And now its our time to speak, boycott, demand expulsions, act!
(This article was first published on Indymedia Ireland, Sunday 11 Jan 2009)
100 – 175,000 march in Barcelona against Gaza massacre and call for Israeli boycott. Due to the ongoing massacres being carried out in the Gaza strip at present, 700+ Palestinians killed, mostly women and children, the protest in the streets of Barcelona was attended between 100 and 175 thousand people, thats about 2 full Croke Parks. Activists, at some stage, mounted a construction scaffolding and attached a banner in Catalan which was a slight modification to the famous poem “First they came…” about the Nazis coming for, removing and disappearing all those they then opposed: the communists, the jews, the trade unionists, the Catholics, the intellectuals, the last of which was the poems author, Martin Niemöller (1892–1984), was part of. Yesterdays banner included “Now they are coming for the Palestinians”
Israeli state being likened to past horrific acts of the Nazis
Spain with its history of the civil war which was won with the full support of nazi power and weaponry, its later fascist dictatorship with raised arm salutes, its existing problems with neo nazis killing foreigners and left wing political activists, its ongoing fascist / nazi sybolism being graffitid on walls… with all this, Spain, and especially Barcelona knows only too well all that lyes behind the symbolism of nazism, their rotated swastika. An interesting thing from yesterdays demo was the number of flags, banners, stickers with the isreali flag without its Jewish star and instead that swastika, or else that star with the equal symbol and the swastika. Basically many here, both Spanish /Catalan and foreigner made, held and displayed such banners etc. Also last week, one of the popes cardinalls likened the present situation in Gaza to Nazi concentrations camps. This is not, as some try to make out, Jews bad, muslims good. It is a political statement against the, what might yet be deemed as, war crimes and state terror being orchestrated by the Jewish Zionist state of Israel, with the present support of George Bush and the present US regime, which yet again obstructs the UN from bringing a halt to the senseless killings. To emphasise that the Israeli state does now speak for or act for all Jews, this week 8 Canadian Jews occupied the Israeli embassy. Equally in Israeli itself, where both young men and women are drafted into the army and given orders to go out and kill, some brave people choose to not serve and to flee their state or do time in prison instead. These people, and more who feel like doing the same, should be supported. Also there is much protest from “Israeli” Jews and non-jews in Jewish cities, who are eually horrified by the actions of their state.
Regarding Urban warfare
After the atrocities of Guernica, which was commerated by the communist artist Picasso, his then city, Barcelona was used as the urban laboratory for HItlers “Blitzkreig”, the act of arial bombardment and spreading of terror on urban dwellers, of which today in Gaza we sadly still see happening. As to the reasons, Norman Finkelstein, pointed out on Fridays Democracy Now show that perhaps it is, amongst other things, to show the mite of isreal while it can prior to the US presedential changeover, with Obama saying he means change for the region, it is perhaps also a tool in the lead up to upcoming Israeli elections. Whatever the reasons, nearly 800 Palestinians have been killed directly from bombs and bullets, 1000’s are injured and who knows what the full fall out will be due to hunger, lack of medicines etc due to infrastructure breakdown, non entry of supplies… etc. This is a complete massacre and has to end.
He also pointed out who exacthly “threw the first stone”;
Well, the record is fairly clear. You can find it on the Israeli website, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website. Mr. Indyk is correct that Hamas had adhered to the ceasefire from June 17th until November 4th. On November 4th, here Mr. Indyk, I think, goes awry. The record is clear: Israel broke the ceasefire by going into the Gaza and killing six or seven Palestinian militants. At that point—and now I’m quoting the official Israeli website—Hamas retaliated or, in retaliation for the Israeli attack, then launched the missiles.
Meanwhile, former President Jimmy Carter has denounced the Israeli attack on the Gaza Strip. Writing in the Washington Post, Carter criticizes Israel for breaking the six-month ceasefire by launching its November 4th attack that killed seven Hamas militants. He also faults Israel for failing to uphold its commitment to ease the humanitarian blockade of Gaza.
How to stop the massacre
– To the streets
Taking to the streets, is the first step, and thankfully many have taken that step. For many it was their first “political” step. From that experience or built on prior feelings many are seeking more ways of helping bring a quick end to the killings.
From that an international boycott is growing, boycotting Israel and all those who support the state somehow through economic, sporting, and cultural / educational means. This tool was part of the success in the end to Apartheid in South Africa, about which Christy Moores rendition of the tune “Dunnes Stores” tells how all small actions play their part. The use of the word and mechanism of Boycott comes from our own troubled history in fighting for similar desires of peace and humility, which the Palestinians seek today, during the time our own population was being quartered (@8+ > 2+ million…) due to unfair imperialsist systems that had us starve, emigrate or be executed.
– Expulsion of Israeli embassadors
Venezuala was the first to expell their Israeli embassador.
In Ireland Fianna Fail TD Chris Andrews has made a similar call from which people are urging the IPSC to push for likewise.
Tony Benn has recomended the same in Britain.
Yesterday Jordan recalled their embassador from Israel
Im not sure where else the call has been made, but im sure its in many more places
First they came…
(Original Translation with highlighted modification inspired by Yesterdays Catalan show of support for Palestine)
When the Nazis came for the communists,
I remained silent;
I was not a communist.
When they locked up the social democrats,
I remained silent;
I was not a social democrat.
When they came for the trade unionists,
I did not speak out;
I was not a trade unionist.
When they came for the Jews,
I remained silent;
I was not a Jew.
When they came for me,
there was no one left to speak out.
Now they are coming for the Palestinians
and now its our time to speak, boycott, demand expulsions, act!
Countries which have begun diplomatic boycott of Israel
Countries which pressure is mounting for diplomatic boycott of Israel
Christy Moore – Dunnes Stores
Norman Finkelstein vs Martin Indyk over Gaza and the “Peace Process” 1/8/09 Democracy Now 1 of 4
‘Concentration camp’ remark threatens Pope’s visit to Israel
Jewish-Canadian Women Occupy Toronto Israeli Consulate
Barcelona as urban war lab
Saturday @ BCN = Metro Refugios + Post-it city + Goya + DRAN + Parc Ciutadella
REFUGI – quan el refugi és el subsòl
Yesterdays 100,000 + Demo @ BCN
Barcelona: Més de 100.000 manifestants en solidaritat amb Palestina i contra el sionisme (cat/cast)
Barcelona: Més de 100.000 manifestants en solidaritat amb Palestina i contra el sionisme (crònica i fotos)
Barcelona: Más de 175.000 personas se manifiestan en solidaridad con los palestinos de Gaza y contra el sionismo
How to stop the massacre
The word boycott entered the English language during the Irish “Land War” and is derived from the name of Captain Charles Boycott, the estate agent of an absentee landlord, the Earl Erne, in County Mayo, Ireland, who was subject to social ostracism organized by the Irish Land League in 1880.
Online version of Catalan free paper with its article about boycotting Israel which was widely distributed yesterday. Its in Catalan, if you have spanish you should be able to get most of the gist…
from the Catalan Palestine support network, check out page 5 for photo from Galway under international solidarity
Government TD calls for Expulsion of Israeli Ambassador : IPSC should do same.