Boston Bombings. By Mazin Qumsiyeh

Via: Popular Resistance.

At first I thought I should not comment on the Boston bombings as it is obvious that we in Palestine, under siege and regular bombardment would clearly sympathize with the victims. But then I saw the usual pundits on mainstream media trying to spin the tragedy to serve racism.

The Israeli Consul-General in Boston told the Jerusalem Post that “Boston is a very quiet and calm place, especially when we come from Israel…..Still, the Jewish community and the consulate are on alert and security has been increased”.  He speaks as if he represents Jews of Boston (and only them) and insinuates as usual that problems in Palestine (‘Israel’) are because of the native “Arabs” not because of the Zionist colonization.

CNN gave extensive time to the Zionist ex-congresswoman Jane Harman who claimed this terrorist attack is likely linked to AlQaeda Islamists while trying to connect herself to victims when she supports terrorism herself. Besides her appalling record in voting for more weapons and money to Israel to kill Palestinians, she was unashamedly more pro-Israel to the point of challenging US interests on several occasions. Continue reading

Israel Apartheid Week/Month. By Mazin Qumsiyeh

Via: Popular Resistance.

The Israel apartheid events* are already being attacked ahead of the events. We are now writing from Colorado where we had our first US stop and where the local groups arranged a number of appearances for us to launch the apartheid Month. In three days we have public lectures at a church, two universities, a bookstore, interview with two radio stations, informal meetings with community leaders, and a meeting with a congressman. Some anti-Semitic Ashkenazi Zionists have been writing to organizers telling them that we are “anti-Semitic” and sending them the link to the ferociously right-wing and settler supporting and misnamed “Anti-Defamation League” (ADL should be called Arab Defamation League). The link they send is this that includes a serious of quotes from me http://www.adl.org/israel/qumsiyeh/in_his_own_word.asp (I have no problem with the quotes, only that some of them are truncated and out of context).

*For more on the Israeli Apartheid Week events held in over 50 cities worldwide, see http://apartheidweek.org/ and this interesting and rather balanced article in Haaretz about this activityhttp://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/features/what-does-israeli-apartheid-week-actually-achieve-1.347807

March 15 is Palestine’s moment to join the other struggles in Arab countries for freedom and people power. All Palestinians and their supporters are encouraged to get down to the streets in all cities and towns wherever they occur. We also demand an end to the West Bank Gaza Split but I personally do not use terms like reconciliation. There are many Palestinian factions on the ground similar to the number of factions that existed in South Africa when it was struggling to end apartheid. The problem lies in the confusion and damage done by the Oslo process which created a “Palestinian authority” (now 2) without any real authority. It relieved the pressure on the occupiers by administering people and controlling their anger while really making the occupation cost-free to the occupiers. Continue reading

Of Cowardice, Dignity, and Solidarity. By Mazin Qumsiyeh

Via: Qumsiyeh.org.

I personally know over 80 of those kidnapped on the freedom flotilla.  It angers us not having any information from all survivors. The only footage received after the vicious attack is brief and released by the Israeli authorities who have otherwise put a complete news blackout. If Israel has nothing to hide, why not allow the kidnapped to talk to the media or at least to lawyers and to their country representatives?   In one video, we see three or four recognizable friends escorted by the Israeli pirates; my mind imagines justice prevailing and those Israeli criminals being led in handcuffs to International criminal courts.  Our anger increased when Israeli forces attacked unarmed demonstrators near Qalandia yesterday injuring a friend.  22-year-old Emily Henochowicz lost her left eye after being hit with an Israeli gas canister.  We met Emily in several events here in Palestine (see story and photos at http://palsolidarity.org/2010/05/12604).  She is a visual artist who was documenting popular resistance (her art blog is here  http://thirstypixels.blogspot.com/, Facebook http://www.facebook.com/people/Emily-Henochowicz/1223820147).  A visual artist losing an eye is beyond words.

Each one of the hundreds abducted is a hero for joining the flotilla. Patriarch Hilarion Capuchhi who was jailed in Israel for many years and lived in Italy was one of the abductees. Sheikh Raed Salah, a Palestinian from the areas occupied in 1948 who is head of a branch of the Islamic movement. Hedy Epstein, a 86 year old Jewish women who lost her family in Nazi concentration camps and subsequently came to Palestine and was shocked to see people claiming to represent Jews mimic some Nazi crimes (and for this the Israelis strip-searched and humiliated this elderly woman). There was Nobel peace laureate Mairead Corrigan-Maguire. There is Joe Meadors, a survivor of the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty (on a US ship in International waters that killed many good Americans in June 1967 but that political considerations buried this Israeli crime – see survivor webpage http://www.usslibertyveterans.org/ ).  For Israel to repeat its atrocity against US citizens as the US commemorates Memorial Day is unconscionable (see also http://www.freepalestinemovement.org ).  For the Obama administration to continue to shield Israel from International law makes us angry.

Those of us angry enough to get out and demonstrate here in the West Bank have a problem. In Bethlehem, over 50 members of the “Palestinian Preventive Security” (as they are called) and police blocked our path to get to the apartheid wall area.  We are told we can demonstrate as long as we do not bother those we are demonstrating against! Continue reading