Daily Archives: September 27, 2010

Building Solidarity, Combating Occupation and Apartheid

Building Solidarity, Combating Occupation and Apartheid

National Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions conference

Melbourne, 29 – 31 October 2010

– activism in support of Palestine

Dear friends and supporters,

We are very pleased to announce the participation of American Jewish activist and author, Anna Baltzer in the upcoming Australian national Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Conference.

Anna is a Jewish-American Columbia graduate and Fulbright Scholar, who has worked as a volunteer with the International Women’s Peace Service in the Occupied West Bank, documenting human rights abuses and supporting Palestinian-led nonviolent resistance to the Occupation.   Anna is the author of the book Witness in Palestine and speaks widely in the USA and internationally on the Palestinian struggle for human rights and self-determination.  Anna is being brought to Australia as part of a national speaking tour organised by Australians for Palestine and will speak at the Australian national BDS conference on Saturday.

Anna is one of the many fantastic activists and speakers who will be participating in the conference. She will be joining our very special guest speaker, Rafeef Ziadah from Canada, who is a member of the steering committee of the Palestinian Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel and who will be speaking on behalf of the Palestinian BDS National Committee. Other speakers include, Samah Sabawi, Yousef al Reemawi, Ofer Neiman, Kevin Bracken, Alex Whisson Kim Sattler, Ginny Adams and Ken Davis. For full details of the speakers see attached list.

CONFERENCE LAUNCH

As outlined in our previous updates, the conference launch will take place on Friday 29th October at the State Library of Victoria Theatrette. Speakers include: Rafeef Ziadah, Ofer Neiman, Yousef al Reemawi and Kim Sattler.

CONCERT FOR PALESTINE – conference concert

On Saturday night, we have a fantastic musical and artistic line up with the Concert for Palestine. Performers include: Fear of a Brown Planet, Rafeef Ziadah, The Conch, the Phil Monsour Band and the Brothahood. Tickets are $25/$20 with proceeds going to the BDS conference organising costs/BDS campaign. Middle East food will also be available on the night!

PRE-REGISTRATION

Pre-registration and pre-payment for the conference is encouraged. You can email us your completed registration form or email us for a registration form at ausbds@gmail.com You can electronically transfer your payment to the account below. Please tag deposit with your initials and “BDS”.

PALESTINE SOLIDARITY CAMPAIGN

BSB: 063 262 Account number: 1052 9148

CONFERENCE ORGANISATION DONATIONS:

As our friends and supporters know, organising a conference takes money and time. As a result, we are appealing to friends and supporters to consider making also donation towards conference organisation costs. Whether it is a big or small amount, it all makes a difference.

Please consider if you can donate $10 or $20 or $50 or more to the organising of Australia’s first national BDS conference. Donations can be deposited in bank account listed above.

We are excited about the conference and the positive responses we have received regarding the initiative and we look forward to seeing you all in October.

For more information on our updated conference agenda and speakers, please visit our conference blog at: http://australianbdscampaign.wordpress.com/

In solidarity,

The Conference organising committee.

SPEAKERS AND UPDATED CONFERENCE AGENDA

Building Solidarity, Combating Occupation and Apartheid

National Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions conference

Melbourne, 29 – 31 October 2010

– activism in support of Palestine –

Endorsed by the Palestinian BDS National Committee

Our confirmed speakers so far include:

Rafeef Ziadah

Rafeef is a Palestinian activist, unionist and spoken word artist. She is a member of the steering committee of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) Rafeef is also a founding member of the Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid (CAIA) promoting the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestement and Sanctions (BDS) campaign in Canada and an organizer of the international Israeli Apartheid Week. Rafeef is a member of the Canadian Union of Public Employees and was a member of the CUPE’s international solidarity committee for 3 years

Anna Baltzer

Anna is a Jewish-American Columbia graduate and Fulbright, who has worked as a volunteer with the International Women’s Peace Service in the Occupied West Bank, documenting human rights abuses and supporting Palestinian-led nonviolent resistance to the Occupation. Anna is the author of the book Witness in Palestine and speaks widely in the USA and internationally on the Palestinian struggle for human rights and self-determination. Anna is being brought to Australia as part of a national speaking tour organised by Australians for Palestine and will speak at the Australian national BDS conference on Saturday.

Samah Sabawi

Samah is an Australian-Palestinian writer and social justice activist. She is co-author of Journey to Peace in Palestine and a former executive director of the National Council on Canada Arab Relations.

Ofer Neiman

Ofer Neiman is a co-editor of the Occupation Magazine, and one of the activists in the Israeli support group for the BDS campaign, “BOYCOTT! Supporting the Palestinian BDS call from within”. He works as an editor and a translator. He believes that Israeli peace and anti-occupation groups will not be able to change reality from within, without support from the outside. Ofer will join the conference launch via internet/video hook up from Jerusalem.

Kevin Bracken

Kevin is a long-time unionist and supporter of the Palestinian struggle for self-determination, as well as other social justice issues. Kevin is currently the Secretary of the Victorian branch of the Maritime Union of Australia and the President of the Victorian Trades Hall Council.

Yousef Alreemawi

Yousef is a Palestinian academic and advocate for Palestinian and refugee rights. Yousef also presents Palestine Remembered, Australia’s only English language program on Palestine, on Radio 3CR. He is also the founder of ASPIRE – the Australian Society for Palestinian Iraqi Refugees Emergency – an humanitarian project which seeks to resettle in Australia, Palestinian-Iraqi refugees living in refugee camps on the Iraq/Syrian border.

Alex Whisson

Alex is a long time Palestine solidarity activist. He is the former convenor of Friends of Palestine in Western Australia and is currently the Public Advocate for Australians for Palestine in Melbourne

Kim Sattler

Kim is a long-time unionist, who was active in the South African anti-apartheid campaign. Kim is currently the Secretary of Unions ACT in Canberra. Kim has recently returned from Palestine, where she participated in the Union Aid Abroad APHEDA Middle East Study Tour 2010

Ginny Adams

Ginny is an organiser with the Health and Community Sector Union. Ginny has been active in the Palestinian and refugee rights campaigns for more than 10 years. She recently returned from Palestine, where she participated in the Union Aid Abroad APHEDA Middle East Study Tour 2010

Ken Davis

Ken is a long-time unionist and social justice campaigner. He is a member of the Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine in Sydney.

UPDATED CONFERENCE AGENDA
– As of 22 Sept 2010

Conference Registration: All weekend $30/22 (incl: Conference launch meeting) Daily $15/$10 Conference Launch meeting $5

Conference registration: email ausbds@gmail.com Telephone: 0439454 375

FRIDAY – 29th October
TIME PUBLIC MEETING – LAUNCH SPEAKERS
7pm – 9pm The international Boycott campaign and the struggle for a Free Palestine

VENUE: STATE LIBRARY OF VICTORIA, cnr of La Trobe and Swanston St, Melbourne City

Kim Sattler (Secretary, Unions ACT)

Rafeef Ziadah (Palestinian BNC)

Yousef Al Reemawi (Palestinian academic)

Ofer Neiman (BOYCOTT! Supporting the Palestinian BDS call from Within Israel)

SATURDAY – 30th October
TIME SESSION SPEAKERS
8.45 – 9.15am R Registration VENUE: MARITIME UNION of AUSTRALIAN HALL – 54 Ireland St, West Melb.
9.15am Welcome/Opening Conference Organising Committee
9.30am – 10.45am Popular struggle: BDS and a short history of civil disobedience and struggle in Palestine and internationally Alex Whisson – Australians for Palestine

Anna Baltzer – author, Witness in Palestine

10.45-11.15am Break
11.15am – 12.45pm Struggle and Solidarity: Lessons from Palestine Solidarity work internationally Samah Sabawi – Palestinian writer/former Executive Director of National Council on Canada Arab Relations

Rafeef Ziadah – Palestinian BNC

Kevin Bracken, Secretary, MUA (Vic)

12.45pm-1.30pm Lunch
1.30pm – 2.30pm National Targets Proposals Conference organising committee
2.30pm – 4pm Discussion of proposed National Targets Break into sectoral groups – Unions Campus/Faith based/ Community/Culture
4pm– 4.30pm Break
4.30pm – 5.45pm Solidarity in Action workshops Australian Flotilla project – Gaza Defence Committee

Palestinian-Iraqi refugees and re-settlement in Australia – ASPIRE

Lessons from Students for Palestine

Volunteering in Palestine – International Women’s Peace Service

6.30pm – midnight CONCERT FOR PALESTINE AND DINNER Featuring: Fear of a Brown Planet, The Brothahood, The Conch, Phil Monsour Band and Rafeef Ziadah $25/$20
SUNDAY 31st OCTOBER
TIME SESSION SPEAKERS
9am – 9.30pm Registration and welcome
9.30pm – 10.45am Apartheid: South Africa, Israel and international law. Ken Davis – Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine

Ginny Adams – union organiser

10.45am- 11.15am Break
11.15am-12.15pm Palestine Q & A Q & A with Rafeef Ziadah and others
12.15pm 1pm lunch
1pm – 2.30pm Hasbara busting: Countering Israel’s propaganda war and attempts to delegitimise BDS. Samah Sawbawi – Palestinian writer/former Executive Director of National Council on Canada Arab Relations

Kim Bullimore – International Women’s Peace Service-Palestine

2.30pm –3pm Break
3 pm – 4.45pm Decision on National BDS target/campaign
4.45pm – 5pm Closing of conference

Building Solidarity, Combating Occupation and Apartheid

National Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions conference

Melbourne, 29 – 31 October 2010

– activism in support of Palestine –

Endorsed by the Palestinian BDS National Committee

CONFERENCE REGISTRATION

Please email completed registration form to: ausbds@gmail.com

NAME     ___________________________________________________________________

PHONE ___________________________________________________________

EMAIL    ___________________________________________________________________

PLEASE TICKET RELEVANT REGISTRATION LEVEL

( ) ALL WEEKEND $30 workers/$22 concession (includes public meeting)

OR

( ) CONFERENCE LAUNCH – FRIDAY $5

( ) SATURDAY $15 workers/$10 concession

( ) SUNDAY $15 workers/$10 concession

***

( ) CONCERT FOR PALESTINE $25/$20

Featuring: Fear of a Brown Planet, The Brothahood, The Conch, Phil Monsour Band and Rafeef Ziadah (Middle Eastern food and drinks available)

PRE-PAYMENT:

Pre-Payment of conference registration is encouraged. You can electronically transfer your payment to:

BSB: 063 262 Account number: 1052 9148 Please tag deposit with “BDS” and your name or initials.

CONFERENCE ORGANISATION DONATIONS:

As our friends and supporters know, organising a conference takes money and time. As a result, we are appealing to friends and supporters to consider making a donation towards conference organisation costs. Whether it is a big or small amount, it all makes a difference. Please consider if you can donate $10 or $20 or $50 or more to the organising of Australia’s first national BDS conference. Donations can be deposited in bank account listed above.

War and Peace: new text in reading group

“I don’t want the peace

that passeth understanding

But rather the understanding

that bringeth peace”

— Hellen Keller

Hi to all on a number of lists

Those of you who are in Brisbane or in transport reach of it may be interested in attending the reading of the next book being read by the group that meets at Kings College within the University of Queensland each Thursday at 1pm. The book is Tolstoys War and Peace, in English translation. The translation being used by quite a number of the existing members of the group is the new Vintage Classics edition translated by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky, but any existing translation would do.

The method used in the group is to read every word aloud, taking turns around the group, pausing every couple of pages to discuss any problems or points of interest. It is not obligatory to read. One can simply listen if one wishes not to read. We have used this method to read major works by James Joyce and Marcel Proust and people have found that it assisted them to overcome difficulties that baulked them when reading the works alone.

You would be welcome to join this group, which is very friendly, at any time, either immediately this week or at a further stage of the reading. Parking is made available for group members by the College, which also offers us afternoon tea.

Time and place: Thursday,1pm to 3pm, 1st floor Kings College, Upland Rd, St Lucia.

Dan O’Neill

Labor 4A Just Palestine weekly report beginning 20 September including FSU QLD motion

Dear all

Also attached Finance Sector Union (Queensland) motion.

Regards

David Forde

Labor 4A Just Palestine

[Editors Note: See also A Shift in Palestine?]

Weekly update for week beginning 20/09/10

This week’s articles

· UN Protection of Civilians (2) Weekly Report 15- 21 September

· BBC – Israeli raid on Gaza aid flotilla broke law – UN probe

· Maan – Israel to cut off East Jerusalem villages

· Guardian – Israel’s unreasonable demand

· Part 2 : “Settlers” Tour of Hate Through Occupied Hebron

· AFP / Sonja Karkar – Sabra and Shatila On massacres, atrocities and holocausts

· LA Times – UN: Israel’s absence during Obama speech draws attention

· Baltimore Chronicel – Israel Denies Gazans Access to Their Own Land and Waters

· Ynetnews – Israel rejects offer to join UN atomic agency

· All the latest from the Palestinian News agency Ma’an

UN Protection of Civilians Weekly Report | 15 September – 21 September

Two Palestinians killed and 16 others injured throughout the oPt. In the West Bank, incidents in the context of Israeli violence continue. Demolitions in Area C and East Jerusalem resumed. Substandard schools in Area C. A two-day general closure imposed on the West Bank. In Gaza, the impact of the recently-applied easings remains limited. Thousands of students affected by a shortage of classrooms. Electricity cuts throughout Gaza remain in place: 4-6 hours per day. To read the report click on: Protection of Civilians Weekly Report

BBC – Israeli raid on Gaza aid flotilla broke law – UN probe

Israel’s military broke international laws during a raid on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla, a UN Human Rights Council investigation says. Its report said the action by commandos, which left nine dead, was “disproportionate” and “betrayed an unacceptable level of brutality”. To read the article and a link to the full report click on: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-11393836

Maan – Israel to cut off East Jerusalem villages

Israel began construction on Wednesday to separate Palestinian neighborhoods in occupied East Jerusalem from the rest of the city, a local committee leader said. To read the article click on: http://www.maannews.net/eng/ViewDetails.aspx?ID=316082

Guardian – Israel’s unreasonable demand

“The Palestinians must recognise Israel as a Jewish state.” This is the mantra of the Israeli prime minister. But is such recognition valid, necessary, or even appropriate? In 1993 Israel’s prime minister, Yitzhak Rabin, called on the leader of the PLO, Yasser Arafat, to recognise Israel as a prerequisite for signing the Oslo agreement. Arafat delivered this recognition in an open letter, which Rabin accepted as sufficient . To read the article click on: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/sep/22/israel-jewish-state-palestin…

Part 2 : “Settlers” Tour of Hate Through Occupied Hebron

Following from part 1 on how illegal Jewish settlers backed by the Israeli military parade through the Palestinian village of Hebron lining up which Palestinian homes they will occupy. To watch click on:

AFP / Sonja Karkar – Sabra and Shatila On massacres, atrocities and holocausts

It happened twenty-eight years ago – 16 September 1982. A massacre (700 – 3,500) so awful that people who know about it cannot forget it. The photos are gruesome reminders – charred, decapitated, indecently violated corpses, the smell of rotting flesh, still as foul to those who remember it as when they were recoiling from it all those years ago. To read the article click on: http://australiansforpalestine.com/29820#more-29820

LA Times – UNITED NATIONS: Israel’s absence during Obama speech draws attention

President Obama’s call Thursday in an address before the U.N. General Assembly for Israel to extend its West Bank construction moratorium got little reaction from the Israeli delegation. That’s because they weren’t there. To read the article click on: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/babylonbeyond/2010/09/president-obamas-call-thur…

Baltimore Chronicel – Israel Denies Gazans Access to Their Own Land and Waters

Throughout 43 years of occupation, Israel has waged war on Palestinians’ human rights and civil liberties, a new UN report providing more evidence that keeps mounting exponentially, adding clarity about an out-of-control rogue state operating lawlessly. To read the article click on: http://www.baltimorechronicle.com/2010/091910Lendman.shtml

Ynetnews – Israel rejects offer to join UN atomic agency

In response to Arab initiative, Israel’s Atomic Energy Commission chief says Jewish state only country to be singled out, asked to take decision against its national interests To read the article click on: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3958321,00.html

Palestinian News agency Ma’an

For all the latest from Ma’an News click on:http://www.maannews.net/eng/Default.aspx

FSU Queensland Branch motion September 2010.pdf

PEOPLE’S ASSEMBLY: Call for DRAW in POLITICAL FOOTBALL GAME