Amani Sawari responds to Mohammed Alhammami’s essay ‘A letter from Gaza to black America’: Until recently I’d felt as though the African American community was alone in the fight against these types of injustices. After reading your letter I’m hopeful that the connection between Black people in America and people of color around the world, which has always been present, will only continue to strengthen.
Category Archives: Activism
Nada Elia responds to recent statements from Jewish Voice for Peace and Marc Ellis on Yom Kippur which appeal to Jewish values: “Yes, there is an urgent need for accountability and transformation. But maintaining claims to exclusivity is a hindrance, not a contribution to a solution that hinges on co-resistance to racism.”
Haidar Eid writes an open letter to South African President Jacob Zuma criticizing South African Ambassador to Israel, Sisa Ngombane, for his response to the Woman’s Boat to Gaza where South African activist Leigh-Anne Naidoo was among a group of women trying to break the siege of Gaza.
On September 26th, 2016 Nobel Energy signed a deal with Jordan’s National Electric Power Company Ltd. (NEPCO) to import gas from the Leviathan field off the shores of Haifa. Jordan BDS categorically rejects the agreement for strategic, economic and moral reasons as it ties Jordan’s energy, economic and political security to Israel for the coming 15 years.
UC Berkeley’s cancellation of a course entitled “Palestine: A Settler Colonial Analysis” (since reinstated) is the latest in a series of 43 attacks on academic freedom pertaining to discussion of one foreign state, namely Israel, state a group of over 200 California scholars at 20 institutions.
Avigail Abarnabel grew up in Israel and came to view the society as a cult. Here she writes a letter to Israeli Jews explaining why she decided to leave: “I left the cult because I wanted to find out who I was. I refused to accept that the only purpose of my life was to defend the cult and allow it to continue.”
A Spanish High Court of the Asturias region upheld a decision last week declaring a Langreo City Council agreement to boycott Israel illegal. And last month the UK government’s Department for Communities and Local Government published guidance for local authorities stating that “using pension policies to pursue boycott, divestment and sanctions against foreign nations and UK defence industries are inappropriate”.
Pro-Israel activists at a NY synagogue say that 10 percent of Americans love Israel, another 10 percent don’t, and the 80 percent in the middle can be reached via progressive messaging aimed at stopping BDS. But the Jewish participation in the ’60s civil rights movement is not going to thrill young people today.
Thirteen women including several parliamentarians, an Olympic athlete, Nobel Laureate, Mairead Maguire and former US Diplomat, Ann Wright are days away from breaking the Israeli blockade by reaching Gaza shores. Sources indicate that the Israel navy has been given orders to intercept the boat.
In recent months, the United Kingdom has denied visas to Palestinian doctors, nurses, athletes, as well as anti-occupation activist Iyad Burnat, apparently under pressure from the pro-Israel lobby in Great Britain.
Let’s call out the absurd arguments by the Jewish diaspora against boycotting Israeli settlement project. Everywhere else in the world, genuine democracy appears to strengthen national stability, but in Israel it’s presented as the worse possible thing that could happen.
Over the past few years, as support for Palestinian rights has grown across the United States, student members of SJP chapters nationally have been facing intense online harassment for speaking up for Palestinian rights. One particular organization, the Canary Mission, has led multiple concerted attacks against students and faculty, tweeting about them as “Jew haters” and “terrorists” to potential employers. Over 1000 professors, representing a variety of viewpoints on Israel/Palestine, signed a statement insisting that the Canary Mission has no place on university campuses, and should not be taken seriously by university departments when evaluating prospective students for admission.
September 25, 2016 marked the thirteenth anniversary of the passing of Professor Edward Said, one of the most influential intellectuals of the twentieth century, and a political icon for anyone invested in the Question of Palestine. And as happens with many historical icons, Said’s legacy is causing a tug-of-war between “liberal Zionists” on the one hand, and the thousands of anti-Zionist critics and BDS activists his radical scholarship and political engagement have spawned.
NYU Law Students for Israel say their mission is to have “open” discussion of Israeli policy, but yesterday they closed a talk by an IDF captain about combating terrorism in the occupied territories at the last minute.
Ghassan Hage, a Lebanese-Australian anthropologist, politely declines the invitation to be an anti-Zionist speaker at an Israeli conference
Are Germans afraid to hear the truth about Palestine. Activist and high school teacher Christoph Glanz says maybe his views of the conflict are wrong, but there is no way to establish that without free speech; and his recent article endorsing Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions was pulped by Germany’s leading trade union under pressure from Zionist groups.
A campaign against education continues. Professor Rabab Abdulhadi of San Francisco State University says: “The McCarthyist attack by Campus Watch/Middle East Forum, led by Daniel Pipes and David Horowitz, named as leading Islamophobes by the Southern Poverty Law Center, is no more than a witch hunt campaign aimed at silencing me and our commitment to justice-centered knowledge production.”
When Zionists work so hard to center Israel in the Jewish community and shower it with praise, can they blame me as a young Jew for using just as much energy to single out Israel and hold it responsible for its crimes?
Palestinian Youth Movement opposes the Dakota Access Pipeline as another opportunity to destroy Native environment and it will caravan from California to Standing Rock, North Dakota in solidarity this month.
The two sides of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement squared off in New York’s City Hall on Thursday, with BDS activists disrupting a hearing where city council members discussed a resolution condemning BDS. “New York City Council should stay out of the business of condemning non-violent human rights movements,” Radhika Sainath, staff attorney with Palestine Legal, said in a statement. “By passing this resolution, New York City Council will chill the speech of New Yorkers eager to be part of an international human rights movement.”
Cadiz, provincial capital in the autonomous community of Andalusia in the Spanish state, has become the latest municipality to pass a motion supporting the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement for Palestinian rights and declaring itself an Israeli “Apartheid Free Zone”. Cadiz joins more than 50 cities and towns across the Spanish state which have voted to declare themselves spaces free from Israeli apartheid.
Groups closely aligned with the far-right Israeli government have declared “lawfare” on the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement in Canada. Recent events in Canada’s parliament, the Ontario Legislature and on Canadian campuses reveal the increasingly forceful trajectory of this strategy.
Israel supporter Seffi Kogen writes at the Forward that Jewish students want to be involved with progressive causes on campus, and the pro-Israel cause too. But it’s impossible to reconcile these political programs.
Nada Elia says that for those who strive to rise above nationalism, activism for justice in Palestine is rooted in a belief in justice and equal rights for everyone, everywhere. Yet, many of these same activists celebrated with millions around the world when Celtic FC fans flew the Palestinian flag at a game in Glasgow against Israel’s Hapoel Be’er Sheva. She explains that even though activists were waving the Palestinian flag, those events were not about nationalism: “The Palestinian flag has come to symbolize defiance to censorship, a rejection of the Zionist narrative that would have people believe Israel is “defending itself” rather than brutally maintaining its occupation and apartheid policies, and grassroots opposition to state violence, to colonialism, to brutal military oppression.”
Two dioceses of the Lutheran Church of Sweden sponsored a Kairos Palestine summer camp to consider ramping up the pressure on Israel by increasing support of the BDS movement. “We have waited 41 years” as the situation has gotten worse and worse in Israel and the Occupied Territories, said Rev. Anna Karin Hammar. “We are cowards.”