2003 - Part 2
THE OCCUPATION LEXICON
Amira Hass - Ha'aretz 11.06.03
Israeli political discourse
relies on terms that have become so distorted in meaning that the
understanding of the reality behind them has also been distorted.
Here are some examples:
Closure: On the eve of the Aqaba summit, the Israel Defense Forces
announced the "closure was lifted." Radio reporters hurried
to announce, "the closure is lifted." Then everyone was
amazed the Palestinians weren't grateful. It should be said for
the millionth time: The closure on the Palestinians is never lifted;
it is only relaxed a little, sometimes. The closure regime was imposed
on all Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank and has continued,
without release, since January 1991. That's before Oslo, the establishment
of the Palestinian Authority, and the suicide bombings in Israeli
cities. Since then, Israel has maintained a sweeping policy that
prevents travel by Palestinians. The military authorities grant
travel passes to a minority of Palestinians. When the authorities
want, it's a large minority, and when they want, it's a small minority.
There are "ordinary" closures that cover travel from the
territories to Israel and from Gaza to the West Bank. And there
are "internal" closures, which in the last two and half
years have been very tight. Hundreds of checkpoints and blockades
prevent travel from city to city, village to village. There are
places where people are allowed to cross by foot, to walk one or
two kilometers from one vehicle to another. Sometimes, in certain
places, people are prohibited from leaving a village or city. People
get through in roundabout ways. Often, they are caught by soldiers
and, as punishment, are held for hours on a hilltop, at an intersection,
in the sun, in the cold, throughout the entire West Bank. Palestinians
are not allowed to travel on the main highways of the West Bank,
which only settlers are allowed to use.
Checkpoints: Israelis are convinced the checkpoints are meant to
prevent terrorists from reaching the country. Nobody asks how the
checkpoints between village and village or city and village service
the purpose, even when the villages and towns are far from the Green
Line or even a settlement. A checkpoint harms more than the economy.
Its purpose is to harass and humiliate, on a daily basis. It means
constant conflict with soldiers, like on Monday, at the Sudra checkpoint
in northern Ramallah. Those passing through it need to walk about
two kilometers on foot, from taxi to taxi. Ambulances are not allowed
through. The elderly and the ailing are pushed in wheelchairs provided
by Palestinian medical relief committees. Sometimes, when there's
no alternative, the sick are put on little carts that usually serve
to carry heavy loads.
On Monday afternoon, an IDF squad made the men going home line up
in two rows on both sides of the checkpoint. Those coming from Ramallah
were checked and allowed to pass, at a slow pace. Those coming from
the north, particularly students, were made to line up for an hour
without anyone checking them. According to an eyewitness, a university
professor, one soldier moved constantly along the line pushing them
to "keep order." The atmosphere was actually relaxed.
It wasn't too hot, the students chatted. One chuckled. The soldier
got angry for some reason, jumped at the student and stuck the rifle
butt into the student's stomach. The student looked him straight
in the eyes. The soldier made a fist and hit him in the face. (The
IDF did not respond by press time.)
Illegal outposts: The original intention was to extend settlements
during the Oslo process, without being stopped. Meanwhile, most
have been legalized whether de jure or de facto. People forget that.
Using the term "illegal" makes people forget the fact
that international law prohibits all the settlements in the West
Bank and Gaza because international law prohibits the occupying
power from moving its population into the occupied territory. But
forget international law. If it's so natural for Jews from Tel Aviv
and Ra'anana to move to new settlements near Ramallah and Hebron,
why can't Palestinians move from Ramallah and Gaza to neighborhoods
near Tel Aviv (with government financing)? Why are extra rights
enjoyed by Jews between the Mediterranean and the Jordan River so
We don't want to control the Palestinian population: Ariel Sharon
said that to correct the impression left by his statement that the
occupation must end. There's nothing new in it. Already, at the
start of Oslo, it was clear Israel didn't want to be bothered by
the annoying responsibility of controlling a civilian population
that has no electoral rights and does not want to be ruled. Therefore,
Israel transferred to the PA all the civic responsibilities, without
granting the PA any authority over land in the West Bank. Would
Jews agree to live in self-governing "Jewish Councils"
in closed enclaves without any land reserves? Obviously not. Why
should Palestinians agree to that, without land, water, and freedom
of movement - the raw materials necessary for the development of
any human community? So why regard the Sharon statement as a great
achievement for the peace project?
BEST SHOW IN TOWN
Uri Avnery - 21.6.03
The most talented director
could not have done better. It was a perfect show.
Television viewers all over the world saw heroic Israeli soldiers
on their screens battling the fanatical settlers. Close-ups: faces
twisted with passion, a soldier lying on a stretcher, a young woman
crying in despair, children weeping, youngsters storming forward
in fury, masses of people wrestling with each other. A battle of
life and death.
There is no room for doubt: Ariel Sharon is leading a heroic fight
against the settlers in order to fulfil his promise to remove "unauthorized"
outposts, even "inhabited" ones. The old warrior is again facing
a determined enemy without flinching.
The conclusion is self-evident, both in Israel and throughout the
world: if such a tumultuous battle takes place for a tiny outpost
inhabited by hardly a dozen people, how can one expect Sharon to
remove 90 outposts, as promised in the Road Map? If things look
like that when he has to remove a handful of tents and one small
stone building - how can one even dream of evacuating real settlements,
where dozens, hundreds or even thousands of families are living?
This must have impressed George Bush and his people. Unfortunately,
it has not impressed me.
It makes me laugh. In the last few years I have witnessed dozens
of confrontations with the army. I know what they really look like.
The Israeli army has already demolished thousands of Palestinian
homes in the occupied territories. This is how it goes: early in
the morning, hundreds of soldiers surround the land. Behind them
come the tanks and bulldozers, and the action starts. When despair
drives the inhabitants to resist, the soldiers hit them with sticks,
throw tear gas grenades, shoot rubber-coated metal bullets and,
if the resistance is stronger, live ammunition, too. Old people
are thrown on the ground, women dragged along, young people handcuffed
and pushed against the wall. After a few minutes, it's all over.
Well, they'll say, that's done to Arabs. They don't do this to Jews.
Wrong. They certainly do this to Jews. Depends who the Jews are.
I, for example, am a Jew. I have been attacked with tear gas five
times so far. Once it was a special gas, and for a few moments I
was afraid that I was going to choke to death.
During one of the blockades on Ramallah we decided to bring food
to the beleaguered town. We were some three thousand Israeli peace
activists, both Jews and Arabs. At the A-Ram checkpoint, north of
Jerusalem, a line of policemen and soldiers stopped us. There was
an exchange of insults and a lot of shouting. Suddenly we were showered
with tear gas canisters. The thousands dispersed in panic, coughing
and choking, some were trampled; one of our group, an 82-year old
Jew and kibbutznik, was injured.
I have witnessed demonstrations in which rubber-coated bullets were
shot at Israeli citizens (generally Arabs). Once I was in the gas-
filled rooms of a school at Um-al-Fahem in Israel.
If the army had really wanted to evacuate Mitpe-Yitzhar quickly
and efficiently, it would have used tear gas. The whole business
would have been over in a few minutes. But then there would not
have been dramatic pictures on TV, and George W. would have asked
his friend Arik: "Hey, why don't you finish with all the outposts
in a week?"
In other words, this was a well-produced show for TV.
A few days before, the leaders of the settlers met with Ariel Sharon.
As they left and faced the cameras they uttered dark threats, but
anyone who knows these people and looked at their faces on TV could
see that there were no strong emotions at work. Of course, the "Yesha
rabbis" (Yesha is settlerese for the West Bank), a group of bearded
political functionaries, called on the soldiers to disobey orders
and requested the LORD and the messiah to come to their help, but
even they lacked real passion.
Why? Because all of them knew that everything has been agreed in
advance. The army chiefs and the leaders of the settlers, comrades
and partners for a long time, sat together and decided what would
happen, and, more importantly, what would not happen: no sudden
attack, no efforts to prevent thousands of young people from reaching
the place well in advance, no use of sticks, water cannon, tear
gas, rubber-coated bullets or any other means beyond the use of
bare hands. The soldiers would not wear helmets nor be equipped
with shields. The settlers would shout and push, but would not hit
the soldiers in earnest. The whole show would be less violent then
a normal scuffle with British soccer hooligans, but would look on
TV like a desperate battle between titanic forces.
Ariel Sharon has some experience with this kind of thing. A dozen
years ago he directed a similar show when, following the peace treaty
with Egypt, he was ordered by Prime Minister Menahem Begin to evacuate
the town of Yamit in the northern Sinai peninsula. At the time,
Sharon was Minister if Defense. And who was one of the leaders of
the dramatic resistance? Tsachi Hanegbi, now the minister in charge
of the police.
All the arms of the establishment cooperated this week in the big
show. The media devoted many hours to the "battle". Dozens of settlers
were invited to the studios and talked endlessly - while, as far
as I saw, not a single person belonging to the active peace camp
was called to the microphone.
The courts, too, did their duty: the handful of settlers that were
arrested for resisting violently were sent home after spending a
day or two in jail. The courts, who never show any mercy when Arabs
appear before them, treated the fanatical settlers like erring sons.
The whole comedy would have been funny, if it did not concern a
very serious problem. Such an "outpost" looks like a harmless cluster
of mobile homes on top of a god-forsaken hill, but it is far from
being innocuous. It is a symptom of a cancerous growth. Not for
nothing did Ariel Sharon - the very same Sharon - call upon the
settlers a few years ago to take control of all the hills of "Judea
The disease develops like this: a group of rowdies occupies a hilltop,
some miles from an established settlement, and puts a mobile home
there. After some time, the "outpost" already consists of a number
of mobile homes. A generator and a water-tower are brought in. Women
with babies appear on the scene. A fence is set up. The army sends
some units to defend them. They declare that for security reasons,
Palestinians are not allowed to come near, in order to prevent them
from spying and preparing an attack. The security zone becomes bigger
and bigger. The inhabitants of the neighboring Palestinian villages
cannot reach some of their orchards and fields any more. If someone
tries, he is liable to be shot. Every settler has a weapon, and
he has nothing to fear from the law if he uses it against a suspicious
Arab. All Arabs are suspicious, of course.
As it so happens, I have some experience with Mitzpe Yitzhak, the
particular outpost that figured in this week's show. Some months
ago we were called by the inhabitants of the Palestinian village
Habala to help them pick their olives in a grove near this "outpost".
When the pickers came near to the outpost, the settlers opened fire.
An Israeli in our group was wounded when a bullet struck a rock
at his feet.
The "unauthorized" outposts were in fact established systematically,
with the help of the army and according to its planning. When several
outposts take root in a region, the Palestinian villages are choked
between them. Their life becomes hell. The settlers and officers
clearly hope that in the end they will give up and clear out.
Will Sharon really evacuate them by the dozens? That depends, of
course, on his friend George W. If the "hudna" (truce) between the
Palestinian Authority and Hamas is achieved, Bush may perhaps exert
serious pressure on Sharon. When I visited Yasser Arafat yesterday,
he seemed to be cautiously optimistic. But he, too, said that there
are no more than four months left for getting things moving: starting
from November, the American President will be busy getting himself
This means that Sharon has only to produce a few more shows of this
sort for television, and then he and the settlers will be able to
breathe freely once again. "The governmental and military decision
makers do not even bother to conceal or at least vary their acts.
Again and again they get back to the same provocation and with the
same purpose. Each time that the negotiations between the Palestinian
factions seem to get somewhere close to a positive conclusion -
and the possibility of achieving a cease- fire which would end the
suicide bombings becomes a concrete option - they are in a hurry
to carry out another "liquidation". Thus, the government is offering
to Hamas on a silver platter a pretext to refuse the requests of
Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen). As the majority of the public already
understands, such actions are not intended to prevent the terrorist
attacks. This government is interested in them; they serve its policies.
GET THIRSTIER UNDER ISRAELI CLAMPDOWN
Mark Heinrich - 3.08.03 - from: asia.reuters.com
AL-DHAHRIYEH (Reuters) - The Khabirat family postpones
having a bath as they await the next water tanker to replenish their
well in parched Palestinian territory under Israeli blockade. The
tanker driver has to sneak a hose through a tunnel under a highway
reserved for Israeli traffic to access his well on the other side,
then take long detours on atrocious back roads to reach homes like
Palestinians, especially in the arid southern
West Bank, ration and improvise to offset water shortages aggravated
by Israel's closure of their area, imposed after suicide bombings.
Arduous, roundabout routes inflate delivery prices for people already
impoverished by the closure that, along with worsening drought,
has highlighted a long unequal contest to control water that is
central to Middle Eastern conflict.
Israel takes 80 percent of the West Bank's mountain
aquifer, one of two major renewable water sources in the territory
it seized in a 1967 war. The other source, the Jordan River dividing
the West Bank from Jordan, is dominated by Israel for nearby Jewish
Water will be a thorny "final status"
issue in a U.S.-backed peace "road map" aiming at an independent
"Occupation has played a big role in inequality.
Israel should be concerned, for if Palestinians lack sufficient
water to improve their lives, they will lack the will to uphold
peace agreements," said Yehezkel Lein, water expert at B'tselem,
an Israeli group monitoring human rights in occupied territories.
Winter rainwater collection doesn't last
Families in the barren village of al-Dhahriyeh
said winter rainwater they collect soon ran out in the long blazing
summer. "We used to bathe and wash clothes every day, now it's
every two to three days. We'd love to have water for a garden, trees,
even a pool like the Jews do (in nearby settlements)," said
Siham Khabirat, a 40-year-old mother of six.
"Most of us must buy water to top up wells
but tanker prices are up 100 percent under closure. It's a double
blow when our own income has plunged due to lack of work,"
husband Yusuf said. They were sitting in their living room under
a painting of a glistening Alpine lake. "It cheers us up a
bit," said Siham.
Mahmoud Ahmad Tayyem, 61, a father of 10, keeps
his melon and mint alive by watering them in drips from a tiny hole
in a plastic jug he holds patiently at an angle over them. "Once
I could just hose the plants, but deliveries are too few and far
between to risk that now," he said.
Israeli forces erected dirt-and-rock barricades
at junctions between village roads and highways earlier in the 33-month-old
uprising to prevent all but localized movement by Palestinians.
Palestinians also complain of disappearing water pressure and increasingly
brackish water, blaming Israeli "overpumping."
Israel says more than 4,000 wells drilled by Palestinians
in defiance of restrictions imposed to shore up the water table
are to blame. Palestinians say they suffer far more from such curbs
than Israelis, forcing them resort to illegal wells.
Israel says it conserves water
Jacob Kaidar, head of water negotiating issues
at Israel's Foreign Ministry, said Israelis consumed less water
per head than any Middle East state except Jordan and denied they
were arbitrarily curbing Palestinian access to precious sources.
"Israel is known the world over for its know-how in water conservation,
especially in agriculture," he said. "We have worked hard
to keep Palestinian communities supplied with water by repairing
pipes damaged in fighting, and (protecting) wells and tanker traffic."
An army spokesman said Palestinians could deliver
water on through-roads with prior security clearance. Tanker drivers
said they had been held up at checkpoints even with such passes.
A B'tselem study found Palestinians' water consumption
under the closure had fallen to half the minimum recommended by
the World Health Organization.
In a 2002 study, PASSIA, an independent Palestinian
think- tank, said Israeli settlement policy had been guided in part
by the imperative of securing control over high-yield aquifers.
It said a now overshadowed interim peace deal entrenched such dominance
in 1995 by granting each Jewish settler a water quota six times
over that for Palestinians in the West Bank.
A new World Bank report says a security fence
Israel is building across Palestinian farmland atop the mountain
aquifer may disrupt access to wells critical to olive and citrus
groves. "The Palestinian population is growing 3-4 percent
a year but the water supply is static," said Lein. "When
they see not only land seized for settlements but settlers enjoying
a very generous water supply with a high quality of life, it generates
much frustration and even hatred."
Israel's Kaidar said giving more to Palestinians
without finding new sources would not solve the water conflict.
Desalination and recycling have been mooted but high costs in times
of fiscal austerity stand in the way.
An letter from Matan Kaminer, on trial in an Israeli military court
to Stephen Funk in the US Marines, August 12, 2003
Matan Kaminer is in 'Open Detention' at Tel Hashomer Camp,
Is this what they call "globalization"?
We live half a world from each other, we have led quite different
lives, and yet we are both in the same situation: conscientious
objectors to imperial war and
occupation, we are both standing military trial this summer. Reading
your statement I couldn't help but smile at the basic sameness of
military logic around the world - including its inability to understand
how anybody could be enough against a war to resist going to kill
and die in it.
But I've been presuming you're familiar
with my situation. In case you aren't, let me fill you in briefly.
I was slated for induction into the Israeli army in December 2002.
After a year of volunteer work in a Jewish-Arab youth movement,
I had made up my mind to refuse to enlist. Together with other young
people in my situation, I signed the High School Seniors' Letter
to PM Sharon, and to make myself
absolutely clear I sent a personal letter to the military authorities
notifying them that I was going to refuse.
They let me know they weren't about
to let me go: the army only exempts pacifists (at least that's what
it claims) and I didn't meet their definition of a pacifist. So
beginning in December I was sentenced by 'disciplinary proceedings'
(do they have this ridiculous institution in the Marines too?) to
28 days in military prison -- three consecutive times. After my
third time in jail, I asked to join my friend Haggai Matar, who
was being court-martialed, and within a few weeks three of our friends
-- Noam, Shimri and Adam -- joined us. Now we are on trial and stand
to get up to three years in prison for refusing the order to enlist.
Sounds familiar, huh? But it's not
just what they're doing to us that's similar, it's what they're
doing to others: occupying a foreign land and oppressing another
people in the name of preventing terror. People like you and me
know that's just an excuse for furthering economic and political
interests of the ruling elite. But it's not the elite that pays
The people who pay the price are
in Jenin and Fallujah, in Ramallah and Baghdad, in Tikrit and in
Hebron. They are the Iraqi and Palestinian children, hogtied face-down
on the floor or shot at on the way to school. But they are also
the Israeli and American soldiers, treated as cannon fodder by generals
in air-conditioned offices, whose only way to deal with their situation
is dehumanization - first of the strange-looking foreigners who
want them dead, next of themselves. You can ask your Vietnam veterans
or our own.
Stephen, people our age should be
out learning, working and transforming the world. People our age
should be going to parties and protests, meeting people, falling
in love and arguing about what our
world should look like. People our age should not be moving targets,
denied their human and civil rights; they should not be military
grunts, exposed to harm in mind and body, lugging around M-16's
guilty consciences; they should not be thrown behind bars for not
wanting to kill and die.
Your trial is set to begin soon.
Mine has already begun so maybe I can give you a few pointers. Look
the judges in the eyes. Use every opportunity you have to explain
why you stand there. They are human
just like you, but they try to deny it to themselves. Don't let
them. War is shit and they know it. They should let you go and they
know it. It's likely that we'll both get thrown in prison when this
There will be dark moments in prison, moments when it seems that
the outside world has forgotten all about us, that what we did and
refused to do was in vain. Well, I know what I'll do in those moments:
I'll think of you, Stephen, and I'll know that nothing we do for
humanity's sake is ever in vain.
With greatest solidarity,
AGENDA & ARAFAT'S IRRELEVANCE
What is Sharon trying to achieve
by the massive devastation of the Occupied
Territories, the widespread humiliation of the Palestinian population
and the brutal bloodshed? Surely, as anti-terrorist strategy this
is patently counter-productive: it can only engender hundreds of
new suicidal would-be martyrs, who -- reversing Samson's last words
-- will pray to their merciful and compassionate god: "Let
me die with the Jews, and take with me as many of them as you please".
Any fool can see this; and Sharon is certainly no fool.
Another, apparently unconnected,
curious fact: some time ago Sharon called Yasir Arafat "irrelevant".
What did he mean? As a term of abuse, "irrelevant" is
rather weak, certainly by Israeli standards; and Sharon is anything
but weak. It could of course be interpreted as a subtle insult;
but Sharon is not a subtle man. Cunning, yes; but this is quite
a different matter.
No: Sharon's description of Arafat
was in fact chillingly literal. It can best be understood as addressed
not to Arafat himself or to the outside world, but in the context
of an internal discourse within the Israeli leadership.
In order to decode Sharon's deeds
and words, we have to go back to the early 1990s. The first Intifada,
which erupted in late 1987 and went on for several years, had by
1991 taught the Israeli leadership that Israel could not long continue
its direct rule over the Palestinians: keeping "order"
in the Occupied Territories was just too costly -- not only in economic
terms but also in its adverse effects on Israel's army and society.
Shimon Peres concluded that a way
must be found to get the Palestinians to police themselves. This
of course meant giving them some degree of autonomy. It also required
a willing Palestinian partner, who would be ready to lead an autonomous
Palestinian Authority -- on Israeli terms. These terms include bearing
sole responsibility for preventing any attack on Israeli soldiers,
settlers or civilians -- and taking full blame for any attacks that
As it happened, such a partner was
found in the apparently unlikely shape of Yasir Arafat, who was
desperate for a deal at almost any price. His feeble bargaining
position was of his own making. By foolishly siding with Saddam
Hussein in the Gulf War (instead of taking the morally justified
and politically astute position of "a plague a both your houses"),
Arafat cut the financial branch on which he had been sitting so
comfortably. Until the Gulf War, he had maintained his control of
the PLO and manipulation of its personnel by means of ample funds
flowing from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States, both as direct government
subventions and as taxes he was allowed to levy on the large Palestinian
refugee community profitably employed there. Suddenly the funds
were cut off, and Arafat was left bereft of his means of control.
No wonder he was ready to accept
Israel's terms at Oslo, without -- so insiders report -- even bothering
to read the small print. For Peres' plan, which he eventually managed
to sell to an initially reluctant Rabin, this was a very "relevant"
Arafat. In fact, he was vital.
But other Israeli leaders -- some
in the Labour party, but most in the Likud and its far-right allies
-- drew a different lesson from the first Intifada. Yes; Israel
cannot indefinitely subdue an oppressed Palestinian population.
But allowing the Palestinians to do it on a DIY basis was too risky:
it may start as a Bantustan, but who knows where it might lead,
given time? After all, had not Zionist colonization of Palestine
also started from modest beginnings, under foreign control? The
only alternative was to complete the ethnic cleansing -- or, to
use the Israeli term: "transfer" -- that had been massively
begun during the 1948 war and in its immediate aftermath, and attempted
again, with much lesser success, inthe wake of the 1967 war.
For this transfer plan, now supported
by 46 per cent of Israel's Jewish citizens and openly advocated
by several of Sharon's ministers, Arafat is indeed highly irrelevant.
If the Palestinians are to be stampeded across the Jordan, even
his feeble and corrupt leadership is merely an obstacle. For a stampede,
you don't need any leader; what you do need is to terrorize the
Palestinians into becoming a frightened herd. If some become frenzied
suicide bombers, this is a price worth paying for the greater national
good. This is what Sharon is attempting to do. His plan is not new:
it long predates Oslo. It is part of a breathtakingly grandiose
plan to re-arrange the whole Middle East under Israeli hegemony,
with client Arab states in all parts of the region, including a
Palestinian Bantustan -- not in cisjordanian Palestine, but across
the river, in what is now Hashemite Jordan. It was this plan he
was trying to implement in 1982, when he deceived the Begin cabinet
into supporting his Lebanese adventure. Nor is Sharon's Grand Plan
a deeply held secret: at the time of the Lebanese war it was openly
and widely discussed in the Israeli press.
That time it failed. But Ariel "The
Bulldozer" Sharon is nothing if not dogged. He will try it
again; he is trying it again. Yes, he will promise the Americans
to behave; he will agree to cease fire; he will consent to negotiate.
But he will break any promise, violate any agreement and torpedo
any talks -- if they stand in the way of his Plan.
An excellent opportunity will arise
if and when Bush II starts another large-scale "anti-terrorist"
war on Iraq. And after that? The next item in the Grand Plan is
Iran, which is the only serious potential obstacle to Israeli regional
Will Sharon's Grand Plan succeed?
Will he be able to implement even its first stage, the "transfer"
of the Palestinians? He may well do, if the world lets him.
COMPARISONS DO MAKE SENSE!
Shraga Elam, Zurich/Switzerland
The comparison between the processes prevailing
in Israel and those in Nazi Germany is not very "political
correct". It is considered as a clear proof of Judeophobia
if done by a non-Jew, almost legitimate if done by a Jewish right
radicals so attacking some enemy, and if done by some Jewish peace
activist, like myself, it is considered to be, in the best case,
an tactical mistake. The Israeli policy is considered to be bad
enough and there is no need to loose energy on unfruitful disputes,
which will heart unnecessarily the feelings of potential sympathizers.
I want to point out the fallacy behind the last
argument, a basic misunderstanding of the National Socialism and
its policy towards the Jews. The Nazi war crimes are automatically
identified solely with
Auschwitz and with gassing of the Jews, Gypsies and others. The
developments leading to Auschwitz are not taken really into consideration.
This is a fatal mistake, which we have to consider if want to prevent
similar catastrophe from happening. One has to fight genocidal tendencies
long before they are realized.
All the researchers agree that there was a gradual
escalation of the anti-Jewish Nazi measures: starting with a 'voluntarily'
transfer (1933-1938), expulsion (1938-1941) and annihilation (as
Considering the numerous alarming tendencies and
indications in the Israeli society and mainly in the army like in
the enclosed reports, peace activists, cannot any longer close their
eyes and refuse
to acknowledge a distressing similarity. Drawing such a comparison
is part of a protest.
Two central activists of the Jewish-Arab organization
Ta'ayush write in today's Ha'aretz: about the ongoing expulsion
called euphemistic 'Transfer' "Anyone who is waiting for a
dramatic moment is liable to miss it as it happens." The point
isn't that we are going to miss it. The point is that it is going
to be too late! ( See below for the article).
The former Israeli education minister said in
a demo in Tel Aviv this year: "The Israeli government and army
misused the Shoa [Nazi-Genocide] in order to justify their politics.
In the name of the Shoa we have to protest against this."
THE TRANSFER IS ALREADY UNDER
Gadi Algazi & Azmi Bdeir, Ha'aretz 15.11.02
[Transfer isn't necessarily a dramatic moment,
a moment when people are expelled and flee their towns or villages.
It is not necessarily a planned and well-organized move with buses
and trucks loaded with people, such as happened in Qalqilyah in
1967. Transfer is a deeper process, a creeping process that is hidden
from view. It is not captured on film, is hardly documented, and
it is going on right in front of our eyes. Anyone who is waiting
for a dramatic moment is liable to miss it as it happens. ]
As these words are being written, Khirbet Yanun
still exists. Or maybe not: 15 of the 25 families that lived in
the village are still there. This is not an insignificant number:
If the reader recalls, on October 18 only two old men remained there,
having refused to leave even after the last families departed, holding
on by their fingertips to the village despite the abuse of settlers.
The others had decided to take their possessions and move to the
nearby town of Akrabeh.
However, Khirbet Yanun's existence is still frail
and incomplete. There is still no electricity or running water,
the houses are without furniture, the presence of residents sparse,
their security unassured. At the beginning of last week, volunteers
from Israel and abroad - Jews and Arabs who belong to the Ta'ayush
movement - were still on site, but their presence there was transitory.
Come the next
attack by settlers, which will happen sooner or later, Khirbet Yanun
may be emptied of its residents for good.
Many Israelis who are committed to a life of peace
and justice in this country are convinced, it seems, that despite
all the horrors of the occupation and the violent conflict, there
are still certain red lines that they will not allow Ariel Sharon
and his government to cross: Transfer will not be permitted to happen.
When the critical moment arrives, they will stand up and stop it.
But transfer isn't necessarily a dramatic moment,
a moment when people are expelled and flee their towns or villages.
It is not necessarily a planned and well-organized move with buses
loaded with people, such as happened in Qalqilyah in 1967. Transfer
is a deeper process, a creeping process that is hidden from view.
It is not captured on film, is hardly documented, and it is going
right in front of our eyes. Anyone who is waiting for a dramatic
moment is liable to miss it as it happens.
The main component of the process is the gradual
undermining of the infrastructure of the civilian Palestinian population's
lives in the territories: its continuing strangulation under closures
that prevent people from getting to work or school, from receiving
medical services, and from allowing the passage of water trucks
andambulances, which sends the Palestinians back to the age of donkey
and cart. Taken together, these measures undermine the hold of the
Palestinian population on its land.
When the water trucks don't make it to the villages,
when every trip to work becomes an adventure with an unforeseeable
end, when schools are closed and hospitals in the nearby urban center
begin to grow
further away - the local fabric of life begins to disintegrate.
Some of the young people, who used to work outside the village and
then return home every night, remain outside, choosing not to attempt
to pass through the succession of roadblocks each morning. Families
that are able to do so move to safer places, closer to their sources
of income, inside the population centers.
And the number of instances are mounting up: the
butcher from Jerusalem, who despairs at the attempt to cross the
Qalandiyah roadblock and who has closed his shop that is situated
north of it; the taxi driver who moved out of his home in northern
Jerusalem to live, crowded with the rest of the family, in his parents'
home in the Old City, in order to have a chance to get to work;
residents of a West Bank village whose son was about to begin studies
in the nearby city of Nablus, but because it is no longer so accessible
even by public transit, are poised to leave their village and move
to the city. All of these cases signal how the hold of the Palestinian
population on the land is being weakened.
Not an isolated case:
What the army's closures and sieges don't achieve,
the settlers do: Every new settlement and outpost requires security,
of course, and the meaning of security to settlers is eviction of
Palestinians from the surrounding area, and transformation of the
agricultural lands to death zones, for whoever enters them to pick
olives or work the land may end up paying for the act with his life.
In order for a handful of settlers to dominate almost half of the
land of the occupied territories, an organized action, a conquest
of the land, a tower-and-stockade thrust is required. Armed, subsidized
and organized, they systematically rough up residents of the villages,
very much like the paramilitary units employed by hacienda owners
Latin America to inflict a reign of terror on the peasantry. They
are above the law.
The campaign against the olive harvesters was
therefore an important component of the settlers' attempt to pull
out from under the legs of the villagers the little that they still
have. It is also intended to show them that the settlers are the
real masters, that they can pick the olives of the villagers with
impunity, and drive off with gunfire anyone who tries to stand in
Khirbet Yanun is not an isolated case. Dozens
of villages in the area of Tul Karm and Qalqilyah, Salfit and Nablus
have been subjected to intense existential pressure for several
months. This is not
necessarily marked by dramatic incidents causing death and casualties,
but by organized abuse, constant deterioration of living conditions,
tightening of the stranglehold, and increased isolation
from the economic, cultural and political centers of Palestinian
All of these long-term structural processes, which
gradually undermine the population's hold on its land, are clearly
expressed at Khirbet Yanun. It is a small and isolated settlement
that lies only a few hundred meters from the outposts established
by the settlers of Itamar. The outposts were established in the
hills above Yanun in the late 1990s, under the auspices of the "peace
process." Akrabeh is
situated a 15-minute drive away, via a poorly maintained dirt road
that is easy to block off.
Venture out at night into the streets of Yanun.
The little village is dark, the landscape pastoral. But even in
the village itself, residents are not alone: On the hill opposite,
the settlers' watchtowers can be seen, and from the hill on the
other side, the caravans and cars are visible. The lights of the
patrol vehicles can be seen from far away. Here in their homeland,
the people of Yanun sit surrounded, as in a sort of reserve whose
days are numbered. The settlers may appear at any moment, and they
do: The children hide whenever they hear the sound of their all-terrain
vehicles. The residents freeze in place in the olive grove whenever
the settlers appear.
This, too, is not an isolated case: If you find
yourself in the southern Hebron hills along the edge of the desert,
along with Palestinian residents living in their tents in Susya,
here too you will find that there is no room for the local residents.
Look up and you will see a star-studded sky, but all it takes is
a glance around you and you will understand that you are surrounded
- army vehicles patrol the road, which the Palestinians are not
allowed to approach. On the other side are the settlers of Susya:
Woe to anyone who gets too close to the fields adjacent to the settlement.
And Susya continues to expand. An illuminated security road passes
behind you, in the wadi, and if you take a look northward, you will
see the lights of the nearby army base and hear the announcements
crackling from the loudspeakers.
This reality conveys an unambiguous message: Residents
of the reserve - you are surrounded; it would be best if you surrendered.
And these are also the explicit words uttered by the settlers to
the people of Khirbet Yanun during recent attacks on the village,
when they broke into homes, when they beat Abd al-Latif Bani Jaber
in front of his family: Get out of here, go to Akrabeh.
Complaints lodged by Yanun residents to the police
provide a documentation of the process by which their village has
turned into a ghost town. The village is situated in Area C, which
is under the full security and administrative responsibility of
Israel, but in the opinion of local residents, there is a tacit
agreement between the army and the settlers. All development in
the village is blocked. Indeed, since 1992, the Israeli Civil Administration
has forbidden any construction there. The fields have become unsafe.
The settlers used to come down the hill and treat the village as
if it were their own. Local residents quote one of the settlers
from Itamar, who told them that he and he alone ruled the area.
I will remain here, he said, when the police and the press have
gone. According to residents, it was he who led the raids on the
And so, long before they burned the electrical
generator in April 2002, the infrastructure of daily life was increasingly
being undermined. The children of Khirbet Yanun used to go to the
elementary school in Yanun a-Tahta, which is near Akrabeh. When
the raids grew worse and the road became unsafe, a small school
was opened in the village, less than two years ago. This school
was closed when the last families left the village. The walls were
closing in on the daily lives of the villagers. The nearest high
school is in Akrabeh, which has become so much more distant. So
anyone who wants his children to stay in school is compelled to
leave Yanun and move to the town. But even without this consideration
- who is going to decide to stay in a village where settlers come
and go as they please, day and night, marching on the roofs of the
houses and breaking into the homes?
On Thursday, October 17, the principal of the
small school in Khirbet Yanun bade farewell to his last students.
The next day, the last six families left town. Two days later, the
Ta'ayush volunteers arrived in order to enable residents to return
to their village. Most of the residents are still there.
Khirbet Yanun sends a danger signal that should
not be disregarded: Tens of thousands of people are liable to become
displaced persons and refugees. In addition, Israeli "security
sources" repeatedly leak reports that in time of war or escalation
of the conflict, the Sharon government may try to displace many
others, on an organized basis. The pain of displacement will not
be soothed by time. For years to come, Israeli society will have
to contend with the violent cost of this displacement, which is
added to previous rounds of it.
Yanun is a warning sign not only to Israelis but
also to Palestinians. The danger of transfer is tangible. In order
to eliminate it, there is a need for serious work in the field and
a strengthening of the local economy. First and foremost, there
should be a focus on rejuvenating the social fabric and strengthening
the internal solidarity within Palestinian society. Without these,
a new wave of refugees is liable to be added to the old camps or
join existing urban centers.
The foundation that is required for tsumud (the
stubborn clinging to the land, the determination to hold on in spite
of the occupation) will not be found in symbolic actions, in focusing
on international public opinion at the expense of dealing with the
distress at home, or in armed demonstrations of power. In order
to contend with the creeping process of transfer, Palestinian society
must enlist its human resources in order to struggle over every
meter of land and every goat. Will this effort find loyal Israeli
allies in the civil struggle against dispossession?
Ta'ayush volunteers came to Khirbet Yanun for
two weeks to fend for the residents, to facilitate their return
home and to roust public opinion out of its state of apathy. Fifteen
families have returned to their homes, albeit hesitantly and fearfully,
and their return is not complete.
During our stay here, the army has been compelled
to demonstrate its presence. But past experience teaches the residents
that despite their calls for help, the maltreatment will not end.
During our stay
here, the Itamar settlers succeeded in swooping down on the village
and severely beating two residents and four volunteers. None of
the rioters was arrested. A sign of things to come.
Our presence in Khirbet Yanun was temporary. It
is impossible and it is wrong for the presence of Israeli citizens
to be the only guarantee to ensure the continued existence of a
Palestinian village. Unless people in Israel stand up to the injustice
and support the people of the village, they will remain at the mercy
of the settlers. When will the next attack come? Will it be after
the residents leave? Will they blow up the houses of the village?
Or move into the houses? And where will they stop?
The sights from three weeks ago remain with
us. On the moonlit night when we arrived in Yanun, we walked through
the abandoned Arab village. The residents had time to prepare themselves,
to take their
belongings, gather light fixtures and pull out the electrical wiring.
There wasn't even the sound of a single dog barking in the village.Still,
wherever you turn, you see open homes, broken-down doors, yawning
black voids. And on the surrounding hillsides, the watchtowers of
the settlers of Itamar. More or less, this is how the Palestinian
villages looked after 1948. Fifty-odd years later, we are here again,
Israelis and Palestinians, captives of a history whose bitter lessons
we have forgotten.
IN THE SERVICE OF THE STATE
Gideon Levy, Ha'aretz 9.09.02
Israel has decided to tackle its
"demographic problem" head-on. Last week, after a five-year
hiatus, Shlomo Benizri, the minister of labor and social affairs,
convened the Israel Council for Demography. There were two items
on the agenda, reports said - the need to encourage families to
have more children, and the problem of foreign workers in Israel.
On the face of it, this is just another committee.
But the reconvening of this particular body, and the total indifference
with which the event was greeted, is cause for serious concern.
In the present public mood in which outbursts of racism are considered
politically correct, Benizri's move - as a representative of the
increasingly nationalist ultra-Orthodox Shas party - is no surprise.
Nevertheless, one can only express astonishment at the people who
have agreed to sit on a committee that evokes appalling historical
First, there is the makeup of the committee -
its 37 members include public figures, lawyers, scientists and physicians.
No fewer than three leading gynecologists are on the panel - Prof.
the president of the association of obstetricians and gynecologists,
Prof. Yosef Shenkar, Dr. Hanna Katan, and an immunologist, a microbiologist
and a physician who specializes in medical ethics.
There are also representatives of the women's
organization Na'amat, and the Women's Lobby. For what purpose did
gynecologists and women's representatives convene? To encourage
a higher birthrate in Israel? Not at all. They convened to encourage
the Jewish women of Israel - and only them - to increase their child
bearing, a project which, if we judge from the activity of the previous
council, will also attempt to stop abortions. Does this remind you
And how will the gynecologists contribute to this
endeavor? Will they make do with proposing methods to increase the
Jewish fertility rate and prevent abortions, or will they also suggest
encourage abortions and reduce the birthrate among Arab women? And
what about non-Jewish women from the former Soviet Union?
As blunt as these questions may sound, they will
in fact be at the center of the committee's discussions, even if
they are swaddled in various bizarre disguises. After all, getting
into the bedrooms of the country's citizens, and the use of scientists,
physicians and women's organizations to mobiliz the wombs of women
for national purposes, are elements of control reserved for totalitarian
regimes. True, David Ben-Gurion also campaigned for a higher birth
rate, but he didn't do it by means of gynecologists and a war on
However, even if the committee should decide not
to enter into questions of birth rate, we should recognize that
the "demographic problem," if it is in fact a problem,
will not be solved by a committee or by any other methods dictated
by government. There is no reason to suspect Benizri of desiring
the end of the occupation - which is the only democratic solution
to preserve Israel's Jewish character that will work - since he
and his party have recently expressed vigorous support for the settlements.
Therefore, the only solution remaining for anyone
who is so upset by the demographic problem is population transfers.
First we expel the foreign workers, then we move the Arabs.
In the early 1970s, the Gafni Commission, an interministerial
body with task of "examining the rate of development in Jerusalem,"
was established. Its recommendations, which were submitted in August
1973, stated: "The ratio of Jews and Arabs in Jerusalem must
be preserved" - the ratio at the time was 73.5 percent Jews
and 26.5 percent Arabs. Since then, Israeli governments have invested
efforts to implement that recommendation - innumerable new neighborhoods
have been built for Jews only, while the lives of the city's Palestinian
residents are turned into a living hell. They are stripped of residency
rights, their homes are demolished, they are denied construction
permits, they receive meager services and master plans for their
part of the city are not approved. The aim of all this is to push
them out of the city and maintain the sacred balance. The result?
Twenty-nine years after the Gafni Commission turned in its report,
the Palestinian minority in Jerusalem has increased to 32.5 percent.
The conclusion? Either a population transfer or the end of the occupation
in Jerusalem. No commission is needed to conclude that. Israel is
a binational, multicultural state, and it is high time we
recognized that fact.
The only way to cope with it is to become a society
that is more just. The only legitimate way to preserve the Jewish
majority, for those to whom that goal is of overriding importance,
is to end the occupation and perhaps also step up immigration. Defining
the Arab citizens of Israel as a "demographic problem"
raises harsh memories and sends them a highly offensive message.
What are they supposed to feel when the government,
which is also their government, convenes a committee that has the
aim of reducing their share of the population, as though they were
a cancer whose growth must be stopped.
Since the rate of natural increase among the country's
Arabs is higher than among the Jews, what's needed is not a commission
of gynecologists but a different policy, which will turn the Arabs
citizens capable of identifying with their country.
The Arabs in Israel will be neither a "problem"
nor a "demographic demon" if the attitude toward them
is fair and egalitarian. This is a country in which the streets
are plastered with posters calling for a
population transfer and no one bothers to remove them or to indict
those who put them up. (It is not difficult therefore to guess what
would happen if posters were put up calling for the expulsion of
Jews). A commission on demography is just another bad omen.
BACK AT GAZA
Occupied Palestine. "Welcome
to the Erez Crossing".
The sign on the way out of Gaza really says this. Yes.
Greetings. Welcome to a half a mile of concrete barriers and barbed
wire. Welcome to electrical wires and fortified soldiers' bunkers.
Take no notice of the machine guns pointed at your head. Follow
the arrows and obey the signs. Put your hands up, leave your bags
behind you, walk slowly, show us your passport, tell us what the
hell you think you're doing in this human garbage dump. No, you
can't be trusted. You're living in Gaza.
Welcome to the Erez Crossing. Make
yourself at home.
A young, blue-eyed soldier with a
crew cut and a machine gun watches me enter the main office at Erez.
I say a meek "shalom"; I don't want to get into a conversation.
But he wants to know where I'm from and what's my name. His eyes
pierce mine and he grins in an unpleasant manner. He looks like
the stereotype of a Nazi soldier, I catch myself thinking. Don't.
Don't have that thought. It's not allowed. Outside, another hundred
meters away, is the last guard post. I pass by it easily, handing
over my gate pass, and feel relieved to see that my taxi is waiting
for me. But in between me and my last few steps at this God-forsaken
transit point is a family of four, a mother, father, and two young
children -sitting on the pavement in the sun, the 100-degree-Fahrenheit,
humid Gaza sun-waiting for the master boys in uniform to deign to
let them back into prison. How many hours have they been kept there
in the withering heat? The soldier at the gate shouts for the father
to approach in the tone of voice used for disobedient dogs. I feel
sick "I'm so sorry. I know my country is paying for this."
They're the only words I can find and I utter them in broken Arabic.
The father looks at me surprised. "Never mind. It's not your
Worthless lives can sit for hours
at the gates of an inferno. No one will ever know. And the man who
waited at Ben Gurion airport for ten hours to get permission to
return to his Gaza hovel was finally allowed in -without his wife
and daughter, who were threatened with deportation for no apparent
You never heard about him either or the hundreds with similar stories.
Or about the woman sitting in the back seat of a taxi with her child
one early morning this past June: Soldiers in a nearby outpost fired
bullets through the window of their car killing them both. They
have no names, no faces, no relevance.
More than 150 people have been murdered
by the Israeli Occupation Forces in the Gaza Strip just since the
middle of March. Three made news in the US. The New York Times labeled
them "suicide bombers" though they had no explosives on
their bodies. They were 14 and 15 year old boys stupidly driven
trespass into the Netzarim settlement, illegally situated on their
land. They were shot in the head and chest, ridden over by an armored
vehicle that disemboweled and utterly disfigured them, and left
to the mercy of dogs until the next afternoon.
Do you remember them?
Are we really surprised that an F16
warplane would drop a 2000-pound bomb on a family home at midnight
killing 15 people, nine of them children and two of them mothers?
Where has the outcry been up to now that over a million human beings
-treated like refuse, spoken of like vermin, drained of the
trappings of basic dignity- live in a ghetto walled off from humanity
surrounded and strangulated by an occupying army that kills them
at will and with complete impunity? Why should fifteen more deaths
matter when the hundreds of others never did? Because this time
the killers were so purposefully indiscreet.
When I step into my taxi for
the weekend trip to Ramallah my Arab Israeli driver greets me tentatively
at first. I thank him for being at Erez so promptly; for not making
have to wait in that miserable place. Anguish fills me when I turn
back to look at the entrance to Gaza. Let me try to forget for a
while. "Where are you from," I ask the driver in Arabic,
in an attempt to focus my thoughts elsewhere. "I am Palestinian,"
he answers me in a voice of controlled calm.
Erez, it seems all your greetings
Article downloaded on 28th
July 2002 from:
Boycott of all Israeli Art Institutions
We appeal to all artists of good conscience around
the world to cancel all exhibitions and other cultural events that
are scheduled to occur in Israel, to mobilize immediately and not
allow the continuation of the Israeli offensive to breed complacency.
Like the boycott of South African art institutions during apartheid,
and the boycott of Austrian art institutions when Haider was elected,
the art world must speak out against the current Israeli war crimes
We reach out our hand in support of all Israeli
artists who are active against the occupation. We support them and
their work. It is especially important at this time to extend all
our support to those brave Israeli artists who are against the current
Israeli offensive and are speaking out against their own government.*
We, members of the international art community
are calling on Israel for a complete withdrawal back to the 1967
borders as well as a dismantlement of all West Bank settlements.
We will boycott all Israeli art institutions and cultural events
until that time.
We appeal for an end of the current military offensive
in which Apache helicopter gunships, tanks,
F-16s, M-16s, and anti-aircraft missiles are terrorizing an entire
civilian population who were already living under the hardships
We urgently appeal for food and drinking water,
and for the general access of all humanitarian agencies. The situation
is on the verge of a humanitarian disaster.
We appeal for the safety of all individuals.
We appeal for medical supplies and access to medical
treatment, electricity, water, phone lines and other necessary facilities.
We appeal for freedom of movement within all cities
and outside all Palestinian cities. Before the current military
offensive, Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza were denied freedom
of movement due to over 300 Israeli checkpoints. It is unforgivable
that in the 21st century, people are killed just trying to get to
work, deliver babies, or visit a relative in a neighboring village...
We appeal for the immediate end to vandalism,
looting, humiliation, and gratuitous violence and destruction.
We appeal for access of humanitarian agencies,
including the ICRC, Red Cross, and the Red Crescent to all detainees,
prisoners and hostages, including Palestinian President Yasser Arafat,
to ensure their well-being.
Emily Jacir, Anton Sinkewich, Oz Shelach
7th April 2002
*Following a comment that naming 5 Israeli artists
active against the occupation risks acting as a reverse "blacklist",
we removed those names from the appeal. We nominate no one to compile
lists of politically good or bad artists.
To endorse the above appeal
send an email to the address below. Please include your full name,
field of activity/institutional affiliation, and city:
The list of signers is kept online at:
In Support for Boycotting Israel
Yehudit Harel - A letter sent to an export company in Texas
Dear Mr. Harris,
I am an Israeli citizen living in Israel and struggling
against the oppressive steps my Government is engaged in against
the Palestinian People's legitimate struggle for Liberation and
I heard about your courageous step to refrain
from selling goods to an Israeli customer and I wish to support
your decision. It's not at all easy for me to do so, as I am an
Israeli citizen, Israel is my
home and my country and I wish I didn't have to do so. However,
I am compelled to act in this extreme way so as to express not only
my total indignation and resentment of my Government's policies
and the crimes committed against the Palestinians, but also as a
result of a deep frustration and desperation.
I am afraid that we, Israeli Peace activists have
exhausted our means for an effective internal struggle against our
Government and it seems to me that the legitimate civil struggle
inside the Israeli Society is leading us nowhere. The prevailing
state of extreme imbalance of power in every respect, both political,
military and public relations wise is making our situation even
more hopeless. The weak and the oppressed - i.e. the Palestinian
side - is successfully being portrayed in the local and international
arena as a "Terrorist" entity - while the usurper, the
occupier and the aggressive oppressor - i.e. Israel - manages to
get the World's and mainly US's sympathy, military and political
backing to carry out it's unjust and cruel policy towards the victims.
The Israeli public opinion is biased against the
Palestinians as a result of many years of propaganda and brainwashing,
and more recently also due to unacceptable means used by the Palestinian
resistance, such as targeting of innocent civilians by suicide bombers.
The much these acts are repelling and immoral - they should not
avert one's mind from their root causes which are the 54 years old
oppression and total dispossession of all their rights, their land,
their identity, their human dignity, their continuous humiliation
in various forms of abuse and degradation. In addition to all this
- in this recent Intifada, Israel applied extreme military power
such as targeting populated areas with Apaches and F16's, using
extra-judiciary executions, imposing hermetic closure on large civil
populations, causing starvation and prevention of medical aid and
food supply to hundreds of thousands of innocent people. These are
the root causes that drive some Palestinians to such depths of utter
despair, frustration, anger and revenge that eventually trigger
the suicide bombings.
Israel under Sharon, backed by the US administration
is not at all in the direction of revoking its oppressive policies.
On the contrary - I am afraid that Mr. Sharon has not yet finished
his scheme to
effectively annihilate the Palestinian Authority and render the
establishment of a free and viable Palestinian state impossible.
Sharon is now waiting for the right opportunity to continue the
Therefore - the only way to change this
dangerous tide is by exerting effective external pressure on Israel.
As American and UN pressure seem unlikely - what remains is the
mobilization of the International Civil society of which the economic
community is an important component. Therefore I wish once again
to congratulate you and strengthen your decision to boycott Israel.
Please do not give in to the Jewish Lobby's pressure and remember
that what you are doing is also for my benefit as an Israeli, and
for my children's benefit and their future. We Israelis and Palestinians
want to live here in Peace, so it is us whom you have to listen
to and not to the corrupt American Jewish Holocaust mercenaries.