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Entry 22: Deborah Fink of J-BIG

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This is Entry 22 in the Mondo Awards end-of-year Inspire-us contest. The author is secretary of Americans AGAINST Apartheid UK

We would like to nominate our personal hero, Deborah Fink, a UK activist (as well as a talented soprano and cabaret artist) from London, a dynamo of activism who has inspired me, as well as many other people in the Palestine solidarity movement here in the UK.

Having seen with her own eyes the horrors perpetrated on the Palestinian People, Deborah has devoted her life to fighting injustice on a grassroots level. In the past, she was active in the UK organisation Jews for Justice for Palestinians for which she helped to set up a student wing and recruited many big names in the world of theatre, music, art and academia. In 2005, she combined her singing with her politics by organising and singing the soprano solos in the World Premiere of Philip Munger’s cantata for Rachel Corrie, ‘The Skies are Weeping’ at the Hackney Empire.

A fantastic storyteller and communicator, Deborah co-founded the UK-based BDS group, Jews for Boycotting Israeli Goods (J-BIG) and uses her singing and other talents to draw in and inspire others to become more involved in the BDS/Palestinian Solidarity movements. As well as organising alternative carol concerts, Deborah uses a variety of innovative and creative ways to get the message across. Her performances inside supermarkets and at demonstrations, and at other events, always attract attention.

Deborah has participated in numerous creative civil disobedience actions and was once arrested, but successfully fought the charges in court after police unlawfully moved a demonstration.

She is also a member of the UK Green Party and always speaks out untirelessly against injustice, be it in person, online and in print. She is not afraid of putting herself in the line of fire and has repeatedly drawn the scorn of Zionists who she has successfully debated on their own ground time and time again.

As Deborah would always agree that actions are just as important as words, here are two videos of her. The first one is a CNN report from 2008, the second one is of Deborah at the 2008 Salute to Israel Parade in London. During the parade, the police demonstrated a zero-tolerance approach to any form of protest. After being assaulted and handcuffed by the police, Deborah was questioned under the Prevention of Terrorism Act, but was later released.

We would like to nominate Deborah for her hard work, efforts and success in helping to further Palestinian solidarity in this part of the world.

Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is Editor at Large for Mondoweiss, a human rights activist and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani

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