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You should have seen 300 students chanting "Divest-Divest-Divest" in the Central Student Government meeting, March 18th, soon after a representative claimed that "none of my constituents" were interested in the divestment resolution.
Now the entire student government gets a chance to re-assess their definition of the phrase, "none of my constituents".
We need some good news now and we have it:
University of Michigan students have officially launched a divestment campaign in the student government. A good number of students spoke up for that resolution March 11th in the Central Student Government last night.
The big meeting and vote will happen Tuesday, March 18th, 7:30 pm on the 3rd floor of the Michigan Union, 530 South State Street, in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Phil, I can't complain. The whole Mondoweiss team is doing its best to push for boycott, divestment, and sanctions against the last apartheid state - Israel. Boycott (or "BDS") really is the most vivid tool to push for liberation, when it comes to Palestine today.
And the entire student movement for Palestine knows it, in every inch of North America, Europe, and Africa. They know it, but won't act on it.
So I hope that students on U.S. campuses will finally come out of their closets and publicly demand boycott against Israel. When they finally start that ball rolling, it will end with liberation for Palestine and for the entire region.
Every tyranny in the entire region is directly or indirectly kept alive by the cold heartless racism of the Israeli state, which is still backed by all three branches of the U.S. government.
So when you abolish the apartheid state, you topple tyranny across the region, too.
Thanks, Professor. I hope that students in the United States will read your article and demand resolutions in their student governments supporting the boycott of Israel, right now, before another semester ends in silence.
Who will be the first campus to have a campaign to boycott Israel?
So far, this year, not one campus has seen a real live marching divestment or boycott campaign (on-line BDS talk and YouTube videos don't count). You can't say there's a campus BDS movement when there isn't one. So where is it now?
Here's a good example of how to do it: Just like Wayne State University's Student Council did it - link to tinyurl.com
Yes, you can walk into your student government and ask for boycott against Israel. Simple.
Petty arguments over this or that personality amount to nothing because there is no BDS movement yet -- remember what the Civil Rights Movement looked like? Remember what the Black Power Movement looked like?
Mass marches making demands -- that's a movement. Occasional squeals on web sites that are unknown to 99% of the population do not equal a movement.
If Palestine is to be saved, there had better be a real, marching Boycott-Israel movement. Make yourself seen and heard in the news media demanding boycott, with a crowd standing next to you. That's a movement.
Yes, Kathleen. I can tell you the reason for such petitions:
Everyone is terrified to demand boycott against Israel in any public setting. Everyone is afraid to march on any seat of power and demand a boycott against Israel.
Hence these petitions, which require no public demands and no public debates. They are signed by the people with the least fear of being called anti-Semites, a laughably flimsy accusation which is used successfully to prevent any public boycott campaign.
Hence the entire boycott "movement" is on-line; none of it is in-person in any sustained way, like at a student government, or a city council. None of it resembles the old-time civil rights marches, or the old Black Power demonstrations.
This terrible fear of making demands against Israel is especially strange, because the Black Freedom marchers had good reason to fear for their life and limb -- yet they marched. Speaking up for Palestine is not even one-tenth as hazardous to your health. So where are the marchers for Palestine?
Of course, this is a welcome statement of support for boycott, divestment, and sanctions against the last apartheid state on Earth. Thanx a bunch.
However, the entire school year has gone by without even one publicized attempt at a boycott, divestment, and sanctions resolution on any campus in the United States.
And we are in 2014, a full twelve years after the first national divestment conference in Berkeley, California, and almost 12 years after the second national divestment conference in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
The students who organized those conferences are in their mid-thirties now. Thousands of Palestinians and Lebanese have been massacred since those conferences.
What kind of a heartless, gutless "solidarity" movement would spend another year without a single visible campus campaign to boycott Israel? Please spare me your promises of a beautifully strategized April resolution to be unveiled just minutes before the campuses flee for summer vacation. I don't believe you any more.
All I hear is your very real silence about boycotting Israel, on every campus in the nation.
You would think that Israel would be content to bomb so many thousands of Palestinians to death, and to steal every ounce of control over Palestinian land, too. But no, they also want to insult and frighten Palestinians way over in North America, too.
There are some antidotes on the web for that kind of genocide, and for the paralyzing fright it induces. Take this "Fuck Israel" poster for example: link to tinyurl.com
Sometimes a little expression of defiance just helps you to breathe easier.
Yes, there is only one way to interpret such obscenities against the people of Palestine, who control not one square inch of land, who could not oppress a single soul if they tried. These obscenities against 11 million Palestinians are expressed by one Israeli prime minister after another, by means of bombing thousands of innocents to death in Palestine and in Lebanon.
Who could blame Palestinians for uttering the words "Fuck Israel", after so much violence, so much racism loosed upon the world by the Israeli state?
Consider who is the occupier with hundreds of nukes (Israel) and who is the victim.
It's Israel which deserves expressions of contempt, not their victims.
Today, another boost to the boycotts and divestment against Apartheid Israel:
"Palestinian activist urges University to divest from Israel" - link to michigandaily.com
See that article in today's Michigan Daily -- the demand to boycott and divest from Israel gets a standing ovation at a packed auditorium in the University of Michigan.
Apartheid is doomed.
There's more momentum today for the Boycott-Israel movement:
"Native American Studies Group Joins Israel Boycott"
Article in 'Inside Higher Ed'
December 18, 2013
At: link to insidehighered.com
"The elected council for the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association has unanimously opted to support the academic boycott of Israel, making it the third U.S.-based scholarly association, after the Association for Asian American Studies and the American Studies Association, to do so...."
The boycott story was also covered in the French mass media at link to france24.com
I think none of us realize the global reach of this overwhelming boycott resolution approval. Today's boycott coverage in the New York Times, Reuters, AP, UPI, ABC, etc., is only the beginning. Think of the campus Boycott-Israel resolutions that are surely coming next semester. You can see the apartheid state being abolished sooner than anyone imagines.
In Spain's mass media today: link to internacional.elpais.com
In Italy's mass media today:
link to ilmondo.it
Thank you for the fine article. How wonderful to see this:
"SAFE demands that the University of Michigan divest from corporations that support the Israeli occupation and its subsequent displacement of Palestinians..."
This demand will free Palestine.
A famous Israeli journalist is screaming for boycotts against Israel, period. Not just against some company, but bluntly against Israel.
Yet it is December 2013 -- where is the campus boycott campaign against Israel? Where is even one student is demanding any boycott resolution against Israel?
Where is even one campus experiencing a public campaign to boycott Israel?
Again, the campus BDS campaign (boycott, sanctions, divestment against Israel) would be wonderful -- if you could see it or hear it on any campus.
Where the hell is it?
Exactly. Publicly putting the boycott of Israel on the table for debate is a gigantic victory by itself. Don't be surprised when you win the debate too.
Thank you, Lena,
It's wonderful to think of people showing open, public defiance against Apartheid Israel, and voicing open demands for boycott against Israel.
I am still waiting to see that happen on a U.S. campus this semester. Once students voice those boycott demands publicly, they will be unstoppable.
I liked Noura's quote, "The one thing that we do have that has been declared by a Palestinian body outside of these traditional channels has been a demand for a rights based approach in the BDS call of 2005…"
Actually, Noura was being modest. The first national divestment conference was scheduled for the autumn of 2001. It was created largely by two visionary students, one being Noura. The notion of busting the apartheid state with divestment and boycotts was the most important thing to happen in the history of Palestine solidarity movements.
Then September 11th happened, and permanently destroyed that divestment momentum. In a word, the entire Arab American population was panicked into silence, where theyhave remained to this day (with a few fortunate exceptions like Noura). Their fair-weather friends wandered off to other causes.
So a terribly crippled first divestment conference was re-scheduled for February 2002 at Berkeley. Many more crippled divestment conferences followed it, until this day. Not one was able to resuscitate the divestment movement, except for quick episodes like last Spring, when a string of California campuses saw divestment resolutions.
Let's not forget the pioneering Wayne State University divestment resolution, where the Student Council voted for total divestment against Israel:
link to 4.bp.blogspot.com
When you see those kinds of forceful total divestment, total boycott resolutions, against Israel, in a big wave across U.S. campuses -- that's when Palestine will get freed. Who will start that wave of resolutions this year?
Text of Wayne State University's Student Council Divestment Resolution:
Approved on April 17, 2003,
This Resolution is on the Web at:
link to inminds.co.uk
"WHEREAS, the Student Council of Wayne State University has grave misgivings about financing violent ethnic cleansing, racially directed against millions of occupied Palestinian civilians, who are both innocent and helpless,
"WHEREAS, those millions of Palestinians suffer long-term malnutrition, are surrounded by Israeli army bulldozers, tanks, soldiers, and by jet bombers, all of which have killed thousands of occupied Palestinians,
"WHEREAS, on Sunday, March 16, 2003, an American college student, Rachel Corrie, was killed in plain sight, while dressed in bright orange, while waving, and while shouting at an Israeli Army bulldozer through a megaphone, by that same Israeli Army bulldozer, in the Occupied Gaza Strip,
"WHEREAS, that Israeli Army bulldozer ran her over twice,
"WHEREAS, South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu has urged us all to divest from Israel due to its violent and humiliating apartheid policies,
"WHEREAS, Israel was a long-time, close ally of White Apartheid South Africa,
"WHEREAS, the Wayne State University Board of Governors ("the Board") has knowledge of University investments, including what governments our University is paying taxes to by means of investment, and has the authority to seek such information from its fund managers,
"THEREFORE IT IS RESOLVED, that we ask the Board to immediately divest (dis-invest) our university from Israel,
"THEREFORE IT IS FURTHER RESOLVED, that we ask the Board for a report this semester, on its progress in divesting the University from its investments in Israel, including divestment from all companies doing business in Israel, and divestment from all stocks and pension funds which include those companies."
At least $118 billion has gone to Israel, according to a report entitled "U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel", by Jeremy M. Sharp, Congressional Research Service, April 11, 2013.
I am very glad to see the Albuquerque billboard demanding action against Israel by the City Council. Thank you! That $118 billion should be spent rebuilding Detroit, not bankrolling Israeli massacres.
Something similar has been happening at the Ann Arbor City Council. See this article:
"Protesters ask new Ann Arbor City Council member to spearhead resolution to 'boycott Israel' "
-- in the 'Ann Arbor News', at link to annarbor.com
Hope to see more action to boycott Israel at city councils. When you show up to speak at the City Council, the reporters and photographers are waiting for you. It's pretty easy to get a "Boycott Israel" news story that way.
Remember when a few pissed-off Zionists could shut down any event? Not any more. Why?
The answer is the BDS movement. I wish it would accelerate! But even in its present tiny form, the demand for "BDS" has given a few students courage.
What you discover, when you say "Boycott Israel", is that the Zionists have no power to shut you up!
Israeli tanks will not roll into your dorm. Israeli drones will not blow you out of the campus swimming pool. Israeli soldiers will not handcuff you at the student government meeting and drag you away from the mike.
You can talk your head off. The Zionsists have to sit there and suffer. They can't phone headquarters for an air strike, can they? So you sign up to speak, and then say "Boycott Israel" at every meeting of your student government -- if the mood strikes you. Repeat the process at every City Council meeting. For a little color, bring a boycott banner, boycott balloons, whatever strikes your fancy.
Because the apartheid state is going down. Down like the Klan. As soon as the students say the word, Netanyahu will be in a cell at the Hague.
That word is "boycott".
Thanks for your kind insight.
You are right on all points. We need to express outrage against the bastards, we need to demand boycott against Israel today, every day, and we also need to be supportive of each other.
I deserve the blame for being hypercritical of timid efforts by well-meaning students, but my excuse is that I have seen too many years of that timidity, followed by too many Israeli massacres against Gaza and Lebanon.
Boycott boycott boycott.
Ben White deserves credit for his Brooklyn College presentation tonight. He did not shy away from speaking on the movement for boycott and divestment (BDS) against Israel, during the Question-and-Answer period.
Ben expressed gratitude that a questioner brought up BDS, and recommended that people really do take advantage of BDS' momentum around the world.
He emphasized that BDS provides an answer to the question of "what do I do now?" He added that people should look for any opportunities to push boycott-type strategies and tactics.
He deserves thanks for that.
Now it's up to his student audience to take action on that advice, before the semester is over, at Brooklyn College and elsewhere. These students are bright enough to figure it out - the louder you call for BDS, the faster Palestine is free.
In reply to "just":
First, your anonymous handle tells me how terrified this so-called movement is. Yes, caution makes sense -- but not 11 years of a BDS-free BDS "movement". What kind of human rights movement simply can't be found, on any campus, From September to March?
Again, on what campus does this BDS "movement" publicly exist this semester? Pardon me for the rude question - but when will they audibly demand BDS against Israel? When?
I guess your level of comfort depends on how urgently you feel that Apartheid Israel needs to be abolished. You seem very comfortable to see a dozen students with innocuous protest signs that demand nothing. I feel sick to know that those kids are the best and the bravest - and that 99% of campuses are doing even less.
You have a lot of love for the students, even if it takes them 11 more years to publicly demand any form of action against Israel.
But I expect more. These kids have Twitter and can materialize anywhere, anytime, on 30 minutes' notice. Yet 99% of them can't find their way to their own student government to demand a simple boycott against Israel. Why? After 11 years, why?
I attended the first national divestment conference in Berkeley, over 11 years ago. So many "strategy" sessions. So much talk of "education".
But after that conference, there was never a sustained public demand to boycott, divest from, or cut all ties to Israel. Never on any campus, except for Wayne State University in 2003. Then (very briefly) on a few other campuses.
Over those 11 years, a tiny handful of divestment campaigns snuck into their student governments in April and then - poof! - graduated, before any newspaper even knew about it. The BDS "movement" only wants a safe room to gripe in, privately. Will they ever march on any university office to demand any action against Israel, you know, like a real human rights movement does?
11 years of "BDS" has consisted almost entirely of private sniveling emails, private postings on Websites unknown to the public, and a few private sniveling events.
I expect wounded whimpering from a beaten dog, but not from thousands of bright students who could truly create a BDS movement nationwide in 7 days.
Yes, I expect more from them.
At the February 2002 national divestment conference, I said, OK, let's all go demand divestment resolutions at our campuses, this month. Quickly a conference leader announced that -- no -- first we must "research". Next we must have a website. Next-- well, you know what came next: nothing, for 11 years. Just more private events, a few conferences that resulted in... more conferences.
Again, this semsester, on what campus can you see a tangible movement to boycott Israel, 11 years after the first national divestment conference?
The top photo is the best. She comes closest to making a demand. Her sign features four words, taken almost verbatim from William Lloyd Garrison's defiant declaration against slavery in 1831: "I WILL BE HEARD."
She is perhaps the bravest student in the Palestine solidarity movement.
The other photos show an excellent protest posture, but with signs that demand nothing. The signs express 1% of the wholly justified outrage in these students' hearts.
They whine that Israeli "democracy" is flawed. Come on! Is that the best we can do?
Millions of Arabs have been exterminated by four successive U.S. Presidents, and by many more Israeli Prime Ministers.
Isn't one student ready to just say "Boycott Israel" in any public place-- until she or he is finally heard?
Now read and learn from William Lloyd Garrison. His words, in 1831:
"I am aware that many object to the severity of my language; but is there not cause for severity? I will be as harsh as truth, and as uncompromising as justice. On this subject, I do not wish to think, or to speak, or write, with moderation. No! No! Tell a man whose house is on fire to give a moderate alarm; tell him to moderately rescue his wife from the hands of the ravisher; tell the mother to gradually extricate her babe from the fire into which it has fallen; – but urge me not to use moderation in a cause like the present. I am in earnest – I will not equivocate – I will not excuse – I will not retreat a single inch – AND I WILL BE HEARD. The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal, and to hasten the resurrection of the dead."
That is the spirit you need -- otherwise, Palestine will continue to be strangled to death while you snivel.
That was a very welcome title to see:
"Ruebner says boycott is essential because ‘we’d be mad to leave this to politicians’ "
Thank you. I hope that the OSU students run with that slogan, this semester. Ditto for a thousand campuses. It's so simple.
At OSU, in 2003, I attended the 3rd national divestment conference. I never imagined that it would take ten years for campus divestment movements to sprout up. I was thinking it would take ten minutes. That's what the whole room wanted.
So after ten years, maybe OSU students will finally walk into their student government and demand a Boycott-Israel resolution. It will create a situation of great clarity on their campus, and it will spread.
Repeat that process and you'll see what helpless racists the Zionists really are. They have no power to shut your mouth once you sign up to speak and take the mike in your hands.
Their tanks, their jet bombers, their checkbooks will not help them against your voice for boycott, in the OSU newspaper, week after week.
The core problem is that SJP's are terrified of living through a "controversy" from September thru March, every year. So they stall until April (or never) before asking for any divestment resolution.
But "controversy" is the way you get heard! Who would even know about the Brooklyn College event without that "controversy" that advertised it?
Since the SJP's have no experience facing "controversy" (that means screaming Zionists), they don't know that it's really possible to ignore the bastards. Just turn your back and keep demanding boycott.
It's untrue that campus divesmtment campaigns are impossible before April. You don't need September thru March to educate with tiny events that no one sees or hears. You need September thru March to loudly educate by demanding boycott, and then letting the Zionsts scream as loud as they like. That gets the slogan "Boycott Israel" into the campus paper.
But if there's no audible noise on campus against Israel all year long, no real "alliance building" and "educating" can be happening, can it?
Tell me, can you imagine if the whole 1960's had consisted of silent "alliance building" and invisible "educating" -- would any Black person be allowed to vote in Mississippi, even today?
In response to "Ladidah":
Thank you for all those words, but there was still no answer to the only important question:
Where is the campus that actually features a visible movement pushing for a boycott against Israel? Where?
P.S.: All that talk about busy-busy-busy SJP activists (who truly cannot be seen or found from September until March) is not a good answer. All those alliances being built! All those public speaking tours!
Yes, I went to the last public speaking tour at the University of Michigan, which was attended by nobody from the public.
That event featured Ben White, Max Blumenthal and professor Camelia Suleiman last March. The small room looked packed, but it had maybe eight University of Michigan students -- who were already in and around the local equivalent of SJP. The rest had driven long distances from other existing SJP's. Not one soul wandered in from the public, except for a handful of peace activists from the 1950's and early 1960's who always show up to these things. There was zero media coverage, even from the campus newspaper.
The event flyer had been emailed on an apparently need-to-know-basis. Over a few days, an already weak flyer was further watered down, so finally it was called "Deconstructing Israeli Democracy: Apartheid, Zionism, Women's Movements by Ben White, Max Blumenthal, and Dr. Camelia Suleiman."
Not one word from any speaker mentioned divestment or boycott or sanctions against Israel. I entreated the speakers before the beginning of their talks to please put in a good word for boycotting Israel. They all seemed to agree-- but none breathed a word about BDS until the end, at which point I was passing them notes to please ask for boycott, and the video feed was about to shut off.
At that point, Max took my note and passed it to Ben. Then Ben said a few positive things about the BDS movement, and everyone left to go home.
That was in March 2013. At no time from September to May of that school year was there the slightest squeak on that very large campus demanding any boycott, divestment, or sanctions against Israel. Also no squeak for BDS this year, and Thanksgiving is almost upon us.
That is typical of the BDS-free "BDS movement" you speak of. Sure, it's better than nothing, but it doesn't possess the self-confidence to simply demand a boycott against Israel, period. Not a single student in the United States does, on any campus.
That's really a shame, after 11 years of national divestment and BDS conventions. So we all wait until Spring of 2014 for a handful of divestment resolutions on a few campuses. Then we wait for Spring of 2015.
Is that a movement? What if the 1960's Civil Rights Movement had looked like that, terrified of its own shadow? Mississippi would still be enslaved.
You claim students are leading the charge for BDS. If only they were!
As examples of this student movement, you name a handful of non-students who are largely elderly and usually wavering on BDS.
I ask again, can anyone name the North American campuses where students are publicly pushing for divestment or boycott resolutions against Israel, this semester? I hear only silence from September until March, almost every year.
Every day I am in a state of disbelief over that campus silence. Although, yes, you are right: BDS-supporters would rather be praised for their underground private meetings, where they tell each other that BDS is a good thing.
But private meetings are no movement. The biggest of them all just concluded at Stanford - a national Palestine solidarity conference. Nationwide, it got one piece of news coverage: one news article in the Stanford Daily. After 11 years, is that all Palestine gets on U.S. campuses? One article?
A response to "LaDiDah":
Yes, I was very happy to see the York Federation divestment resolution, which was in March 2013. I was also thrilled to see the California divestment resolutions which followed it in April and May, and I hoped they would become a nationwide trend. Yet they only spread to one campus -- DePaul.
As you say, there are many, many campuses with some students who (privately) support BDS. Is that the"movment" you speak of? Certainly it must feel like a movement to those SJP-ers who privately meet with each other.
Were gay bars in the 1950's a Gay Liberation Movement? No, they were secretive places, living in fear of public disclosure, certainly lacking the backbone to demand their rights as normal human beings -- exactly like today's BDS "movement". It exists under a rock, not proudly in public view from September through September on every big campus -- as it should do.
And yes, I agree with you that this year promises to be like last year -- a handful of divestment campaigns at the tail end of the last semester of the school year.
Where the hell are they from September through February? "Strategizing"? "Building Bridges"? "Educating"? Yes, I know what that means - essentially private events for themselves and their personal friends to comfort themselves over the daily loss of Palestine.
You are right -- there will be a little flurry of divestment campaigns in "March/April/May 2014, at the end of this academic year" -- so that when the Zionists start screaming, their victims can simply flee the campus or graduate and disappear. This is a strategy to AVOID campus debates all year.
I guess I should be grateful for the handful of April heroes on a handful of campuses. But that is no national movement, it has no national energy, no natioanl public backbone, and scarcely anyone with a real name that is publicly pushing for it from September through February.
For example, your screen name is "La-Di-Dah". I understand the need for anonymity: Arab students are victimized for speaking out for Palestine; but at some point paranoia and paralysis make BDS into an underground whisper when it should be a proud nationwide shout.
Consider the acronymn "BDS". It is still a secret handshake, not a national shout. 99% of the population has no idea what BDS even means. Why not simply say "Boycott Israel" or something else that is comprehensible?
The students are not shying away from a certain type of demand against Israel. They are terrified of making any demand against Israel, any demand at all.
Honestly, the only students who give a damn about Palestine are Arab students. They are best able to articulate what's been done to 300 million Arabs by Israel. They feel the humiliation. They flock to Arab comedy shows to laugh bitterly at themselves. They also fear what the Zionists might do them, whether in Ann Arbor or in Gaza City.
The humiliation shakes their confidence to speak publicly. And they fear being called anti-Semites, being barred from every job, thus being effectively prevented from marrying and living a normal life. The victimization (and later academic careers) of the UC Irvine students shows that they are right (and wrong) to be so afraid.
Those students who have every reason to feel safe, and protected by their white privilege, don't give a rat's ass about Palestine. So they also won't make public demands against Israel -- even though it would cost them nothing to speak up.
Until they were led by Black students, the Civil Rights and Black Power movements simply had no spirit, no loud confident voice. White liberals had no spirit or ability to do much.
But with self-confident Black leadership, the Black Freedom movement went far. They had a big enough heart to inject the issue of Palestine into U.S. political discourse too, starting in the summer of 1967.
Until Arab students can publicly demand action against Israel, saying "Boycott Israel" or "Cut all Ties to Israel", or whatever, even a million Mondoweiss web sites won't liberate Palestine.
Do you remember the 4 Black students who started the 1960's, with the lunch counter sit-ins? They were afraid of being killed or arrested -- but they were not. And they saved Black America.
Ben's talks are good fuel for BDS activists on campus. The problem is that there are no BDS activists on campus, any campus, not since April 2013 in California.
I am glad Ben is hoping that his talk will motivate students "to take action on campus in solidarity with Palestinians"; yes, of course I hope the same.
But Ben spoke in March 2013 at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor to a roomfull of the most dedicated Palestine solidarity students from several Michigan campuses, and at least one Canadian campus. Afterwards, they never pushed for even the weakest BDS resolution, anywhere. They were thrilled to just pose for pictures with Ben and call that "activism".
It is now November 2013, and not a single visible campaign to boycott Israel exists on any campus in North America. Not in Michigan, either.
Even if Ben bluntly urges the students to march into their student governments and demand Boycott-Israel resolutions, they won't. And they will list a dozen "strategic" reasons why now is "not the right time". They will tell you that instead they are "organizing smart". They will tell you they are "building bridges".
Even if Ben offers to personally lead them into their own student governments and speak for their boycott resolutions, nobody will accompany him.
After 2001, where has there been a single group of students with the self-confidence to demand Boycott-Israel resolutions on any campus, in any sustained way? The tiny handfull of exceptions (California, Wayne State, DePaul, UMich-Dearborn) last for no longer than a snowflake on a hot day. Compare that to the last decade of feverish campus campaigns to boycott Coke, Adidas, and fossil fuels-- to alleviate oppression that's not one-tenth of the brutish strangulation visited on Gaza.
Speeches like Ben's (even with his nice clear slideshow) simply will not move the students to demand boycott resolutions.
Israeli massacres of Gaza and Lebanon won't move the students to demand boycott resolutions. These students are permanently paralyzed when it comes to demanding boycott against Israel. Privately, they grin for photos with their fellow BDS supporters -- and this is the sum total of the "BDS movement" on campuses.
Too bad for Gaza, but there is a silver lining: happy party times for U.S. BDS supporters at their conferences, once a year. Good luck, Ben. Those students grinning for photos with you are never going to demand BDS in real life, on any campus.
Every time I see the phrase "the next intifada", I remember the constant Israeli massacres of helpless Palestinians. That is what "intifada" looks like.
It would be so much safer, and so devastatingly effective, to simply walk in front of journalists where they sit-- at student government meetings, at city council meetings-- and demand a resolution favoring a total boycott of all products from Israel, to the maximum extent allowed by law.
Nice loud Boycott-Israel resolutions: they are needed now. They are simple and safe. You can't get arrested by asking for one. Much better than watching the campuses stay silent for another semester. Much better than another 11 years of "strategizing" behind closed doors and imagining that an intifada is coming.
There is no such thing as an "intifada" when you are helpless in front of a gigantic nuclearized military power. Israel will shoot every Palestinian who looks at them cross-eyed, like in the previous intifadas. It would be as easy as shooting fish in a barrel for the IDF.
So hit "Israel" with loud, legal boycott resolutions; that will involve a whole world full of campuses, and it will keep you alive long enough to gather more support.
The decision to deny funding to the Palestine cultural event was so obviously sick that it was just overturned in tonight's Senate meeting.
The publicity helped. The louder and more public you are in the media eye, the less harm the Zionists are able to do to you.
Now let's move on to a boycott-Israel resolution, in the same Senate.
For crying out loud. This extremely modest event is being vetoed? 10,000 miles from Palestine, you still can't say a single word about Palestine, not even in a tame cultural event? It is time to call the USG a bluntly racist institution if they allow that to happen. That would be true even if their executive was not touring Israel.
If they veto this, then next week, why not let them see a big juicy Boycott-Israel resolution in their student government?
In reply to southernobserver:
I have no disagreement with anything said here, about how Arab and Muslim students are rightfully afraid to be harmed for advocating a simple humanitarian boycott against Israel. Yes, they are rightfully fearful -- but I say they are taking that fear to the point of paralysis, and paralysis is where the truly non-existent campus boycott movement is.
Certainly I do not want to push any student to be publicly defiant against Israel if they genuinely fear that Zionists will harm them.
And so there is no such thing as a publicly visible movement on any campus, on any campus, to demand a boycott resolution against Israel.
When Arab students find their voice, they will be more starkly clear than anyone who has gone before them. Until then, we are reduced to reading the tea leaves with Phil, about what Beinart is writing and where he is writing it. At best, we get a scholarly talk from Ben White, a good man equipped with good footnotes, but unable or unwilling to lead any marches on a student government -- possibly because no one would follow him.
This is why, until Arab students find their voice, they will be led by Ben (who just wants to present some scholarship) and by Beinart (whose first interest is Israel always), and by their own subterranean campus groups who are paralyzed with fear and just want to comfort each other as Palestine is dissolved.
There is a way out, but it involves loud, 1960's-style demands, this time against Israel. Who will start that process, on any campus? Who?
The current Palestine "movement" is like a Civil Rights Movement where Martin, Malcolm, and Fred Hampton were never born, where the Montgomery Bus Boycott never happened, where the 1960-61 wave of lunch counter sit-ins and Freedom Rides never happened, where there was no 1963 March on Detroit followed by a March on Washington.
Its teeth are pulled and its voice is muted below a whisper in any public forum.
It's like a Civil Rights Movement where Black students are far, far in the background and the only visible leaders are old white guys who grumble that race prejudice is wrong, and that somebody ought to do something about it.
Black America would still be living under Lynch Law if the civil rights movement had looked like that.
Yet that is exactly where the Palestine Freedom Movement still is.
Have you seen any marches on Washington, to demand that Washington "Cut All Ties" to Israel? No, you haven't.
Yet such marches and demands were common during the late 1970's and early '80's when it came to Apartheid South Africa. There was nothing controversial about saying "Cut All Ties to the Apartheid State".
Phil and Annie and Alex are doing a very useful piece of journalism with Mondoweiss, sure. And a few hundred Arab students have revived enough to hold an annual Palestine conference (it has ceased to be called a "divestment conference"), just for the comfort of being around like-minded people in the same room for a weekend.
But that is all there is, and it means a century of slavery for the Arab world, especially for Palestine. I still hope for more from the students, a nationwide campus movement demanding boycott against Israel.
Look how easy it's been to push resolutions to "divest from fossil fuels" or to boycott Adidas or Coke in order to defend mistreated labor union members 10,000 miles away. Don't tell me that Israeli tanks will roll across Harvard Square if you push for a boycott-Israel resolution in the Harvard student government. There will be no resistance except for stupid insults from a handfull of powerless Zionist loudmouths.
Yes, I said powerless. Idealistic Arab students with cardboard protest signs can easily overthrow the political dominance of 125 Zionist Federations, which are essentially old guys with checkbooks and a small paid staff that screams on cue for Israel.
I've heard Ben speak, and have read his writings. He's a serious, consistent scholar of the (very modest) Palestine solidarity movement. And I'm glad Mondoweiss is showcasing the sick censorship attempts against him. Ben writes and speaks in favor of boycotts and sanctions against Israel, too. At Michigan, I had to prompt him to bring up the subject, but he was finally willing to speak up for it at the tail end of the meeting.
So why am I uncomfortable reading Mondoweiss's coverage? What's wrong with this picture?
What's wrong is that Arab students are missing from the public discussion. Muslim students are missing. Certainly there is no public Palestinian face leading this movement. And it's a movement for what? Boycotting Israel at Brooklyn College?
No, it's a much more modest movement. Too modest, after all these years of blood and ruin for Palestine. It's only a movement to invite a white guy to give a scholarly presentation. And Mondoweiss is the only loud public coverage I have seen. Mondoweiss is the only Web site where you can find this (very modest) Movement for Palestine.
And, as I say, it's not a movement to boycott Israel, by and large. It's a movement to whine and grumble, nothing more. It ought to be a movement to publicly defy, publicly boycott, publicly isolate Israel as the stinking racist state it is. You know, the way Apartheid South Africa was defied and boycotted.
Even the existing movement (the modest grumble and whine movement) is not publicly led by Arab students. It's led by Mondoweiss. Much credit goes to Mondoweiss for that, but damn it, is that the best we can do?
Where are the Arab students? Will they ever speak up for boycott? They dearly wish that someone else will take on that job, but, guys, no one else will.
Thank you, Ahmed. I also like to believe that "the BDS movement will grow in force and effectiveness."
But here at the University of Michigan campus in Ann Arbor, there is not the slightest demand for boycott against Israel. Or divestment. Or sanctions. Nothing.
The internet is forever, and out of 40,000 University of Michigan students, not even one is willing to risk their name ever appearing next to even the most symbolic action against Israel. Ever.
Many of those students just finished attending a lovely BDS conference at Stanford -- and they are publicly silent about BDS.
Last year, those students hosted a lovely BDS conference at Michigan -- and they were publicly silent about BDS last year too.
Remember, those students are acutely aware of Israel's savage racism. They sincerely hate that racism. They wish somebody would demand boycott against Israel -- but not themselves. And this is Michigan, the best-placed campus to make a public plea for a total boycott against Israel.
The situation is duplicated at thousands of campuses nationwide. No one will make the slightest demand for boycott or even divestment against Israel. Not even one student in the entire nation. And it's already November. Soon it will be Christmas break.
Then comes the 2014 BDS conference -- and you can bet there will still be no visible BDS movement on any campus.
Israel is rightly compared to the genocidal maniacs who committed genocides on the Native Americans. Israel is rightly compared to every violent racist thug: the Klan, Apartheid South Africa, Hitler, King Leopold of Belgium as he plundered and massacred the Congo. All these comparisons are useful and right.
So I looked all over Twitter and Google for campus movements to boycott or (at least) divest from Israel. I see none. Even after last week's Stanford Palestine conference: none, on any campus on Earth.
Why is that? It's now November 2013, 11.5 years after the first national divestment conference. Where are the campus divestment movements?
In response to Ron's comment,
This kind of vulgar defiance is something you would never, ever direct publicly against Israel. I would appreciate your defiance more if it were aimed at publicly demanding a Boycott-Israel resolution at your student government or City Council.
As for your hard work for BDS, I don't doubt it -- but why is there no mass media coverage of it? It is because you lack the public defiance against Israel that you are capable of voicing -- if you wish to.
Is Israel really an apartheid state that deserves to be boycotted and thereby abolished? Yes, and I say so in front of the City Council and student government. What is preventing you from doing the same, with your troupe of street demonstrators?
I am sure Israel must be thrilled to see that no student, simply no student, is demanding boycott against Israel on the entire North American continent. Nothing scares Israel more than those two words, spoken in the mass media: "Boycott Israel".
The students can speak those two words today, if they want to. The students can walk into their student governments and ask for a resolution favoring a boycott against Israel to the maximum extent allowed by law. It will change campus life overnight.
Or the students can simply condemn those who have noticed that BDS has ceased to exist. Yet BDS has ceased to exist, except as a private code of solidarity, a secret handshake, an email salutation, the quietest of slogans, an intentionally obscure acronymn unkown to 99% of the country, barely heard in any media outlet.
My experience is that the students will run back to the safety of their private meetings and work very, very hard on future private meetings.
Public demands for boycott against Israel -- that is what will save Palestine. Private conferences won't, unless they serve to build that public movement. Since the first 2002 national divestment conference, I have expected that at least one student would say "Boycott Israel" in at least one public meeting on at least one campus. I am still waiting, as are 11 million Palestinians.
Thank you, Linda,
Couldn't access that link, but found something that must be roughly similar at: link to superuw.org
That was very nice, I hope it made it into the newspapers. It happened in June.
So far nothing has happened that has hit any media radar from Sept. 1st to Sept. 30th nationwide. On thousands of campuses, nothing suggesting any campus boycott or divestment demand against Israel. Not even a bravo or a complaint about the October BDS conference.
Mind you, this is 11-and-a-half years after the first nationwide Divestment Conference at Berkeley.
At this rate, maybe the children of those 20-year-old conference attendees will be ready, in the year 2022, to start the nationwide push for divestment and boycott resolutions.
Or maybe not. What will Palestine look like in 2022, just going by the present trend of campus silence?
Thanks, Dutch, and thanks Annie,
Yeah, I'm a whiner on the subject of BDS. Don't know what else to do, except to keep saying "Boycott Israel" until it catches on, in front of meetings where the media is present.
Comatose campuses can change into BDS campuses-- I just hope it happens sooner rather than later.
Yes, they are great kids. I have seen them personally at many divestment and BDS conferences from the 2001-2002 school year through the 2012-2013 school year. How they love "strategizing" - it makes passivity look like activity. Yes, they are 100% for BDS -- as long as someone else does it.
I hope that the California experience has changed that. A whole month has been wasted in silence this semester.
National conferences are great, but when exactly do they stop "strategizing" and start publicly demanding anything-- like boycott of Israel?
Out of thousands of U.S. campuses, not even one student group, not even one student, is publicly demanding any boycott of Veolia or Sodastream or Sabra Hummus or anything openly related to Israel.
Not even one.
I'm glad for the Veolia campaign, but the campuses are dead and buried as far as any boycott-Israel campaugn goes, and it doesn't need to be that way.
Thanks, Annie, I think you've captured my strong feelings about this pretty well. Israel's violent racism means that it must be boycotted, and that the Israeli state must be abolished just like Apartheid South Africa was abolished.
But someone has to publicly demand that.
I personally demand boycott-Israel resolutions at my City Council and at the local student government. Often. Year after year, sometimes month after month. It annoys Zionists for the obvious reasons. It annoys anti-Zionists too, who are still obsessed with keeping BDS on the down-low.
Hence I am not heard, because no students will touch the issue with a ten-foot pole. Not in Michigan, not anywhere outside of California. It's a terrible shame for Palestine.
"BDS" has become a brand name for endless private meetings, private emails, private film showings, and occasional flashmobs on YouTube, but never for any concerted public demand for boycott at any university campus -- outside of California. Those California resolutions were a big victory, but they never spread. I know you helped. You tried.
Mondoweiss is, so far, the best resource for the BDS movement. All that is missing is the actual public BDS movement, on actual campuses.
But BDS-ers are afraid of making public boycott demands against Israel, and they also don't know how. (Hint: you just do it.)
BDS-ers are always bellyaching privately about Israel, but never publicly thrusting themselves in front of the mass media to demand boycott against Israel. Once they do, their worries will be over because the Zionists will be defeated, faster than you would ever believe.
Until then, we have another BDS conference at Stanford, October 25th. Great. But it's not a substitute for a public BDS campaign on heavily populated campuses: think Michigan, New York, Illinois, Massachusetts, all loaded with private BDS sentiment but public slience.
I guess this question makes you uncomfortable, given all the hard work you do, given all the hard unseen work that goes into BDS conferences, etc.
But let me ask that same annoying question: Where is this BDS movement on any campus, in any visible form? Where is the campus paper expressing joy or horror at BDS? Where is the student government debating a resolution to boycott Israel? Where?
P.S. Private meetings that are unreported in the mass media do not count as BDS. They count as BS.
If the BDS movement revives this semester, the Zionist thugs lose.
If not, they can run riot completely unopposed. Remember that there are very, very few Zionists. It's a filthy, racist doctrine, something shameful to express in public.
All you need is 3 students demanding a strong boycott-Israel resolution, and the entire campus's life will change. Next week is October. Where is the "BDS movement"? It represents a good clean cause-- resistance to racist violence.
So where is it? Can it be found on any campus, anywhere?
Of course any and all students who hate racism should be enthused about a campaign to boycott Israel on campus. Those who decline are missing out on the experience of a lifetime, a real human rights movement that will benefit the planet in a big way.
I think that's worth more than a modest car. Or even an immodest car.
So I hope students will think hard before resigning themselves to the life of a sheep (or a wolf).
Your 3-state reality is not inevitable, if the Palestinians can make their voices heard more loudly. In this country, that means a loud demand for boycott against Apartheid Israel. Since the labor unions cover barely 10% of the nation and are unconcerned with interntional solidarity, the civil rights and Black Power Movements are gone, the Chicano movement as we remember it is gone, that leaves only one spark plug for Boycott-Israel resolutions.
That spark plug is thousands of Arab American students on hundreds of North American campuses. Once they are publicly seen to demand Boycott-Israel resolutions on their campuses and beyond, then you can stop "Israel" from exterminating the last vestiges of Palestine.
Is it really so hard to demand boycott against Israel, to the maximum extent allowed by law? The Wayne State University student council voted for total divestment against Israel 10 years ago.
Where is the first student government to pass the same kind of resolution this semester?
It's a refreshing experience to see people express honest outrage against Apartheid Israel, for the crimes against humanity which it's been committing since 1948.
We do our best to demand boycott resolutions against Israel ( see link to annarbor.com ), but only the students can really make the movement happen.
Racism is the most absolute evil in the world, and we all have a duty to abolish it. "Boycott Israel" may not rhyme, but it feels good to say it, because that road leads to liberation.
True! Since Palestinains are pretty tightly tied down in Palestine, more importance is attached to U.S. campus boycott movements.
They can instantly reach the news media. Since Arab students do care about Palestine, largely, they are going to lead that movement to boycott Israel. No one else cares to do it.
The question is when. Now is better, while the semester is young. After 11 years of "strategizing" and "building bridges" and "educating", finally somebody has to set the precedent of demanding boycott, on a campus.
I mean the precedent of marching into a student government and demanding a resolution that urges a boycott against all Israeli products, to the maximum extent allowd by law.
Until that precedent is set, Israel will just keep bombing and shooting its way across the Arab world like a hot knife through butter.
After the boycott demands start spreading, though, there will be no stopping them. Racism is ugly, and students ought to be proud to boycott it.
Yes, spreading the images and news is important, so that activists can... do what?
All these images, such good fuel for the Movement to... do what?
To silently commiserate, that's what. Of course, that is no movement, and that is no activism.
Did MLK and Malcolm X send around unhappy pictures of oppression? Was that the civil rights movement? No, they got in front of TV cameras and demanded liberation. Bluntly. They led marches, and very public debates, for Black liberation.
Now it's September 2013. Late September. Not even one campus has any visible boycott or divestment campaign against Israel.
What a bloody unfathomable shame. 11 years of divestment conferences, divestment "strategizing", and not one public campus campaign demanding the slightest action against Israel.
Meanwhile a furious campaign to divest from fossil fuels is taking campuses by storm. "Progressives" are rushing to join any abstract cause that has no Arabs in it. The whiter the faces in that movement, the more attractive "progressives" find it.
Yet the elephant on the coffee table is the ongoing genocide against the Arab world. That is the paramount human rights issue of today, together with the multi-million-person death toll in Africa caused by 60 years of genocidal post-colonial colonialism.
Do "progressives" imagine they are successfully hiding their revulsion at the idea of defending Arabs from heavily-armed European colonists? They are not hiding it from anyone. Shame.
Before fossil fuels, the campus "progressives" were outraged at Coke. Before Coke, they were outraged at Nike. Before Nike, they were livid over baby formula.
But the actual life and death of millions in the Arab world today?
Don't look for "progressives" to defend them. Hell no. Those "progressives" are racist to the bone. They will never lift a finger to boycott Israel or stop the ongoing wars on Arabs. Never, until it becomes cool and fashionable.
At most, a few of them might look at your pictures of Palestine, stifle a sniffle, and snort down another pint of diet carrot juice.
If Arab life is worth anything, to anyone on campus, let us see proof of that -- like a boycott campaign to abolish the apartheid state of Israel. Yes, on your campus.
Yes, boycotting is one of the best ways to abolish occupation.
Who will go to their campus government or city council and ask for a boycott-Israel resolution?
I thank Mr. Dalack for breaking the news that Alice Walker has been re-invited to speak at the University of Michigan. It is true that supporters of the racist state of Israel are hell-bent on silencing pro-Palestinian voices. Thank goodness they failed to silence Alice Walker.
Palestinians and their supporters should not silence themselves either. While there is no shame in being gagged by the powerful, remember that the Zionists are not so powerful that they can shut you up on U.S. campuses.
There are no Israeli tanks on campus.
There is no campus government in the country that can stop you from signing up to speak, and then demanding a boycott against Israel.
There is a terrible emasculating shame that comes from gagging yourself. Shed that shame and open your mouth.
There is simply nothing preventing 100 students from descending on the Central Student Government tomorrow (Tuesday) and demanding a resolution to urge the University of Michigan to boycott all products from Israel, to the maximum extent allowed by law.
Is that asking too much, in an elite student body of 40,000?
OK, then 10 students can demand a boycott against Israel. Or five. Or even one.
You've been gagged too long by racists, and by your own hand on your mouth. Speak in your own voice, while you can.
Don't wait until the U.S. joins openly with Israel in another war on the Arab world.
Yes, the California divestment movement worked very hard in the last month of school. They carried the entire BDS movement into the Los Angeles Times, over and over again.
Also, for your list, the first resolution for total divestment against Apartheid Israel was in 2003, at Wayne State University. See the full resolution, as approved by their Student Council, at link to 4.bp.blogspot.com
I went to at least the first three national divestment conferences, starting in 2002 at Berkeley, then at Michigan, then at Ohio State, and another one in Washington, DC.
I felt a certain excitement about the idea of ‘Connecting Struggles, Forging a National Movement’, because I thought all these students would run out and demand resolutions for divestment and boycott against Israel.
No, I was told -- no divestment resolutions until we "strategize", and "research", and "build bridges". That was in 2002. So 11 years of "strategizing" have gone by. The class of 2002 has children who will be shaving in a few years.
When does the "strategizing" end?
Many national divestment conferences, and "BDS" conferences, have come and gone. They are exciting places to be, because they promise public action on campus, to demand boycotts and divestment against Israel.
The students are thrilled to meet and tweet -- then they evaporate. Where is the wave of divestment resolutions?
Is there finally going to be a wave of divestment resolutions this September? Or will everyone wait silently for the next conference, and the next?
Thanks to Ms. Harvey, Mr. Dalack, and Mr. Weiss for making a big deal out of this.
You see the major media coverage that's possible when you publicly condemn the atrocities committed against Palestinians, as Alice Walker has done in Gaza. See Mondoweiss's coverage at link to mondoweiss.net, and see the AP coverage of that time, too.
That mass media coverage can be duplicated this September on U.S. campuses. We have learned from California divestment campaigns over the last year. We now know that once you demand boycott or divestment against the apartheid state of Israel, you will get media coverage.
Thus you can embolden many campuses to join you. The Israeli army has no tanks on U.S. campuses, and they cannot put a gag on your mouth after you have signed up to speak, in any student government meeting. Your words will go straight into the campus newspaper, and from there into the wider media.
This is how you free Palestine. It worked for South Africa, didn't it?
Why are you calling this statement "BDS"?
It does not call for boycotting Israel. It does not call for divestment against Israel. It does not call for sanctions against Israel. It does not call for any action against Israel?
Does "BDS" now refer to any critique, on any blog or email, of Israeli policies? I was hoping for a bit more, especially from the seasoned human rights advocates on the list of signers. They know how to demand boycott. They chose not to.
This statement against Israeli racism is much better than nothing. Thank you.
However, that statement demands no action against Israel - no boycott, no cutting of ties, nothing. Hat in hand, it begs politicians to "acknowledge and address" Israeli racism.
That statement is typical of the current toothless BDS movement, which can hardly be found outside a few California campuses.
Who will voice any heartfelt defiance against the last apartheid state on Earth, to publicly demand its boycott and abolition?
We are called on to do more than wring our hands. At this late date, we must demand total boycott and total abolition of the apartheid state -- exactly what worked on the now dead-and-buried South African apartheid state.
Black Americans used to condemn Israeli racism with the defiance it deserved -- at least since the 1956 Israeli attack on Egypt.
Just look at this 1970 New York Times ad, condemning Israeli state racism - link to tinyurl.com
Read more about it here - link to electronicintifada.net
That 1970 ad was written as an "Appeal by Black Americans" demanding an end to all military aid and assistance of any kind to Israel. Tell me, why can't you say that now, 43 years later?
Do you realize how deep, and how old, Israeli racism is? See this 1973 racist cartoon in Ha'aretz - link to tinyurl.com
That 1973 Israeli cartoon portrayed African diplomats as cannibals who were cheerfully preparing to eat Israeli officials.
Then Israel joined white South Africa's 1975-76 invasion of Angola, which ultimately led to the death of a half-million Angolans over several decades. Israel also joined white South Africa and the United States in the destruction of Mozambique: a million Mozambicans are dead as a result, and a third of the country was contaminated with landmines.
Tell me why, as Israel destroys thousands more lives, do condemnations of Israeli racism grow meeker, not louder?
Re-read that 1970 New York Times ad, to get a flavor of proper defiance against Israeli racist violence. Boycott and abolish the last apartheid state on Earth.
What's needed is some Vitamin BDS:
Cut off all aid, trade, and diplomatic relations with Apartheid Israel.
Then, bingo - the Palestinian people will not have the same swaggering bully choking the life out of them.
And the apartheid state will be abolished, exactly as it was in South Africa, the same way.
Instead the U.S. continues to flood the George Zimmerman of the Middle East with massive arsenals, billions of dollars per year, and carte blanche to commit any atrocity that strikes his fancy. The result is exactly what you would expect.
We can only hope that September will begin with boycott and divestment resolutions on every campus, aimed straight at the last apartheid state on Earth.
Oh, come on. Matt only needs to ask one question, every day - "Why don't you cut off the billions in annual aid to Israel -- and cut off all trade and diplomatic relations with Israel?"
Anything else is just dancing around the real issue: the United States government would not have Israel any other way than you see it now. The more Arabs that Israel massacres, the more ovations Netanyahu can expect in Congress. Those massacres only make it easier for the U.S. to massacre Iraq and Afghanistan.
Those massacres accelerate the normalization of genocide against Muslims.
Israel has bombed and shot tens of thousands of Arabs to death. At various times, "Israel" has imprisoned virtually every male Palestinian or their immediate family members. That is what your Congress is paying Israel to do.
That is why "peace" talks have continued since the 1970's with zero positive results for the Palestinian people. The purpose of these talks is simply to stall until every last Nakba survivor is dead.
A Hitlerian state like Israel deserves the same outrage and total boycott that was aimed at Apartheid South Africa, until that state is abolished.
"Israel" is the George Zimmerman of the Middle East.
Israel still massacres thousands of Arabs, still proudly flashes its White License to Kill.
The U.S. Congress is sincerely grateful for Israel's white colonial army, proudly committing genocide with impunity. Congress has given Israel over $100 billion to keep doing that dirty job, and is truly happy to do it. It makes the U.S. genocide against the non-white world so much easier to sell. As it is, there is no difficulty in selling genocide to a mass media that's in danger of breaking its arm, constantly saluting every U.S. and Israeli general that crosses its path.
So the problem is bluntly stated: Israel = Zimmerman.
The solution should be bluntly stated: Boycott the Apartheid State out of existence now. Cut all ties to "Israel" now.
Every campus government should do what the Wayne State Student Council already did: link to 4.bp.blogspot.com
--pass a resolution expressing total revulsion, total divestment, total boycott against the last openly racist state on Earth: Apartheid Israel itself.
A very opposite message appears at link to tinyurl.com
It says "Fuck Israel - it's a Nazi state."
For millions of occupied Palestinians, Israel indeed appears as a Nazi state, straight out of the 1930's. Israel even forces a Warsaw Ghetto existence onto the Gaza Strip, which it blockades and massacres at will.
Now, about the "democracy" angle. The fact that Israel's settler population votes to maintain this torture against Palestinians is not a cause for the victims to celebrate. It is akin to white Mississippians voting for lynch law against the entire Black population, for so many bloody generations.
Occupation is the issue. Who will say that Palestinians are not suffering under a Nazi occupation today? Who will say the occupier state should be spared a boycott?
These blowhards are powerless. Students will speak up for resolutions to boycott Apartheid Israel to the maximum extent allowed by law. The blowhards will just have to live with that.
There are many ways to say "Boycott Israel":
link to dearbornboycottsisrael.blogspot.com
Here's hoping that early September sees many students demanding boycott-Israel resolutions as a matter of basic human rights.
The administration would be even more horrified by the same students marching into their student government meeting, then signing up to speak, and then demanding a resolution for Northeastern to boycott every product from Israel -- to the maximum extent allowed by law.
No power on Earth could stop the students from doing just that.
Week after week.
And we haven't even discussed pushing for boycott resolutions in city councils, all summer long.
There are many ways to show defiance against the racist, violent state of "Israel" (link to dearbornboycottsisrael.blogspot.com ). A good loud demand for boycott is probably the surest way to change the atmosphere on campus.
Massad understated the necessity for the liberation of Palestine.
The Black freedom movement in the 1960's certainly didn't weigh its words with a thimble to make sure that no whites would be offended. It rightfully issued countless broadsides against the genocide that Black America was subjected to, and demanded immediate liberation.
Black Americans were being murdered, disenfranchised, and robbed at the beginning of the '60's, and no power on Earth could stop it.
Thanks only to the Black freedom movement, at the end of the '60's, no one could stop you from attending school, voting, working, or living where you chose, unless they were willing to be dragged in front of the courts and the news media as a racist criminal.
Similarly, the anti-apartheid movement of the 1970's and '80's never worried that someone might mistake them for being "anti-white". That movement cursed South Africa for its racist crimes, boycotted South Africa, issued broadsides against South Africa, and helped to free South Africa's people from white supremacist rule.
If that timid, shamefully polite thing called "the BDS movement" ever goes nationwide, marching on student governements for total boycotts of Apartheid Israel, then Palestine will be liberated in no time flat. Until then, the BDS movement will be awaiting permission, hat in hand, from its "allies" who so hate to offend Israel.
The so-called BDS movement should listen to Massad. Then maybe they will spend their summer getting ready to demand boycott against Israel, starting on September 1, 2013, and never be muted for a single week after that.
How many more Arabs are going to be massacred by Israel before BDS becomes a public boycott group, instead of a timid bunch of perpetual "strategizers" and "planners"?
Joseph has to break out of the blog ghetto and into the mainstream media, as clase as he can get to the big microphones.
He tried, with Al Jazeera. He needs to push into the 'Nation' and 'New York Review of Books', like Edward did, and into the larger TV talk shows and newspapers.
He's going in a good direction -- previously, he wrote about how Gaza today is like the Warsaw Ghetto. Now he's pushing nice big broadsides essentially showing how Zionism is 21st-century Naziism.
It's good that he shows that-- because what do you do with a Nazi state? You boycott it. You cut all ties with it. As Apartheid South Africa was abolished, apartheid Israel will be too.
It's a relief to see Joseph going big on the issue of Palestine, saying "J'Accuse" loudly enough to be censored, which will give him a higher profile.
That leads to action: flat-out boycotts of Israel, followed by liberation for its victims.
I was afraid Joseph was never going to get heard -- glad I was wrong about that. The best defense is a good offense.
When they try to gag you, yell louder and use the "B" word (boycott!)
U.S. intervention did a lot to destroy Syrian democracy since the 1940's.
Note especially the U.S.-backed overthrow of President Shukri al-Quwatli (شكري القوتلي), whose party won the elections in Syria. He was overthrown in March 1949. This led to more coups and had a ruinous effect on the nation. See link to en.wikipedia.org
The cumulative ruin caused by U.S.-backed coups and wars in the Middle East is incalculable, from the 1940's until today.
Just one example: the 1953 U.S. coup that destroyed Iranian democracy.
The U.S. and Israel were both gunning for Yemen in the 1960's.
In March 1963, U.S. President Kennedy agreed to deploy a squadron of U.S. Air Force F-4s to Saudi Arabia, to fly near the Yemeni border, and to train Saudi pilots, as a demonstration of U.S. support for Saudi Arabia, as it fought to restore the overthrown Yemeni monarchy.
(See “Uncle Sam, Supreme Guardian of the Saudi Crown”, By Herman F. Eilts, U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia (1965 to 1970), in the Spring 2000 issue of American Diplomacy.)
On top of that, the Israeli Air Force intervened to oppose the Yemeni republic and support the royalists.
Add to that the catastrophic U.S. support for Israeli violence and racism throughout the Arab world for so many decades.
It's a spectacle of one nation after another being shattered, the spinal column of political discourse broken in country after country, by coup after coup, war after war. The basics of human survival -- even a national infrastructure of schooling, medical services, public health, public utilities, the ability to walk tranquilly down your own street, have been incinerated by U.S. and Israeli interventions across the Middle East.
We have not even discussed the analagous ruin of the Congo, the destruction of African unity and civil society, caused by the assassination of Lumumba.
Nor have we discussed the choking of the Latin American continent, under the weight of so many U.S.-backed coups in the 1960's and '70's.
Think about that, whenever the U.S. government throws its military and diplomatic force against the Middle East, pretending that "democracy" will be the outcome.
Another victory for the boycott of the apartheid state.
Speaking of which, check this morning's Daily Californian for an excellent review of why divestment from apartheid is a simple and necessary action, taken to oppose a horrifically plain human rights disaster whose perpetrator is... Israel.
Here is the article: link to dailycal.org
A big thank-you to the author.
This would be a good spot to suggest a Harvard campaign to boycott Israel.
This ad is perfect. It will change the atmosphere. It openly broadcasts this crystal-clear demand: cut off every penny to Apartheid Israel.
The ad should be duplicated in every city.
This ad has another great message: that the words "Muslim" and "Palestine" are positive words that you really want to broadcast.
Bonus: The letters themselves are proudly large. They clearly identify Israeli apartheid with the old, dead South African apartheid state.
Only two things are missing:
1. A few thousand Palestinian, Arab, and Muslim students to lead marches on Washington with the exact same demand you see on this ad. Young Palestinians should very proudly lead these marches. What an honorable way to start out your life.
2. Simultaneously, we need a constant drumbeat of student resolutions demanding a boycott against Israel to the maximum extent allowed by law. This month's spectacular victories at UC Riverside and UC San Diego are an excellent start. Future resolutions will bluntly demand boycott against Israel. Clarity is good.
Those trillions of dollars spent on killing Muslims worldwide should be immediately halted -- trillions should be spent to re-build the U.S. inner cities. That demand can unite the Palestine freedom movement with everyone who remembers the Black freedom movement.
Racists have no chance against that kind of movement.
Ms. Al-Sheemary's article should be assigned reading in every history class. Thank you very much for sharing this with your audience. I hope she writes more.
This article appears at the right time -- just as the news media reveals an epidemic of birth defects in Iraq, following its bombardment.
See the BBC News report, released March 21, 2013. These birth defects have been attributed to war munitions, by interviewees at the Iraqi Health Ministry & also at Basra Maternity Hospital: link to bbc.co.uk
See also CNN: "Birth defects on the rise in Fallujah", March 20, 2013, at: link to edition.cnn.com
See also SBS World News Australia: "Iraq's epidemic of birth defects linked to war", March 21, 2013, at link to sbs.com.au
See also Al Jazeera: "Epidemic of birth defects in Iraq and our duty as public health researchers", at link to aljazeera.com
See again Al Jazeera: "Iraq: War's legacy of cancer", March 15, 2013, at link to aljazeera.com
See the most shocking coverage at Democracy Now: "Ten Years Later, U.S. Has Left Iraq with Mass Displacement & Epidemic of Birth Defects, Cancers", March 20, 2013, at link to democracynow.org
See MSNBC: "Bush promised Iraqi civilians a better future. What are their lives like now?", March 18, 2013, at: link to tv.msnbc.com
Thank you again for Ms. Al-Sheemary's fine article.
Yes, three campuses make a trend! And there are more:
This victory follows divestment resolutions approved by the student government of UC Riverside -- link to latimesblogs.latimes.com
It also follows the divestment victory at UC Irvine -- link to latimesblogs.latimes.com.
It also follows the pioneering Wayne State University divestment vote -- link to tinyurl.com
That evening, the Wayne State Student Council actually voted for total divestment against Israel.
* Arizona State University in 2012 -- link to electronicintifada.net
* Evergreen State College in 2010 --http://electronicintifada.net/content/evergreen-state-students-overwhelmingly-pass-divestment-votes/1067
* The University of Michigan-Dearborn -- link to michigandaily.com
* Carleton University graduate students in 2012 -- link to electronicintifada.net
* The University of Wisconsin-Platteville faculty senate approved its own divestment resolution -- link to michigandaily.com
* MEChA, voted overwhelmingly in 2012 to endorse the global call for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel -- link to nationalmecha.org
* South Africa’s governing party, the African National Congress, voted to make boycotts, divestment and sanctions against Israel part of its official policy in December 2012-- link to panafricannews.blogspot.com
* The Olympia Food Co-op, in 2010, voted to boycott all Israeli products --http://www.theolympian.com/2010/07/21/1310754/israel-cleaned-from-co-op-shelves.html
* Ann Arbor, Michigan's Interfaith Council for Peace & Justice voted for a resolution urging divestment against the Israeli military, and now Ann Arbor City Council is faced with demands to boycott Israel entirely -- link to annarbor.com
How many more murders will Apartheid Israel get away with, before the boycott and divestment movement stops it?
Here's an answer, from late last night:
A huge divestment victory at the University of California-Riverside. Another student government has entered the history of the Palestine Freedom Movement.
I hope to read more details in Mondoweiss. Yes, the student government at the University of California-Riverside has voted overwhelmingly for divestment against Israeli Apartheid.
The vote was 11-5, overriding a veto that attempted to kill the divestment resolution.
This follows a recent vote for divestment at UC-Irvine's student government (in the L.A. Times at link to latimesblogs.latimes.com ).
It also follows earlier student government votes for divestment at:
* Evergreen State College in 2010 (link to electronicintifada.net ),
* Wayne State University (at link to tinyurl.com ),
* Arizona State University in 2012 (at link to electronicintifada.net )
* The University of Michigan-Dearborn (at link to michigandaily.com ),
* Carleton University graduate students in 2012 (at link to electronicintifada.net )
* The University of Wisconsin-Platteville faculty senate approved its own divestment resolution (at link to michigandaily.com ),
* MEChA, the largest association of Chicano youth in the U.S., voted overwhelmingly at its 2012 national conference to endorse the global call for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel ( link to nationalmecha.org ),
* South Africa’s governing party, the African National Congress, voted to make boycotts, divestment and sanctions against Israel part of its official policy in December 2012 (at link to panafricannews.blogspot.com ), and
* The Olympia Food Co-op, in 2010, voted to boycott all Israeli products (at link to theolympian.com )
In these votes, every argument that apartheid could make was rejected. After all, the arguments favoring Apartheid Israel are identical to the arguments made to preserve the old dead Apartheid State of South Africa.
Furthermore, Apartheid South Africa was tighly allied to Apartheid Israel. (See link to guardian.co.uk )
Another divestment vote is coming at UC San Diego next week.
This is because UC San Diego's student government adjourned their meeting following eight hours of divestment debate last night (see link to ucsdguardian.org ; at the end it quickly mentions the divestment victory at UC Riverside. )
Thank goodness there's a Barcelona demonstration today, chanting "Boycott Israel", over and over - link to youtube.com
When will "Boycott Israel" beome the main chant of the Palestine solidarity movement in the United States?
As the massacre of Gaza continues, the York University Graduate Students Association has just approved a divestment resolution: link to youtube.com
Can someone post further news on this?
Divestment against Israel is also spreading to York University, and to Swarthmore College.
Divestment against Israel is now being urged at the UCSB (University of California, Santa Barbara) student government - link to dailynexus.com
Also, a demonstration for Gaza, and for divestment against Israel, is going on at Vari Hall, at York University. The York divestment campaign can be seen here: link to youtube.com
Thank goodness, today comes news that Swarthmore College students are starting a campaign to divest from Israeli apartheid. You can see it in their college newspaper at:
link to swarthmorephoenix.com
And UC-Irvine's student government just voted unanimously for a resolution favoring divestment from Israeli apartheid. See today's Los Angeles Times - link to latimesblogs.latimes.com
A hundred campuses should do the same, immediately.
Demand divestment now-- while you can still save Palestinians from being massacred to the extent we saw in 2008-2009.
You really can demand total divestment, total boycott against Israel. It worked at the Wayne State University Student Council --
Total divestment from a racist state which richly deserves to be abolished - exactly as the apartheid state of South Africa was abolished.
Follow the example of Wayne State students and go for total divestment. The Palestinian people deserve at least that much.
I attended the first national divestment conference at Berkeley in February 2002.
During the divestment workshop of that 2002 conference, we were told that any campus campaigns to divest from Israel must wait-- until more research and planning can be completed.
I also attended the second national divestment conference at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, in October 2002.
Ten more years have gone by.
Israel massacred Lebanon in 2006.
Israel massacred Gaza in 2008-2009.
Now it's October 2012.
When exactly will there be a wave of campus campaigns to boycott all products from Israel?
Where is there even one campus campaign to boycott Israel?
I have to have a movement with room for those who say totally boycott Israel until that racist state is abolished and Palestinians are finally safe.
I don't have to have the whole movement agree with me. I don't have to have any of the movement agree with me.
But it has to have room for those who totally reject and totally boycott that racists state, or else it's too mealy-mouthed to get anything done.
I hope you will be shocked to discover that the same official BDS site, on a different page ( link to bdsmovement.net ) , is suddenly asking only for Israel to end “its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands occupied in June 1967″.
Do you see how the BDS movement is breaking its own legs?
Now it has reduced its land claims down to Gaza and the West Bank.
I guess that puts my total rejection of the Israeli state outside of the official BDS movement, doesn't it?
Too bad for Palestine that the BDS movement is so terribly afraid.
In response to Annie, I did some research.
I found that the official BDS movement is suddenly on the record asking only for Israel to end "its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands occupied in June 1967".
This is a change.
Up until now, the official BDS movement had always asked for an "end of occupation and colonization of all Arab lands".
Do you see how far the BDS movement has devolved into accepting the Israeli state?
Why have they done this?
Because there is no movement rejecting the Israeli state, only a movement begging Israel to please make a deal.
Don't believe me? Then look at your new BDS movement's statement:
link to bdsmovement.net
Of course there is no written policy.
But how many times do I have to submit "Boycott-Israel" campaigning news, and see it front-paged nowhere (except one small blog)?
How many times do I have to see funny dances for miniscule boycotts front-paged instead?
How many times do I have to see Mondoweiss respectfully front-page steadfast Zionists?
You're right; there is no written policy, and yet the words "Boycott Israel" somehow don't appear in Mondoweiss, or in any BDS campaign I have seen in the United States.
Because the whole visible BDS "movement" wants to make a deal with Israel, they don't want to see it abolished.
You can't imagine it being abolished as Apartheid South Africa was.
Too bad for Palestine.
P.S.: Annie, Mondoweiss and the BDS movement are the best thing out there -- and yes, they still suck. They do good work, but they have no backbone and no conviction. They will improve as they move toward demanding the boycott and abolition of the racist state of "Israel".
I emailed the article and photo to you today.
I'll send it again.
You're right; our primary duty is not to advance formulas for what Palestine should look like.
But I think it's very constructive to demand full boycotts against all products from Israel. Why? Because that was common in the movement to boycott South Africa.
The predominant attitude to South Africa was "Cut all Ties to the Apartheid State".
That's simple, true, and it works.
Today, the predominant attitude of the BDS movement is "Let's look responsible and respectable and ready to dialogue".
As Palestine dies.
Annie, you are sharp as a tack.
You are acutely aware of the difference between "BDS" and a total boycott against Israel.
BDS has come to mean tiny boycotts of one product (like Ahava or HP), and even more often just an attitude of liking BDS. In Mondoweiss, I can't remember any time "BDS" has meant a blanket boycott against everything from Israel.
To be fair to you, the BDS "movement" has also rejected blanket boycotts against Israel. That is their shame and Mondoweiss's too.
Because the BDS movement is thus signaling that they are ready to make a deal with Israel. And Israel is always ready to make, and break, a deal. That way, Israel keeps its legitimacy, its nukes, and a hell of a lot of land.
That's because the movement, including Mondoweiss, lacks the backbone to fully reject the whole apartheid state of Israel.
That full rejection of Israel will win the day, as it did with apartheid South Africa.
Anything less is, you know, nice, but it leaves Israel with legitimacy that you should not allow them to claim.
Israel deserves no legitimacy.
Someone explain this to me:
Mondoweiss refuses to front-page any story where people are demanding a total boycott against Israel. I know that, because I submit those stories to Mondoweiss and get nothing back but a question about why I spell "Israel" with quotation marks.
Yet Mondoweiss sounds like it's cheering on young people to get themselves arrested in subways, trying to spray graffiti on advertisements, while enraged Zionists try to physically block their spray cans!
Is Mondoweiss going to pay the legal bills for any Arab students who foolishly get into spray-can fights with Zionists in the subways?
Is Mondoweiss going to explain to these students' parents why these kids got deported for some spray-can fight?
What if a physical fight resulted in the subway, caught on video? -- That could end in jail time, and in hospital bills up the wazoo.
It's beyond my comprehension why Mondoweiss is so hostile to a nice legal demand to boycott "Israel" until it's abolished, yet so reckless in urging people to get arrested for spraying graffiti while Zionists hurl their bodies in their path.
Somebody explain it to me.
Boycott worked. Total boycott, total rejection of the apartheid state, and the abolition of the apartheid state.
No one in the boycott movement asked for "dialogue" with that racist state.
I am sick of subtext.
You tell me where anyone in the "Movement" has demanded total boycott against Israel, total abolition of the Israeli state, the kind of shunning we remember happened to Apartheid South Africa.
At most, all you will find is hedging and double-entendres about "BDS", whatever that means now. So in public, the BDS-ers claim fervently that they are not anti-Israel. In private -- who cares what they say in private? Not me. Not anymore.
So the legitimacy of "Israel" is denied where, exactly? By now, it should be denied everywhere, and for the most obvious reasons.
Thank you for that anti-colonialist thought!
I want the U.S. to boycott Israel until that apartheid state is abolished, just as happened to apartheid South Africa.
As with South Africa, racism is the problem. Colonialism, too.
Colonialism is racism with a tank.
Most of the current Palestine solidarity crowd has no problem with U.S. colonialism -- their distaste is only for Israeli colonialism.
The current Palestine solidarity crowd has no quarrel with the Israeli state, and the Israeli nuclear arsenal, as long as a small pacifist Palestinian state is allowed to survive next door, in an oxygen tent. That's all they want.
The current Palestine solidarity crowd is all about "The American Interest", as defined by State Department types. Many were, or aspire to be, those types.
Their priority is to strengthen the United States government, as it continues its violent and racist crimes around the world. Their case is simply that Israel hurts "The American Interest". They are willing to throw the rest of the world, including Iran, overboard, as long as the U.S. downgrades its alliance with Israel.
The problem is the official "American Interest", as practiced, has meant the destruction of Black America, and the destruction of Vietnam, Nicaragua, El Salavdor, Guatemala, Iran, Indonesia, and the Congo. And the destruction of much of the Arab world.
In most of these cases, Israel was heavily involved, cheek-by-jowl with the United States.
Again, I want the U.S. to boycott Israel until that apartheid state is abolished, just as happened to apartheid South Africa.
And I don't care whether that is in "The American Interest" or not.
Now Mondoweiss has zeroed in on Princess Middleton's body parts, way over in Europe.
I used to wonder why no one in Mondoweiss is willing or able to front-page proposals to totally boycott Israel, to cut all ties to Israel, until Israel is abolished.
Now I see that Mondoweiss is a comfort zone for Americans who are not too bothered by America's crass racist brutality-- except in the case of Palestine.
Mondoweiss is comfortable with giggling over a faux pas committed by a mass media celebrity, or with mild-mannered activism that never demands the total rejection of Israel.
True, Mondoweiss finds Israel's brutality excessive, and truly would like it to be toned down. Therefore, cute videos showing dances for "BDS" are allowed in Mondoweiss. (BDS has come to mean this: very gentle boycotts of a cosmetic here, a hummus there, never defiance against the existence of the Israeli state)
But boycott Israel? Abolish Israel? Oppose imperial power?
No -- not Mondoweiss's department. Too bad for Palestine.
The first national divestment conference was in Berkeley in early 2002.
Over 10 years later, "Israel" has massacred thousands more Palestinians and Lebanese, and has threatened to bomb Iran many times.
Over 10 years later, I expect to see a public debate on an actual proposal to boycott all products from Apartheid Israel. At Berkeley. At many campuses.
It's been 10 years.
Is this article a new trend for Mondoweiss? It's a sick trend that would be death on millions of Arabs, and would be death on Iran as well. This trend would only leave "Israel" intact:
With this article, Mondoweiss's new author has advanced the sickening claim that Iran is the aggressor --
He seems to propose that Israel and the United States contain Iran and preserve the Israeli state, initially with a crappy deal that smothers all backtalk from Palestinians forever, then with an Israeli-Iranian alliance against 300 million Arabs.
Mondoweiss's new author fantasizes that if only the Palestinians (starving and beaten as they are) can be forced to sign some crappy Oslo-style deal, then Israel will be saved and all pro-Palestinian agitation will be silenced.
He fantasizes about inking a deal that would supposedly make you look like you were AGAINST Palestinian self-determination if you demanded any rights at all for Palestinians.
He fantasizes that this deal will somehow stop Iran from claiming that Israel kills and humiliates oppressed Muslims (even though Israel DOES kill and humiliate oppressed Muslims).
But there's more:
* Mondoweiss's new author proclaims that Iran is pursuing a "quest for regional hegemony"
* Mondoweiss's author claims that Iran is making "anti-Zionist threats" -- even though it's Israel that constantly threatens to bomb Iran, and actually has the means to do it.
* Here is the part that is just plain murder:
Mondoweiss's author badly wants an alliance between Israel and Iran against the entire Arab world! How many millions of Arabs is he planning for Israel to kill with that alliance? Or is he only kidding when he says "alliance"?
* Mondoweiss's author does promote something he apparently loves: the phony "Israel loves Iran" media campaign which seeks to legitimize the apartheid state of Israel.
* Mondoweiss's author then goes way overboard to absolve Israel of blame for its threats against Iran (he calls it a mere "impasse"), and to absolve Israel for its years of genocide against Palestinians (he calls it a mere "failure to reach an accord").
But wait, there's more:
* Mondoweiss's author condemns "Hamas’ rejectionism", the "Palestinian Authority's (PA) unpopularity among its own people", and "the failure of both Hamas and the PA to work out a reconciliation deal" -- without mentioning Israel's wholesale massacres of Palestinians!
* Mondoweiss's author then repeats his claim that Iran supposedly has a "goal of becoming a Middle East power".
How does Mondoweiss justify printing such an article, whose venom is directed solely at Arabs and Iranians, apparenly with the main goal of preserving Israel?
I saw you speak about the suffering of Palestine in the 1990's. You spoke well.
But your latest writing bothers me. By now, I hope you know that Palestinians are regular people, not exotic, but regular. I was hoping you undertand the same thing about Black people. They are regular people, not exotic, not a joke, but as regular as your own kids.
You write about Rice, Bush's Secretary of State.
She is not some kind of physical fantasy for you to dangle in front of your readers.
She is just as uninteresting as Bush. One day, Bush and Rice, and their accomplices, will go on trial at the Hague, where they belong. Until then, there is not much to say about them.
Like her predecessors, and like her successor, Rice was apppointed to help the U.S. and Israel to slaughter Muslims and Arabs. Since the days of Albright, that seems to be the main job of U.S. Secretaries of State.
And yes, as a child Rice narrowly missed being slaughtered herself in the Birmingham church bombing of 1963. "Denise McNair was my little friend from kindergarten," she said. "Addie Mae Collins was in my uncle's homeroom in school", she said. Here are photos of the four slaughtered girls, when they were fully alive: link to louisianajusticeinstitute.blogspot.com
So yes, Rice should understand that the white church bombers are like the Israeli government as it massacres Palestinians and Lebanese. She should understand, but she doesn't. No surprise there, considering her life's work. End of story.
Why can't you end the story there?
Why is it necessary, Marc, for you to invite your readers to obsess over her blackness? At least since James Weldon Johnson, the U.S. government has included Black officials willing to kill. That is old news.
Even before Johnson, there were the Buffalo Soldiers, Black troops who were employed, in part, to kill Native Americans. That is even older news.
So again, Marc, why the fascination over Rice's body, her first name, and her color?
You write about her "Black face".
You write about her unusual first name, which you use as a kind of joke rhyme. You encourage your son, and your readers, to use her name as a joke rhyme.
You publish your fantasies about her as a "powerful African American woman, with perfect conked hair".
Your fantasies about her body seem endless. You write: "Condi went rogue. She began to grow an Afro."
You go further. You write, "Now imagine Mahatma Condi stripping down and saying the hell with it. Cannonball!"
You also call her "Jock Condi".
I found your essay to be a teachable moment. It shows me two paths to freedom for Palestine:
1. Just march for total boycott against Israel. March to "cut all ties" to Israel, until that apartheid state is abolished. Simple.
2. Or you could spend an eternity navel-gazing and indulging in fantasies about people who don't look like you. Before you know it, you could be 60 years old without ever having led a single march to boycott Israel.
Please try to focus on what Palestine needs now. It needs action.
Palestine needs every campus and city to contend with a loud movement to boycott Apartheid Israel until it's abolished.
It does not need you to dangle racialized fantasies in front of your readership, which is already too far gone into ruminations and strategies that never see the light of day.
Your readers have enough weird ideas about Arabs and Jews being "special" (they are not). Now you want them to exoticize Black people too?
Thanks, Dr. Moore.
Sorry you've been compelled to spell out the obvious in such exhaustive detail, for those who still pretend not to get the point.
The point is: the violent, racist apartheid state: "Israel".
Everyone who's harmed by that racist state ought to demand a complete cutting of all ties with it. A total boycott. A total end of all aid, trade, and diplomatic ties. Simple. That was a major help in abolishing the apartheid state of South Africa.
Everyone who expects some benefits from racism will de-emphasize the crimes of that apartheid state, and will instead criminalize its victims. Those who look to Zionists for legitimacy are hardly going to demand any rejection of the Israeli state.
Those who want to sit with Zionists at "dialogues" and symposia, complete with water pitchers and printed programs, are never going to reject the Zionist state.
Thus two little words, "Boycott Israel", are barred from so much discourse, even in the so-called Palestine solidarity movement.
The only U.S. human rights activists who consistently rejected the apartheid state of "Israel" were the Black Power movement from the summer of 1967 until that movement was crushed in the early 1970's.
See, for example, “An appeal by Black Americans against United States support of the Zionist government of Israel”, link to tinyurl.com , in the New York Times, November 1, 1970.
You see how Israel's racist violence was so clear, even two generations ago, in the most important newspaper on the continent?
You see how the solution was equally clear, in 1970 and today?
The solution is ending all U.S. support to the racist state of Israel.
What a shame that so many words are required to say the obvious, after it has remained so obvious for over 40 years.
I will hazard a guess that Baltzer, Finkelstein and Chomsky are not going to reject the legitimacy of the Apartheid State. That should not prevent you and me from rejecting it!
I also guess that Baltzer, Finkelstein and Chomsky will not call for a total boycott against Apartheid Israel. Don't let that prevent you from demanding a total boycott against Israel.
Racist states ought to be boycotted until they're abolished. What is so hard to recognize about that? Do you remember Apartheid South Africa?
Actually, that total boycott demand, against Israel, is being made loudly and clearly at the University of Michigan campus, and inside its Central Student Government.
See this news coverage: link to youthanormalization.blogspot.com
I have personally alerted Mondoweiss about this important BDS action at the University of Michigan, and I trust they will cover it themselves shortly.
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