On May 18th we will be marching down the streets of Toronto to honour the Nakba and to call for an end to Israeli Apartheid. The energy and strength of Palestinians has been relentless in resisting colonial violence. Please join us on the streets and support our call by sharing the event with your network of activists and organizers. This is the Facebook page.
We will be gathering at Yonge-Dundas Square at 2PM and marching to Yonge and Bloor to the Israeli Consulate. Please bring your energy and enthusiasm as well as your banners and placards.
We urge you to endorse this day of action and our call for the right of return of Palestinians. An endorsement can mean simply stating your support to us, sharing the event page on Facebook, and/or supporting with resources. Some endorsing organizations include:
Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME)
The cruelty and temerity of the people in Gaza once more reached new heights Saturday: dozens of rockets on Israel before the week of its Independence Day, just after its Holocaust Remembrance Day, and worst of all, two weeks before its Eurovision. How dare you Gaza, how dare you.
Israel still hasn’t recovered from the Holocaust, is preening itself for its Independence Day, the musicians are starting to arrive at Ben-Gurion Airport, and you’re firing Qassam rockets. How will we be able to celebrate? News reports give the impression that Israel is under siege; Gaza is threatening to destroy it. Twitter has already suggested “Eva’s Story on the Gaza Border” – a play on the social media campaign about the Holocaust.
Pundits explain that it’s all because of Hamas’ greed. Ramadan is beginning and “they’re under crazy pressure for cash.” Or, “It’s all because of the weak security policy that has gotten the terror groups used to Israel; we only strike buildings.”
And so they shoot, those villains. Hamas wants money, Israel’s too soft on them, they are terror, we are peace; they were born to kill. On Friday the army killed four protesters by the Gaza border fence, but who’s counting. In Israel a teenage boy tripped while running for a shelter. “When a lack of policy and continuity yields to blackmail,” a voice of wisdom mumbled, and nobody could figure out what he was proposing. Benny Gantz, the alternative. This is what we have an opposition for.
Everything is completely disconnected from context and reality, intentionally and willfully. Half a week after Holocaust Remembrance Day, the knowledge that 2 million people have been locked up more than 12 years behind barbed wire in a giant cage doesn’t remind Israel of anything and doesn’t arouse anything. Half a week before Independence Day, the struggle for freedom and independence of another people is perceived as murderous terror for no reason.
Even the desperate attempt to prevent the brink of starvation is perceived as greed; the effort to somehow impart the appearance of a holiday in the holiest month of the year is depicted as extortion. That’s how low the brainwashing goes and no one protests. Everyone accepts it with a shrug. Anyone who doubts how hollow and destructive the inculcation of the Holocaust is in Israel should look at the responses in Israel to this Gaza Ghetto Uprising. Anyone who ignores the reality in Gaza or tries to deny its disaster has learned nothing.
Gaza is a ghetto and what’s happening in the south is a ghetto uprising. There’s no other way to describe it. You can make claims against Hamas but you can’t make any claims against Gaza. It’s fighting for its freedom and no struggle is more just than its struggle, and Hamas is its leader.
The countdown to Hamas’ death has already begun: Only seven more months until the UN report, until Gaza is unfit for human habitation. But Israel yawns and its spokespeople only know how to tout “deterrence,” that monster we’ve created to justify every killing, closure and bout of destruction, as we lie ourselves to death that there’s something to deter 2 million unemployed, desperate, humiliated people, some of whom are hungry or dying for lack of medical care, and all of whom are locked up.
No one in Israel can imagine life in Gaza over the past 12 years. There are people who see to it that we don’t know, including Israel’s ban on the entry of Israeli journalists, which has stoked no protest at all. “Eva’s Story” should be filmed in Gaza way before it’s filmed in the Gaza border area.
A country that is established on the memory of the ghettos, which only a few days ago sanctified that memory, hides its face from the much larger ghetto that it built with its own hands and doesn’t want to see, one hour from the center of that country. A country that was established in a bloody struggle will not recognize the justness of the struggle of another people and wonders whether that people even exists. A society that considers itself exemplary, which was established on the world’s indifference to its suffering, shows monstrous heartlessness to the suffering it is causing.
“What were they before?” a woman asked me Friday in a lecture I gave in Tel Aviv. And what were we? What have we become?
At a Brock University town hall on January 15, Prime Minister Justin
Trudeau was challenged by an audience member who lauded the PM’s apology
for Canada’s role in turning back Jewish refugees from Nazi persecution
during the Second World War, but then went on to dispute the PM’s
understanding of contemporary anti-Semitism. “I believe, to my
consternation,” stated the questioner, “that you equated the BDS
(Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement with anti-Semitism. Will
you take this opportunity today to retract your condemnation of the BDS
movement?” The PM’s response
appeared to come straight from the playbook of Israel-affiliated lobby
groups when he declared that the BDS call is anti-Semitic and that
“Canadian values” dictate that it must be opposed. Indeed, even
Trudeau’s language (“single out Israel,” “delegitimize and demonize”)
directly references Israeli government talking points. Adhering to the
“anti-Zionism equals anti-Semitism” position of the Israeli government
and many pro-Israel Jewish organizations, the PM demonizes and
potentially imperils the rights of those who care about and advocate for
Palestinian self-determination and an end to violations of the rights
of the indigenous population of Palestine.
Just how out of step is Justin Trudeau with the Canadian public’s
attitudes towards Israel’s violations of Palestinian human rights? The
PM’s most recent attack on the non-violent Palestinian civil society-led
Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement appears to be in direct
contradiction to the opinions of the majority of Canadians. The evidence
for this claim can be found in two surveys conducted recently by the
EKOS polling organization. The first survey, conducted in 2017 and sponsored by Independent Jewish Voices Canada and Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East,
revealed that 46 per cent of Canadians hold a negative view of the
Israeli government. In Trudeau’s own Liberal party, the number of those
with negative views was a substantial 55 per cent. Nonetheless, Canada’s
Liberal government continues to demonstrate virtually uncritical
support for Israel. They justify their position by claiming that it is
necessary to “support Jews and to oppose anti-Semitism.” This serves to
perpetuate the misconception, encouraged by Israel-aligned Jewish
communal organizations such as the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs
(CIJA) and B’nai Brith Canada, that Jews are ideologically unified in
their support for the Jewish state’s current political regime. A recently released EKOS survey of Canadian Jews’ opinions on Israel, sponsored by Independent Jewish Voices Canada and the United Jewish People’s Order, is the first of its kind and demonstrates conclusively that there is no unity among Canadian Jews regarding Israel’s policies.
Indeed, the study concludes that Jewish Canadians are deeply divided
in their opinions of the Israeli government. More than a third of
Canadian Jews (37 per cent) have a negative opinion of the Israeli
government, while only half view it positively. In addition, almost one
in three Canadian Jews (31 per cent) oppose the military blockade of the
Gaza Strip, and nearly half (45 per cent) oppose the U.S. decision to
recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish state. Fifty-eight per
cent of Canadian Jews do not see criticism of Israel as necessarily
anti-Semitic, and 48 per cent believe that charges of anti-Semitism are
often used to silence legitimate criticism of the Jewish state.
Astonishingly, over a third (36 per cent) of Jews in Canada think that
the Palestinian call for a boycott of Israel is reasonable, while 44 per
cent oppose Parliamentary condemnation of those who endorse a boycott
of Israel. Unlike Prime Minister Trudeau, 28 per cent of Canada’s Jews
believe it is reasonable to impose sanctions on Israel for its
violations of Palestinian human rights.
Clearly, Trudeau does not represent general Canadian public opinion
when it comes to Israel/Palestine. Moreover, his opposition to BDS, his
support for measures that would censure anti-Zionist expression, and his
clear mimicking of Israeli Foreign Ministry language and ideology are
unacceptable to significant numbers of Canadian Jews who have parted
ways with those in the community who march in lockstep with the Israeli
government. Trudeau’s position is not only ill-advised, it is dangerous
— dangerous for Palestinians whose situation grows graver by the day,
and dangerous for Jews in the current climate of rising anti-Semitism
from the right. As Oxford philosophy professor Brian Klug
has argued, “When anti-Semitism is everywhere, it is nowhere. And when
every anti-Zionist is an anti-Semite, we no longer know how to recognize
the real thing — the concept of anti-Semitism loses its significance.”
It’s time to bring our government’s policies on Israel’s 51-year
occupation into alignment with the decidedly more critical, and
ultimately more moral, stance of the Canadian public.
The United States has spent hundreds of billions on unnecessary wars, but only the UN relief agency for the Palestinians is improperly run
By Gideon Levy
September 02, 2018 “Information Clearing House” – Now it’s out in the open: America has declared war on the Palestinians. With his son-in-law Jared Kushner, an expert on humanitarian organizations and Palestinian refugees, the great bully Donald Trump decided to end aid to the UN agency that aids Palestinian refugees. The official explanation: The business model and fiscal practices of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency made it an “irredeemably flawed operation.”
Trump and his son-in-law, the keepers of the seal of good government, found that the agency isn’t properly run. The annual U.S. contribution of $360 million will end. Even in Israel, which rejoices at every Palestinian calamity and is positive that everything is a zero-sum game, people think the state’s greatest friend of all time went a little overboard.
The new America treats small slights and major crimes equally. Allocations to U.S. aid organizations operating in the territories, such as the U.S. Agency for International Development, have been cut by $200 million.
Washington decided to hit the Palestinians in the wallet. Of all the huge sums going to aid corrupt regimes, of all the trillions spent on pointless wars and mass killing, it’s the aid to the Jabalya refugee camp that’s mismanaged and has to stop. The Palestinians, blackmailing sons of blackmailers, no longer deserve it because of the business model. It would be funny if it weren’t so sad; the price of the joke will be paid from Chatila to Rafah.
In the next decade, the United States is set to pour $38 billion into Israel, among the most developed countries on the planet with one of the best-equipped armies in the world — which of course follow the right business model. Not a single dollar can be cut. Humanitarian aid to a needy country that doesn’t waste a single cent.
Israel deserves this terrifying aid; it complies with every resolution passed by international institutions, a model of morality that obeys every U.S. recommendation that it withdraw from the territories and end the occupation. It’s worthwhile for America to pay for all its whims and wars. It greatly adds to its global prestige.
This year, America will spend $46 billion in Afghanistan, on a war it can’t get enough of. It will pour $13 billion into Iraq, long after one of the most foolish wars ever ended.
Wars? The one in Afghanistan cost America $753 billion, the one in Iraq $770 billion, according to the Pentagon. According to Brown University’s Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs, the actual cost was $1.7 trillion. Two unnecessary wars that caused the needless deaths of hundreds of thousands of people, but the money spent on them conformed with a proper business model. The same for the wars in Syria and Yemen.
Only the UN relief agency for the Palestinians is improperly run. The leader of the free world, the greatest warmonger since World War II, cuts flour for Yarmouk and cooking oil for Bureij, because the Palestinians overestimate refugee numbers.
Behind all this, of course, is a much broader truth. UNRWA could hire Eliad Shraga, head of the Movement for Quality Government in Israel, and comply with Scandinavian management standards, but nothing would make a difference. Israel long ago declared war on the agency, America followed it as usual, all with the aim of removing the refugee issue from the agenda.
Anyone familiar with the conditions in the refugee camps knows just how dependent their inhabitants are on the UN agency. There might be some waste, certainly there are freeloaders, reform is absolutely necessary, but UNRWA provides basic humanitarian assistance. Without it there are no schools, clinics and food in the camps. America owes an indirect debt to the people there; it funds and supports the Israeli occupation, and it has never lifted a finger to reach a genuine solution to their suffering.
But the new America has lost its shame, too; it no longer even wants to pretend to be the honest broker, or take care of the world’s needy, as its position obliges it to do. Let us say, then, shame on you, America.
This article was originally published by “Haaretz“–
AXA crushes the lives of defenseless families in Palestine, while providing life insurance around the world. What a sickening paradox.
The French insurance giant is accused of violating international law by financing Elbit Systems — Israel’s leading arms company — infamous for supplyingprohibited weapons that have already killed and injured hundreds of innocent Palestinian women and children.
What’s more, a new report reveals that AXA also invests in three major Israeli banks that finance Israel’s illegal settlement industry.
The job of an insurer is to guard families against risks, to their lives and homes. But AXA is endangering Palestinian families both by supporting the manufacture of weapons used against them, and the infrastructure of occupation.
Tell Axa to stop investing in Elbit Systems and banks financing illegal Israeli settlements in Palestine!