FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Protesting Israel’s Apartheid Wall

by TOUFIC HADDAD

I’m writing from day 5 of the solidarity tent in Ar Ram where at least 17 people have joined in on the hunger strike protesting Israel’s apartheid wall. Despite the heat wave (36 centigrade) there is a good atmosphere in the tent, and the hunger strikers – though visibly more weary are in high spirits. Today there were questions regarding Dr. Azmi Bishara’s health. Bishara was the first to go on hunger strike, but he is also a kidney transplant receiver (via his brother). Since there haven’t been so many kidney transplant receivers who have gone on hunger strike, his doctors are especially worried. Despite this, he is bravely pressing on and even comes off as one of the stronger hunger strikers never refusing interviews and always active on the tent grounds.

Throughout the day, delegations of people in solidarity come to visit and get information, while journalist are busy hounding the hunger strikers looking for an interview. The tent where the strike is taking place is equipped with a couple of computers (one with a DSL line), information packets on the Wall, a couple of fans, chairs and tables, mattresses (where the strikers sleep), a satellite-linked television and two water coolers where everyone including the hunger strikers drink from. The tents’ walls are decorated with maps, Palestinian flags, posters and banners with slogans on them that read: “Resisting the wall: a duty of all people of conscience”, “Israel’s wall = Apartheid – Wrong in South Africa, wrong in Palestine” and “Israel’s wall (does not equal) security; Israel’s wall = land theft, racial discrimination and Palestinian dispossession”. At night, when the temperature has cooled off and people have gotten off work, the tent becomes a collecting ground for people in the neighborhood as well as people from farther off who come to share their solidarity, and where events take place. Yesterday night, a local children’s summer camp came around and did a performance, a few people read their poetry and organizers read solidarity greetings aloud. As I write these words, a delegation from Nazareth has come and different representatives from popular grassroots committees are extending their greetings. This is significant because there is a sense of inclusiveness about the whole event, with a recognition on both sides of the Green line that the wall affects all Palestinians and must be resisted likewise.

Less than 50 yards from the tent, groundwork on the wall is taking place. Beneath uzi- totting armed guards with bullet proof-vests on (security contractors, not even soldiers), construction equipment is busy at work digging trenches, pouring concrete and trying to get a good ‘level’ base upon which the leggo-like 8 meter high concrete blocks will eventually stand. It is also about 300 meters from the second checkpoint that is the gateway into Jerusalem from the north. Once the wall is built, where the tent now stands (together with the entire neighborhood of ar Ram (about 40,000 people) will be in a sort of twilight zone with a wall on one side and caught between two checkpoints about a mile and a half apart.

I will try and write continuous updates regarding what goes on here in the tent and the state of the hunger strikers. In the mean time, I am taking this opportunity to make a loud and clear appeal to all those who read this to organize and mobilize all resources at their disposal to draw attention to the racist colonialist Israeli practices embodied in the wall and all that it stands for, in parallel with the courageous attempts to resist it on behalf of the Palestinian people. This hunger strike is not about a few individuals, but is about the historical dispossession of the Palestinian people in their and their attempt to resist Israel’s dispossessive and racist policies backed by the US government. We are at a crucial stage where we are calling upon the broadening of solidarity work both locally and internationally. To begin with, tomorrow (Thursday) is a general strike where all Palestinian shops will be closed in protest. We also hope to get more solidarity tents erected and more hunger strikers on board throughout the entire occupied territories, inside the green line and throughout the Arab world as well as internationally. We will update you of our progress. The aim is to have continuity in the struggle so that this issue (and all the Palestinian rights it so negatively effects) will not be lost or forgotten, but can lay the basis for a new movement against Israeli apartheid.

Mobilize in your community

Write letters to your newspapers and parliamentarians

Erect solidarity tents of your own where information can be distributed and those who wish to join in the hunger strike can do so.

You can send updates on your activism and your solidarity greetings to:

abishara@inter.net.il

More later. But everyone try to get the message out

 

 

More articles by:
Weekend Edition
February 23, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Richard D. Wolff
Capitalism as Obstacle to Equality and Democracy: the US Story
Paul Street
Where’s the Beef Stroganoff? Eight Sacrilegious Reflections on Russiagate
Jeffrey St. Clair
They Came, They Saw, They Tweeted
Andrew Levine
Their Meddlers and Ours
Charles Pierson
Nuclear Nonproliferation, American Style
Joseph Essertier
Why Japan’s Ultranationalists Hate the Olympic Truce
W. T. Whitney
US and Allies Look to Military Intervention in Venezuela
John Laforge
Maybe All Threats of Mass Destruction are “Mentally Deranged”
Matthew Stevenson
Why Vietnam Still Matters: an American Reckoning
David Rosen
For Some Reason, Being White Still Matters
Robert Fantina
Nikki Haley: the U.S. Embarrassment at the United Nations
Joshua Frank
Pearl Jam, Will You Help Stop Sen. Tester From Destroying Montana’s Public Lands?
Dana E. Abizaid
The Attack on Historical Perspective
Conn Hallinan
Immigration and the Italian Elections
George Ochenski
The Great Danger of Anthropocentricity
Pete Dolack
China Can’t Save Capitalism from Environmental Destruction
Joseph Natoli
Broken Lives
Manuel García, Jr.
Why Did Russia Vote For Trump?
Geoff Dutton
One Regime to Rule Them All
Torkil Lauesen – Gabriel Kuhn
Radical Theory and Academia: a Thorny Relationship
Wilfred Burchett
Vietnam Will Win: The Work of Persuasion
Joyce Nelson
Why Mueller’s Indictments Are Hugely Important
Thomas Klikauer
Umberto Eco and Germany’s New Fascism
George Burchett
La Folie Des Grandeurs
Howard Lisnoff
Minister of War
Eileen Appelbaum
Why Trump’s Plan Won’t Solve the Problems of America’s Crumbling Infrastructure
Ramzy Baroud
More Than a Fight over Couscous: Why the Palestinian Narrative Must Be Embraced
Jill Richardson
Mass Shootings Shouldn’t Be the Only Time We Talk About Mental Illness
Jessicah Pierre
Racism is Killing African American Mothers
Steve Horn
Wyoming Now Third State to Propose ALEC Bill Cracking Down on Pipeline Protests
David Griscom
When ‘Fake News’ is Good For Business
Barton Kunstler
Brainwashed Nation
Griffin Bird
I’m an Eagle Scout and I Don’t Want Pipelines in My Wilderness
Edward Curtin
The Coming Wars to End All Wars
Missy Comley Beattie
Message To New Activists
Jonah Raskin
Literary Hubbub in Sonoma: Novel about Mrs. Jack London Roils the Faithful
Laura Finley
After the Parkland Shooting … Teach Youth About Dating Violence
Binoy Kampmark
Frontiersman of the Internet: John Perry Barlow
Chelli Stanley
The Mirrors of Palestine
James McEnteer
How Brexit Won World War Two
Robert Koehler
The Cheapening of Human Life
Ralph Nader
Absorbing the Irresistible Consumer Reports Magazine
Ted Rall
Never Mind Millennial Apathy, Here’s Generation Z Inbox x
Cesar Chelala
A Word I Shouldn’t Use
Louis Proyect
Marx at the Movies
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail