Occupation End Notes
May 21, 2009
Volume 7 Number 8
1. US Campaign Update: New US Campaign Blog; Apply Now for Summer Delegation; Countdown to National Conference; New Merchandise; and more!
2. Gaza Action: Caterpillar Bulldozers Devastate Gaza; Take Action; Delegations to Gaza
3. Challenging U.S. Policy Update: Obama
and Netanyahu; Tell Congress No Arms for Israel; Influence the Obama
Adminsitration; US Campaign Questions at Senate Budget Hearings;
Military Aid to Israel Still a 'Sacred Cow'
4. Standing Against Apartheid Update: New
Study on Apartheid and Occupation in International Law; Apartheid
Update on US Campaign blog; Mustafa Barghouti on Two-States vs.
5. Boycott & Divestment Update: AIPAC is Afraid of Us, Caterpillar Day of Action, Israeli Groups Call for Divestment; Leonard Cohen; and more!
6. Membership Update: Help Us Reach 300!; Member Group Events; IFPB launches new website
7. Resources & Events:
World Council of Churches Week for Peace in Palestine Israel; Huwaida
Arraf on Palestinian Nonviolence; Educational Resources Available; and
8. Opportunities to Visit Israel and Palestine:
ICAHD, Olive Harvest Delegation, Indigenous Youth Delegation, Global
Exchange, Interfaith Peace-Builders and Friends of Sabeel - North
Top of Page
1. US CAMPAIGN UPDATE:
* New US Campaign Blog! News, Video, Analysis, and More!
US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation now has a blog! View
exclusive content, news, updates, analysis, video, and more by clicking
analysis by US Campaign Steering Committee members Phyllis Bennis and
Adam Horowitz and US Campaign Advisory Board Member Nadia Hijab; see US
Campaign National Advocacy Director Josh Ruebner on NBC News; view
updates on the growth of the anti-apartheid framework, and more. Click here to view exclusive content on the US Campaign blog.
* Apply Now for US Campaign and Interfaith Peace-Builders' Summer Delegation!
summer, the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation and Interfaith
Peace-Builders are cosponsoring a delegation to Israel/Palestine
focusing on the role of the United States in the Israeli-Palestinian
conflict. The delegation will examine the role of the US government and
civil society actors in bringing peace and fomenting conflict between
Palestinians and Israelis. The delegation will travel from July 25th -
August 7th. To read more about this delegation, click here or send an email to Interfaith Peace-Builders. Click here to apply. To read about last year's co-sponsored delegation, click here. View video testimonials from past participants here.
* Countdown to 8th Annual National Organizers' Conference in Chicago, IL, September 12-13, 2009
Our 8th Annual National Organizers' Conference will be held during the weekend of September 12th - 13th, 2009. We will send out all necessary information for you to plan and book your flights in the coming months.
Keep an eye on this page for more information.
Read reports from previous conferences by clicking here.
* New Member Group Section on Website
updated the Membership section of our website to increase networking
and resource sharing between our member groups. Check it out here. Check out resources from our member groups here, and check here to make sure that your member group is in good standing with the US Campaign!
If your group has more resources or videos that you would like to share
via our member group webpages, please email it to our National
Membership and Outreach Coordinator by clicking here.
* New Media Section on Website
We've added a "Media" section
to facilitate media contact with the US Campaign as well as to provide
tools for member groups that want to take action with their local media
outlets. Use this web section to read press releases, media coverage of the US Campaign and our programmatic work, and access media action tools.
We've also added a "Share This" link to our main page, so that you can
share articles from the US Campaign website on Facebook, Twitter,
email, your blog, and more.
* How You Can Sustain the US Campaign
Support our ongoing work by donating online, donating office supplies and services, or joining the Olive Branch Club.
Click here for more information.
* Huge Blowout Sale!
time for spring cleaning here at the US Campaign, and that's good news
for you. We're having a huge blowout sale on books and pins! Everything
Check out the great prices of our merchandise by clicking here.
* New Merchandise Available!
new merchandise is available from Canaan Fair Trade: a Fair Trade Gift
Basket! The basket is a Qirtalla, a traditional hand woven basket made
of olive twigs, filled with Canaan's certified organic and fair trade
products: olive oil, green olives, black olives, tahini, almonds,
couscous, and Za'atar.
Click here to view this and other exciting merchandise from the US Campaign!
2. GAZA ACTION:
* Caterpillar Bulldozers Used to Devastate Gaza
According to an article in the Jerusalem Post,
the Israeli military, in addition to armor fitting and weaponizing D-9
Caterpillar bulldozers, has been utilizing a new unmanned, remote
controlled version of the killing machine. Dubbed "Black Thunder," the
drone demolisher first came into use during the 2006 invasion of
Lebanon and was most recently put to use during Operation Cast Lead,
contributing to the more than 4,000 houses destroyed by the Israeli military during its most recent Gaza invasion.
action to hold Caterpillar accountable for the continuing use of its
equipment to destroy Palestinian homes, kill civilians, uproot olive
and fruit trees, and build the Apartheid Wall by clicking here.
* Take Action
For action ideas on what you can do end the siege on Gaza and hold Israel accountable, visit our web section "Take Action to End Israel's War and Siege on Gaza." The destruction of the Gaza Strip at the hands of the Israeli military would have been impossible without weapons provided by U.S. military aid, Motorola communications and weapons equipment, and weaponized Caterpillar bulldozers. Make sure to keep up with the ongoing work of the US Campaign
to hold Israel accountable for violations of international law and
human rights in the occupied West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem.
* Delegations to Gaza
Delegations to Gaza are being organized by US Campaign member CODEPINK and our allies in the Free Gaza coalition. For more information on the CODEPINK delegation click here. You can click here to learn more about the Free Gaza "Hope Fleets." Click here to learn about the International Movement to Open Rafah Border (IMORB), and find out about IMORB's delegations by emailing here.
3. CHALLENGING U.S. POLICY:
* Obama and Netanyahu Meet in Washington, DC
growing signs of an impending policy clash between the United States
and Israel over the issues of Israeli settlements, Israeli-Palestinian
negotiations, and Palestinian statehood, President Obama met with
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. To read our analysis and to
keep up the pressure for accountability, not arms for Israel, click here.
To read analysis of the meeting from US Campaign staff and steering
committee members, check out the US Campaign blog by clicking here.
* Obama's FY2010 Budget Request - Tell Congress No Arms for Israel!
Two weeks ago, President Obama sent his FY2010 budget request to Congress
and, as expected, included in it $2.775 billion in military aid for
Israel, an increase of $225 million from this year's budget. The budget
request now goes to the Senate and House Appropriations Subcommittees
on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs for hearings and
"mark-ups". This request for an increase in military aid to Israel
comes despite the fact that Israel consistently misuses U.S. weapons in
violation of the Arms Export Control and Foreign Assistance Acts. Click
to read our open letter to Congress and get your organization to
endorese it. Then send your own letter to the Congressional
appropriators telling them to hold Israel accountable, not reward
Israel with more weapons!
* Help Influence the Obama Administration: Yes We Can…End Military Aid to Israel!
Find out how you can take steps to influence the Obama Administration
to end weapons transfers to Israel by clicking here.
* US Campaign at Senate Budget Hearings
At the US Campaign, we often do behind-the-scenes work to influence U.S. policy toward Israel/Palestine. As
an example of the behind-the-scenes political work we do, yesterday we
sent the letter below to each Senator on the Senate Foreign Relations
Committee and the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign
Operations, and Related Programs suggesting questions for the Senators
to ask of Secretary of State Clinton during today's hearings. Did it work? Check out our blog to find out.
* Netanyahu at the White House: Not Yet Change We Can Believe In
US Campaign Steering Committee member Phyllis Bennis' before-and-after
analysis of the first face to face meeting between Obama and Netanyahu
by clicking here and here.
* Rethinking the Costs of Peace
May 21 - US Campaign National Advocacy Director Josh Ruebner writes on U.S. military aid in the Detroit Free Press:
"By asking earlier this month for $2.775 billion in military aid to
Israel in his FY2010 budget request, it would seem that on this
important policy issue President Obama's commitment is more rhetorical
than substantive." Click here to read the full article.
4. STANDING AGAINST APARTHEID UPDATE:
* New Study Focuses on Apartheid, Colonialism, International Law in Occupied Palestinian Territories
Mondoweiss carries this exclusive report
about a landmark study which carefully applies international law
concerning occupation, colonialism, and apartheid to the occupied West
Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem. The report concludes that
"Israel, since 1967, has been the belligerent Occupying Power in the
[Occupied Palestinian Territories], and that its occupation of these
territories has become a colonial enterprise which implements a system
of apartheid." Click here to read highlights of the report's executive summary.
* Anti-Apartheid Framework Grows in Mainstream Discourse
Learn about recent developments in the anti-apartheid framework by clicking here to read the US Campaign blog. And make use of the US Campaign's anti-apartheid resources by clicking here.
* Mustafa Barghouti: Obama Must Act Now or the Two-State Solution is Doomed
May 18 - Palestinian parliament member Mustafa Barghouti argues in the Los Angeles Times that
this is the last chance for President Obama to push for a two-state
solution before Israeli apartheid becomes too entrenched for two states
to be possible: "We Palestinians seek freedom, not apartheid, and not
the sort of Potemkin villages on the West Bank that Netanyahu is trying
to package to the West as visionary economic boomtowns for desperate
Palestinians." Click here to read the full article.
5. BOYCOTT & DIVESTMENT UPDATE:
* AIPAC is Afraid of Us
last two months have seen a lot of activity around our two corporate
boycott and divestment campaigns, from over two-dozen events during our
March month of action, to protests at the Motorola shareholders' meeting
on May 4. Just one day before Motorola's shareholders' meeting, the
American-Israel Public Affairs Committee's (AIPAC) Executive Director
made an impassioned speech about the efficacy of boycott and divestment campaigns. Now, join us as we gear up for Caterpillar's shareholders' meeting on June 10th. Click here to learn more.
* Caterpillar Should Build America, Not Destroy Palestine - June 10 Cat Shareholder Day of Action
bulldozers are a poignant symbol for the destruction that military
occupation and apartheid have brought to Palestinians. CAT sells the
Israeli military armor-ready bulldozers, which are then used to destroy
Palestinian homes, agricultural land and build the apartheid wall. The
Israeli military has crushed several dozen people to death, including
Washington state native Rachel Corrie, using Caterpillar bulldozers.
Join human rights advocates across the country in using Caterpillar's
annual shareholder meeting to draw attention to CAT's crimes in
Palestine/Israel and call for corporate accountability! Click here to learn more.
Planning to be in Chicago on June 10? Join us
to protest and educate shareholders about Caterpillar's complicity in
the destruction of Palestine. If you can't make it to Chicago, you can
still participate in the day of action by sending an email to CAT's management, writing an op-ed or letter to the editor, or planning a local action. And if you want to organize your community to hold CAT accountable, click here to sign up for a local organizing kit.
* Hang Up On Motorola Resources
Sign up to be a local organizer for our Motorola boycott. Get organizing tools
such as postcards for the Hang Up On Motorola pledge, fact sheets about
Motorola's support for Israeli apartheid policies, and tips on how to
involve retailers in the campaign.
Or click here
to make a tax-deductible donation to support the ongoing Boycott,
Divestment, and Sanctions work of the US Campaign. Just $10 will pay
for a campaign kit to be sent to a new Hang Up On Motorola organizer,
$500 will sponsor a stop on our fall organizing tour. All donations are
appreciated. Supporters who give $30 will receive a print of the winning poster entry from our Expressions of Nakba art competition. Supporters giving $50 will receive a DVD of Occupation 101. Supporters giving $100 or more will receive both gifts.
* Support the Academic & Cultural Boycott of Israel
The international academic boycott of institutions supporting Israel's
occupation has spread from Europe to Canada and now to the United
States. Click here to get involved in the U.S. academic & cultural boycott movement.
* Great BDS website
Israeli Coalition of Women for Peace exposes corporations profiting
from the occupation of Palestinian territory and people.
out their online database, WhoProfits.org, which you can search by
company, country of company origin, or country of company operation, by
* Keep Up with the Global BDS Movement
at the US Campaign we are proud to be part of a global movement for
boycott, divestment, and sanctions against Israeli occupation and
apartheid policies directed at the Palestinians.
Keep up with this global movement of solidarity with Palestinian civil society by clicking here.
* Morally Responsible Investment Resources for Churches
Friends of Sabeel North America now has a website devoted to resources on morally responsible investment activism. View their resources by clicking here.
The New England Conference of the United Methodist Church has a list of
companies recommended for divestment. You can view the list by clicking
here, and find out more about the United Methodist Church and divestment by clicking here. Presbyterian Church divestment information is available by clicking here.
* Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions Needed to Stop Ethnic Cleansing in East Jerusalem
May 10 - US Campaign Steering Committee member Bill Fletcher, Jr.
writes that ethnic cleansing in East Jerusalem, far from being a
paranoid worry, is happening now: "The proposed removal of 60,000
Palestinians increases the relevance and timeliness of discussions
regarding the need to develop a movement of boycott, divestment and
sanctions aimed at undermining the Israeli occupation of the
Palestinian territories." Click here to read the full article at the Black Commentator.
* Israeli Groups Call on Norwegian Government to Divest from Occupation
May 14 - A group of 20 Israeli organizations
has written to the Norwegian government pension fund's board of ethics
urging it to divest from companies that profit from the Israeli
occupation. The letter, organized by the Coalition of Women for Peace,
lists a number of companies in which the Norwegian pension fund is
invested that profit from the occupation. The companies named include Caterpillar, Lev Leviev's Africa Israel, and Veolia. Click here to read the letter.
* Leonard Cohen: Don't Play Israel
May 17 - New York activists from US Campaign member group Adalah - NY
gathered in front of Radio City Music Hall Sunday night during a
Leonard Cohen concert to call upon the singer/songwriter to cancel his
scheduled September concert in Israel. The protesters sang songs,
chanted, handed out leaflets to concert attendees and produced sidewalk
art. The call comes in support of earlier calls by Jews, Palestinians,
Israeli citizens and residents of the UK, and coincides with the
publication of an open letter by the Palestinian Campaign for the
Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) calling for protests in
the cities where Cohen is touring. Click here for video, photos, and more information.
7. MEMBERSHIP UPDATE:
In an effort to better help our coalition members network and for us to
better gauge the coalition's regional diversity, we have put together a
map with our more than 280 coalition members represented by state:
* Help Us Reach 300!
Help us reach our goal of 300 member organizations! We currently have
284 member groups in our national coalition-just 16 groups short of our
summer goal. Click here to see if your organization is a member group of the US Campaign, and if not, click here
to join. If you feel that there are organizations that are not part of
the coalition, but should be, please put us in touch with them by
emailing us here. If your organization is already part of our coalition, click here to make sure that you are in good standing!
* Stand Up: An Evening of Comedy for Palestine
May 21 - Washington, DC
The Jerusalem Fund presents an evening of stand up comedy and live
music to support Palestinian charities. The event will take place
Thursday, May 21, at 7 pm, at the Shawarma King at 1654 Columbia Rd,
NW, Washington, DC. Suggested donation is $20. Please RSVP by calling
202-338-1958. Click here for more information.
* Eyewitness Gaza with Darlene and Donna Wallach, Activists Recently Returned from Gaza
May 27 - Eugene, OR
Darlene and Donna Wallach, Jewish anti-Zionist social justice
activists, recently returned to the Bay Area after living in Gaza
Strip, Palestine from August - December 2008. Along with 41 other human
rights workers they broke the Israeli blockade of Gaza on board the two
FreeGaza movement boats, SS Liberty & SS Free Gaza, which arrived
in Gaza in August 2008. Come here their eyewitness reports. Sponsored
by Al-Nakba Awareness Project, this event will take place at 7 PM at
Harris Hall, 125 E 8th, Eugene, OR. RSVP here.
* Peace Luncheon to Benefit Gaza Children
May 30 - Rockville, Maryland
PeaceAction Montgomery, Pax Christi, and the Social Justice Council of
the Unitarian Universalist Church of Rockville are cosponsoring a peace
luncheon featuring a presentation on the U.S. military budget by Frida
Berrigan and a slideshow of Code Pink's recent Gaza delegation
presented by Pam Rasmussen, the coordinator of the Code Pink
Palestine/Israel campaign. The luncheon will be held Saturday, May 30
at 11:30 am in the Fellowship Hall of the Unitarian Universalist Church
of Rockville, 100 Welsh Park Dr., Rockville, MD. Suggested donation of
$20 with proceeds to support a playground in Gaza. RSVP here, and click here for an event flyer.
* Charlotte Day of Action to Stop Caterpillar
June 10 - Charlotte, NC
Join in a day of action to hold Caterpillar accountable for its
complicity in human rights violations committed against the
Palestinians. The Charlotte day of action will occur at 12 PM at the
CAT dealer at 9000 Statesville Rd. Click here or email for more information. Click here to learn how to organize or participate in a Caterpillar day of action event in your community.
* Exhibit Opening - Gaza Conversations
June 5 - Washington, DC
tragedy of Gaza has left the headlines but forever remains in the
hearts of these three artists. Their work for this exhibition enables
the Gaza conversation to continue. Join the Jerusalem Fund and the
Palestine Center for the opening of this exhibition. A percentage of
the artists' proceeds will be donated to a Gaza charity of their
choice. This event, which will take place from 6:30-8:30 PM at the Jerusalem Fund, is free and open to the public. Registration is not required to attend.
Gallery hours: M - F, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., or by appointment.
* Register Now - ADC National Convention June 12-14, 2009
June 12-14 - Washington, DC
"ADC: From the Grassroots to Our Nation's Capita: Change for Our
Future" is the theme of the 2009 American-Arab Anti-Discrimination
Committee (ADC) National Convention, to take place in Washington DC
from June 12-14. More information is available here.
Come by and check out the US Campaign's table and a workshop on
grassroots organizing by the US Campaign's National Advocacy Director,
* Christian Peacemaker Teams Tenth Christian Peacemaker Congress
September 17-20 - Denver, CO
Christian Peacemaker Teams
announces that its tenth Christian Peacemaker Congress will take place
in Denver, Colorado on 17-29 September 2009, on the theme of "Restoring
Balance: Peace Through Right Relationships." Speakers include George
"Tink" Tinker, Harvey Eagle, Elizabeth Garcia, as well as updates from
CPT's work around the world. For more information, click here.
* Interfaith Peace-Builders Launches New Website
Interfaith Peace-Builders is proud to announce the launch of our new website: www.ifpb.org!
IFPB.org brings more content and more information to your fingertips,
including a fresh, new interactive mainframe, original photos and
videos from IFPB delegates, and updated resources for education and
Go to www.ifpb.org to browse the site now!
IFPB has also compiled a new resource for use by activists and others. IFPB's new
House Party Packet makes it simple to host a small scale fundraiser for
your favorite nonprofit. You can magnify your impact and support by
pooling funds from your friends, colleagues and neighbors! Click here to download IFPB's House Party Packet.
8. RESOURCES AND EVENTS:
* Panel: Why Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions?
May 21 - Los Angeles, CA
A panel discussion featuring Mohammed Abed (CSLA) and Reem Salahi
(ACLU) on the moral and strategic questions surrounding boycotting,
divesting from, and sanctioning Israel. This event is part of UCLA's
4th Annual Palestine Awareness Week. For more information contact Randa at Students for Justice in Palesine, UCLA.
* World Council of Churches World Week for Peace in Palestine Israel June 4-10
The World Council of Churches is inviting member churches and related
organizations to join a week of advocacy and action for a just peace in
Palestine and Israel from June 4-10, 2009. Click here
to learn more about the World Week for Peace and how you can get
involved through prayer, education, and advocacy. For ideas on
promoting justice and human rights during the WCC Week of Action, email
* Order Palestinian Loss of Land Map Cards
Educate in your community using these postcard-sized maps, which show
Palestinian loss of land from 1946 through the current day. Click here to order.
* Call for Proposals: Split This Rock Poetry Festival 2010
This Rock Poetry Festival: Poems of Provocation & Witness invites
poets, writers, activists, and all concerned citizens to Washington,
DC, March 10-13, 2010 for four days of poetry, community building, and
creative transformation as our country continues to grapple with two
wars, a crippling economic crisis, and other social and environmental
ills. We invite you to send proposals for panel discussions, group
readings, roundtable discussions, workshops, and small-scale
performances on a range of topics at the intersection of poetry and
social change. Possibilities are endless. Challenge us. The deadline is
May 30, 2009.
Details and guidelines are online here. More information on Split This Rock 2010 can be found here.
9. DELEGATIONS TO ISRAEL/PALESTINE:
* ICAHD Summer Rebuilding Experience
Annually since 2003, ICAHD
has made it possible for internationals and Israelis to join together
with Palestinians in Anata, East Jerusalem, to resist the occupation
and rebuild the demolished home of a Palestinian family. In the summer
of 2009, ICAHD will once again rebuild a Palestinian home during our
two-week summer rebuilding experience. We invite you to participate in
the incredible opportunity to learn first-hand about life under
occupation. "Creating Alternative Facts on the Ground," ICAHD's 2009
Summer Rebuilding Experience, takes place from July 14-27, 2009. In
addition to construction, there is a full program including field
trips, cultural events, films and much more. For more information and
an application form, please click here or email Richard Wark here.
* Global Exchange's Delegations to Palestine & Israel
May 28-June 5, 2009 (Gaza CODEPINK Children's Delegation from Egypt)
June 4-June 15, 2009 (Gaza CODEPINK Children's Delegation from Israel)
July 25th-August 4th, 2009 (Prospects for Peace with Justice)
October 30-November 9, 2009 (Olive Harvest)
December 5th-15th, 2009 (Prospects for Peace with Justice
* Interfaith Peace-Builders Delegations to Israel/Palestine
July 25th-August 7th, 2009 (Delegation cosponsored by US Campaign)
October 24th - November 6th, 2009
Click here for video testimonies from past participants in Interfaith Peace-Builders delegations.
* Indigenous Youth Delegation to Palestine
August 2-17, 2009
The Indigenous Youth Delegation to Palestine
is a project of a collective of grassroots youth groups in the U.S. and
Palestine. We have been committed to connecting Native and immigrant
youth in the U.S with youth in Palestine by creating remote forums for
us to reflect together and bridge our struggles. This first-ever
cross-continental exchange is an opportunity for youth to learn first
hand from each other by sharing tools of empowerment and education. Our
journey to Palestine is part of an on-going process of connecting the
shared experiences of Indigenous peoples across the world for the
ultimate goal of land rights, justice and peace. Our trip is planned
for August 2-17, 2009. Click here for more information.
* Joint Advocacy Initiative Olive Harvest Delegation
October 17-26, 2009
The Joint Advocacy Initiative of the East Jerusalem YMCA and YWCA of
Palestine (JAI) and the Alternative Tourism Group (ATG) are organizing
the sixth Olive Picking Program 2009 in Palestine from October 17-26.
This agricultural event is of special significance to the Palestinian
economy when all energies and efforts are mobilized. Click here for more information.
* Sabeel/Friends of Sabeel North America Delegations
Friends of Sabeel North America maintains a list of alternative travel
opportunities to Israel/Palestine. To view the list, click here. Click here for more information on Sabeel's summer Young Adult Conference and Fall Witness Trip.
Back to top
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 by emailing us here.
The US Campaign aims to change U.S. policies that sustain Israel's
41-year occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, Gaza Strip and East
Jerusalem, and that deny equal rights for all.