Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Bloodshed In Palestine


 Illustration: The Mosque under Israeli Attack

            Rashid Khalidi, Edward Said Professor of Arab Studies at Columbia University and author of several books, appears below and he is not as well-known as he should be.  He used to take breaks while teaching at Chicago and meet with Barak Obama.  He helped him find a house next to his near the lake and considered him a friend.  At the time, Obama was a purported supporter of the Palestinian cause and ate many meals at Arab homes.  They helped him get to the White House and Dr. Khalidi was not even invited to the inauguration.  

            The significance of the Edward Said [Sigh Eed] Chair is also not well-known.  Edward Said was a well-known scholar and Professor of Comparative Literature at Columbia University and is most well-known for his book Orientalism. He was also known as a nearly concert-level pianist, especially with Beethoven's late sonatas.  He collaborated with a close friend, Daniel Barenboim in establishing a program to bring together Israeli and Palestinian youngsters through music.  The program may still survive, but could never even be contemplated today, so deep Israel has sunk into the sewer of the intellect.

            Barenboim was an Israeli citizen, but recently took Palestinian citizenship:  Citizenship

            Everyone has been bombarded lately by the attack in the Synagogue in which four Rabbis and one Druze Policeman were killed, Derschowitz wept on TV with Wolf Blitzer or someone of his ilk, but the full story has not been told.  Here is an attempt to correct that problem: 

Credence Sheik Fritz

Jerusalem Unrest Threatens Wider Flare-Up After Deadliest Attack on Israeli Civilians in 3 Years

The unrest that has gripped Jerusalem has escalated after a deadly attack on five Israeli civilians. The victims were killed when armed Palestinians stormed a synagogue during morning prayers. It was the deadliest attack on Israeli civilians in more than three years and the worst in Jerusalem since 2008. The dead included three U.S.-born rabbis, a British-born rabbi and a Druze police officer. Seven worshipers were injured. The assailants were shot dead by police. The attack came after weeks of unrest fueled in part by a dispute over Jerusalem’s holiest site, known to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary and known to Jews as the Temple Mount, as well as the continued expansion of Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem. After the synagogue killings, Israeli settlers launched reprisal attacks in the occupied West Bank, targeting a school near Nablus and Palestinian motorists on a road near Hebron. At least five Palestinians were wounded after Israeli forces fired rubber-coated bullets. We are joined from Jerusalem by Ha’aretz correspondent Amira Hass, the only Israeli journalist to have spent several years living in and reporting from Gaza and the West Bank.


This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: We turn now to Jerusalem, where five Israelis died Tuesday when a pair of Palestinians armed with meat cleavers and a gun stormed a synagogue during morning prayers. It was the deadliest attack on Israeli civilians in more than three years and the worst in Jerusalem since 2008. The dead included three U.S.-born rabbis, a British-born rabbi and a Druze police officer. One of the slain rabbis, Mosheh Twersky, was from two of the most prominent families in Orthodox Judaism. Seven worshipers were injured. The assailants were shot dead by police. The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine claimed responsibility for the attack, which came after months of mounting tension in Jerusalam.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas of inciting violence in the city and said the killings were part of a "battle over Jerusalem."
PRIME MINISTER BENJAMIN NETANYAHU: [translated] As a nation, we will settle the score with every terrorist and their dispatchers, and we have proved we will do so. But no one must take the law into their own hands, even if spirits are riled and blood is boiling. We are in a long campaign in a war against terrorism that hasn’t started today. It accompanies us throughout the Zionism. We always overcame it, and we will this time, as well. There are some who want to uproot us from our state and capital. They will not succeed. We are in a battle over Jerusalem, our eternal capital.
AMY GOODMAN: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas condemned the attack, which came after weeks of unrest, fueled in part by a dispute over Jerusalem’s holiest site, known to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary, containing the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and known to Jews as the Temple Mount, because the two Biblical temples once stood there.
PRESIDENT MAHMOUD ABBAS: [translated] We strongly condemn this incident and do not accept under any circumstances attacks on civilians. At the same time we condemn these actions, we also condemn the attacks on the Al-Aqsa Mosque, holy places.
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: The director of Israel’s Shin Bet domestic security service, Yoram Cohen, dismissed Netanyahu’s claim that Abbas incited the attack. Cohen said a number of events led to the synagogue massacre, including the murder of Palestinian teenager Mohammed Abu Khdeir, who was found burned to death in Jerusalem in July, and the discussions in the Knesset to permit Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount.
AMY GOODMAN: We go now to Jerusalem, where we’re joined by Amira Hass. She’s the Ha’aretz correspondent for the occupied Palestinian territories, the only Israeli Jewish journalist to have spent years living in and reporting from Gaza and the West Bank.
Amira, why don’t you lay out the scene for us in Jerusalem right now?
AMIRA HASS: Hi, Amy. I just came from the neighborhood, Har Nof, where the murder took place. And before that, I haven’t been able yet to go to the neighborhood where the two perpetrators lived, but I went to—I was in some other Palestinian neighborhoods of Jerusalem. Both Palestinian and Israeli neighborhoods seemed to be very, very reserved. There is fear in both parts. The fear was very clear in the Palestinian part. I saw many, many police—policemen, border police—scattered. I even saw them when they were launching up a big balloon, spying balloon, with a camera, I guess, over the neighborhood. The streets were almost empty.
While in the neighborhood in the Jewish neighborhood, things were normal, but very reserved, very restrained. I didn’t enter—I could not enter inside the synagogue, because I’m not allowed as a woman to be there. I did talk to some people. It turns—it seems that the two men who did the killing used to work in the neighborhood in some shops. That’s what I was told, though I didn’t check it yet, didn’t verify it yet.
I did speak to some Palestinians in Jerusalem. And what was remarkable is that they do not approve of it. They do not approve of it, of this murder. But they share with those who perpetrated—they share the sense of despair and anger that Palestinians live with all the time, all the time. I felt that people do not dare to condemn, even though some people feel uncomfortable about such a killing, such an operation. By the way, I don’t think that the Popular Front adopted it officially. People say that the two youngsters are members or fans of the Popular Front, not necessarily members or not necessarily that they got an order from the Popular Front, but this is still to be seen.
Yeah, it is very, very tense. And I was making the comparison between the neighborhood where they lived, the two men, two Abu Jamal—very crowded, very—no investment in the livelihood, in the welfare of the people—while this neighborhood is—the Har Nof neighborhood is a relatively new neighborhood on the land of the village, of the destroyed Palestinian village, Deir Yassin—very spacious, many newcomers, many new immigrants from mostly Anglo-Saxon countries. If they worked there indeed, if the two guys worked there indeed, I think that they faced every morning—they were facing—every day they were facing the Israeli apartheid, very clearly.
And they don’t have—there is no leadership in Jerusalem to—or, at all, any leadership to offer them a struggle with hope, a struggle that yields fruits which give hope for a change. Everything, somebody told me also from the Popular Front today—somebody told me, "We’ve tried everything. We’ve tried negotiations. We’ve tried demonstrations. We’ve tried nice relations with Jews. We’ve tried so many things. And nothing—nothing—brings a change and stops this reality of apartheid."
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And, Amira Hass, how would you characterize the tensions in the recent weeks in Jerusalem compared to previous years and the ongoing conflicts between Jews and Palestinians in Jerusalem?
AMIRA HASS: Look, there are daily confrontations with the police. There is more police, or there are more confrontations. There are many, many racist manifestations on the part of Israeli Jews in the streets of Jerusalem against Palestinians. So there is fear among Palestinians to go and spend time in the west side of the city, where most of them also have—many of them have work, as well. There is, as I said, more—more police everywhere, especially in the Old City and entrance to Al-Aqsa—has become—as somebody told me, "It is like we are going to a theater, and we have to take a ticket from the police in order to enter Al-Aqsa or to enter even the Old City." A guy who lives in the Old City told me, "I cannot go in to my own house. The police is there. There are checkpoints. They don’t let me get in from this place. They don’t get in people who do not live in the Old City." So, you feel that the Israeli measures, to remind Palestinians in Jerusalem that they are not natural residents of the place, natural natives of the place, but they are actually there on probation. They live in Jerusalem on probation, provided they behave nicely or behave according to Israeli regulations. This is the sense that you get. You get a sense—Palestinians get a sense, more than ever, that they are here in this—in their city, natives of this city, as a gesture, not because it’s their native right.
AMY GOODMAN: In October, Israel shut down the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in the Old City of Jerusalem for the first time in 14 years, following the shooting of an Israeli far-right activist named Yehudah Glick. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas condemned the temporary closure as a declaration of war on the Palestinian people. The site, again, known to Jews as the Temple Mount, houses both the mosque and the Dome of the Rock. Jamal Tawfiq, a resident of Jerusalem, said he was turned away after arriving for his morning prayers.
JAMAL TAWFIQ: [translated] This is a collective punishment for something we had nothing to do with. This is injustice. There is no fair government here. Justice should be the basis for governance. But there is no justice here. A problem happens with a person over there, they close the mosque here. Why is it OK to allow Jews to go pray at the Wailing Wall without any harassment, while a Palestinian is killed every day? Every day, a Palestinian is killed. Every day, holy olive trees are burned and pulled out because they belong to Arab Palestinians. Why are we the ones being punished?
AMY GOODMAN: So that was Jamal Tawfiq, a resident of Jerusalem. So, Amira Hass, now five Israeli Jews have been killed, three of them American citizens born in the United States. Where do you see this going from here?
AMIRA HASS: That’s always the most difficult question. I mean, the two sides are giving signs that they are ready for escalation. And there are more Israeli measures. The house of one of the perpetrators of a running-over attack, his house was demolished this night. Probably the houses of the two Abu Jamal nephews or cousins, they will be demolished also soon. So, Israelis claimed officially that they are going to use more collective measures against the entire Palestinian population in Jerusalem. Also what they declared is that they had—they planned some gestures in the West Bank, like opening roads that were closed down to Palestinian traffic, and now they decided not to have this gesture. So, there is—on this part, there is clearly an intention to escalate. And it’s never—as usual, in the past so many years, Israel does not listen to the message of Palestinian protest. It only improves and perfects its tools to repress those demonstrations and expressions of protest.
On the Palestinian side, there is a lot of confusion, because the Palestinians in Jerusalem can revolt, but there is no leadership, Palestinian leadership, that works now to—or able to lead an uprising, in all levels. And also in the West Bank, people, the great majority of people, I believe—and we’ve seen people—the great majority of Palestinians are not really keen on entering now a new phase of repression, of terrible Israeli repression. Gaza is far away. They can sacrifice again, again and again their lives, their houses. But it’s not in a position to lead an uprising against the Israeli occupation, especially now that again Hamas and Fatah are not in the best terms and the reconciliation is not really working. So, it is—there is a lot of confusion. And Jerusalemers are left now, left—in a way, they are left quite alone in a desperate attempt to explain to the Israelis that they have had enough. This is quite heroic, but also not strategized.
AMY GOODMAN: We want to thank you very much, Amira Hass, for joining us from Jerusalem. Amira is the Ha’aretz correspondent for the occupied Palestinian territories, the only Israeli Jewish journalist to have spent many years living in and reporting from Gaza and the West Bank. A few years ago, she was awarded the International Women’s Media Foundation Award for Lifetime Achievement. It was awarded by CNN’s Christiane Amanpour. And a slight correction: Five Israelis have died, four Jews and one Druze. This is Democracy Now! When we come back, we’ll be joined by a Palestinian professor and a former Israeli soldier. Stay with us.

Creative Commons LicenseThe original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

"Palestinians Always Live in Fear": Jerusalem Killings Follow Months of Tensions, Settlement Growth

In the aftermath of Tuesday’s attack that killed five Israeli civilians in a Jerusalem synagogue, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas of inciting violence in the city and said the killings were part of a "battle over Jerusalem." Abbas has condemned the attack, which came after weeks of unrest fueled by a dispute over Jerusalem’s holiest site, known to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary and known to Jews as the Temple Mount, as well as the continued expansion of Israeli settlements. We discuss the worsening tensions in Israel and the Occupied Territories with two guests: Rashid Khalidi, Edward Said Professor of Arab Studies at Columbia University and author of several books, and Eran Efrati, a former Israeli combat soldier turned anti-occupation activist and investigative researcher.


This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: We’re continuing our coverage of the crisis in Jerusalem, where five Israelis died Tuesday when a pair of Palestinians armed with meat cleavers and a gun stormed a synagogue during morning prayers. It was the deadliest attack on Israeli civilians in more than three years and the worst in Jerusalem since 2008.
AMY GOODMAN: We’re joined now by two guests here in New York. Rashid Khalidi is the Edward Said Professor of Arab Studies at Columbia University. He’s the author of a number of books, including his latest, Brokers of Deceit: How the U.S. Has Undermined Peace in the Middle East.
Eran Efrati is also with us, a former Israeli combat soldier turned occupation—anti-occupation activist and investigative researcher. His family has lived in Jerusalem for seven generations.
Let’s start with Professor Khalidi. Your response to what has taken place, not only yesterday, the killing of the four Israeli Jews and one Druze at the synagogue, but in the lead-up to that, as well?
RASHID KHALIDI: Well, tensions have been growing since the summer, and Jerusalem is the flashpoint. When, on top of the pressure that Palestinians are all under because of this occupation that’s now in its fifth decade, you have the issue of the Haram al-Sharif, the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and you have calls by senior ministers in the Israeli government, like Naftali Bennett, to completely change the status quo, to in effect take over a Muslim holy place that’s been the center of devotion for 1,400 years and, essentially, do to it what was done to the mosque in Hebron—turn it into a Jewish holy place where Muslims are occasionally allowed—you are throwing fuel on the fire. And so, ever since the last couple of months, there’s just been an escalation in tension all over the city.
You have increased settlement activity that just is penetrating neighborhood after neighborhood. Arab neighborhoods that have never seen armed settlers, with a heavy military and police presence to guard them, are now slowly, but surely, being colonized one by one. And so, you’re basically turning up the heat on a very, very hot situation, and that’s been going on now for many months.
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And given the inability of the leaders to be able to negotiate a settlement to the ongoing occupation, do you think that there’s a possibility that we’re under the brink of a Third Intifada, with the young people just saying, "Hey, our leaders can’t deliver anything"?
RASHID KHALIDI: Well, I think that what Amira Hass earlier said is correct. In Jerusalem, in particular, there’s an absence of leadership, but there’s an absence of leadership for the Palestinians as a whole. And that has been, I think, signaled over the Gaza crisis. It’s been signaled over the inability of the Palestinians to actually put together a reconciliation, a unity government, and to define a strategy.
I mean, Israel has a clear strategy. It is that they will negotiate forever, but they will not give up control of the Occupied Territories. The most important statement made by an Israeli politician was made by Netanyahu this summer. He said, "We will keep permanent, perpetual security control of these territories." So he’s basically said, "No state, no sovereignty, no independence. You can talk as long as you want. I will meet with you. But you will never get an end to occupation."
Well, that’s—something has to give here. I don’t think—I agree with Amira: I think that people in the West Bank are afraid. They’re both afraid of Israeli retaliation and they’re afraid of the security cooperation between the Palestinian Authority, which helps the Israelis to hold them down, and Israel. So, I’m not sure that that’s where we’re going. We may be going to more—sadly, to more horrible random acts of violence and more eruptions of kids, without leadership, in various parts of the West Bank, perhaps, and Jerusalem.
AMY GOODMAN: Is there something shifting here, from an Israeli-Palestinian conflict to a Israeli, perhaps, Jewish-Muslim conflict, which certainly involves many more people than just in that area?
RASHID KHALIDI: Well, I mean, this is certainly grist for the mill of people who want to turn it into a religious conflict. There are certainly people on the Israeli side and people on the Palestinian side, but in the broader Arab and Muslim world. I mean, this group in Sinai, which announced its adherence to the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, is called Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, a support—
AMY GOODMAN: The Egyptians.
RASHID KHALIDI: The Egyptian Sinai group that announced its adherence to the Islamic State off in Mosul and Baghdad, al-Baghdadi’s group, is called Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, supporters of Jerusalem. This is a card that these people will play. So, yes, this is not just tinder in the Palestinian-Israeli arena, religious tinder; this is religious tinder all over the region. I don’t know what—I’m not suggesting that’s necessarily going to—something is necessarily going to happen, but the Israeli government is playing with fire. They have a senior minister—Naftali Bennett is one of the three most important people in the Israeli Cabinet. He is making incendiary statements. His party and Lieberman’s party are saying and doing things that Palestinians watch. They know who these people are. They know how important they are in Israeli politics. They know the kind of support they have. And people are quite afraid, I think.
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And Eran Efrati, as a former soldier now turned anti-occupation activist, your reaction as you’re seeing this latest flare-up over this terrible attack yesterday?
ERAN EFRATI: All right. So I think when we’re really trying to understand what happened in Jerusalem the last few months, we’ll need to understand it in a broader context—the broader context of maybe 70 years of ethnic cleansing all over Palestine, but definitely in the last 40 years in East Jerusalem and around specifically the holy sites, trying to bring more and more Jews into this area instead of Palestinians and determine a new history, if you want, a new history when you cannot divide Jerusalem, because Jews were always there in the Old City and around these holy sites. So, from this situation, the angle is to make Palestinians leave Jerusalem. And we’re trying to oppress them so much. And this our goal—when I was in the army—in the police in Jerusalem, the goal is to make people’s life miserable. When we were in the army, they’re trying to tell us that to do that, we’re doing it for the fact that they will not act in terror attacks. So, we need to make their life miserable, so they will be afraid all the time, and they will not have time to plan terror attacks. It’s, of course, ridiculous. The end goal in the end to make them want to leave also made them want to do crazy things, like attacks on Jews and on Israelis.
The second context I will talk about—I think it’s important to talk about—is the last 10 years. Since the last—since the Second Intifada, the end of the Second Intifada, that was very bloody for both sides, the Palestinian society decided to act in nonviolent acts, trying to go to the U.N., like Amira Hass has mentioned, going to the U.N. promoting BDS—boycott, divestment and sanction movement—on Israel. All of that was countered in a very, very harsh oppression by Israel. People in Israel, officials in Israel are calling them terrorists. If you’re going to the U.N., you’re a political terrorist. If you’re promoting BDS, you’re an economic terrorist. People are arrested for that. You know, institute like [inaudible] Institute, a right-wing institute in Jerusalem, is calling the Parliament, telling them that it will help them expose BDSactivists to stop them and arrest them and destroy their homes. You know, when we’re—
AMY GOODMAN: BDS being boycott, divestment and sanctions movement.
ERAN EFRATI: Right, Amy. When we’re reacting to nonviolence in such a violent way and oppression, and we explain to the Palestinians, "There is no legit way to resist the occupation, there’s no legal way to resist us," it will always end up with violence. Oppression with violence will counter resistance with violence. And in the last four months, Jerusalem is burning. I’m there. I’m from there. I’m a seventh generation in Jerusalem, and I was there in the last few months. Jerusalem is burning since the beginning of the summer, and of course since the killing of Mohammed Abu Khdeir, that, by the way, one of his killers that burned him to death in July was from Har Nof neighborhood.
So, the tension is always there. But the media was not always there, and the attention was not always there. For 40 years, East Jerusalem is in this situation, but nobody seemed to be noticing, because in the last 10 years, for Israelis, since the end of the Second Intifada, it was quiet years. For us, it was peaceful years, because we weren’t living in fear. But Palestinians never had those quiet years. They always lived in fear. They didn’t stop being attacked by the police, by the army—and now, since the summer, by civilians, by mobs on the streets going there and looking to lynch people. And they do, like Mohammed Abu Khdeir, like two days ago when they found in East Jerusalem a bus driver, a Palestinian bus driver, a father to two girls, hanged in the middle of his bus after a violent attack on him, lynching him and hanging him up in the middle of the bus. But it doesn’t seem like nobody is talking about it.
AMY GOODMAN: Wait, explain that, because it was said that he committed suicide.
ERAN EFRATI: Yes, the police came out—exactly like in the Mohammed Abu Khdeir story, by the way, when they came out and said that his family found out that he’s—their son is gay, and this is why they killed him, some homophobic and racism combined together. And, of course, in the end, they have to admit that he was actually lynched to death. The same here. The police came out immediately and said that he committed suicide. His picture, by the way, is going around online, and you can see the violent signs on his body and the rope around his neck. It’s completely crazy, but nobody is talking about it. I’m hearing Barack Obama coming out and condemning this story. I think it’s important to understand that he’s—it’s important to condemn violence against civilians, but where was he when violence against Palestinian civilians are happening every day?
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: I wanted to ask you about the role of Americans, here, financing and helping to support settlement expansion in Israel. The impact that that has?
ERAN EFRATI: Definitely, so much money is being transferred mostly from the evangelicals, but not only. Weapon companies that fuel this government, lobbyists of weapon companies that fuel this government and a lot of right-wing Zionist movements in this country is actually being fueled to the settlement movement in East Jerusalem, all over the West Bank, and to the right-wing parties in Israel. In a lot of ways, the U.S. control completely the political situation in Israel. Like Professor Khalidi just mentioned, the political atmosphere is extremely violent and fascist. And the United States not only enabled that, it’s backing it up with money and with support.
AMY GOODMAN: I want to turn to comments President Obama made following the attacks on the synagogue yesterday.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Tragically, this is not the first loss of life that we have seen in recent months. Too many Israelis have died. Too many Palestinians have died. And at this difficult time, I think it’s important for both Palestinians and Israelis to try to work together to lower tensions and to reject violence. The murderers for today’s outrageous acts represent the kind of extremism that threatens to bring all of the Middle East into the kind of spiral from which it’s very difficult to emerge, and we know how this violence can get worse over time. But we have to remind ourselves that the majority of Palestinians and Israelis overwhelmingly want peace and to be able to raise their families knowing they’re safe and secure. The United States wants to work with all parties involved to make that a reality and to isolate the kinds of extremists that are bringing about this terrible carnage.
AMY GOODMAN: That’s President Obama speaking yesterday in response to the attacks on the Jerusalem synagogue. Professor Khalidi, your response and how you feel the U.S. should respond?
RASHID KHALIDI: Well, the United States is precisely the enabler of all of this. The United States, by its diplomatic support, prevents any real pressure on Israel to stop it from occupation, settlement and repression.
AMY GOODMAN: And the tension reportedly between Netanyahu and Obama?
RASHID KHALIDI: I mean, that and five cents won’t get you a cup of coffee. The president can vent and have his acolytes and his flacks and his hacks say nasty things about the Israeli prime minister. As long as American money is going to support the repression of Palestinians, as long as 501(c)(3) supposedly "charitable" organizations in this country are not stopped by the Justice Department, are not stopped by the Treasury, from funneling tens and hundreds of millions of dollars to settlement activities and to the repression of Palestinians, what the president says is meaningless. This is an American-Israeli enterprise, in fact. The money is largely from the United States. The weapons are from the United States. We are implicated.
And we are running interference for Israel. Whenever anybody tries to do anything—British Parliament, the Spanish Parliament, the Irish Parliament, the Swedish government—the United States objects. Whenever anybody tries to do anything diplomatically or in a nonviolent manner, such as boycott, divestment and sanctions, we’re told that these are anti-Semitic actions. So, presumably, the Palestinians are supposed to lie down and let the bulldozers and the settlement enterprise and the repression run over them and go back to negotiations, which Netanyahu has already told us can never lead to an end to occupation. That’s the doing of the United States, to a very large extent, I’m afraid.
AMY GOODMAN: Your family background, Professor Khalidi? I mentioned that Eran’s family goes back, what, seven generations in Jerusalem. Yours?
RASHID KHALIDI: Our family—my family is a Jerusalem family. My uncle was the last elected Arab mayor of Jerusalem. He was elected in 1934. He was deported to the Seychelles by the British in 1937, but he served as mayor for three years before British colonialism dealt with him. So, we’re an old Jerusalem family. I have cousins living there, and I’ve talked to them. It’s scary. What Amira reported is true. There is an enormous amount of fear. People who have families, people who have kids, are really worried about what will happen to their kids. They’re worried about what will—you know, my cousin has a garden. Israeli undercover agents leap over the wall and chase people through their garden. It’s terrifying. And there’s nothing you can do about it. Palestinians have no share in the governance of the city. It is ruled by others, for others, for a project that is designed to dispossess them and make them into third-class citizens and, ultimately, if possible, get as many of them out. They’re 38 percent of the population of Jerusalem, Palestinian Arabs, and yet they are treated as if they have absolutely no rights.
JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And given the worldwide condemnation of the occupation and the continuing refusal of the Israeli government to negotiate some kind of just settlement, what do you see in terms of potential hope for any kind of progress in the conflict?
RASHID KHALIDI: Well, one thing that is happening is that in this country there is an awakening among younger people, the kind of people who watch this show or listen to this show, people who do not consume the mainstream media, people on campuses. There is an enormous change in public opinion below the level of the mainstream media. The second thing is, in Europe, there is an enormous shift. Four major European countries have had parliaments or governments actually take a stand. Now, that has yet to be translated into effective pressure to stop these acts of oppression, but we’re getting there.
AMY GOODMAN: Sweden just recognized Palestine.
RASHID KHALIDI: Sweden has recognized Palestine. The Spanish Parliament voted yesterday. The Irish Parliament has voted, and the British Parliament has voted. So we have four of the most important countries in the world, have come around or are beginning to come around in an official fashion on this. This is only going to increase. Everybody in Europe knows what’s going on. What the American media doesn’t tell the Americans, the European media does tell Europeans. And so, I think that you’re going to see increasing pressure on Israel, at least from Europe and the rest of the world. The problem is here. The problem is in this country.
AMY GOODMAN: Finally, Netanyahu saying that the occupation will remain forever because the borders are indefensible, your response?
RASHID KHALIDI: Well, he claimed that what has happened with the erection of this supposed Islamic caliphate shows why Israel has to maintain permanent security control over the Jordan River Valley and the entirety of the Occupied Territories. I mean, he has been finding excuses for the longest time why Israel has to continue settling, has to continue occupying, has to continue oppressing. It’s a pretty transparent maneuver. Obviously, you do not control a region by oppressing the people and turning them into your enemies, which is what Israel has been doing for 47 years.
AMY GOODMAN: We’re going to have to leave it there. We thank you both very much for being with us. Rashid Khalidi is the Edward Said Professor of Arab Studies at Columbia University, author of a number of books, including, most recently,Brokers of Deceit: How the U.S. Has Undermined Peace in the Middle East. And Eran Efrati is former Israeli combat soldier turned anti-occupation activist and investigative researcher.
This is Democracy Now! When we come back, a very close vote in the Senate to defeat the Keystone XL pipeline. Stay with us.

Creative Commons LicenseThe original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Palestine and Ferguson--Good site for information

Repost with permission

Home   »  Our Work  »  Joint Struggle   »  Palestine to Ferguson 

Palestine2Ferguson Contingent Shows Power of Unity
by Anna Baltzer, National Organizer
October 24th, 2014

Artist: Yumna Ali 

This month, the US Campaign was honored to help bring together a strong Palestine Contingent to theFerguson October Weekend of Resistance to join a movement moment challenging the national epidemic of racial profiling and police militarization, brutality, and impunity. We know that we cannot advocate an end to Israeli state violence while ignoring state violence against communities of color here at home, as part of our commitment to confronting racism and bigotry in all its forms.

The weekend was a phenomenal success with countless unforgettable moments including:
Contingent members joined more than a dozen acts of civil disobedience, shutting down St. Louis City Hall, blocking the doors to a fundraiser for local complicit politicians, taking part in a shopping mall flash mob and the people's occupation of St. Louis University, shutting down three Walmarts (in solidarity with recent police victim John Crawford), and much more.

US Campaign Steering Committee co-chair Felicia Eaves and member Sandra Tamari marching in St. Louis 

A diverse group of more than 100 joined a national march of thousands holding signs saying, "From Palestine to Ferguson":"Resistance Is Not a Crime," "End Racism Now," and "Justice for All." The march culminated in a rally where St. Louis Palestine Solidarity Committee (PSC) andUS Palestinian Community Network(USPCN) member Suhad Khatib and Palestinian-American Dream Defenders organizer Ahmed Abuznaid spoke eloquently of the importance of joint struggle, bringing tears to many eyes.

Palestinian poet Remi Kanazi performed at the Hip Hop and Resistanceconcert along with Dead Prez, Talib Kweli, Tef Poe, and others.

Contingent members from NSJP, PSC, USPCN, and the US Campaign show support for Ferguson youth taking the stage. 

PSC members Suhad Khatib, Hedy Epstein, and US Campaign Steering Committee member Sandra Tamari joined Kanazi on stage with Civil Rights leader Dr. Cornel West for a dynamic panel. When local Ferguson youth took to the stage asking to be heard, Khatib and Tamari immediately ceded their spots in solidarity.

Contingent members stood with courageous St. Louis and Ferguson community members to challenge the local militarized police presence in the streets night after night. USPCN member Zena Ozeir and PSC member Bassem Masri were arrested along with more than a hundred others. Ozeir and Masri are both safely home.

Day after day, Palestinians sent photos from across the globe to show their solidarity with Ferguson.

Even more moving than the presence of the Palestine contingent, however, was thebreathtaking, spontaneous outpouring of solidarity shown to the contingent by the people of St. Louis, Ferguson, and the broader movement for justice for Mike Brown. Ferguson youth took to the rally stage and thanked the people of Palestine for being the first to send their support through tweets after Mike's killing. Dr. Cornel West decried the Israeli occupation of Palestine, which was met by deafening cheers from the crowd of thousands. These and countless other moments of connectedness and solidarity throughout the weekend were deeply humbling and spoke to ourcollective power when we work together for justice for all.

The US Campaign was proud to organize the contingent with an extraordinary coalition of member organizations and allies made up of the PSC, Organization for Black Struggle, USPCN, Muslims for Ferguson, Council on American Islamic Relations - St. Louis, Palestinian BDS National Committee, National Students for Justice in Palestine, Palestinian Youth Movement (PYM), American Muslims for Palestine, and African Americans for Justice in the Middle East and North Africa.

Be sure to check out these amazingrecordings, images, and resources from the contingent:
The struggle continues -- in Ferguson, St. Louis, across the nation, and across the globe. In the words of Ferguson youth: "United we stand, divided we fall." Let's stand together when it counts to build a better world for all.