- Written by Move Over AIPAC! Move Over AIPAC!
- Published: 18 August 2011 18 August 2011
Years have been wasted making concessions to their colonisers. Palestinians were right to call for a secular state at the outset
The Palestinian national liberation movement has reached its end. As the Palestinian leadership – if there is such a legitimate body today – prepares to bring the issue of statehood to the UN this September, the weeks and months ahead will witness the last desperate attempt to get the international community to assume their responsibilities and ensure that a Palestinian state becomes a reality in the occupied territories.
Please distribute widely:
Justice for Palestine
A Call to Action from Indigenous and Women of Color Feminists
Between June 14 and June 23, 2011, a delegation of 11 scholars, activists, and artists visited occupied Palestine. As indigenous and women of color feminists involved in multiple social justice struggles, we sought to affirm our association with the growing international movement for a free Palestine. We wanted to see for ourselves the conditions under which Palestinian people live and struggle against what we can now confidently name as the Israeli project of apartheid and ethnic cleansing. Each and every one of us—including those members of our delegation who grew up in the Jim Crow South, in apartheid South Africa, and on Indian reservations in the U.S.—was shocked by what we saw. In this statement we describe some of our experiences and issue an urgent call to others who share our commitment to racial justice, equality, and freedom.
During our short stay in Palestine, we met with academics, students, youth, leaders of civic organizations, elected officials, trade unionists, political leaders, artists, and civil society activists, as well as residents of refugee camps and villages that have been recently attacked by Israeli soldiers and settlers. Everyone we encountered—in Nablus, Awarta, Balata, Jerusalem, Hebron, Dheisheh, Bethlehem, Birzeit, Ramallah, Um el-Fahem, and Haifa—asked us to tell the truth about life under occupation and about their unwavering commitment to a free Palestine. We were deeply impressed by people’s insistence on the linkages between the movement for a free Palestine and struggles for justice throughout the world; as Martin Luther King, Jr. insisted throughout his life, “Justice is indivisible. Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
A letter from a Palestinian woman to the supporters of Palestine.
I would like to talk to you as the voice of the thousands of Palestinians who appreciate what you are doing. You who have a great commitment to human rights and who actually act upon your beliefs. You risk your life to both witness and tell the truth of what you see. You are a group of people who understand what is happening in the holy land and have decided to dedicate your time, money and energy to the issue. You demonstrate that religion nor race is important when it comes to standing up for the rights human beings. And every step you take justice and humanity wins.
I want you to trust that your actions are making a difference and changing the violence we see here in our land. Your solidarity is helping fuel our non violent fight. Palestinians face many kinds of violence and torture, however, being ignored is the worst punishment of all. Those who refuse to hear and see us are just as bad as those who occupy us. Those who stand in solidarity with us send a strong message of humanity and are helping us to overcome our suffering. In the middle of all this crisis, your help puts a smile on our face. From this smile you will always be welcome in our hearts even if you are unable to enter our land.
Your solidarity reminds the world that we are all one human family and that we Palestinians are still part of it. Please do not give up. Even if your boats do not make it to the shores of Gaza or if your planes refuse to fly, the unseen effects are still huge.
I want to say thank you for all that your work involves. Thank you for booking your tickets, taking time off from work, leaving your loved ones, and for all of the other small things, I am truly grateful.
Please continue to be with us, hand in hand, in our non-violent struggle. We need to reach the end of the path of occupation and your presence on this journey is crucial, we cannot make it alone.
I hope one day to share a coffee with you in my home or in yours, for when this day comes we will have reached our freedom.
Gazan living in Ramallah
Action Alert: July 3, 2011
The U.S. Government Must Pressure Greece
to Let U.S. Boat to Gaza Sail
Release Captain John Klusmire
and Our Boat Immediately!
The U.S. Boat to Gaza calls for pressure
on the U.S. State Department
People around the world are rallying for the release of the boats that Greece is preventing from sailing to Gaza. We call on you to show your solidarity and support for the flotilla as a whole, and in particular for the captain of the U.S. boat, John Klusmire.
Over the past two weeks, two boats of the international flotilla to Gaza have been sabotaged while docked at Greek ports. No one has claimed responsibility for the damage done to these boats. The potential danger to the U.S. boat was obvious to the captain, the crew and the passengers: there was a clear possibility that the U.S. boat would be sabotaged next.
The departure of the U.S. Boat to Gaza - The Audacity of Hope - was first delayed by a complaint filed by the Israel Law Center and shown to be frivolous. Greek authorities then inspected the boat but, until the boat set sail five days later the, the results of that inspection has not been shared with the captain and his crew. Those results were not shared until the Hellenic Coast Guard stopped The Audacity of Hope some 20 minutes after it had left the dock on Friday, July 1. The Hellenic Coast Guard intercepted the ship and ordered that the ship stop. This order was obeyed. Commandos with drawn rifles ordered the ship to return. It is now impounded at a military dock in Athens and the captain has ben arrested.
Captain Klusmire faces two charges: disturbing sea traffic and endangering passengers; and moving away from the dock in violation of an order not to do so. He is being held in a cell without a bed and does not have access to toilet facilities. The only food and water he has had has been brought in by visitors. He has not been visited by anyone from the U.S. Embassy even though he is entitled to such a visit by international law.
The U.S. Boat to Gaza campaign urges you to immediately take the following actions. Even though it is a holiday weekend we urge you to make these calls now, and if necessary to place calls again on Monday and Tuesday.
Contact your members of Congress and urge him or her to pressure the Greek authorities to drop the charges against Captain Klusmire.
Contact the U.S. State Department and the U.S. Embassy in Greece. Insist that they fulfill their duty to advocate on behalf of Captain Klusmire and that they demand the release of the U.S. boat by Greece so it can freely sail to Gaza.
Sect. of State Hillary Clinton: 202-647-5291
Kim Richter, Consular Affairs, Overseas American Citizens Services, U.S. State Dept: 202-647-8308
Greek Desk, U.S. State Dept: 202-647-6113
U.S. Embassy in Athens: 011-30-210-721-2951, fax 011-30-210-645-6282, website: athens.usembassy.gov
Activate your emergency response network to publicly demonstrate support for Captain Klusmire and our call for Greece to let the flotilla sail! Pass along this action alert as widely as possible.
Below is a copy of the latest press release from the U.S. Boat to Gaza.