Tuesday, 27 March 2012

New York's Mayor Bloomberg claims boycott of Israel will lead to 'massacres'

The Park Slope Food Co-op is set to vote tonight on whether to hold a referendum on boycotting Israeli goods and the New York Times has sunk to a preposterously inconceivable new low with this biased propaganda on the proposed Park Slope Co-Op Boycott of Israeli products. What's missing:

- not a single quote from anyone who supports the boycott

- not a single mention of what is motivating the boycott: Israel's human rights abuses, theft of land, oppression of Palestinians, and so on

- not a single statement of comparative contextual history, e.g., grassroots boycotts of South Africa that successfully contributed to the end of Apartheid policies

Instead of of neutrality, impartiality, facts, and context, what do we get? A megaphone for hateful, delusional scaremongering:
“I think it has nothing to do with the food,” Mayor Bloomberg said of the boycott. “The issue is there are people who want Israel to be torn apart and everybody to be massacred, and America is not going to let that happen.”
Excuse me? Supporters of nonviolent boycott want Israelis to be massacred?

Not to be outdone, Manhattan borough president Scott M. Stringer called the boycott “an anti-Semitic crusade.” And again, no chance for a response from any co-op members who support the boycott. more

Imprisoned Fatah leader Barghouthi calls for halt to all coordination with Israel

Detained Fatah strongman and legislator, Marwan Barghouthi, sent a letter from his prison cell at the Hadarim Israeli prison, calling on the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank, to stop all forms of security and economic coordination with Israel.

Barghouthi stated that the main task of the P.A. is to protect the Palestinians and their well-being, and not to protect the occupation.

He called on the Palestinian leadership to remain determined on the release of all Palestinian prisoners, without excluding a single detainee.

The Fateh leader said that the P.A. should set the release of all detainees as a legitimate precondition for the resumption of peace talks with Israel, in addition to insisting that Israel halts all of its settlement activities, in addition to insisting on a direct and clear Israeli recognition of an independent Palestinian State, with East Jerusalem as its capital, before resuming peace talks.

Barghouthi added that “illusions that the occupation can only be ended through negotiations must stop”, adding that “the political process must be accompanied by ongoing resistance and popular struggle against the occupation”. more

Northern Irish town votes to maintain twinning with Gaza

A BID by Ulster Unionist councillor Joan Baird to get Moyle Council to ‘revoke and totally disassociate’ itself from a ‘Twinning Arrangement’ with Gaza failed on Monday night (March 26).

The 15-member nationalist-controlled council previously supported twinning on March 12 when seven councillors - all nationalists - backed the proposal and six councillors - five Unionists along with Independent councillor Randal McDonnell - voted against.

On Monday night Cllr Baird called on the Council to change its decision.

Supporters of the ‘twinning’ say it will bring humanitarian aid to Gaza but opponents believe the move makes a one-sided political statement in the Middle East conflict. more

Islamic Jihad leader launches hunger strike against his administrative detention

JENIN (Ma'an) -- Islamic Jihad announced Tuesday a senior member of the movement who was detained by Israel a week ago has began a hunger strike against his administrative detention.

Jafar Ez Al-Din Qadan, 40, was seized by Israeli forces from Arraba village south of Jenin, at dawn on Wednesday. He was transferred to administrative detention -- without charge -- and immediately began refusing food in protest, the group said.

Ez Al-Din Qadan has spent four years in Israeli jails. His brother Tareq was released in the October 2011 prisoner exchange deal, and deported to the Gaza Strip. more

Video: Mustafa Barghouti vs. Rabbi Arthur Waskow on BDS Movement, Palestinian Solidarity

democracynow.org - The Park Slope Food Co-op, one of the oldest and largest in the country, is set to vote Tuesday on whether to hold a referendum on boycotting goods from Israel to protest the Israeli government's policies toward Palestinians.

We host a debate on the international advocacy effort called the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign, or BDS for short, which is inspired by the international boycott movement against apartheid South Africa. "We believe this campaign is for the sake of both Palestinians and the Israelis, because it would help us liberate ourselves from the last segregation and occupation system in the world. And it would help liberate the Israelis from the last colonial settlement system in modern history," says Dr Mustafa

Barghouti, a member of the Palestinian Parliament who supports the BDS movement. "The result of the way BDS is framed on almost everyone I have talked to who feels attracted to it, is that the society as well as the government of Israel is wrong and must be attacked," says Rabbi Arthur Waskow who is opposed to BDS. He is founder and director of the Shalom Center in Philadelphia. "Even using methods that are not outright violence, is not a nonviolent approach."

We also discuss the case of Hana Shalabi, the Palestinian hunger striker protesting the Israeli policy of administrative detention. She has been on hunger strike for 39 days. This past weekend, an Israeli military court rejected her appeal.

Hospital may consider force-feeding Shalabi - Amnesty warns against 'inhuman treatment'

BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- The ethics committee of Meir Hospital may consider force-feeding hunger-striking detainee Hana Shalabi, human rights organizations said Monday.

The committee will meet Tuesday to discuss Shalabi's case and could discuss force-feeding her, Addameer prisoner rights group and Physicians for Human Rights-Israel said in a joint statement.

Amnesty International warned forcible feeding "could constitute cruel and inhuman treatment," a release from the group said.

Shalabi has been on hunger strike for 40 days since she was detained from her home in the northern West Bank. On March 20 she was transferred to Meir Hospital in central Israel. more