Free Palestine Rallies and Marches, January 2009, Brisbane

Here are the speeches at the Rally on 10 Jan 2009:

Here are the chants and speeches during the march:

ummahmedia has put together this excellent coverage of the Brisbane Gaza Rally and March on 10 Jan 2009

Part 1

Part 2

Interview

What Tomorrow will bring?

Phil Monsour sings accompanied by images of the rally and march on 24 Jan 2009

19 thoughts on “Free Palestine Rallies and Marches, January 2009, Brisbane

  1. This came to me from the Emperors Clothes art Exhibition:

    Hi

    we have extended the Exhibitiom about the suffering of the Palestinian People in Gaza

    to next Saturday /Sunday 7/8 February 2009 from 11am to 3pm

    see some examples below

    if you know any Artist who still want to contribute…….. in any Mediun Painting Drawing Caricature.Poetry .Sculpture ,Installation and Multimedia

    there is still space aviable and no charge… ring 33427527 to reseve your space

    can you please email to your Frends and members to view and support our effort…hermann

    “Horror in Palestine” Exhibition
    Friday 30th January 2009
    Emperor’s Clothes, 2 Brereton St. South Brisbane

    Many years ago, there lived an emperor who cared much about his clothes.

    One day he heard from two swindlers named Guido and Luigi Farabutto that they could make the finest suit of clothes This cloth, they said, also had the special capability that it was invisible to anyone who was either stupid or not fit for his position.

    Being a bit nervous about whether he himself would be able to see the cloth, the emperor first sent two of his trusted men to see it.

    Of course, neither would admit that they could not see the cloth and so praised it.

    All the townspeople had also heard of the cloth and were interested to learn how stupid their neighbors were.

    The emperor then allowed himself to be dressed in the clothes for a procession through town, never admitting that he was too unfit and stupid to see what he was wearing.

    He was afraid that the other people would think that he was stupid.
    Of course, all the townspeople wildly praised the magnificent clothes of the emperor, afraid to admit that they could not see them, until a small child said:
    “But he has nothing on!”

    The Emperor’s New Clothes — a fairytale written by Hans Christian Andersen
    and first published in 1837 — Extract from Wikipedia.

  2. This is a list of Israeli companies from Wikipedia. It is incomplete.

    A company worth boycotting would be the German company Siemens; Europes largest engineering firm.

    They are currently building rolling stock for Israel’s rail expansion project and are supplying electric-electric and diesel-electric locos to Queensland Rail. Bombardier another German company and the worlds largest in rail equipment manufacture also provides trains to Israel and are one of the largest train manufacturers in Australia.

    They build trains in partnership with EDI and other engineering firms for almost all of Australia.

    They currently have a contract with Queensland Rail to manufacture of 30 x 3-car EMU for Queensland Rail in joint Venture with EDI Rail· Design and manufacture of 14 x 3-car high speed EMU in joint venture with EDI Rail for Queensland Rail and Airtrain Citylink.

    A
    Africa Israel Investments Ltd.
    Ahava
    Aladdin Knowledge Systems Ltd.
    Amdocs
    Am Oved
    Amit, Pollak, Matalon & Co.
    AudioCodes

    B
    Balter, Guth, Aloni & Co.
    Bank Hapoalim
    Bank Leumi
    Bank Otsar Ha-Hayal
    Bezeq
    Barnies

    C
    CAL Cargo Air Lines
    Castro Model Ltd.
    Carmel Agrexco
    Cellcom Israel Ltd.
    Cisco Systems Israel
    Clalit Health Services Group
    Comverse Technology

    D
    D.B.S. Satellite Services (1998) Ltd.
    Dan Company for Public Transportation Ltd.
    Dizengoff Suites

    E
    ECI Telecom Ltd.
    Egged Bus Cooperative
    Eilat Ashkelon Pipeline Company
    El Al Israel Airlines
    El Al Cargo
    Elbit Systems Ltd.
    Elisra
    ELTA Systems Ltd.
    Exanet Ltd.

    F
    Fermentek
    Fischer, Behar, Chen, Well, Orion & Co.
    Flying Carpet
    Freescale Semiconductor
    Fring
    Frutarom
    Fox-Wizel Ltd.

    G
    Goldfarb, Levy, Eran, Meiri & Co.
    Gornitzky & Co.
    Grant Thornton Fahn Kanne
    Gross, Kleinhendler, Hodak, Halevy, Greenberg & Co.

    H
    Herzog, Fox & Neeman
    Hot
    Honigman & Sons Ltd.

    I
    IMI TAMI Institute for Research and Development Ltd.
    Insightec
    ISCAR Metalworking
    Israel Aircraft Industries Ltd.
    Israel Discount Bank Ltd.
    Israel Electric Corporation
    Israel Military Industries Ltd. (IMI)
    Israel Railways
    Israir
    Issta

    J

    K
    Kanaf Arkia
    Kavim
    Ksoft

    L
    Levitan, Sharon & Co.

    M
    M. Firon & Co. Advocates & Notaries
    Machteshim
    Mapa
    McDonalds
    Meitar Liquornik Geva & Leshem Brandwein
    Metrodan Beersheba
    Metropoline
    Mey Eden
    Microsoft Israel
    Migdal Insurance and Financial Holdings Ltd.
    Minicom Advanced Systems
    Mirabilis (company)
    Mirs Communications Ltd.
    M-Systems

    N
    Naschitz Brandes & Co.
    Nativ Express
    NDS Technologies Israel Ltd.
    Netafim
    Newlog (a subsidiary of shipping magante Zim)
    NICE Systems Ltd.
    NMC Music

    O
    Oracle Israel
    Osem

    P
    Paz Oil Company Ltd.
    Pelephone Communications Ltd.
    Plasan
    Plasan

    R
    Radvision Ltd.
    RAFAEL Armament Development Authority Ltd.
    Renuar

    S
    S. Horowitz & Co.
    Sano-Bruno’s Enterprises Ltd.
    Secured Dimensions
    Shavit Bar-On Gal-On Tzin Nov Yagur
    Shiboleth, Yisraeli, Roberts, Zisman and Moshe H. Ne’eman, Ben-Artzi & Co.
    Soltam
    Steimatzky
    Strauss-Elite
    Sun D’Or
    Superbus
    SuperPharm
    Surf Communication Solutions

    T
    Tadiran Telecom Ltd.
    Tamir Airways
    Tara Agricultural Producers Cooperative Society in Nahalat Izhak Ltd.
    Tempo Beer Industries Ltd.
    Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.
    The Web Lender
    TNUVA Co-Op for Marketing of Agricultural Produce in Israel Ltd.
    TNT
    Tour Bus
    Trivnet

    U
    Union Bank of Israel Ltd.

    Y
    Yehuda Matzos
    Yehuda Raveh & Co. Law Office
    Yigal Arnon & Co.

    Z
    Zend Technologies
    Zim Integrated Shipping Services

    Top companies by sales
    The top 10 Israeli companies by sales are[1]:

    Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Ltd., $4.8 billion
    Oil Refineries Ltd (BAZAN), $4.4 billion
    Israel Electric Corporation, $3.4 billion
    Israel Chemicals, $2.7 billion (2004)
    Elco Holdings
    Israeli Aircraft Industries
    Tnuva Group
    Vishay Intertechnology
    Makhteshim Agan
    Intel Electronics, Israel

  3. Dear friends,

    The next meeting of Justice for Palestine is this
    Wednesday (February 4),
    6:30pm – 8:30pm at the TLC Building (2nd floor),
    16 Peel St, South Brisbane.

    The meeting will discuss plans for a public meeting to launch the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions campaign in Brisbane and also other plans for the campaign.

    See below for a list of ideas so far for the BDS campaign from the brainstorm at last week’s meeting.

    in solidarity,
    Kathy

    Ideas from brainstorm for BDS campaign.
    JFP meeting 28/1/09

    Strategy
    Month by month focus
    Educational
    Short term/long term targets
    Boycott letters to companies
    approach organisations to endorse campaign

    Where to distribute information

    St Mary’s
    Information stalls
    Need a slogan:
    ‘Isolate Israel’
    ‘Make Israel pay’

    Targets

    tourism industry (present alternatives/Palestinian tourism)
    monthly actions at Starbucks
    Veolia (building a settler only light rail line in the Occupied West Bank). Target QLD Government contracts with Veolia (transport, waste management, water treatment).
    AICC and AICC sponsors and members
    Raytheon
    ANZ

    Military ties with Israel
    Federal Government ties. Protest at Rudd’s office.
    Sporting events
    Tax deductibility

    Public meeting:
    public meeting to make the case of BDS campaign. Agreed. To decide details next meeting. Need to decide what we are asking people to do as part of the campaign. Include slide show.

    Universities
    planning meeting on February 6 (details to be sent to email list)
    week of action from March 16-20
    find out research ties with Israel
    QUT Student Guild passed motion in support of Gaza

    Media
    support Avaaz
    Trade Unions
    motions to trade unions to support campaign
    ending TU delegations/junkets to Israel
    write re UK, NZ trade union support

    Fundraising
    merchandise: armbands, posters, badges, t-shirts (Hamish to liase with groups in other cities)
    fundraising gig

  4. Friends

    The latest Israeli bloodfest has come to an end. And we are all grateful for that. Of course the siege has not been lifted and the people of Gaza are still imprisoned in the world’s largest concentration camp. The Israelis are still trying to starve the people of Gaza into submission. So we must continue to do all we can to help them.

    We are now calling for the boycott of Starbucks. Why? The first reason is that Starbucks is owned by Howard Schultz a multimilionaire supporter of the state of Israel. And it is the state of Israel that we are targeting. We are doing so because it is the rogue state of all rogue states. It was founded according to the principles of the ideology of Zionism. From the very start Theodore Herzl and all the other Zionists to come – Vladamir Yabotinsky, David Ben Gurion, Golda Meir, Menachem Begin, Yitshak Shamir, Benyamin Netanyahu, Ehud Barak and Tzipi Livni have all had one aim and that has been to steal the land of the Palestinians. That is the simple truth.

    To get the land they have had to imprison without trial, torture, assassinate, massacre and carry out ethnic cleansing. They have been doing this without ceasing since the Balfour Declaration of 1917. The war on Gaza is just the latest episode in a campaign of colonial brutality Begin were proud of their crude brutality. Today only the brutes remain. That explains why Avigdor Liebermann can call for the atomic bomb to be dropped on Gaza.

    That is also why Tzipi Livni says there is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza. To have a humanitarian crisis you have o have humans. For Livni Arabs are not human beings so there is no humanitarian crisis.

    Now it is true that the attack on Gaza was exceptionally brutal. Only savages would attack a hospital with white phosphorous shells. White Phosphorous burns human flesh right down to the bone. And that is what the Israeli Army did in Gaza. Only savages would unleash the hellfire missile on civilians. The hellfire missile can amputate arms and legs without shrapnel. And that is what the Israeli Army did in Gaza. Only savages would experiment with Dense Inert Missile Explosives which tear the flesh off and can cause cancers later. And that is what the Israeli Army did in Gaza.

    Over 1 thousand four hundred Gazans were murdered and over 5 thousand wounded. Over 400 children were slaughtered. We will never forget them and we will never forgive. But I also want everyone to understand. What happened in Gaza was necessary. The Zionists are acting logically. If you want to steal Palestinian land you have to murder Palestinians. I repeat the Zionists have always understood that brutal simple logic. They have always been for murder and massacre. They have always been for genocide. Always.

    It is true that some of the Zionists like Herzl and Abba Eban wanted to be discreet about what they were doing. Others like the fascist Menachem Begin boasted openly of what he wanted to do to the Arabs. But all Zionists want to steal Palestinian land. And that is why 94% supported the bombing of Gaza and that is why they flocked to the Hill of Shame to sing and dance while the Israeli Army rained death down on defenseless civilians.

    But I also want to say that a boycott here in Brisbane is part of the world wide boycott movement that is confronting the bloodthirsty monstrosity that is Israel. All around the world people are turning away from the abomination that is Israel. We turned away from Apartheid South Africa now we must turn away from Zionist Israel.

    And that is why we are here today. We are calling for a boycott because we are saying No to Zionism. No to arrest without trial. No to torture. No to the murder of children. No to assassinations. No to ethnic cleansing. No to War crimes. And no to genocide.

    I want to finish, however, by stressing that by a boycott we are also saying to the Palestinian people “Yes we are with you in your suffering”. The Cause of Palestine is the cause of humanity. It is true that the Zionist butchers have you penned in cages and they are slaughtering you as they wish. But you will be free.

    Finally Friends by boycotting Israel we are saying yes to our own humanity. We are saying yes to peace and we are also saying yes to a better world. Thank you.

  5. I got this cynical message right from Gaza.

    What you may not know that Gaza people have such a lovely sense of humour.

    It took me over 3 hours to translate it.

    Hope my “English” sense of humour helped me to carry his cheerful outlook to you of the way they needed to live during those long weeks.

    Enjoy – crying is optional!

    Emad

    PS: there is no blood!

    ——————————————

    Day 20, and one hell of a night!

    Day-20 has finally come, and everyday we say this day is the hardest and the wildest day. Seriously? Today is the hardest and the wildest day! So far, we used to see the bombardment live on TV, now we see it live before our eyes! Seems our number has been called!

    All last night, flashing lights all over coming on and off – just like fireworks. However, the rest of the world has fireworks going from earth to the sky, ours are special! Sky to earth!

    Here they reached Tal El-Hawa*, 1 dollar away by taxi, 50 cents by bus! I’m on my computer while my family outside is acting as a Military Analysts in an operation room. They think it’s weird I’m on the net; it’s a war out there so I must be setting around them screaming.

    3 weeks setting at home – no going out or going in! Nothing to do, no power most of the time and no water at all time! Out of boredom, one doesn’t know what to do till he’s hit. Sometimes I count the tiles, other times I count the number of the hocks in the curtains, if there is power remaining, I play with my mobile phone, if nothing worked, I pick on any of my siblings!

    Of course, one tries to be useful with all this free time. I learnt a new sport, called it Water-Tanks-ball. I start exercising right after I wake up. I sneak out, and race the wind to the rooftop in between the laundry to check the water levels and estimate how much water we have left – by knocking on it, before heading back even faster (you get faster when you come face to face with an F-16), and report how much water we have left to the chief in command. Ok, there is no ball, but I needed to make the new sport name rhymes with football! Telling you the truth, I’m getting really really good at it! One developed a tank-musical ear! The usual thing is to know if the tank is full of empty. With exercise, I got to know exactly how many litres we have left – usually none!

    Anyway, the sweet thing about this whole issue is that Shloamo truly shows up his kind side at time of war. For the “well-being” of the people, we give 3 hours ceasefire everyday, he said! So, 3 hours one can do whatever he wants. The best thing about those hours is that they are of multiple choice: one day it’s from 1-4 pm, the next 8-11 am, then 10 am – 1 pm, so you need to take your pick, then dial triple 8 two 0 one nil, and you may win the daily price!

    I swear one doesn’t know what to do in those 3 hours. By the time you get yesterday’s list and start eliminating the places that are no longer there, the 3 hours are gone!

    Today I sat down and thought what to do, and I decided to fall asleep while it’s relatively quiet – as ALL NIGHT LONG the sound of the bombardment and the humming spy planes (or hummers) does not help at all, you feel as if someone is digging into your ears with a broach

    All the time, you either hear a nearby rocket, or far-away rocket, or feel a shake. Then, we started to hear of targeting those weird places: a cemetery, a wedding hall, a residential tower, or a deserted house, or even a house that has been bombed before! Speaking of which, I really would like to take the opportunity and show my gratitude to the pilot launching those rockets; for throwing a small rocket at his target first before splitting it into 2 with the next real one! Can you see how humane? And you say they are bad!! They throw just a tiny little cute one, so whatever survives it has less than a minute to run for his/her/it life before the next one runs him to heaven!

    Lives are all in the hands of the Lord, we have firm believe that all is in the hands of the Lord, and although one is no longer afraid as before once you hear the sound of rocket approaching, still you fear that the sun of a gun would “fall in love” with our house and drop one piece of a shell on our heads, for any obvious reason, the laundry at the rooftop is affecting the hummers communications, for instance!

    I keep consolidating myself with a saying we learnt here as kids – don’t fear the sound of bullets, you can’t actually hear the one that would kill you. But, does that also go for rockets? What you think?! I should ask mum – when she finishes crying.

    The best thing is when the phone line is working and the phone rings, we all start fighting who’s to pick it up, so we can talk to our brothers calling from Arabic countries. We take turns, and all to his own luck, it could be from Morocco, Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, OR, you may get f*** and the call would be from the IDF!!! The guy on the line threatens you not to own any weapon or to have anything to do with the resistance.

    Today, I felt that our phone line is the only one working in Gaza!

    It did not shut up:

    – Hello, As-salaamo Alaikom (peace be upon you)
    – Wa alaikom as-salaam ( and also on you)
    – This is Mrs. X from Libya, may god be with you, may god help you, may god strengthen you
    – Thank you very much Mam, please pray for us
    – God help you and keep you safe
    – Thank you so very much. As-salaamo Alaikom
    – Wa alaikom as-salaam my son.

    This is a sample of one of the lovely ones. Short but sweet, makes us feel we are not alone. GOOD GOD if during the call a rocket was launched, or the Apache’s 500mm started working, they never stop screaming and crying on the phone!!! And instead of them comforting us, we start comforting them: Don’t worry; it’s at our end not yours! It’s just a tinny rock not a big deal! May god be with you, may god help you!!

    The new flashy thing that’s killing me (or burning me to be exact) is the phosphorus. My whole life, I’ve been learning that phosphorus is in the fish, and it’s useful for “thing”!! And every time we used to eat some we feel ALL LIGHTENED UP (halleluiah)!! But now, things are a little bit different, it does “lighten you up” though, but for real!!! So if u were hit by one, and you were still able to hear anything, you probably hear someone saying – wow, how flashy mate!!!

    (Sigh)… I found myself alive tonight, so I thought I should stop screaming with my family outside, ops, I mean the military analysts, and pop up to tell you how we’re doing! Who knows about tomorrow! I may not be able to talk, or not live at all.

    Pray for us, pray for the war to end soon, pray for the resistance, pray for the martyrs, pray for the wounds, pray for the people, pray for everyone and everything, and if it isn’t too much to ask, pray for me to get rich!!!

    See ya

    * Editors Note: AlJazeera English reported on January 16, 2009 that Tar El Hawa which is a neighbourhood of Gaza city has been the scene of particularly heavy fighting. Red Crescent facilities, a hospital and residential apartment blocks were among the buildings hit by the Israeli bombardment…white phosphorus was used and flats and homes of ordinary people were destroyed. See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FhSEipa9jWA

  6. On 14 January 2009 Justice for Palestine (Brisbane) voted to give financial support toAustralians for Palestine which has been doing a lot of advocacy work for Palestine in recent years. I voted in favour of that support.

    However debate on this issue was curtailed at the Justice for Palestine meeting because of time constraints. At the time we were organising one of four demonstrations in Brisbane’s Queens Park during January 2009.

    Australians for Palestine has begun a GAZA NEWSPAPER CAMPAIGN in Australian major daily newspapers in The Age, Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian, The Canberra Times, The Herald Sun, The Courier Mail, Adelaide Advertiser, The West Australian for publication on Monday 26 January 2009.

    If you do not get any of these newspapers you can read the ad. in the article Stop the Killing in Gaza

    However I object to placing such advertisements, particularly in the Murdoch press. My reasons are below.

    An ‘Appeal to the Masses’?

    The use of the mass media suggest that there is an appeal to the broad masses of people ‘out there’. But on what basis should such an appeal be made? The Australians for Palestine advertisement does make an appeal on the basis that Israel is killing children — GAZA NEWSPAPER CAMPAIGN.

    As terrible as the central image of the injured Palestinian child is, it panders to the media sensationalism that results in the media ignoring the issue of Palestine when children are no longer being killed (that is, until the next onslaught by Israel).

    Such sensationalism ignores the accumulated crimes of the everyday, perhaps not as sensational, but the harrassment, the poverty, the daily indignities of queing up to pass through your own land, the original dispossession, the taking of land, of orchards, of water over a period of 60 years – the bulldozing of villages to be replaced by settlers, the endless growth of Palestinian refugees – the tale of misery and indignity is endless.

    Why should we pander to such sensationalism as the western media does?
    Why should we become who they are, what they stand for?

    Why can’t we look behind the headlines and the rage and try to understand this conflict, the political reasons for it, the refusal of ‘right to return’ for Palestinians underwritten by UN mandate but freely given to Jewish refugees from the Holocaust by the same mandate? We will not be able to understand if we rely upon sensationalism, upon opportunism.

    Also implied in seeking out the nation’s leading newspapers is an appeal to respectability. This is done openly through the courting of signatures of support from prominent Australians which is the tone of the advertisement titled “THE SLAUGHTER IN GAZA”

    Such American style, PR inspired, advertising campaigns are often resorted to by celebrities and prominent people in the US wishing to spend their money to express their dismay over violence, injustice or lack of diplomacy and dialogue, or in short, lack of liberal values.

    The basis of the appeal made? Implied in such campaigns is an appeal to ‘just masters’. There is often mention of the UN in the same sentence as ‘the need for dialogue’. But in this case Israel will not talk to the representatives of the people of Gaza. They will not even speak to the surrogate representatives put up by the American administration, namely the Palestinian Authority [PLA], not directly anyway.

    As part of this assumption the masses are said to be less informed and more moderate than ‘just masters’ (whoever they are). But which masses? Even a cursory look at the Arab media does not support this view. Look at the response also in countries like Turkey which has a secular government. Over a million people protested on the streets of Ankara.

    Much hope has been placed in the US on Obama, but that relies on a stereotype of the US President — that because he is a black man he will naturally side with the oppressed. Regardless of who the US president is, it is his government that arms Israel with the means of suppressing civilian populations like Palestinians by the use of such terrible weapons as white phosphorus. The US has a long history of such war crimes, can this be turned around without actual change, not merely the promise of it.

    Respectability
    As touched on above is the appeal through the media to ‘humane and civilised values’ upheld by newspaper editors and their proprietors. Yet these editors and proprietors hide behind such respectability and impartiality to lie to their readers. Take the board of the BBC refusing to broadcast an appeal to help the children of Gaza. The BBC claimed ‘impartiality’ as the reason that it could not broadcast the appeal. The same BBC which under the guise of ‘balance’ is the purveyor of lies about Israel’s need for self-defence while the IDF fires white phosphorus shells to rain down on the people of Gaza.

    I can understand a desire for acceptance when Palestinians are portrayed daily in their newspapers as terrorists, rock throwers — ‘the wretched of the earth’ (sic). But who is putting forward these ideas? Where do they come from? Why should we be associated with the people who hide behind such lies and distortion when it is justice for Palestine that we seek?

    These editors have made their living passing post-mortems on the Palestinian resistance.

    Yet it rises still.

    The Australian Media are far behind
    The Fairfax papers in Australia have been little better than the Murdoch papers. See the caricature of Palestinians as ‘hateful extremists’ in this Sydney Morning Herald article — http://www.smh.com.au/news/world/after-the-slaughter-sickening-jubilation/2008/03/07/1204780065631.html?s_cid=rss_world [the phrase ‘hateful extremists’ was coined by Australian-born Israeli spokesperson in Jerusalem, Mark Regev.]

    Where in this conflict has diplomacy and ‘civilised’ dialogue got the Palestinian people? The Australian media do not even speak to the ordinary people on the ground affected by Israel’s assault – for the most part they report from a distance in Jerusalem with the help of the Zionist lobby and Israeli Defence Force spokespeople?

    Meanwhile the Arab press [i.e. Al Jazeera, Al-Manar TV, and Press TV] have had people reporting on the ground in Gaza during the Israeli assault.

    Name a single act of diplomacy that stopped a single Israeli warplane, a single tank in the assault in January 2009. Which one of the many invasions into Gaza has it stopped? The one in March 2008 where over 100 people were killed? Its invasion of Lebanon on July 2006. Or when the IDF flattened Jenin, or stood by while the Phalange killed the refugees in Shabra and Shatilla, or the massacre this time next year?

    It was Israel that repeated its standard strategy this month.

    Ignoring all pleas, going about its recurrent slaughter and then, when finished, declaring a unilateral cease fire.

    Just to put the icing on the cake, it attacked the UN headquarters in Gaza at the precise moment its representatives sat down with the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon to discuss a cease fire.

    Even this did not stop the UN Secretary General from calling on Hamas to work inside ‘the legitimate Palestinian Authority’ — the same PLA that had lost the general elections in Gaza to Hamas only a year or so before.

    Meanwhile the US government argued for the right to Israeli self-defence and passed bills in congress [390 – 6] to arm the Israeli airforce with white phosphorus, fuel air bombs, cluster bombs and the like.

    Was a single life saved by the diplomatic effort of Ban Ki-moon, by his visit to Gaza? If so, whose life was it? Which child in the UN school that Israeli artillery bombed was saved by the UN Secretary General?

    When has the ‘peace process’ addressed the core injustice?

    In a recent advertisement titled “THE SLAUGHTER IN GAZA” in the Sydney Morning Herald, prominent Australians signed the following statement:

    “And we condemn the easy resort to vio­lence instead of dialogue as a means of resolving difficult disputes. “

    Such nice words by such nice people. Yet no mention in the advert. of the Israeli Defence Force? Not a single killer named. Not a mention of of Olmert, of Livny, of Barak or Netanyahu.

    And the Israeli assaults on Gaza continue year in, year out without any attempt in talks to solve the core injustice — the establishment of a Jewish state in Palestine by UN mandate in 1948.

    Nowhere in the above advertisement do you see any reference to that injustice in what the ad refers to patronisingly as the “difficult dispute“.

    How could the state of Israel continue to exist if such injustice were addressed?

    How could there be two states that these “dialogues” often refer to? There are entitlements to land, water, air and Arab culture that makes neither a Jewish nor an Islamic state possible. Israel wants 1.1 states, with one army to rule over the occupied territories.

    Pro-Israel News
    Why place “Free Palestine” advertisements in Murdoch newspapers which have been pro-zionist for 40 years?

    The advertisement supports economic boycotts against Israel.
    How can we support a boycott campaign against Israeli companies when we intend to contribute advertising revenue to News Corp that has been a powerful part of the Israel lobby in Australia and elsewhere?

    Won’t it simply draw people to the pro-Israel bias of the articles in those newspapers and editorials supporting Israel’s assault on Gaza?

    Can’t the money be better spent on sending out the Justice for Palestine message ourselves, producing our own booklets, running our own campaigns creating our own media to change people’s views directly?

    How do we stop the genocide by Israel by giving money to the media that has either supported it directly or by omission?

    In rallies, vigils, speak outs in Brisbane 2,000 ordinary people have mobilised, donated thousands of dollars to the victims in Gaza through APHEDA (Union Aid Abroad), over 40 people attend organising meetings (currently held two nights per week) surely people are more effective than Murdoch papers?

    Do these adverts seek win real change in the media in its reporting of the injustice suffered by the Palestinian people? Where they seek to change the very political institutions that all my adult life have supported Israel?

    Why should we be mired in a compromise that says we should speak to the devil to save one life, when no life has been saved, where no injustice has been corrected.

    The Fairfax ads imply that we wait, as the Palestinians have waited for so long, we are required to wait while “our media and government have been full of justification for Israel’s slaughter”[quote from the Ad. – The Slaughter of Gaza].

    Of course it is the knowledge of these prominent people that the readers must wait to hear before they will change their minds. For these ‘prominent people’ know the truth of the suffering.

    It is they that understand the issue that led to the catastrophe that is occurring in Gaza right now. It is they that support the UN. It is they that talk of compromise, of the ‘two state solution’.

    And while they were drafting advertisements in their ‘battle of ideas’, the Israeli military were killing the medics tending dying and wounded Palestinians.

    So what is the alternative to such advertisements?
    Direct support from ordinary people on the basis of worker solidarity, Arab unity and Palestinian Victory. In the end it is the Palestinian resistance that will win, but they need all the help we can give. We should start some organised resistance of our own to change the society where we live and remember the words of the Palestinian poet when we read the media stuff about dialogue and prominent Australians:

    I am against my country’s fighters hurting a single ear of corn
    I am against a child, any child, having to carry a gun
    I am against my sister learning weapons drill
    I am against what you will … but
    What would even the saints have done
    Had their eyes been filled with killing?
    I am against a ten year old becoming a hero
    I am against the trees bearing shells for fruit
    I am against the sanctuary of my land being made into a scaffold
    I am against what you will … but
    After the burning of my land
    and my friends
    and my youth
    How can my poems not become guns?
    Rashed Hussain

    Ian Curr
    25 Jan 2009

  7. Justice for Palestine: Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions campaign planning meeting

    Now more than ever we must take a stand in solidarity with the people of Palestine.

    Now more than ever we must heed the call of the people of Palestine to isolate Israel.

    Come along to this Justice for Palestine meeting to discuss future actions in support of Palestine and be part of launching a campaign in Brisbane as part of the international Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions campaign:

    Wednesday January 28th, 6:30pm
    TLC Building (2nd floor), 16 Peel St, South Brisbane

    If you can’t make it to the meeting but would like to be part of the campaign or if you would just like more information, please get in contact –

    Phone: 0413 783 853 (Abdalla), 0401 586 923 (Hamish).
    Email: kathynew1@hotmail.com

  8. Brisbane protests against Israel’s war crimes.

    Release date: Friday 23rd January 2009

    For the fourth week in row supporters of Palestinian freedom, human rights and social justice will rally at 12 noon in Queens Park this Saturday 24th January.

    The rally will march to the office of Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in Waterfront Place, Eagle Street.

    Children from different cultures will carry paper doves and small coffins to the PM’s office symbolising the more than 300 children killed in Gaza.

    Justice for Palestine spokesperson Abdulla said, “While Kevin Rudd and other so called leaders around the world are relieved by the ceasefire the people of Gaza continue to die.”

    For three weeks Israel poured destruction on one of the world’s most densely populated areas and its 1.5 million inhabitants. Israel dropped white phosphorous, cluster bombs and used depleted uranium munitions on homes, schools, hospitals, mosques and U.N. warehouses storing food and medicine.

    “War crimes have been committed and international law is still being broken. For 18 months before the first bomb fell Israel has laid siege to Gaza, starving it of even the most basic needs. That siege is still in place stopping desperately needed food and medical supplies from getting to the people,” said Abdulla.

    “If a group of people trapped some animals for a year and a half with hardly any food, then violently killed and injured many of them and then kept them trapped and refused to let anyone help those animals, there would be furious outrage especially if the government sat back and did nothing.

    Israel does this to 1.5 million people, human beings like you and me with jobs and debts and kids at school and our government does nothing,” Abdulla said.

    Israel must be brought to account for the war crimes it has committed and the human rights abuses it inflicts daily on Palestinian people. Pressure must be brought to bear on the Australian government to end its support for Israel.

    “Committing genocide is not an act of self defence. A country that commits acts of genocide does not deserve Australia’s support, it does not deserve the support of the international community,” said Abdulla.

    “That is why we are going keep the pressure on Rudd to end this support and why a growing number of people around the world who believe in justice and basic human rights are pressuring their governments to isolate the racist and criminal government of Israel.”

    Authorised by Justice for Palestine (Brisbane)

    For more information contact Abdalla on 0413 783 853.

  9. I refer to an article by Ahdaf Soueif in Egypt called “The Palestinians say: ‘This is a war of extermination‘” in the The Guardian on 17 January 2009. The article asks the question “Will Israel create an exodus of Palestinians from Gaza into Egypt under the guise of humanitarian action”?

    What light does the article shed on the struggle of the Palestinian people or the reasons that Israel has made its bloody assault on Gaza?

    We read the news that Israel is withdrawing its troops from Gaza after their bloody assault over the past three weeks.

    It seems unlikely that Egypt would willingly accept a Palestinian exodus from Gaza when they have so much strife from their own poor?

    As the article points out Hosni Mubarak rebuilt the wall along the Gaza/Egyptian border at Rafah when 700,000 Gazans broke through in 2007.

    Now in 2009 after the destruction of Gaza, Egypt is reported to have organised with other Arab states $3billion worth of aid to Gaza [The Australian 21 Jan 2009]. It goes without saying that little of this aid is likely to get to those most in need. The various Arab regimes of Jordan, Egypt, Kuwait, Emirates and Saudi Arabia have already proven how corrupt and careless they are to the plight of the Palestinian people. They treat their own people with equal distain.

    Many of the Palestinians in Gaza do not come from there but are already refugees from their own land which has been settled by Israel. Whatever the term ‘ethnic cleansing’ means it has already been achieved by the state of Israel. Gaza is a humanitarian disaster. The Palestinians have no ‘right of return’.

    The military capability of Hamas seems to be yet another invention of Israel. Hamas could not have calculated on the ferocity of the attack made by Israel against the people of Gaza. Perhaps they thought Egypt would be forced to open the gates at Rafah to allow an escape from the carnage. Israel aircraft, artillery, tanks and soldiers have done what they liked in the last three weeks — killing men, women and children. This has been in full view of the West. Aljazeera has broadcast the savagery of the assault daily through satellite TV and the internet.

    If Hamas did not exist, Israel would have to invent it; in fact, Israel did sponsor Hamas originally as a replacement for Fatah. They have now used Hamas to justify to gullible and apathetic people in the west the war crimes they have committed in the past three weeks.

    Like Hamas, the spectre of the PLO terror machine was an invention of the Israel/US alliance.

    And with Arafat gone, and Hamas in retreat, no doubt Arab oil money and Obama will present the moderate Palestinian Authority leadership as an alternative to Hamas; in much the same way Hamas was originally presented as an alternative to Fatah in Gaza by Israel.

    No matter who the US administration deals with, they will have little credibility with the Palestinian people. Will this attack on Gaza be the final ruin of the Palestinian Authority — how can Makmoud Abbas make deals with any US administration after all that has happened in Gaza and the West Bank? Even if the Palestinian authority were to gain some respect in the eyes of the people, wouldn’t they make the same mistakes (of corruption and betrayal) they made last time which led to Hamas winning elections in Gaza in 2006?

    And on the other side, if there was not an election in Israel in February 2009 would the assault on Gaza have been so well prepared for and executed in the past three weeks?

    Even if there was a strong peace movement in Israel, wouldn’t the contenders for leadership in Israel still have tried to out-score each other in the eyes of the Israeli electorate on how tough and murderous they can be to the Palestinians? After all, the ‘war on terror’ won George Bush two terms in the US, why wouldn’t it do the same for Livny or Netanyahu in a brain-washed Israeli electorate. Similarly Howard won elections in Australia despite the huge protest rallies against the Iraq war. That is the nature of democracy, western style.

    Sadly, has a single Gazan child been saved as a result of all the peace demonstrations in West?
    The form of these protests has been little different from the demonstrations against the Iraq war. The two party democracies of the west largely ignored them. In Australia, Rudd and Gillard supported Israel. In Britain, Brown made some remarks about the humanitarian cost but continues to send arms and munitions like white phosphorus to Israel. There remains no political party of any size that opposes the US alliance in Britain or Australia. As the US continues to support Israel under the Obama administration, so too does Australia and Britian

    The resistance of the Palestinian people is the only thing that stands against continued cruel assaults by Israel aided and armed by the US.

    How humane and civilised!
    Stole my land
    burned my trees
    jailed my sun
    killed my children
    drank their blood
    then ground their bones at McDonald-Douglas
    and offered them back to me
    as a present
    in a flour-sack
    to torture me all my life
    This is America.
    Nasri Hajjaj


    Worker Solidarity, Arab Unity, Palestinian Victory!

    Ian Curr
    January 2009

    Reference: To see how Israel uses white phosphorous on people of Gaza go to http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=MKgph9PV3SA

  10. PEACEFUL RALLY AND MARCH: IT’S NOT OVER!

    Israeli troops out of Gaza! End the siege!

    FREE PALESTINE!

    After three weeks of devastating attacks, Gaza is in ruins. By Saturday January 17th, 1203 people had been slaughtered and 5200 people had been injured.

    While the Western governments mouth their “relief” at the ‘ceasefire’, the people of Gaza continue to suffer.

    The siege remains in force preventing urgently needed food and medical supplies from getting to the people.

    This war of occupation must be stopped. Israel must be bought to account for the war crimes it has committed.

    Pressure must be bought to bear on the Australian government to end its support for Israel. Add your voice to the international movement for Palestine – join the next peaceful rally and march in Brisbane:

    Sat Jan 24, 12 noon
    Queen’s Park (cnr Elizabeth & George Sts, City)

    Organised by Justice for Palestine

    Phone: 0413 783 853 (Abdalla) or 0401 586 923 (Hamish). Email: kathynew1@hotmail.com

  11. We in Just Peace would like to request your assistance in promoting this weeks events aimed to build public awareness and opposition to the assault on the Palestinian people in Gaza. As you will not doubt be aware the casualty list now includes over 1000 dead with over 200 children amongst that toll and over 4000 people seriously injured. The hospital scenes must be truly horrendous!

    *Speakout!*
    Friday Jan 23, 5-6:30pm
    Brisbane Square (George St end of Queen St mall)

    *Rally*
    Saturday Jan 24, 12 noon
    Queen’s Park, cnr Elizabeth & George Sts

    _*For more information*_:
    Phone: 0413 783 853 (Abdalla), 0401 586 923 (Hamish)

  12. PICTURES of dead Palestinian children have been posted on the windows of Kevin Rudd’s Brisbane electorate office as dozens protest the Gaza crisis.

    About 40 protesters, chanting “Free, free Palestine,” marched on the Prime Minister’s office in Morningside this afternoon to deliver almost 2000 letters and petitions demanding the Australian Government take a stronger stance against Israel’s actions in Gaza.

    See http://www.news.com.au/couriermail/story/0,23739,24916856-3102,00.html

  13. The Trotskyist Platform statement on Gaza is available from-

    http://220.233.218.73/gaza.pdf

    A subscription to the TROTSKYIST PLATFORM newsletter costs $AUS10 and is available from

    Trotskyist Platform: PO Box 1101, Fairfield NSW 1860, Australia.

  14. Pamela on advertising in the Murdoch Media says:

    This is a hard one. Contributing anything to Murdoch is anathema to most of us however we have to balance this with getting a message out to the uncommitted. The anti and uncommitted get their information from the mainstream media. They do not read our pamphlets and booklets.

    The situation in Gaza is so dire that I think that we have no choice but to use all avenues of media. If these ads place Gaza on the radar of the uncommitted – they are then more receptive to think and question the Israeli propaganda. The money will mean little to Murdoch. If these ads reach some hearts and minds we have succeeded.

    In the end it is a numbers game politically- our bodies on the line in the streets, reported in the media demonstrating to the Government that we care about this issue and want our government to support a Just Peace for Palestine. If the ads lead to more reportage of support for Palestine then this is another plus.

    No guarantees but what can we do but support the people in Palestine with every weapon we have.

  15. Justice for Palestine Brisbane to take their message for Gaza to Rudd, “No Australian support for Israel!”
    Release date: Wednesday 14th January 2009

    Supporters of Palestinian freedom, human rights and social justice will gather at

    Kevin Rudd’s Electorate Office
    at 630 Wynnum Road, Morningside

    on Thursday 15th January at 12:00 pm

    to present the Prime Minister with over one thousand letters and petitions calling for an end to Australian support for Israel
    including cutting all economic, diplomatic, cultural and political ties between the two countries.

    Justice of Palestine spokesperson, Abdalla asked,

    “Faced with the daily images of civilians slaughtered by Israel, of Israeli warplanes dropping white phosphorous and cluster bombs on one of the most densely populated areas of the world contravening the Geneva Convention and breaching many other international laws how can Kevin Rudd and his government not say one word against Israel? How can the Australian government support Israel, a country which for years has been compared to apartheid South Africa and even Nazi Germany because of the way the Israeli government treats Palestinians they occupy by force everyday?”


    A representative for Kevin Rudd will be invited to receive the letters and petitions which will be delivered by children on behalf of the more than 200 children that have already been killed and the hundreds of thousands more still at risk in Gaza.


    “We will keep pressure on the government to end their support for Israel, pressure corporations that do business with Israel and raise public awareness of the systematic atrocities Israel has committed against Palestinians for the whole 60 years of Israel’s existence. We will not be silent.” Abdalla said.

    As Israel has intensified its slaughter Justice for Palestine has intensified its commitment to be a voice for the victims of Gaza on the streets of Brisbane.

    This commitment includes speak outs for the people of Gaza at 5:00pm on Friday 16th and Friday 23rd January in Brisbane Square as well as more rallies in Queens Park at 12 noon this Saturday 17th and the following Saturday 24th January.

    Authorised by Justice for Palestine (Brisbane)

  16. Stop the war on Palestine! Israeli troops out of Gaza!
    End the massacre! Free Palestine!

    Rally & March Saturday January 17, 12 noon
    Queen’s Park (cnr Elizabeth & George Sts)

    Organised by Justice for Palestine
    Phone: 0413 783 853 (Abdalla), 0401 586 923 (Hamish). Email: kathynew1@hotmail.com

    Since the beginning of the Israeli bombing of Gaza on 27 December followed by the ground invasion on 3 January, over 900 Palestinian people have been slaughtered – including at least 230 children. Over 4100 Palestinian people have been injured. On 6 January Israel bombed a UN school, which it knew was being used as a shelter for displaced civilian families. The attack killed at least 46 people and wounded 55 others.

    A Norwegian doctor working in Gaza, told the media on 5 January that Israel is deliberately attacking Palestinian civilians. He told Sky News:


    “Just a little bit more than an hour ago, the Israelis bombed the central food market in Gaza City and we had a mass influx of about 50 injured and between 10 and 15 killed. At the same time they bombed an apartment house with children playing on the roof and we had a lot of children also. This is really like from Dante’s Inferno. It’s like hell here now and it’s been bombing all night.”

    Medics have also reported that Israel is using white phosphorous shells – a banned substance which sends a shower of burning material to the ground, where it causes painful chemical burns if it lands on the skin.

    The attack on Gaza’s 1.5 million civilian population come on top of the Israeli imposed siege designed to strangle the life out of the Palestinian people by denying them adequate fuel, food, medical supplies and power.

    The people of Gaza are standing steadfast in the face of these atrocities and all across the world people are raising their voices in solidarity.

    On 10 January over 2000 people joined in a peaceful protest in Brisbane to call for an end to the massacre and to call for the Australian government to take a stand against Israel’s atrocities. This Saturday a further rally will be held in Queen’s Park.

    Now is the time to add your voice to this growing international movement for justice. Help spread the word about the rally. Stop the massacre! End the siege now! Free Palestine!

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