Larry Commodore, a First Nations activist aboard the al-Awda boat to Gaza, speaks to Kim Jensen about the sing-a-longs on the Freedom Flotilla, his treatment once detained in Israel, and how he got into activism to support Palestinians.
Category Archives: BDS
The extreme character of Israel’s nation-state law and its Gaza massacre provides a golden opportunity to activists to mobilize wider and deeper support for the Palestinian struggle, Richard Falk reports from a conference in Beirut.
Who says BDS isn’t working? Twelve years ago Israel launched “Brand Israel” to transform its image overseas. But marketers for Tel Aviv are seeking to disconnect the city from Israel, because the Israel brand is “contentious” and “less than savory,” a brand development site reports.
The recently passed Israeli ‘nation-state’ law is making is pushing liberal-Zionists to take sides. They can’t ignore the overt Apartheid anymore. Daniel Barenboim says he’s “ashamed to be Israeli”. What will he do about it?
“Israel is effectively declaring itself an apartheid state and dropping its worn-out mask of democracy,” Omar Barghouti says. And now that it is constitutionally mandated “to racially discriminate against” Palestinian citizens, “this should stir people, institutions and governments to take effective action to hold Israel accountable.”
The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism equates antisemitism with advocacy for Palestinian rights and undermines both the Palestinian struggle for freedom and the global struggle against antisemitism, say 39 Jewish groups around the world that do not oppose BDS.
The Irish senate has voted in favor of a bill banning the importation of products from illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory, paving the way for the country to become the first EU nation to enforce a boycott of Israeli settlement goods.
The Episcopal Church voted today at its general convention in Austin, Texas, to divest from companies involved in Israel’s human violations against Palestine. The Church had defeated such measures before but now joins nearly a dozen other Christian denominations in taking economic action.
Since 2016, suicide rates in Gaza have been rising, reflecting rising levels of despair and hopelessness in the population, the Guardian reports. Until recently suicide in Gaza had been rare, partly due to strong clan networks, but mostly because killing oneself is forbidden in traditional Muslim societies.
Prominent Israeli scientist David Harel and writer and translator Ilana Hammerman penned a joint op-ed for the Guardian last week calling on the international community to intervene on behalf of Palestinians, before time runs out. The pair are not marginal public figures, they do not consider themselves BDS activists or anti-Zionists, but they are calling on the international community to pressure Israeli society because “the state of Israel is facing a catastrophic situation, which could, alarmingly soon, lead to extensive bloodshed.”
Activist Ariel Gold is deported from Israel because of support for BDS, as a Jew. Minister of Interior Aryeh Deri said: “I am again using my authority to prevent the entry into Israel of a woman who came to act against Israel and call for its boycott. This is a Jew who tried to abuse this fact. Those boycott activists must understand that the rules of the game have changed.”
Last week Roger Waters performed in Munich following a campaign to cancel his concert backed by the city’s mayor, Dieter Reiter, who accused Waters of anti-Semitism. Waters punched back from the stage at Munich’s Olympic Hall: “I believe all people, all of us, all of our brothers and sisters, all of our fragile globe, whatever their ethnicity or religion or nationality deserve the same basic human rights under the law.”
Given their own history, the Irish understand the implications of Israeli settler colonialism and Palestinians appreciate Irish people’s support. Despite collaboration between Israel and Ireland, Irish universities have been hospitable to pro-Palestinian voices. And an independent Irish senator is planning to introduce a bill seeking to prohibit the import and sale of goods originating in illegal settlements in occupied territories.
In recent days, Palestinian legislators have submitted three legislative measures before parliament to explode the illusion that Israel is a western-style liberal democracy. A bill to revoke the quasi-governmental status of international Zionist organizations like the Jewish National Fund (JNF) and the Jewish Agency that discriminate against non-Jews was defeated when all the Jewish parties voted against it.
A dishonest ‘NY Times’ article blames threat of ‘violence’ for canceling Argentina-Israel soccer match — and does not ask a single Argentine player why they chose to cancel the friendly match on June 9 in Jerusalem, which would have served Israeli propaganda purposes.
On May 23, 2018 the California State University, East Bay’s student government voted unanimously in favor of a resolution in support of divestment from corporations that profit from the occupation of Palestine.
Four more filmmakers have joined a growing number of artists boycotting the Tel Aviv LGBT International Film Festival in response to a Palestinian call. French director Océane Michel explained on Facebook: “I stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people and express my total disagreement with Israel’s policy towards Palestine. For this reason, I refuse to take part in the pinkwashing strategy of the Israeli government. I want my movie withdrawn from the festival.”
Demonstrators muffled the sounds of the Philadelphia Orchestra over the weekend in a protest of the company’s upcoming tour in Israel.
The National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies recently passed a resolution in support of Dr. Rabab Abdulhadi. Fulano de Tal explains how this resolution came to pass, while weaving in the historical trajectory and current events in Gaza.
On Kensington High Street, around the corner from the Israeli embassy, Londoners protested the killing of Palestinian demonstrators in Gaza yesterday, with more actions across the city in recent days at the U.S. embassy, the Saudi embassy, the BBC, 10 Downing Street, and Parliament Square.
BDS support among Jews is a problem that goes back to Jews being against other Jews in the Torah, says Roseanne Barr. She would reach out to those Israel-criticizing Jews with Torah. “They are not really all that educated,” Barr told the Jerusalem Post conference. “I would tell them….Do you know you’re looking at the greatest recorded rebellion of a slave class of people that’s ever been written?”
The campaign against the Philadelphia Orchestra’s upcoming tour to Israel continues to intensify. Eleven longtime subscribers and donors have issued a statement announcing their decision to withdraw their support of the Orchestra if it does not cancel the tour. “We will no longer support the Orchestra if it decides to lend legitimacy to Israel’s apartheid regime,” the statement reads.
The George Washington University student Senate overwhelmingly passed a resolution to divest from nine companies known to be complicit in Israel’s violations of Palestinian human rights after being delayed a week because of threats to their safety by the anti-BDS group Canary Mission. Still, Canary Mission showed up on campus the night of the Senate vote, and it got very bizarre.
Israeli human rights activists submitted a Freedom of Information request concerning the international network of anti-BDS activity by Israeli ministries – and were surprised to find that the Justice Ministry was directly involved.
Like the recent Barnard BDS vote, Natalie Portman’s refusal to attend the Genesis Prize award presentation shows how deep the cracks in Zionism are running for a growing number of Jews who today find it “increasingly tricky” to reconcile one’s familiar love for Israel and one’s decency, and eventually opt towards dissociating themselves from Zionism.