UC Davis Protest Israeli Diplomat George Deek

 

Statement of Action

Today, UC Davis students, alumni, and members of the broader community came together in response to the presence of George Deek – the so-called “Arab-Israeli” diplomat- on our campus. Our response was not organized by any single organization or group but rather, emerged from shared principles of anti-colonialism in general, and anti-zionism in particular. The protest took the form of a walk-out accompanied by the following chants:

 

Free, free Palestine

Long live the Intifada

Intifada, intifada

Israel is an apartheid state

Israel is anti-Black

When Palestine is occupied, resistance is justified

Palestine will be free, fight white supremacy

 

While we recognize our actions to be minimal in relation to the history of Palestinian resistance we invoke, we felt a responsibility to reject the zionist agenda that George Deek furthers – a settler-colonial agenda that is xenophobic, Islamophobic, and anti-Black. We refuse all efforts to normalize the Israeli occupation and recognize that the state of Israel was born and remains possible through the genocide and displacement of Palestinians. We did not participate within the established framework of the event because we are aware of how discourses about ‘dialogue’ and ‘democracy’ function to silence anti-zionist voices. We recognize that Israel’s voice is already over-represented in the media, our classrooms, and history books and refuse to provide the State another platform through which to normalize colonial violence. We have no more ‘tolerance’ for Israeli propaganda.

George Deek, a self-identified Israeli born to a Palestinian family, perfectly embodies the project of zionist liberal-democracy, which seeks to assimilate Palestinians into non-existence, after the exhaustion of genocidal State strategies. Deek’s public references to Israeli willingness to ‘dialogue’ and denunciations of Palestinians’ so-called self-victimization not only disregards the disparity of power between colonizer and colonized, but also erases the history of Palestinian resistance against occupation. We reject the kind of identity politics that values Deek’s Palestinian identity at the expense of asserting his function as a colonial collaborator.

In light of recent events on the UC Davis campus we also feel obligated to note the Israeli state’s foundational anti-Blackness. Israel’s investments in prison systems and direct involvement with American policing should preclude any bonds of solidarity between supporters of Israel and dispossessed communities, particularly the Black community. We note the continuity between the foundational racism of Israel and that of the United States, and see the continuity between Israeli anxiety over the reproduction of non-white, non-Ashkenazi bodies and the history of sterilization of indigenous and Black women in the United States.

We, therefore, are opposed to entities that impose or directly enable these injustices to persist, and we will not tolerate or allow for such people to have a platform to speak on our campus, nor will we engage in pseudo ‘dialogue’ with them.

Signed,
Pro-Palestine Supporters and Community

Egyptian Army Begins Flooding Of Gaza Tunnels

via Middle East Monitor

Blockaded by Israel since 2007, Gaza used to receive much-needed supplies through the network of smuggling tunnels on its border with Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula.

Since the 2013 military coup against President Mohamed Morsi, Egyptian authorities have cracked down on the smuggling tunnels along the border with Gaza.

One of the tunnel owners, a Palestinian man who goes by the name of Abu Mohammad, told Anadolu Agency: “The Egyptian army started pumping large amounts of water from the Mediterranean Sea into the tunnels through large underground pipes that have hundreds of holes in them. These pipes were extended in the past in a trench that extends across the borders between Egypt and the Gaza Strip.”

Abu Mohammad also explained that large amounts of water flooded the tunnels that were used to smuggle food, medicine and construction materials from Egypt to Gaza.

 

[Video] Black Scholars and Activists Renew Palestinian Solidarity

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[ Scroll Down to Read Full Statement From Black Activists & Scholars in Solidarity With Palestine ]

Video From Dr Jared Ball Of iMiXWHATiLike / The Real News

Activist and journalist Kristien Bailey discusses a new letter signed by more than 1000 to support Palestinian liberation. –   August 20, 2015

From Black For Palestine (Black Solidarity With Palestine)

The past year has been one of high-profile growth for Black-Palestinian solidarity. Out of the terror directed against us—from numerous attacks on Black life to Israel’s brutal war on Gaza and chokehold on the West Bank—strengthened resilience and joint-struggle have emerged between our movements. Palestinians on Twitter were among the first to provide international support for protesters in Ferguson, where St. Louis-based Palestinians gave support on the ground. Last November, a delegation of Palestinian students visited Black organizers in St. Louis, Atlanta, Detroit and more, just months before the Dream Defenders took representatives of Black Lives Matter, Ferguson, and other racial justice groups to Palestine. Throughout the year, Palestinians sent multiple letters of solidarity to us throughout protests in Ferguson, New York, and Baltimore. We offer this statement to continue the conversation between our movements: Continue reading

[INFOGRAPHIC] Nakba Fact Sheet.

Palestinian_refugees

 

Nakba day (Day of the Catastrophe) is an annual commemoration of Palestinian displacement on May 15th where an estimated 700,000-800,000 + were forced to flee or were expelled after the 1948 war. Hundreds of towns and villages were later destroyed by the Zionist occupiers.

 

DARWISH ADDASSI, Nakba survivor:

We were forced to walk for two days to the nearest Arab village that was not under Israeli occupation. I was a 14-year-old boy. I, my father, my brother, and two uncles were taken as prisoners of war from the town of Ramleh. We were released in April 1949 to the Jordanian army. We lost everything: Our homes, our orange groves, and our land. We were never compensated for anything.”

 

David Ben Gurion, first Prime Minister of Israel:

“We must do everything to insure they [the Palestinians] never do return … The old will die and the young will forget.”

 

Infographic via Middle East Eye.

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[Video] ‘We love being Lakota’: Native Autonomy in Pine Ridge

Post image for ‘We love being Lakota’: native autonomy in Pine Ridge

‘The Native and the Refugee’ documentary project explores the similarities between the struggles and experiences of Native Americans and Palestinians.

Originally Posted in ROAR Magazine

By Matt Peterson & Malek Rasamny, photo by Chris Huber for Rapid City Journal.

In December 2014, we visited the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in what is now South Dakota. We chose to begin our project at the archetypal site of struggle for land, sovereignty and autonomy among natives in the United States. It was the Lakota people, including warriors Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse, who put up some of the most historic fights against the US military forces in the nation’s expansion westward.

In the 1876-1877 Black Hills War, the US intervened militarily on behalf of settlers searching for gold in the Lakota’s most sacred site, now known as the Wind Cave National Park. It was in this context that the Battle of Little Bighorn took place, when the Lakota famously defeated George Armstrong Custer’s Battalion of the 7th Cavalry. Pine Ridge was later the site of the 1890 Wounded Knee massacre, in which that same 7th Cavalry killed hundreds of Lakota in its struggle to disarm and forcibly relocate them to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

Continue reading

Banksy Unveils New Graffiti Art Series In Gaza

From Street Art News

After teasing us with a single shot on Instagram earlier this morning (GMT time), Banksy finally revealed the location of the first piece which is Gaza in Palestine. Inspired by “The Thinker” by Rodin the first piece is entitled “Bomb Damage” and obviously with Banksy, the placement is just on point.
On top of that, the elusive British street artist took the opportunity to reveal four new pieces which you will be able to find around Gaza.
Two quotes were enclosed with the images of the new stenciled pieces:

Gaza is often described as ‘the world’s largest open air prison’ because no-one is allowed to enter or leave. But that seems a bit unfair to prisons – they don’t have their electricity and drinking water cut off randomly almost everyday.  — Banksy

A local man came up and said ‘Please – what does this mean?’ I explained I wanted to highlight the destruction in Gaza by posting photos on my website – but on the internet people only look at pictures of kittens. — Banksy

Just like in New York City back in 2013, one of the new piece is text based and reads: “If We Wash Our Hands Of The Conflict Between The Powerful And The Powerless We Side With The Powerful – We Don’t Remain Neutral”.
Finally, Banksy drops a strong statement with a 2 minute long video which document his recent trip to Palestine.
Hit the jump to discover more images on these powerful artworks plus the video and as usual keep your eyes peeled on StreetArtNews for the latest Banksy updates. Continue reading

Audio Recording: Steven Salaita at Berkeley’s La Pena

From La Pena

From La Pena website

On Tuesday, Steven Salaita spoke at Berkeley’s La Pena Cultural Center, with the support of the Middle East Children’s Alliance.

Steven Salaita is a professor who was “unhired” from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for publicly speaking out against the Israeli occupation of Palestine. A few weeks before classes were about to start, he received a letter from Chancellor Phyllis Wise, informing him of his termination. Ever since, there’s been a media frenzy around his termination and his unapologetic Twitter feed. In the tweet that gets quoted and gasped at the most, Salaita asked, “If Netanyahu appeared on TV with a necklace made from the teeth of Palestinian children, would anybody be surprised?” Check out the rest of his feed here.

On his Berkeley stop of a national tour, he spoke at La Pena about Palestine, his termination and forms of colonization and repression in the academy. Continue reading

Rasmea Odeh: Another Example of US Courts’ Political Bias

rasmeaReblogged from Mufta

After only two hours of jury deliberations, Palestinian-American activist, Rasmea Odeh, has been convicted of “unlawful procurement of naturalization” for failing to disclose that she was conviction by an Israeli military court, forty-five year ago, on dubious and discredited terrorism charges. The conviction came after Odeh was kidnapped, tortured, and raped by Israeli soldiers, who induced her to confess to a crime she denied committing. Though she renounced the forced confession, an Israeli court convicted Odeh anyway and sentenced her to life in prison. She was eventually released in a prisoner exchange and immigrated to the United States in 1995. Journalist Charlotte Silver recently recounted these events in a piece for the Nation:

When she was 21, in 1969, Odeh was arrested in the middle of the night by Israeli soldiers at her home, and for twenty-five days her interrogators tortured her. She was beaten from head to toe with sticks and metal bars; her body, including genitalia and breasts, was subjected to electric shocks after she was forced to watch a male prisoner tortured to death in this very way. All the while, she was told she would die if she did not confess. But it was not until they brought in her father, threatening to force him to rape her, that she agreed to sign a confession stating that she had helped orchestrate two explosions in West Jerusalem that killed two civilians. Even then, her torturers raped her with a thick wooden stick.

Standing before a military court less than one month later, Odeh renounced the confession. But the panel of judges ignored that, and Odeh was sentenced to ten years plus life in prison. Ten years later, she was released in a prisoner exchange, along with seventy-five other Palestinians. That same year, in 1979, Odeh traveled to Geneva, where she described to the United Nations precisely how she came to be convicted of terrorism by Israel. In the years following, Odeh lived in Lebanon and Jordan, where she obtained a law degree. In 1995 she immigrated to the United States, joining her brother and father, both US citizens, and the large Arab-American communities in Detroit and, later, Chicago.

Odeh did not divulge the conviction on her U.S. naturalization papers or to immigration representatives, before being granted citizenship in 2004. About a year ago, she was arrested by officials from the Department of Homeland Security and charged with unlawfully obtaining her naturalization, a crime that carries anywhere from probation to ten years in jail.

But for the U.S. government’s active pursuit of Palestinian, Arab, and Muslim activists since 9/11, Odeh’s Israeli court case may never have been discovered…

Read the entire article here.

A Brief History of Block the Boat, Oakland: Organization, Planning, Autonomy, Spontaneity Combine for a Spectacular Direct Action at the Port

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Emily Loftis/MintPress

From Hyphenated Republic

In August, 2014, an ad hoc coalition and ever-changing group of autonomous activists prevented the Zim Piraeus from offloading it’s good for four days and caused subsequent entanglements that prevented the vast majority of its cargo from touching dry Oakland land. Much has already been said about the relationship between labor and the BTB coaltion that was necessary for such a monumental win. I would like to speak of another hand in hand relationship that received less attention or press, but was just as important, and perhaps even more so, to the final impact of the Block the Boat coalition’s unprecedented victory in Oakland.

That relationship between organizations in the Bay Area organizing scene that comprised the Block the Boat coalition and action taken through existing solidarity networks and individuals, acting autonomously. To understand the remarkable victory of Block the Boat, Oakland, one has to first trace the line of this uneasy partnership, and the incredible feedback loop it unintentionally unleashed, amping the Block the Boat signal higher and higher towards success*.

Block the Boat Begins

2014’s Block the Boat began at the end of an otherwise dreary pro-Palestinian [and pro-Immigrant] rally, with an uncharacteristically high, and thus, indicative, turn-out of about 100 people marching listlessly in a circle in front of the Federal Building in Oakland. At the end of the action, a call was made by some organizers to create an ad hoc assembly to discuss the possibility of blockading a Zim shipping lines ship. From the outset, the assembly made it clear that they sought to emulate the successful action by a coalition of labor and social justice groups in 2010 which blockaded a Zim ship for two work shifts as protest against the Mavi Marmara atrocity. Zim, an iconic Israeli company with ownership, voting and vetoing power vested in the state itself, was seen as a perfect BDS target–emphasis on the S for sanction, especially for those at the assembly who wanted to bring BDS further into the direct action sphere. The atmosphere was charged with anger and sadness about the shocking death toll in Gaza at Israeli military hands, the sense of urgency was palpable.

Read the entire piece here.

 

[Action Alert] Block The Boat: Tampa!

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Follow: @BlocktheBoatTPA
When: August 27th 8:00am – 5:00pm
Where: 2002 Maritime Blvd Tampa Florida
RSVP: https://www.facebook.com/events/541809929252987/

 

To all our comrades in the struggle for Justice in Palestine: Join us!

What’s happening?

The world has watched in horror as Israel has continued to bombard and devastate Gaza. Millions around the globe have come out in support of the Palestinian people and against the Zionist regime, holding massive marches, demonstrations, and actions. It’s time to step it up and hit Zionism where it hurts! Oakland blocked an Israeli Zim ship from unloading for 4 days thanks to the solidarity of ILWU Local 10 longshore workers who refused to cross the picket line. Now it’s our turn!

Call to Action!

Palestine is calling us to action! Palestinians laborers, Palestinian General Federation Trade Union (PGFTU), have called on workers around the world to refuse to handle Israel goods. Palestinians throughout Gaza, the West Bank and 1948 Palestine have demonstrated their unity in the struggle against Apartheid Israel and have taken to the streets in the tens of thousands, bravely facing Israeli military armed with US made weapons to call on the international community to stand with them as they resist Zionism throughout all of historic Palestine. We will be answering this call by organizing community pickets at the Port, asking the longshoreman and truckers to honor this request and to stand with the people of Palestine.