captain of US to Gaza boat imprisoned

July 3, 2011

The Greek Coast Guard seized The Audacity of Hope, the US boat trying to sail to Gaza, and jailed the captain. For more information, visit the USToGaza website. With Hilary Clinton’s recent comments that the actions of the Freedom Flotilla II are “provocative” and “dangerous,” we can see the Obama administration’s continued dismal record on Palestine — the Arab Spring apparently skipped straight to winter when it comes to Gaza and the occupied territories. Paul Murphy criticizes Clinton’s comments well:

Clinton’s comments are disgraceful. She has essentially given the green light to Israeli Defence Forces to use violence against participants in the flotilla. She has ignored the reasoning behind the need for such a mission, the criminal and illegal blockade of Gaza, which is resulting in enormous suffering for the Palestinian masses.

Many of the 36 passengers on board are staying on the ship in solidarity. How long before anyone from the US government protests the treatment of the captain of The Audacity of Hope or the seizing of the ship? I’m not holding my breath…


Kareem Abdul-Jabbar reverses decision to visit Israel

June 28, 2011

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was slated to receive an award from the Jerusalem Film Festival for On the Shoulders of Giants, but Abdul-Jabbar cited “concerns arising ‘after the Nakba Day violence‘” as his reason for not attending. As with Alice Walker’s piece about joining the Freedom Flotilla II, Abdul-Jabbar’s boycott stems from long engagement with civil rights. Here’s a paragraph from the statement by the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation:

Abdul-Jabbar’s film documents the policies of segregation and racism that characterized the world of basketball in the 1930s. “Ironically,” the signatories told Abdul-Jabbar, “the majority of Muslim and Christian Palestinians could not even have attended such a screening because they are excluded from entering Jerusalem on the basis of their ethnic and religious background.”

Israel threatens to ban journalists for 10 years

June 26, 2011

If journalists cover the Freedom Flotilla II, Israel threatens to confiscate their equipment and ban them for ten years.

flying the Goodman, Chaney, Schwerner flag to Gaza

June 25, 2011

Alice Walker is 67 years old, and she’s sailing to Gaza. In “Why I’m joining the Freedom Flotilla II to Gaza,” Walker interweaves civil rights, anti-Semitism, and anti-apartheid in Palestine in a poignant and insightful piece. This is a fine read.

Freedom Flotilla II — Europe leads the way

June 19, 2011

Freedom Flotilla II is supposed to sail the third week of June to Gaza, and if you go to the Witness Gaza website, you can see all the European countries who are participating, from Turkey (the main organizer) to Germany to Italy to Denmark to Ireland, and more. Some excellent YouTube videos to check out:
Gaza Island
Message in a Bottle

Boycott divest sanctions flashmobs

June 14, 2011

Lots of flashmobs appearing in support of the BDS movement to boycott, divest from, and sanction against companies that support Israeli occupation and apartheid. The Philly BDS Flashdance against Sabra and Tribe hummus is a great example.

Jewish Voice for Peace – Standing Against Islamophobia

September 5, 2010

Sydney Levy of Jewish Voice for Peace has written a powerful message to supporters warning against “the rising tide of manufactured bigotry against Muslims,” especially as Sept. 11 approaches. Read Levy’s Standing Against Islamophobia, Again and Always for a sensitive and passionate message.