Occupation End Notes | June 16, 2005
Volume 2 Number 17


In this issue...



1. US Campaign Update: Upper Midwest Regional Conference – Madison, WI; SAVE THE DATE!; 4th Annual National Organizers’ Conference – Atlanta, GA; Win a FREE Trip on a Global Exchange Palestine/Israel Reality Tour; Support the US Campaign for Father’s Day with Heartof.com


2. Special Feature on Silwan Demolitions

3. Resources & Education: New England United Methodists pass divestment resolution; Massachusetts Green-Rainbow Party passes divestment resolution; July 9 Day of Global Action Against the Wall; CAT protest in NYC; False Alarm – Body Shop in Israeli settlement; Israel’s Ambassador to the UN voted V.P. of General Assembly; New Film – Paradise Behind Bars; Checkpoint Watch Annual Report


4. Events: Conference: Wheels of Justice Tour; Stop the Wall Tour; Bereaved Families Speaking Tour

5. Opportunities to Visit Israel and Palestine: ISM Freedom Summer; Middle East Children’s Alliance Delegation; Palestine Summer Camp;  Bethlehem University Educators’ Conference; Holy Land Trust Summer Activist Camp; Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions Summer Work Camp; F.O.R. Interfaith Peacebuilders; Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions Fall Study Tour


NOTICE:

We are in the process of upgrading our website today, which may result in problems with some links to our website.If you experience difficulty accessing our web site, please check back in a few hours. We apologize for the inconvenience.



1. US CAMPAIGN UPDATE



REGISTER TODAY!The US Campaign, in cooperation with the Madison-Rafah Sister City Project, will be conducting an Upper Midwest Regional Organizers’ Conference in Madison, WI from June 24-26.  Visit the draft agenda for more details and to register online.Space is filling up quickly, so register today!!!



SAVE THE DATE!  The US Campaign’s 4th National Organizers’ Conference will take place on the weekend of July 29- August 1, 2005 in Atlanta, GA.  The National Organizers’ Conference is an opportunity for activists from around the United States to network, strategize, and share skills.  It is also the time when our membership elects a new steering committee and votes to set the agenda for the upcoming year.  Further details will be forthcoming.

     From now until July 31, for each $100 that you donate to the US Campaign, you will be entered once in a raffle to win a FREE trip (valued at $1,750) on a Global Exchange Palestine/Israel Reality Tour (this offer does not include airfare, which is the responsibility of the winner).  Donate $500, for example, and you will be entered 5 times in the raffle.For every donation of $50 or more, you will also be entered once in a raffle to win a personalized autographed book from such famous authors as Naseer Aruri, Phyllis Bennis, and Rashid Khalidi.For raffle details and to make an online contribution click here

Father’s Day is Sunday, June 19.Did you know that if you’re purchasing an on-line gift for dad, you can benefit the US Campaign at the same time?We’ve teamed up with Heartof.com, an on-line mall with links to hundreds of stores.For every purchase you make that originates from their website, you can designate the US Campaign to receive a percentage of your purchase!Learn more about how to benefit the US Campaign while shopping on-line by clicking here




2.  SPECIAL FEATURE ON SILWAN DEMOLITIONS

The municipality of Jerusalem recently released its plans to demolish 88 homes in the al-Bustan neighborhood of Silwan, an East Jerusalem village just outside of the OldCity.Such a demolition will displace approximately 1,000 Palestinian residents of Silwan, and will be one of the largest demolition projects since 1967.More than forty of the homes slated to be destroyed have already been issued demolition orders.We encourage you to use the resources below to educate your community about the impact that this act will have on the Palestinian residents of Silwan.

Analysis and Background Information

The Process of Transfer Continues

Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions

By Meir Margalit

Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions 

Demolition Threat to Palestinian Homes

By Donald Macintyre

MIFTAH 

Action and Resistance

Jewish Voice for Peace Action Alert

Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions Action Alert

Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions takes diplomats and journalists on a tour of Silwan

Articles

Dispute arises over plans to raze homes

Joel Greenberg

Chicago Tribune 

Palestinian neighborhood fears demolitions

Joshua Brilliant

United Press International

Palestinians facing eviction

Erik N. Nelson

Newsday.com

Political destruction

Haaretz Editorial

Haaretz

Jerusalem orders Palestinian homes to be razed

Chris McGreal

The Guardian



3. EDUCATION & RESOURCES

* The New England Conference of the United Methodist Church has passed a resolution to create a committee to research companies that support the Israeli occupation, and for New England churches to examine their own corporate investments against the list of companies.  Click here for the the full text of the resolution.

*On June 5, 2005, at its annual Convention, the Green-Rainbow Party of Massachusetts called for the end of all US military and economic aid to Israel and for support for “divestment initiatives that seek to withdraw institutional investments from Israel state bonds and corporations that do business with Israel; academic boycotts of Israeli academics and academic institutions.”Click here for the full text of this statement and more information about the Green-Rainbow Party of Massachusetts. 

* July 9, 2005 is the one-year anniversary of the International Court of Justice’s advisory opinion on the Wall.The Stop the Wall Campaign is calling for global action and education on this important anniversary.Stop the Wall will also release its new report Do-It-Yourself Apartheid: Israel, The World Bank, and the “development” of Palestinian ghettos which will be available online at Stop the Wall.  The US Campaign encourages people in the United States to heed this call from Palestine for action and to plan events for July 9.

* On June 15, 2005 activists gathered at New York’s Waldorf-Astoria Hotel where an executive from Caterpillar was scheduled to appear on a panel on social responsibility and sustainability. The activists protested Caterpillar’s role in gross human rights violations against Palestinians by selling bulldozers to the Israeli Army.The action was endorsed by the International Solidarity Movement - NYC, NYU Students for Justice in Palestine, Queer Resistance for Palestine, Jewish Voice for Peace, the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, Women of a Certain Age, Jews Against the Occupation NYC, and the BootCAT Campaign.Read coverage of the event on Electronic Intifada

*This week many US-based and Israeli organizations circulated emergency action alerts about the Body Shop opening a store in Pisgat Ze’ev, a settlement built on Palestinian land just outside of Jerusalem.The Body Shop is known to be a socially-conscious company that has awarded Palestinian rights groups for their work, so to learn of plans to open a store in a settlement was certainly shocking.However, Gush Shalom, an Israeli peace organization that initiated the action alert, released information on Wednesday, June 15, 2005 that Body Shop Israel is not connected with the international chain; the name was pirated by the Israeli company Fischer Pharmaceuticals.According to Gush Shalom “the international Body Shop network, centered in the UK, clearly bears no responsibility for the shop about to open in Pisgat Ze'ev and deserves our apology.”

*On June 13, 2005 Mr. Dan Gillerman, Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations, was elected as one of the regional Vice-Presidents of the General Assembly.Ambassador Gillerman is the first Israeli representative to hold the position since Israel’s former Ambassador to the UN, Abba Eban, served as Vice-President 53 years ago.

*Paradise Behind Bars is a feature-length documentary film now in production by Ted Saad Entertainment.   The film offers a graphic portrayal of the occupation's impact on generations of a Bethlehem family and highlights efforts of Israelis and Palestinians working for peace.A 13-min excerpt is available on http://www.tedsaad.com or DVD by request for exposure and fundraising.   Eighty hours have been filmed, and the editing process has begun.For more information, contact: Tedsaad@aol.com


*Checkpoint Watch, an Israeli-based women’s organization that monitors soldiers and police officers at Israeli checkpoints and works to ensure the human and civil rights of Palestinian crossing checkpoints, has just released its annual report A Counterview: Checkpoints 2004.  Clickhere to view and download the 112 page document 




4.  EVENTS

Ongoing: Wheels of Justice Tour
Members of Voices in the Wilderness, the Palestine Right to Return Coalition, the Middle East Children's Alliance, and affiliates of the International Solidarity Movement take to the road in a colorfully decorated full-size school bus for nonviolent education and action against war and occupation in Iraq and Palestine and for justice and universal human rights.  For more information and an itinerary visit Wheels of Justice


Ongoing: Stop the Wall Tour
The Stop the Wall Campaign and Tour traveled to 45 cities last summer and fall.  The Wall trailer and full scale models, together with films, Power Point presentations and lots of handouts and maps had a remarkable impact on those who saw them.  Click here to view the new spring tour schedule



5. OPPORTUNITIES TO VISIT ISRAEL AND PALESTINE

June 25 - August 21: International Solidarity Movement Freedom Summer

Freedom Summer Palestine 2005 is a Palestinian nonviolent campaign against Israeli occupation. This summer, with the participation of international supporters, Palestinians will continue their long-standing mobilization for nonviolent direct action against the Israeli occupation and draw the world's attention to what is really happening in the OccupiedPalestinianTerritories.Two-day training sessions will be conducted by ISM trainers every Sunday and Monday of Freedom Summer in Ramallah.On completion of training, groups of internationals will be dispatched to various regions to join localnonviolent resistance activities.For more information write: info@palsolidarity.org

July 1-14: Middle East Children’s Alliance Delegation
For 17 years, MECA has taken small groups of North Americans to the West Bank, Gaza and Israel to witness life under occupation and meet people who are working for justice. Long time friends and project partners of MECA are our local guides and our hosts are a cross section of the people living through the occupation and within the specter of Israel's policies.  For more information and to register call 510-548-0542.

July 2-30: Palestine Summer Camp
The National Committee for Summer Camps in the USA  and The National Committee for Summer Camps in Palestine invite Palestinian Americans, of ages between 6-22 years old, to participate in the first annual Palestine Summer Camp in Al-Bireh-Ramallah for four weeks in July.  The program will include classes in: Arabic, religion, history & geography of the holy land, arts, folklore dancing, sports, field trips and community volunteer work.  For more information contact Amal Wahdan at 216-351-5377 or email youthsummercamp2005@yahoo.com

July 4-15: BethlehemUniversity, Bethlehem
This summer at Bethlehem University, international educators and community activists will join their Palestinian counterparts to explore how all forms of education affect socialization processes within a society and between societies: before, during, and after conflict.  The organizers of this conference encourage a diversity of perspectives, disciplines, and experiences. The terms education, educator, and community activists are by no means distinct categories. The list of participants already includes Middle East specialists, a geographer, adult educators, a legal educator, an environmentalist, and teachers. We will discuss the multiple meanings of peace, conflict, imperialism, multiculturalism, globalism, dissent, and democratic governance.  For more information contact Howard S. Davidson at hdavid@ms.umanitoba.ca

July 14-24, 2005: Holy Land Trust Summer Activists’ Camp
Holy Land Trust and Quaker International Affairs Representatives are very pleased to invite you to the first activists' summer camp that will take place during July.  Objectives of the camp include: delivery of nonviolence training and training for community organizers, community building among the youth, and sparking new nonviolence groups. Click here for more information and to register.

July 17-30, 2005: Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions Summer Work Camp
For the third year in a row, the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) is offering a summer work camp intended to foster learning, discussion, and friendship between Palestinians, Israelis and internationals. Our cooperation will send a clear message to the world: We refuse to be enemies; together we resist the Occupation.  For more information and to register contact lucia@icahd.org

July 30-August 13: Fellowship of Reconciliation Interfaith Peace Builders
Interfaith Peace-Builder sends delegations to Israel and Palestine so that U.S. citizens can see the conflict with their own eyes. Participants have the opportunity to learn directly from Israeli and Palestinian nonviolent peace/human-rights activists, to spend time in Palestinian and Israeli homes, and to experience the situation of Palestinians living under military occupation.  For more information visit F.O.R. Interfaith Peacebuilders


October

ICAHD is pleased to announce that it will again be working in conjunction with an English company in arranging a study tour to Israel and Palestine that will take place over nine days in October 2005.  Participants will be based in hotels in Jerusalem and Bethlehem and will have unique opportunities to hear analysis from key leaders on both sides of the divide.  Visit people from villages divided by the Wall and others that are under threat. Travel south to Hebron and north to Baca in what is known as the Triangle area in the Galilee. See the JudeanDesert and the Mediterranean Sea.  For information email tours@icahduk.org



Occupation End Notes is the US Campaign bi-monthly newsletter designed as a tool for activists. For this newsletter to be successful, we need your participation. Use us to promote events, give feedback on recent actions, recommend resources, or just learn from other activists in the movement. If you or your organization are planning an event aimed at ending the occupation, or you have information for the Newsletter, please contact the US Campaign at outreach@endtheoccupation.org



The US Campaign aims to change US policies that sustain Israel’s 38-year occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem, and that deny equal rights for all.

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