On Dec 2, Brown University’s Advisory Committee on Corporate Responsibility in Investment Policies voted to recommend that the school divest from companies that facilitate Israeli human rights violations. The decision follows a vote this past spring where 69% of Brown’s undergrad student body voted in favor of a referendum to divest from occupation-connected companies like Motorola, Boeing, and Raytheon.
Category Archives: Activism
A protest of Islamophobic funding by a leading Jewish charity arm in New York is picking up steam. Victor Kovner says the Jewish Communal Fund of NY “is slurring, smearing the Jewish community as a whole to associate with these vicious, fascist, racist groups. And we must, as Jews, speak up against what they are doing.”
The catastrophic climate crisis is fueled by global inequality and engineered by complicit governments and corporations that put profit before people and planet. Everywhere, the least powerful are the most affected. Indigenous Palestinians living under Israeli occupation and apartheid, with no control over their land or natural resources, are highly vulnerable to the climate crisis.
Research by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign in the U.K. reveals that British universities invest over £456 million in companies complicit in Israeli violations of international law. The research was published as hundreds of students across the country take action as part of ‘Apartheid Off Campus’ day of action, with banner drops and protests at campuses across the UK.
“I am convinced that the loss of legitimacy of the Zionist idea, of the idea of a special state for a special people, is irreversible, that that cannot be resurrected in the 21st century, a time when we at least preach if not practice universal rights and equality,” the writer Ali Abunimah said in a landmark speech ten years ago, and his remarks have proved to be prophetic in describing the anti-Zionist movement inside progressive life.
Roger Waters on the importance of international solidarity with Palestinians: “The aim … is to focus world attention on the plight of the Palestinian people in Gaza in the hope that the scales will fall from the eyes of all, ordinary, decent people round the world, that they may see the enormity of the crimes that have been committed, and demand that their governments bring all possible pressure to bear on Israel to lift the siege.”
Bernie Sanders’s support for Palestinian rights at the Democratic debate Wednesday could not have been expressed “anywhere in the Democratic Party, ever, under any circumstances in the 60s,” Rashid Khalidi says. While Dorothy Zellner says the ongoing divide in the Democratic Party over Palestine is an “ethical” division going back to the Nakba, and there is no point in having a united front that sells out Palestinian rights.
Zak Witus is a member of IfNotNow and a graduate student in Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Chicago. He told Mondoweiss that the group decided to target Schakowsky because she’s “a great moral leader on so many human rights issues, both for her district and the Chicago Jewish community in particular.” He pointed out that Schakowsky opposed the Trump administration’s embassy move, condemned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to block Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), and co-authored an op-ed with Omar about confronting the threat of white nationalism. “Not another penny of taxpayer money should fund another Israeli home demolition or bomb that wipes out an entire family in Gaza,” said Witus, “We think that Jan agrees, and so her committing to defunding the occupation should be a no brainer.”
Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party understands Palestine as a moral foreign policy cause of this generation, and affixes it to their material fight against neoliberal austerity. Nick Rodrigo writes that this relationship lies in the radical street politics of the British student movement between 2008-2011.
Members of Jewish Voice for Peace, American Friends Service Committee, and other constituents occupied the office of Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL 9th District) and called on her to support a congressional bill that promotes human rights for children in Palestine. The protesters read a list of 271 Palestinian children who have been arrested and detained by the Israeli military, as well as a list of the 8 children killed in Israel’s recent attack on Gaza.
Michael Bueckert has been tracking Israel’s anti-BDS app for two years. Mondoweiss spoke to him about the app, its use during the recent attacks on Gaza, and where it is having an impact.
In yet another sign that Palestinian solidarity activists are getting room inside mainstream institutions, scores of Harvard students walked out on Israeli consul general Dani Dayan Wednesday as he began a talk at Harvard Law School on the settlement project. They silently held signs saying “Settlements are a war crime.”
Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI) revealed in late October that members of Congress are planning another delegation to Palestine and this time “the permission has to include Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar.” Pocan’s remarks introducing Palestinian writer Yousef Aljamal show that support for the rights of all Palestinians is growing within the 98-member-strong Congressional Progressive Caucus.
The French insurance giant AXA is the second-largest provider in the world, with operations based in more than 60 countries that total over 100 million clients, including banks that finance Israeli settlement infrastructure projects.
Boston has banned ads for Palestine– and other political causes– in transportation sites, and an anonymous group responded by opening many bus station kiosks this week and replacing advertisements for commercial products with “posters explaining that the good people of Boston lose out on social programming, education, and clean energy because $11 million of this city’s taxes go towards buying guns for Israel every single year.”
November 9th marks 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall but we have unfortunately entered a new era of walls. The Stop the Wall campaign in Palestine has published a new anthology looking at global connections and resistance to walls and militarization. “Instead of ceding to the temptation to become completely absorbed in the ever more dramatic and brutal crises and attacks on our movements, this is a moment to lift our heads, see beyond the walls, and make connections between our struggles in order to gain strength and confidence together,” Maren Mantovani writes.
Every Fall architecturally distinct buildings and grounds in Jerusalem treat the public to free tours as part of Open House Jerusalem. This year, for the first time, the festival was protested after it promoted guided tours at a site in the West Bank and programs in Jerusalem run by a settler organization.
In order to play authentic religious music commemorating Bethlehem’s native son, the Amwaj Choir and Palestine Philharmonie needed a harpsichord. That search began a few years ago in Europe and culminated in Bethlehem in late October with the unveiling of a beautiful instrument.
Last year, a huge global outpouring convinced Argentina to cancel a planned friendly match in Jerusalem. Now, BDS activists are attempting to halt a match scheduled between the Argentina and Uruguay national football teams to be held in Tel Aviv.
UMass Amherst Students for Justice in Palestine write an open letter to the university chancellor demanding a retraction on allegations against the BDS movement and demand that the university make a clear public statement explaining the difference between anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism.
Students at Duke University in North Carolina repeatedly interrupted an event last Wednesday featuring Tzipi Livni, the former Israeli foreign minister who was subject to an arrest warrant issued by the UK and criminal complaints in two more European countries for her alleged role in war crimes committed during the 2008-09 Cast Lead invasion of Gaza.
UMass Amherst faculty issue an open letter pushing back on a statement by Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy that was critical of the upcoming panel “Criminalizing Dissent: The Attack on BDS and American Democracy.”
The Young Democratic Socialists of America at Georgia Tech have been found guilty of discrimination and sanctioned by the school’s Office of Student Integrity for barring a pro-Israel individual from attending one of their meetings over concerns that they would potentially be disruptive. The decision comes after a 6-month long disciplinary process from the OSI, which YDSA referred to as “open-ended, opaque, politically-motivated, and ultimately unlawful.”
The Executive Council of the Episcopal Church has adopted a human rights investment screen related to Israel and Palestine and will sell its holdings in Motorola Solutions, Caterpillar, Inc., and the Israel Discount Bank.
The Canadian BDS Coalition is declaring victory in its campaign to stop the Toronto Raptors from going on a team trip to Israel, which co-owner Larry Tanenbaum promised after winning the NBA championship in June 2019.