Black Lives Matter endorses BDS: Israel is apartheid state

The wide-ranging new platform of a coalition growing out of the Black Lives Matter movement includes harsh criticism of Israel, which it describes as an “apartheid state” that, it claims, perpetrates “genocide” against the Palestinian people, endorsing the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign.

Released Monday, the platform of the Movement for Black Lives calls for “an end to the war against Black people” and is the campaign’s first comprehensive document addressing specific federal policies.

Black Lives Matter Network is one of over 50 black-led organizations in the coalition.

While the majority of the document addresses issues other than Israel, the section on foreign policy, titled Invest-Divest, objects to U.S. military aid to Israel, which it describes as “a state that practices systematic discrimination and has maintained a military occupation of Palestine for decades.”

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Israel’s hydro apartheid keeps West Bank thirsty

Water shortages are not new for Palestinians. Whether in the occupied Gaza Strip or the West Bank including East Jerusalem, the supply of water flowing into Palestinian homes is strictly capped or obstructed by Israel.

As temperatures climb during the summer, taps run dry. Clemens Messerschmid, a German hydrologist who has worked with Palestinians on their water supply for two decades, calls the situation “hydro-apartheid.”

This year, Israeli journalist Amira Hass published data proving that the Israeli Water Authority had reduced the amount of water delivered to West Bank villages.

In some places, the supply was slashed by half. Her records contradict official denials that water supplies to Palestinian cities and villages are cut during the summer, even though that too is not new.

Cities and small villages have gone as long as 40 days without running water this summer, forcing those who can afford it to haul in water tanks.

Read more on the Electronic Intifada

Tell DNC & RNC to Put Palestinian Rights in Their Platforms

Last week former Rep. Robert Wexler delivered a banal justification of Israel’s oppression of Palestinians before the Democratic National Convention’s platform drafting committee.

Dr. Cornel West, a member of the committee, respectfully pushed back. “For too long, the Democratic Party has been beholden to AIPAC,” West responded to applause. The party “didn’t take seriously the humanity of Palestinian brothers and sisters.”

But “we’re at a turning point now,” West continued. “And of course it’s going to be a slow one in the Democratic Party, but some of us will be working outside the Democratic Party to make it quicker. And that’s why I support the BDS [movement].”

This is must-see TV.

Israeli occupation is the main trigger of humanitarian needs among Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian territory

Press Release

Israeli occupation is the main trigger of humanitarian needs among Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian territory

Jerusalem, 13 June 2016

Humanitarian needs in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) continue to be driven by practices related to Israel’s prolonged occupation and continued conflict, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) says in its 2015 Annual Humanitarian Overview, “Fragmented Lives,” released today.
“This month, Palestinians enter their 50th year under Israeli occupation,” said David Carden, Head of OCHA in the oPt. “‘Fragmented Lives’ shows clearly the devastating impact of this ongoing situation, mainly on 4.8 million Palestinians who are increasingly vulnerable due to violations of international humanitarian and human rights law.”

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Occupation Free Portland responds to PSU President's attack on student activsts

OFP Responds to PSU President Wim Wiewel

Portland State University president Wim Wiewel recently publicly denounced a resolution introduced to the student senate of the Associated Students of PSU calling on the university to divest any holdings in Caterpillar, G4S, Hewlett-Packard, and Motorola Solutions. Here is a link to Wiewel’s comments and here is a response from Occupation-Free Portland.

Imagine if Wiewel’s views of divisiveness and discomfort became the gold standard for academia: True scientific inquiry would come to a halt, because it would be uncomfortable for an academic to have their papers and research challenged and critiqued by colleagues; teachers would have to stop correcting student’s work because students might feel unsafe; civil rights and social justice movements would halt because they are divisive and would make people uncomfortable. Universities would still be segregated. South Africa would still be under apartheid. Free expression of political speech itself would end on college campuses.

Wiewel contends that the resolution introduced dictates opinion. This is false and an affront to the democratic process of student government. The resolution was introduced to the Senate and after due deliberation was voted on. It has passed the first reading by a democratic vote of the Senate and will continue on to a second reading for further deliberation and a final vote. Mr. Wiewel, this is called democracy.  What you are attempting to teach students is, yes, you can have your democracy except when it comes to discussing human rights violations against Palestinians.  This certainly fits the bill for teaching students the current zeitgeist of our political elites but is not about teaching real democracy.

Read more: Occupation Free Portland responds to PSU President's attack on student activsts

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