IRELAND SETS THE PACE FOR BDS

Thank you Ireland!

Ireland becomes the first country ever to pass a law boycotting goods from illegal Israel settlements in Palestine!

Image by Carlos Latuff

Irish senate passes bill banning products from Israeli settlements

 

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 bill, which passed on Wednesday in the upper house of the Irish parliament, the Seanad, will need to make its way through more Seanad votes and then the lower house before becoming law.

The bill passed with 25 lawmakers voting in its favor, 20 against it and 14 abstaining.

Palestinian officials and activists supporting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement hailed the move as courageous.

Hanan Ashrawi of the PLO Executive Committee released a statement after the vote saying she was “truly honored to extend our sincere appreciation of and deep gratitude to the Seanad Éireann who took a courageous and principled stand in support of peace, justice, and morality.”

Ashrawi praised the “historical friendship and solidarity between both the Palestinian and Irish peoples,” adding that the legislation bears great significance for Palestine, particularly in the context of Ireland’s firm commitment to defending social justice, equality and freedom and the rights of the oppressed, including the Palestinians, a people in captivity and exile.”

She went on to implore other EU countries and the international community to follow in Ireland’s path “to hold Israel accountable and to act on their declared principles and policies by banning all settlement products and beginning a process of de-occupation in Palestine.”

While the bill calls only for the boycott of the importation of goods produced in Israeli settlements, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed it “gives a tailwind to those who seek to boycott Israel and is utterly contrary to the principles of free trade and justice”. The bill does not ban all Israeli products.

According to the Irish Times, the EU has estimated that settlement goods make up about one percent of the €50 million annual imports from Israel to the country, at €500,000.

The Irish government, however, estimated in 2012 that the figure stood closer to €1.5 million.

The Irish Times highlighted that many fruits and vegetables imported from Israel come from the settlements, specifically Medjool dates. The dates are farmed by settlers in Jericho, famous in Palestine for its dates, on occupied Palestinian land.

According to the newspaper, if enacted into law, regulating settlement goods may prove difficult for the country, given reports of Israeli settlement companies bypassing EU labeling regulations by bringing products from settlement farms to processing facilities inside Israel proper, from where they are labeled and shipped out.

“By using such tactics, exporters can present their goods as ‘made in Israel’, thereby enjoying preferential access to the EU’s markets,” the Irish Times reported.

The Israeli government, which slammed the bill as “populist, dangerous and extremist,” has increased its measures to combat the BDS movement, as it has expanded to include companies, universities, and religious institutions around the world divesting from organizations complicit in Israel’s violation of Palestinian rights.

Despite previous pressure from Israel on Ireland to kill the legislation, the Irish lawmaker behind the bill, Frances Black, said in a statement prior to the vote that “trade in settlement goods sustains injustice”.

“In the occupied territories, people are forcibly kicked out of their homes, fertile farming land is seized, and the fruit and vegetables produced are then sold on Irish shelves to pay for it all,” she said, adding that “settlements are war crimes, and it’s time for Ireland to show some leadership and refuse to support them.”

ROGER WATERS PLAYS MUNICH DESPITE MUNICIPAL OPPOSITION

Roger Waters plays Munich despite mayor’s effort to stop concert over his support for BDS

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,” Roger Waters told the crowd at a Munich concert last week. 

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. An attorney for Waters asked Reiter to retract his statement, according to the Jerusalem Post, and Waters addressed the row himself from the stage at Munich’s Olympic Hall and later posted to social media. The musician explained that the mayor was championing a petition that alleged Waters is anti-Semitic because he endorses the Palestinian movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel.

Munich passed a law last year that prohibits the use of public facilities to persons who support the BDS movement.

Here’s the video of Waters in Munich:

Dieter Reiter, the Mayor of Munich, has issued a press release denouncing me as anti-Semitic.

The Mayor claims I make increasingly hateful anti-Semitic remarks.

I stand for human rights...

REMEMBER WHEN THE NOBEL PEACE PRIZE WAS NOBLE

Let’s hope it becomes that again

NEW VIDEO …. BDS, NOW MORE THAN EVER

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EUROVISION 2018 ~~ THE UNTOLD STORY

Netta Barzilai is an incredible talent and deserved to win Europe’s most important song competition. But her victory, even if inadvertently, is a victory for the occupation.

Israel’s Eurovision win will bring a showdown with BDS

I’m a huge fan of Netta Barzilai. I think she’s a rare musical genius. I was rooting for her as she was competing to represent Israel in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. Late at night on Saturday, as votes from across Europe were coming in, I was sitting on the edge of my seat, yelling at each country that didn’t vote for her, eventually bursting out in joyous laughter as she won the popular vote and the entire contest.

Politically speaking, however, Barzilai’s win is bad news. Our Eurovision victory proves that the Israeli right is correct. We can bomb Iranians in Syria as much as we want, push for the cancellation of an international nuclear agreement we are not even party to (and that most countries view as essential for world peace), open fire at journalists and nonviolent demonstrators, hold millions of people under a racist military regime for over half a century – and nothing bad will happen.

On the contrary. Embassies are moving to Jerusalem, exports (especially of Israeli weapons) are up, and next year’s Eurovision competition will be held in the unified (read: occupied) Jerusalem. Once in a while we might hear the distant, choking sound of Palestinians, living under the boot of Israeli occupation, but it’s a noise one gets accustomed to.

One can argue, of course, that the massive popular vote for Barzilai throughout Europe was neither a political statement in support of the occupation nor a message regarding the growing popularity of the authoritarian right across the continent. Rather, it was a genuine enthusiasm from her performance – and one that I share. While the Eurovision’s referee votes are highly politicized, ordinary fans of the competition likely voted for someone they recognized as a great singer – someone who sings about woman empowerment, and who pushes a progressive and liberal platform.

But in the real world of politics, intentions are not enough. Israel’s hasbara (state-sponsored propaganda) has made an art of turning liberals into a living proof of our being “the only democracy in the Middle East.” Both the Ministry of Tourism and Ministry of Foreign Affairs regularly boast of Tel Aviv’s progressive politics and its and vibrant nightlife – with a stated goal of re-branding Israel and hiding away Jerusalem, with its religious zealousness and occupation.

This is also the case now. As 972’s Orly Noy recently mentioned, Netta Barzilai represents the State of Israel. Both the government and opposition members in the Knesset have been celebrating her victory, saying that next year’s Eurovision will come to the “unified Jerusalem.” They know well that this is a national victory, not a private one. It is especially a victory for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the “foreign relations wizard,” who is already using the latest news to promote both hasbara and his own political career.

The coming year will most likely turn into a PR war between Israel and BDS activists throughout Europe. As the 2019 contest inches closer, the latter will most likely start campaigning in all 40-plus countries that send representatives to the competition, bringing up information about the occupation in general and Jerusalem in particular – and thus sparking political controversy. This will not likely stop the show, but the international debate will be of value in and of itself.

Until then, it is up to Israelis like myself to keep fighting the occupation at home, to support Palestinian popular resistance, and in between – go party with the one and only, Netta Barzilai.

IN ISRAEL ~~ YOU CRITICIZE, YOU GO!

“This is yet another alarming sign of the country’s increasing intolerance of critical voices”

Image by Carlos Latuff

Omar Shakir, the Israel and Palestine director for Human Rights Watch, has been ordered out of Israel after the country accused him of supporting a boycott of the country.

Human Rights Watch Director Decries Expulsion From Israel as Attempt to ‘Muzzle Dissent’

“Barring access to those documenting human rights abuses won’t hide Israel’s mass violations carried out in the context of more than 50 years of occupation.”

Human rights campaigners stood in solidarity on Wednesday with Omar Shakir, the director of Human Rights Watch’s (HRW) work in Israel and Palestine, after Israel announced that Shakir would be expelled from the country within 14 days.

Despite claims by the Israeli Interior Ministry that Shakir had violated the country’s anti-boycott laws, Shakir argued that the deportation order was part of Israel’s efforts to “muzzle dissent” regarding its occupation of the West Bank and Gaza and other human rights violations.

Breaking: Israel has ordered me deported after compiling 7-pg intel dossier on me. 1st time in history Israel orders official out. Year ago it denied work permit before reversing, accusing us of ‘propaganda’. Now its BDS. Real aim to muzzle dissent.

Fifteen Israeli human rights groups including the Coalition of Women for Peace and the Human Rights Defenders Fund spoke out in support of Shakir, calling on Israel to “end the occupation”—rather than trying to hide it by removing critics.

“Israel is trying to keep both its own citizens and the world from seeing what it is doing,” the groups’ joint letter states. “Neither closing the borders to human rights groups and activists nor other Israeli measures against organizations critical of the occupation will deter us—or them—from reporting human rights violations in areas under Israeli control.”

The Interior Ministry announced on Tuesday that Shakir was being ordered to leave Israel due to his support for the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement urging backers to withdraw all economic support for Israel to protest the occupation and other abuses.

While Shakir said Tuesday, “I have not called for any form of boycott of Israel during my time at Human Rights Watch,” a statement from his organization argues that even trying to ban ban participation in such non-violent actions remains “contrary to Israel’s obligation to uphold the rights to freedom of expression and to non-discrimination on grounds of political opinion.”

“This is yet another alarming sign of the country’s increasing intolerance of critical voices,” added Magdalena Mughrabi of Amnesty International. “The Israeli authorities must immediately stop their ongoing harassment of human rights defenders. Barring access to those documenting human rights abuses won’t hide Israel’s mass violations carried out in the context of more than 50 years of occupation. Israel must repeal laws that arbitrarily restrict human rights advocacy, including criticism of human rights violations and breaches of international humanitarian law that it has committed.”

Shakir, a U.S. citizen, was previously barred from Israel last year when the country refused to grant him a work permit. He was later given a one-year work visa after Shakir himself drew comparisons between the Israeli denialand a host of other countries that showhostility towards human rights observers.

ON VIDEO … STEPHEN HAWKING’S ‘SPECIAL’ RELATIONSHIP WITH ISRAEL

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Stephen Hawking believed in Palestinians’ right of resistance and was the first scientist of his stature to boycott Israel

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New Image by Carlos Latuff

Stephen Hawking, a friend of Palestine

A VIDEO TO HELP YOU GET TO KNOW THE BOYCOTT

Short video for those unfamiliar with the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) Movement

ISRAEL HAS ITS OWN BOYCOTT~~ ANOTHER FILM THEY DON’T WANT YOU TO SEE

Israel hates the word ‘BOYCOTT’ unless they are the ones doing it

Why is Israel boycotting an Israeli film? Because it shows Palestinian deaths being covered up by Israeli soldiers.

FINALLY, A NOBEL PEACE PRIZE NOMINATION THAT DESERVES IT

Awarding this year’s Nobel Peace Prize to the BDS movement would be a powerful signal, emphasizing the international community’s commitment to support a just peace for the Palestinian people and by that – for the Israeli people and all people in the Middle East – and the world at large.

Image by Carlos Latuff

BDS nominated for 2018 Nobel Peace Prize

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement for Palestinian rights has been nominated for the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize. Formal nomination for the prestigious award was made last week by the Norwegian MP and leader of the Red Party, Bjørnar Moxness.

In a statement announcing the nomination, the Parliamentary Group, which includes a number of left-wing parties, said that the selection of BDS for a Nobel Peace Prize reflected “the growing international solidarity with the Palestinian struggle for justice, dignity and freedom from the Israeli occupation”.

Explaining their nomination, the Parliamentary Group said that the BDS campaign is a non-violent movement for freedom, equality and a just peace for the Palestinian people and was therefore being nominated for the prestigious prize.

Moxness, who is leading the campaign for BDS to be honoured in Oslo at the end of the year, said:

Awarding this year’s Nobel Peace Prize to the BDS movement would be a powerful signal, emphasising the international community’s commitment to support a just peace for the Palestinian people and by that – for the Israeli people and all people in the Middle East – and the world at large.

In his comments to MEMO, Moxness was keen to point out that the intention behind the nomination was “first and foremost pro-Palestinian, not anti-Israeli”. Having said that, the Norwegian politician expects a backlash: “We are well aware that the current right-wing government of Israel tends to try to criminalise any attempt to convince Israel to abide by international law and end the occupation and oppression of Palestine and the Palestinians.”

Asked about the kind of opposition he is likely to face, he said: “We nominated the BDS movement for the Nobel Peace Prize well aware that this perfectly legitimate nomination of a perfectly legitimate movement that fights for a legitimate cause – that of the Palestinians – with legitimate peaceful means, will meet some resistance, typically in the form of smearing campaigns and the like. In the face of that kind of opposition, the challenge is to stay focus on the main cause, freedom for the Palestinians, and to stay focused on what we see as our humble contribution to that cause, an attempt to start a positive international campaign in favour of awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to the BDS movement.”

One of the main reasons BDS groups cite for endorsing the campaign is the double standard when it comes to Israel. Alluding to this tendency the Red Party’s press statement mentioned Norway’s January 2018 decision to “officially impose sanctions and restrictions against 26 different states or regions due to breeches of international laws and human rights but not against the state of Israel – despite Israeli occupation, annexation and collective punishment of the Palestinian people”.

According to Moxness “the current Norwegian government is closely allied to the USA and seems to be more eager to please the USA and its ally in Tel Aviv, than to uphold a principled stance on international law and human rights”. This fact was one of the reasons for initiating this campaign to award the Nobel Peace Prize to the BDS movement, he said to MEMO.

Moxness explained that the support Israel gets on a governmental level is not replicated across Norwegian society, pointing to the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions which he said is a massive player in Norwegian politics. “They firmly support the Palestinian cause and voted in favour of implementing BDS measures against Israel last December.”

The opposition to BDS, according to Moxness, is due to its impressive success. The BDS movements’ impressive record of creating pressure to end Israeli occupation through peaceful means is seen as legitimate and ethical by most of the international community. It gets its inspiration from the anti-apartheid movement from South Africa, and it is endorsed by a very broad range of organisations and personalities, former Nobel Peace Prize laureates like Desmond Tutu and Mairead Maguire, people of different political affiliations and religious belongings. This legitimacy, said Moxness, is probably what scares the Israeli hawks the most.

The next step on the formal track is the publication of the Nobel Committees short list, which is due towards the end of September/beginning of October. Moxness is confident that if all supporters of the Palestinian cause join together and campaign for awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to the BDS movement it is perfectly possible to make it to that shortlist and beyond. And regardless of the committee’s decision, he insists, “through the campaign we might have made important steps towards reigniting the struggle for justice for the Palestine through peaceful means.”

Moxness appealed to human rights groups and activists to join the campaign. “We think an international campaign to award the Nobel Peace Prize to the BDS movement can contribute both to legitimise the BDS movement and more broadly to put the Palestinian cause back on the international agenda again,” he predicted.

For this to happen we need the participation of all, he added. Moxness predicts that there will be grassroot support, social media support, the support of media organisations, political parties, politicians, governments, trade unions, students, artists, intellectuals, athletes as well as football teams.

The Nobel Committee will publish a shortlist of nominees by the end of September. “We have until then to make this an effective international campaign,” Moxness said, and “if everyone participates this is the kind of positive campaign that we think can change the political environment and bring us closer to the objective of justice for the Palestinians.”

 

Source

AND BOYCOTT WE WILL HASTA LA VICTORIA SIEMPRE!

We boycott to support the right to resist! ….

They can’t arrest us all …. so this is the latest tactic ….

Who’s Who on ‘The List’?

Here’s a good question ….

Why has Israel banned Jewish leftists but not members of Nazi-linked groups?

Israel has banned leaders and key activists from Jewish Voice for Peace, the American Friends Service Committee, and the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, among other groups that support BDS, from entering the country. So why doesn’t it extend the same restrictions to members of Nazi-affiliated groups?

Read THIS report to find out why

Enjoy the following ….

(Israel isn’t the first to blacklist Freedom)

SPOTLIGHT ON OUR ASSOCIATE AND THE GERMAN BDS MOVEMENT

We are all mighty proud of you Evelyn!

Here are a few examples. In Germany, the BDS movement has Evelyn Hecht-Galinski at its service. She is the daughter of Heinz Galinski, a former president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany and chairman of the Jewish congregation of Berlin, who was one of the greatest and outspoken fighters against any form of anti-Semitism.

Criticism of the ‘Jewish State’ is NOT Anti Semitism!

The strange case of self-hating Jews 

It’s hard to understand—and even harder to accept—Jews who target their own people, but whether we like it or not, this is a reality; it’s clear, however, that these lunatics won’t succeed in harming the development and future of the Jewish state.
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To tell you the truth, it doesn’t bother me that Lorde isn’t coming to sing in Israel. We survived Pharaoh, we’ll overcome Lorde too.It really bothers me, however, that the young singer from New Zealand decided to boycott Israel because of incitement and alleged words of “explanation” from another young woman from the same serene, remote country—Justine Sachs, a Jew who supports a boycott of the Jewish state.

That young woman, who is not very wise to say the least, isn’t the first Jew targeting her own people. There were others in the past, and there are some in the present. This self-hatred is very strange, and even insane, but it’s a phenomenon we mustn’t belittle.

Here are a few examples. In Germany, the BDS movement has Evelyn Hecht-Galinski at its service. She is the daughter of Heinz Galinski, a former president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany and chairman of the Jewish congregation of Berlin, who was one of the greatest and outspoken fighters against any form of anti-Semitism.

Galinski, who I shared a “block” with at Auschwitz and who “got stuck” in Berlin after the war for some reason, would issue a scathing response to any anti-Semitic comment in the German media—and in many cases, he even won the authorities’ support. His daughter, on the other hand, is one of the most fanatical slanderers of Israel and is among the top supporters of a boycott against the Jewish state, which her father defended with all his might.

And talking about Germany, we should also mention Moshe Menuhin, the father of renowned violinist Yehudi Menuhin. Here’s a Jew who named his son Yehudi (“Jew”), yet kept writing for years for neo-Nazi and anti-Semitic weekly National Zeitung, attacking Israel and the Jews in the most blatant manner. It’s hard to believe, but it’s a fact. Reacting to one of his father’s anti-Israel articles in 1968, Yehudi Menuhin said: “It is a source of great pain to me.”

Still in Germany, we have Felicia Langer, a lawyer who defended terrorists in Israeli courts for years. One day, she decided to immigrate to Germany, where she has been incessantly inciting and slandering Israel. She is also active in the boycott movement, of course. Langer, by the way, was awarded the fifth highest of Germany’s federal order of merit’s eight ranks in 2009. In 2012, she was awarded a “medal of excellence” for her activity from the Palestinian Authority.

I could go on with the list of Jews who hated Jews in different periods of time, but there’s no need. It’s a phenomenon which is hard to understand, and even harder to accept. But whether we like it or not, it exists. And occasionally, it causes us trouble. It’s clear, however, that these lunatics won’t succeed in harming the development and future of the country they are attacking—their own people’s state.

Oh, yes. I almost forgot to mention that the phenomenon of a Jew attacking Jews has existed since the beginning of the Christian religion. The root of anti-Judaism was Saul of Tarsus (Paul the Apostle).

VERBAL ASSAULTS WILL SET PALESTINE FREE

In a full-page ad in the Washington Post, “America’s Rabbi” Shmuley Boteach has printed an all-out verbal assault on Lorde, the New Zealand singer who recently cancelled a show in Tel Aviv out of concern that she would be legitimating Israel’s occupation. 

Shmuley Boteach’s unhinged attack on Lorde will only help the movement to boycott Israel

In a full-page ad in the Washington Post, “America’s Rabbi” Shmuley Boteach has printed an all-out verbal assault on Lorde, the New Zealand singer who recently cancelled a showin Tel Aviv out of concern that she would be legitimating Israel’s occupation. Lorde cancelled her show after reading a letter from two Palestinian and Jewish New Zealanders noting the illegality of Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian Territories, Trump and Netanyahu’s escalation against Jerusalem, the Israeli detention of Palestinian minors like Ahed Tamimi, and the longstanding oppression of Palestinians in Al-Khalil / Hebron, including the family of one of the co-authors. Notably, the letter pulled punches by avoiding any mention of the expulsion of the Palestinian refugees during Israel’s founding, or Israel’s wargames against Iran and throughout the region.

In one of his many attempts to slime critics of Israel with newspaper ad purchases, Shmuley Boteach labels Lorde an anti-Semite over her cancellation and implies that she supports the atrocities of the government of Syria. Boteach is an ardent supporter of Donald Trump and a confidante of Steve Bannon, the notorious former Trump Administration staffer known for running the white nationalist Breitbart publication. Though Boteach has served as a celebrity rabbi on a number of reality television shows, leading Jewish religious authorities have dismissed his writings as heretical.

The ad, purchased by Boteach’s World Values Network, goes to great lengths to malign Lorde, the government of New Zealand, and the movement to boycott, divest, and sanction (“BDS”) Israel, for expressing varying degrees of dissent against the State of Israel. However, the ad constitutes objective support for the very same boycott movement for several reasons.

First, the ad itself is remarkably unhinged. Outrageously, the ad suggests that Lorde supports Syrian regime atrocities because she is playing a show in Russia, which supports the Syrian government; that is, Lorde is being accused of supporting the crimes of one country because she is playing a show in an entirely different country that happens to have friendly diplomatic relations with the first. And although the ad, in passing, points out that Russia has committed human rights abuses of its own, the ad does not consider that, as of yet, critics of Russia’s abuses have not called upon Lorde to cancel her Russia show. That means that, as of yet, Lorde is not crossing a proverbial picket line by performing in Russia, as she was doing by originally planning a show in Tel Aviv.

The ad also expends much ink criticizing the behavior of the New Zealand government for joining virtually the entire world in condemning Donald Trump’s decision to legitimate Israel’s land grab over Jerusalem – a criticism that is entirely unrelated to Lorde. The bizarre argumentation of the ad leaves the reader with the impression that the ad is not a meaningful criticism of Lorde, but a piece of poorly drafted war propaganda grasping at straws to sling mud at the performer.

Second, Lorde is a sensitive target. The accomplished 21-year-old singer is adamantly committed to feminismgay rights, and challenging race privilege, and has a fanbase of young people committed to the same worldview. To smear such a delicate target as Lorde as a “bigot,” let alone an agent of a joint Russo-Syrian-New Zealander conspiracy to defend war crimes in Syria, has the tendency to reflect more poorly on the accuser – and the Israeli government he is defending – than the target of the ad.

But finally, and most importantly, Boteach’s ad disincentivizes other performers from playing shows in Israel. The ad contrasts Lorde’s decision to cancel her Tel Aviv show with a litany of other performers who chose to perform in Tel Aviv in spite of calls to boycott. To many critics of the movement to boycott Israel, there is nothing political about playing a show in Israel, and to play a show in Tel Aviv is not the same as making a political statement in defense of the Israeli government.

But Boteach’s ad makes it clear that such a belief is a farce, and that whatever the intentions of performers who play in Tel Aviv, their performances will inevitably be used by unhinged right-wing extremists to defend the Israeli state and to smear those who cancel shows. Boteach’s decision to contrast Lorde with other performers effectively sends a message to all other performers considering shows in Tel Aviv: your one-night performance can and will be used, even years after the fact, by right-wing extremists in America as part of a propaganda war against other people in your industry and in defense of policies that you may not even be aware of and crimes that may not have yet occurred.

Given that most celebrities simply want to avoid controversy, the ad hardly encourages anyone else to book a show in Tel Aviv any time soon.

The movement to boycott Israel has come under tremendous strain in recent years. High-profile smear campaigns against those who have boycotted have emerged alongside laws in various nations aligned with Israel to censor the boycott. One wonders how such a minimal movement motivated by the principle of “Do No Harm” could provoke such ardent and zealous backlash from those in power. And yet, like most movements of the powerless, the attempts to crush it inevitably help it grow.

LET’S LAUGH AT THE OCCUPATION

Another one to add to your boycott list …

ON LINE WAR AGAINST BDS …..

‘Literally grasping at straws’ ….

Fighting online BDS in wake of Jerusalem declaration

It is so obvious that ……

IN PHOTOS ~~ SAYING NO TO BIRTHRIGHT

On Sunday, Jewish Voice for Peace held a demo at the office of the Israeli Birthright Program …. in protest of that program ….

 

In case you don’t know what Birthright is ….. HERE’S a description

Photos © by Bud Korotzer

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HIDING COMPANY NAMES SUPPORTING ILLEGAL ISRAELI SETTLEMENTS

“[Israeli] officials say they are taking the so-called ‘blacklist’ seriously, fearing its publication could have devastating consequences by driving companies away, deterring others from coming and prompting investors to dump shares of Israeli firms,” AP reported.

HEBRON, WEST BANK – AUGUST 14: A bulldozer, belongs to Israeli authority demolishes three building of Palestinians in the Masafer Yatta neighbourhood of southern Hebron, West Bank on August 14, 2017 under the observation of Israeli forces. (Photo by Mamoun Wazwaz/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

Israel and US Hide Names of Companies Supporting Israeli Settlements

By Marjorie Cohn

In December 2016 the United Nations Security Council passed a resolution reaffirming that Israel’s Jewish settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) are illegal and calling on Israel to stop settlement activities in the OPT. Resolution 2334 says the settlements have “no legal validity,” calls them “a flagrant violation under international law,” and demands Israel “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities.”

Nine months earlier, the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), in Resolution 31/36, had ordered the Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights to “produce a database of all business enterprises” that “directly and indirectly, enabled, facilitated and profited from the construction and growth of the settlements.”

The database was scheduled for release in December 2017. Meanwhile, the Israeli and US governments have been trying to prevent that list — which reportedly includes at least 150 local and international companies — from becoming public. “We will do everything we can to ensure that this list does not see the light of day,” Israel’s UN ambassador Danny Danon told The Associated Press. US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said, “We just view that type of blacklist as counterproductive.”

The UNHRC has reportedly delayed the release of the list until “early next year.”

“[Israeli] officials say they are taking the so-called ‘blacklist’ seriously, fearing its publication could have devastating consequences by driving companies away, deterring others from coming and prompting investors to dump shares of Israeli firms,” AP reported.

An Israeli official told The Washington Post that the companies include Israeli banks, security firms, supermarkets, restaurant chains, bus lines, and multinational corporations that provide services and equipment to build and maintain the settlements.

Resolution 31/36 also called on states to take “appropriate measures to help to ensure that businesses domiciled in their territory and/or under their jurisdiction, including those owned or controlled by them, refrain from committing or contributing to gross human rights abuses of Palestinians.”

Publication of the list of companies would make the UNHRC “the world’s biggest promoter of BDS,” Danon opined. In a statement, Danon said, “The Human Rights Council has turned into an accomplice of the BDS [Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions] movement and its conduct is both anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic.”

In fact, the BDS movement is not anti-Israeli, as it targets the policies, not the people, of Israel. And actions against Israel’s policies, including BDS, do not equate to anti-Semitism, as I explain elsewhere.

Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS)

Representatives of Palestinian civil society launched the BDS movement in 2005. They called upon “international civil society organizations and people of conscience all over the world to impose broad boycotts and implement divestment initiatives against Israel similar to those applied to South Africa in the apartheid era … [including] embargoes and sanctions against Israel.”

The call for BDS specified that “these non-violent punitive measures” should last until Israel fully complies with international law by (1) ending the occupation and colonization of all Arab territories and removing the barrier wall; (2) affirming the human rights of Israel’s Arab-Palestinian citizens to full equality; and (3) affirming the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their land as required by UN General Assembly Resolution 194.

Israel seeks to suppress the identities of the companies that support the settlements because it is feeling the pinch of the BDS movement. The United States thinks publication of the list would be “counterproductive” because it would fuel BDS, thereby negatively impacting Israel, the leading US client state and biggest recipient of US foreign aid.

BDS was a major factor behind the 46 percent decrease in foreign direct investment in Israel in 2014, according to a UN report. A World Bank report revealed that Palestinian imports from Israel dropped by 24 percent in the first quarter of 2015.

Several investors, including Bill Gates, George Soros, TIAA-CREF and the Dutch pension company PGGM, have divested from companies doing business in the illegal settlements. Venezuela and Brazil cut diplomatic ties with Israel. Companies that have pulled out of the settlements and the Israeli market include SodaStream, the French telecom Orange and the French multinational corporation Veolia. G4S — the London-based security company that assists with Israeli checkpoints, unlawful detention and torture of Palestinian prisoners — is selling its Israeli subsidiary due to millions of dollars in lost contracts as a result of the BDS campaign.

The European Union promulgated rules prohibiting funding of Israeli companies based in illegal Israeli settlements and has cautioned about the risks of doing business with illegal Israeli settlements.

Israel Maintains “Apartheid Regime”

In March 2017 a UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia report concluded that Israel maintains an “apartheid regime” and recommended that national governments support BDS activities to challenge Israel’s illegal system of oppression of the Palestinians. The report was co-authored by Richard Falk, an international law expert and former UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the OPT.

Mandla Mandela, grandson of Nelson Mandela, concurs. He said at a November 27 press conference in the West Bank, “Palestinians are being subjected to the worst form of apartheid.” Mandela noted, “The settlements I saw here reminded me of what we had suffered in South Africa because we also were surrounded by many settlements and were not allowed to move from one place to another freely.”

“What we have experienced in South Africa is a fraction of what the Palestinians are experiencing,” Mandela told Royal News English. “We were oppressed in order to serve the white minority. The Palestinians are being eliminated off their land and brought out of their territories, and this is a total human rights violation. I think it is a total disgrace that the world is able to sit back while such atrocities are being carried out by apartheid Israel.”

Jewish Voice for Peace and other human rights organizations have called for “increasing grassroots pressure on Israel, through Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaigns, until full human rights of Palestinians are realized.”

Nabil Shaath, a senior Palestinian official, said the forthcoming UNHRC list of companies is an “important step” in the campaign against the illegal settlements.

ROGER WATERS IS PUTTING HIS MONEY WHERE HIS MOUTH IS … WILL SERENADE IN PALESTINE FOR CHRISTMAS

Now THIS is a man of conviction!

The results are starting to pour in starting with THIS …

Roger Waters broadcasts cancelled in Germany over support for Israel boycott

Decision not to air Ex-Pink Floyd member’s concerts due to his support for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement branded ‘ridiculous’

German public broadcasters have dropped plans to air concerts next year by ex-Pink Floyd musician Roger Waters, citing what they call “accusations of antisemitism against him”.

Waters, part of one of the world’s most critically acclaimed and commercially successful rock bands from 1965 to 1985 before going solo, is a member of the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS) that targets Israel over its occupation of territories where Palestinians seek statehood.

Five state television and radio affiliates of the national ARD network have pulled out of broadcasting concerts by the 74-year-old Waters in Berlin and Cologne scheduled next summer “in reaction to anti-Semitism accusations against him”, Berlin and Brandenburg public radio (RBB) said.

RBB, part of the ARD network, said it wanted to send a message to other artists who, heeding the BDS, refused to perform in Israel. Waters joined the movement in 2011.

“Taking a clear position here is an important signal for RBB to the Jewish communities in Berlin and Brandenburg,” RBB director Patricia Schlesinger said in a statement.

“The quick and decisive reaction by the broadcasters … is an important signal that rampant antisemitism against Israel has no place in Germany,” said Josef Schuster, president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany.

Marek Lieberberg, Waters’s tour director, said German Jews were right to be concerned about “clearly visible and growing antisemitism” in Germany – alluding to the far right’s surge in recent German elections – but the broadcasters’ decision was “absolutely ridiculous”.

Lieberberg, the son of Holocaust survivors, told the Mannheimer Morgen daily that while he rejected the BDS, he separated personal opinions from work. “I cannot and do not want to deny [Waters] his right to freedom of opinion,” he said.

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s rightwing government has long campaigned against the BDS, describing it as antisemitic and an attempt to erase Israel’s legitimacy.

The movement – launched in 2005 as a non-violent campaign to press Israel to heed international law and end its occupation of territory held since a 1967 war – has gathered momentum in recent years even if its economic impact remains negligible.

Germany has long sought to distance itself from the Nazi Holocaust and become one of Israel’s closest allies.

Source

ROGER WATERS RESPONDS TO NICK CAVE ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS

 Roger Waters responded to criticism from Australian singer Nick Cave over the former Pink Floyd frontman’s prominent advocacy of an artists’ boycott of Israel, telling him it “isn’t about music – it’s about human rights.”

Image by Carlos Latuff

If you respect our peaceful BDS picket line, you will be in the excellent company of fellow celebrated musicians like Elvis Costello, Lauryn Hill, the late Gil Scott-Heron and Tunde Adebimpe

Roger Waters responds to Aussie singer: Boycott of Israel ‘isn’t about music – it’s about human rights’

Roger Waters responded to criticism from Australian singer Nick Cave over the former Pink Floyd frontman’s prominent advocacy of an artists’ boycott of Israel, telling him it “isn’t about music – it’s about human rights.”

Cave and his band, The Bad Seeds, played to sold-out crowds on Sunday and Monday in Tel Aviv.

Prior to his concerts, Cave told a news conference that he was performing in Israel to take a stand against the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel, or BDS.

He took a dig at Waters, saying, “If you play Israel, you have to go through a sort of public humiliation from Roger Waters and Co., and no one wants to be publicly shamed. It’s the thing we fear the most, in a way, to be publicly humiliated.”

Waters has been active in urging fellow artists to boycott performing in the country.

“Nick thinks this is about censorship of his music? What?” Waters wrote in a statement following Cave’s concerts in Israel. “Nick, with all due respect, your music is irrelevant to this issue. So is mine, so is Brian Eno’s, so is Beethoven’s. This isn’t about music – it’s about human rights.

“We hurl our glasses into the fire of your arrogant unconcern, and smash our bracelets on the rock of your implacable indifference,” Waters also wrote, adding that “if at some point in the future you want to climb out of the dark, all you have to do is open your eyes, we, in BDS will be here to welcome you into the light.”

Eno, a British musician, also commented in a statement posted with Waters’ on the website of the Artists for Palestine organization.

“I admire Nick Cave as an artist and I know he has been generous in his support for Palestinian humanitarian causes. I think he has every right to come to his own conclusions about whether or not he supports BDS,” Eno wrote. “However, I think I also have the right to present him with another side to this argument.”

 

SOURCE

SLEEPLESS NIGHTS FOR ZION ~~ WORKING 24/7 TO DEFEAT BDS

Two-and-a-half years ago the initials BDS (Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions) meant little to the wider general public. But then the BDS coalition that was established in 2005 and called for the imposition of economic, academic and cultural boycotts on Israel intensified its struggle especially by exerting heavy pressure on music artists not to perform in Israel.

These new reinvigorated efforts caused the Israeli government to declare the BDS a strategic threat, prompting the Ministry of Strategic Affairs to launch a campaign against the coordinated boycotts.

Interesting to see how zionists employ the nazi’s star symbol

 

Who’s afraid of the BDS? Meet the people on the frontline

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When the BDS movement intensified its efforts to ostracize Israel in all spheres of private and public life, a number of organizations, comprising academics and IDF veterans, made it their mission to tackle the phenomenon head on and deploy new forces, adopt fresh strategies, and exploit untapped advantages to counter the international smear campaign.
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Two-and-a-half years ago the initials BDS (Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions) meant little to the wider general public. But then the BDS coalition that was established in 2005 and called for the imposition of economic, academic and cultural boycotts on Israel intensified its struggle especially by exerting heavy pressure on music artists not to perform in Israel.

These new reinvigorated efforts caused the Israeli government to declare the BDS a strategic threat, prompting the Ministry of Strategic Affairs to launch a campaign against the coordinated boycotts.

Today, dozens of organizations are engaged in the local and international battles to eliminate the erroneous and pernicious perceptions that the BDS movement seeks to instill within its supporters, among them IFOR (International Freedom of Research) ISRAELis, and the Institute for Zionist Strategies (IZS) that are leading the struggle against the boycotts on three fronts.

“The academic boycott threatens to silence liberal voices”

IFOR is the initiative by Dr. Sharona Aharoni-Goldenberg, a senior legal lecturer at the Netanya Academic College, who banded together with academic colleagues such as like Dr. Roy Gilbar in order to fight against the academic boycotts in Europe and the US.

The initiative was born two-and-a-half years ago after Dr. Goldenberg witnessed the gloomy reality taking place regarding Israel’s integration in the international academic word.

Their articles were rejected by magazines and periodicals, they were not invited to professional conferences and in may cases they were simply ignored or protested against during lectures and academic meetings.

Have such cases of academic boycotts occurred in history?

“Yes. It’s a disgrace. There is a picture from the year 1933 in which soldiers can be seen placed at the entrances of universities and not allowing Jewish researchers to enter,” she says.

Members of IFOR battle against the academic boycotts by utilizing tools they are most familiar with. They lecture in Israel and around the world, establish research groups an and write opinion pieces in the international press.

“We are trying to change the perception and communicate the message that academic boycotts are an oxymoron and that they are an assault on human rights,” says Dr. Goldenberg.

“Recently, for instance, there were calls to boycott a conference in Israel for cancer research. This harms the pursuit of truth, the advancement science and promotion of society. Another example is the Dublin Conference on the academic boycotts. Two Israeli research groups sent abstracts but were not allowed to enter the conference,” she recalled.

According to Dr. Goldenberg, many of the Israeli researchers are afraid of the boycotts and conceal their academic affiliation. Israeli students studying abroad also witness the anti-Israel climate permeating college campuses.

“It seeped not only to Israeli lecturers and students but also to Jewish students. In the US there are students who are scared to study in certain universities—universities that the Telegraph newspaper dubbed ‘no go zone’ universities, because they were bought by Islamic organizations,” Dr. Goldenberg explains.

“We see the effect which I call the ‘ripple effect.’ It started with silencing Israeli lecturers and continued into intimidating Israeli students and made its way to Jewish lecturers and students on campus. In my opinion, the next stage—and it has already begun—is the silencing of different liberal voices,” Dr. Goldenberg predicts.

Using post-military travels as a PR tool

ISRAELis is an organization that was established by three IDF officers, Eyal Biram, Barak Deri and Jonathan Sabrui, who after recently being discharged from their military service began to grasp the huge and untapped power held by young Israelis when it comes to portraying Israel’s image.

Every year, some 400,000 Israeli youngsters aged 20-24 travel abroad, the majority of whom are freshly discharged from the army. During their trip they get to know, on average, five fellow travelers of their age group, a meeting that has the potential to totally transform Israel’s image.

“The idea is to build a community of discharged soldiers who are involved in improving Israel’s public image,” says 25-year-old Biram, recounting his own experiences during his post-military travels which led to the creation of his organization.

“I met two French people and in a simple conversation over a beer in the hostel I managed to convey a simple message: What you have heard about Israel is simply not true. I told them that I served in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge. They had never heard of the tunnels or about the soldiers who were killed. It’s possible that those same French people went home and came across the issues of the BDS and remembered that they met with Eyal from Israel and described the situation differently,” Biram says.

Today, the three young entrepreneurs hold training workshops in three stages in cooperation with the Defense Ministry and the Institute of Public Diplomacy.

The first stage includes basic training as part of a preparation course for freshly discharged IDF soldiers, who are given the tools to communicate messages designed to enhance Israel’s image.

The second phase consists of training a patrol team of activists comprising ambassadors aptly nicknamed “the tourists” who possess stronger public relations tools. The third stage, which is currently in its development stage, is a digital platform designed to assist and support tourists during their travels after the army.

“Nothing exists to help the population of discharged soldiers and we have here the ability to create a significant change. We have 1,500 graduates and we predict that by the end of 2017 we’ll have 40,000. At this rate, in another ten years half a million Israelis will be Israeli ambassadors,” Biram predicted.

The change begins from inside

Unlike ISRAELis, which concentrates most of its efforts on public relations outside Israel, the Institute for Zionist Strategies focuses all its energy inside Israel’s borders.

The institute was born 12 years ago, and five years ago, as part of its framework, the “Blue & White Human Rights” offshoot movement was created, an apolitical group managed by Noah Dromi which deals predominantly with rights of Palestinians.

“We don’t say that everything is wonderful and nothing is happening here,” explains the CEO of the IZS, Miri Shalem.

“We also don’t show a negative reality. IDF soldiers are not evil demons and even if the Palestinians don’t have a state, not everything is bad. Some of them work inside Israel and receive a high salary compared to what they would receive in the PA. They also receive medical treatment,” she points out.

The activities of the IZS against the BDS movement focus on three central areas. The first one is volunteer work at checkpoints in the West Bank (most of the volunteers are residents of Gush Etzion), which includes monitoring the operations of workers at the checkpoints, solving specific problems and giving medical assistance.

“All this is in cooperation with the authorities and without the involvement of the media,” Shalem stresses.

The second main area of focus is patrols at the checkpoints, which receives particular scrutiny from organizations abroad.

The third area is the training of geopolitical tour guides, a particularly popular area in the West Bank and less in Israel.

“We don’t present a rosy picture, but rather the complex reality that will cause people to question anchored perceptions in their minds.

“Sometimes when delegations arrive to Israel, like Taglit, they are given tours that ignore the reality—they are shown the startup nation and the beaches of Tel Aviv. Our activities are designed to create a change in the Israeli domestic discourse which also spreads abroad too. It allows for a different perspective on the conflict.”

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