed description of free speech in justifying the Israel Anti-Boycott Act he favors.

Wyden turns himself into a pretzel on free speech and Israel Anti-Boycott bill!

Katie Miranda on

Oregon Senator Ron Wyden has turned himself into a knot on the Israel Anti Boycott Act. He wants to defend your right to picnic for BDS, but the ACLU says you could go to jail if you tweet support for a UN boycott, under the bill. Katie Miranda reports from senator’s latest town hall, in Tualatin, Oregon.

Lessons from Finkelstein: International Law and equal rights should be the focus for Palestine solidarity

Seth Andersen on

Seth Andersen says there are lessons the Palestine Solidarity Movement can learn from Norman Finkelstein: “‘Zionism is racism’, ‘Israel is a settler colonialist state’, ‘a settler colonialist project needs to be decolonized’’ If you’re a left-leaning person and you are working for justice in Palestine, you have probably come across statements like these. And as true as they may be, we have to ask ourselves a fundamental question: “Who are we talking to?” As Norman Finkelstein put it: ‘Zionism for most people is a hairspray, a cologne’. And I think he has a point. The broad public has no idea what we are talking about.”