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Occupation End Notes | August 6, 2009 Volume 7 Number 13

Occupation End Notes

August 6, 2009

Volume 7 Number 13


Here at the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation we are always looking to make resources available to our supporters in as useful a format as possible. To that end, we are exploring ways to streamline Occupation End Notes, our bi-monthly newsletter designed as a tool for activists.

In this issue of Occupation End Notes, you might notice a lot more links to the resources available on our website, blog, and social networking sites. You'll see more links to our online database of media coverage of our work. You'll find plenty of links to the news, analysis, videos, and articles being posted on our blog. We hope that, by keeping these online resources updated and available, we can make Occupation End Notes more streamlined and useful to you, our readers.

Of course, we know that some of our supporters are resource and news junkies, and that's why we provide many different ways to receive updates and useful links from the US Campaign. Follow us on Twitter to get regular updates. Read news and analysis on the US Campaign blog. Become our fan on Facebook. Check out news coverage and find events near you on our website.

As always, in order for this newsletter to be a success, we need your help. Have an event or a resource that you want shared? Email us by clicking here.

We hope you find all the materials in this week's edition of Occupation End Notes useful--from a chance to win a poster signed by Archbishop Desmond Tutu to information about house evictions in East Jerusalem, from updates from our delegation to Israel/Palestine to boycott and divestment getting Israeli news coverage, there's a lot in here!


US Campaign: Delegation Reports; Enter to Win a Poster Signed by Desmond Tut; National Conference; and More!

Gaza:
Gaza Freedom March, Israeli Piracy, Israel Investigates Itself, and More!

Challenging U.S. Policy:
Meet With Your Member of Congress; East Jerusalem House Evictions; Nadia Hijab's Suggestions for President Obama; and More!

Standing Against Apartheid: President Obama to Honor Critics of Israeli Apartheid; News Coverage of Israeli Apartheid

Boycott & Divestment: U.S. BDS Actions in Israeli Media; U.S. Campaign on the Radio; and More!

Membership: We've Reached 300!; Member Group Events; and More!

Resources & Events:
Events and Educational Materials

Opportunities to Visit Israel and Palestine


Top of Page



1. US CAMPAIGN UPDATE:


* Reports from US Campaign/Interfaith Peace-Builders Delegation to Israel/Palestine

The delegation to Israel/Palestine cosponsored by Interfaith Peace-Builders (IFPB) and the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation has arrived safely and has been traveling, seeing, and learning for the past 11 days. The purpose of this delegation, the 31st to make the trip since 2001, is to educate North American citizens about the region and deepen their understanding of its conflicts. This is the second delegation that IFPB and the US Campaign have co-sponsored since 2008. The delegation focuses on the role of the United States in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The group will meet civil society leaders, activists and experts who will explain the role of U.S. military, humanitarian and diplomatic aid in the region. Participants will analyze the U.S. role in a comparative framework and examine the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the light of other historical conflicts such as apartheid South Africa and the Jim Crow South. Delegates will also hear from Palestinian and Israeli peace-builders and nonviolent activists promoting peace and reconciliation. For updates and reports from the delegation, click here. 

You can also follow the delegation on the US Campaign blog and our Twitter feed. Click here to read a report written by US Campaign National Organizer Katherine Fuchs.


* Enter to Win A Poster Signed by Desmond Tutu

At the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, we are extremely proud to have developed a strong connection with South African Nobel Peace Prize-winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu. This giant in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa has been a clear and consistent voice of conscience speaking out against Israel's apartheid policies against Palestinians. We want to send one lucky supporter a poster autographed by Tutu. What's the catch? You guessed it…to be eligible to win this poster we are asking for your financial support so that we can continue doing our important work of educating the public about Israeli apartheid; organizing campaigns of boycott, divestment, and sanctions against companies that profit from Israeli occupation; challenging U.S. military aid to Israel, and much, much more. Click here to find out how you can win an autographed poster and support the work of the US Campaign.


* Join Us On A Conference Call About Our National Organizers' Conference in Chicago

Our 8th Annual National Organizers' Conference will be held during the weekend of September 12th - 13th, 2009. That's barely a month away! Register today by clicking here.

We will be organizing a conference call for member group delegates on Thursday, August 13 to better familiarize them with the overall structure of the conference as well as to discuss proposal submissions and other components of the conference. If you would like to join us on the call, please send your name, the organization you represent, your city and state to us by clicking here no later than Wednesday, August 12:

To find out more details about the conference and make sure that your organization is in good standing with the US Campaign, click here.


* Delegation News, East Jerusalem Evictions, and Member Group Actions on the US Campaign Blog

The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation now has a blog! View exclusive content, news, updates, analysis, video, and more by clicking here. Read about the United Kingdom cutting military contracts to Israel; the latest on the opaque Congressional budget process and U.S. military aid to Israel; testimonies of Israeli soldiers about what they saw in the Gaza Strip; and the use of Israel's Apartheid Wall to sell phones. Click here to view exclusive content on the US Campaign blog.


* US Campaign in the News

From independent radio to Israeli daily news, the US Campaign has been getting a wide range of media attention lately. Click here to keep up with the most recent coverage of our work!


* Become a Fan of the US Campaign on Facebook

The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation now has a page on Facebook. Get instant updates and become a fan of the US Campaign by clicking here.

In other Facebook news, Facebook has recently decided to allow Israeli settlers to choose "Israel" as their network even though they are living in the occupied West Bank. Click here for more information.


* How You Can Sustain the US Campaign--Donate Today!

Support our ongoing work by donating online, donating office supplies and services, or joining the Olive Branch Club.

Click here for more information


2. GAZA UPDATE:

* Gaza Freedom March, Violations of the Law of the Sea, and Israeli Investigations

As the siege of Gaza drags on, the US Campaign and its member groups and allies continue to cast light on the dire situation of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and what can be done to challenge U.S. support of the siege. Check out the US Campaign blog for updates on the Gaza Freedom March, a video portraying Israeli violations of international law in the waters of the Gaza Strip, and reports on the Israeli government investigation--or cover up--of war crimes committed during "Operation Cast Lead."


* 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.



3. CHALLENGING U.S. POLICY:

* Meet with Your Member of Congress in August

Congress is on recess during August, but that's no reason to give your elected representatives a break! Your Members of Congress need to hear from you to know that there is broad support for U.S. pressure to stop Israeli settlements and to end the siege of the Gaza Strip by cutting or conditioning U.S. military aid to Israel. Click here to join more than 200 people from 37 states and 125 Congressional districts by scheduling a meeting and to get all of the resources you need to lobby your Members of Congress. You can also click here to organize against military aid in your community.


* Sheikh Jarrah Evictions, Right-Wing Settlers, and U.S. Money

Despite State Department condemnations of the recent evictions of two Palestinian families from their houses in East Jerusalem--and their immediate replacement by Israeli settlers--U.S. military aid enables these and other violations of international law and the human rights of Palestinians. Click here to read more. In other news, some right-wing Israeli settlers want the United States "out of Israel"--but want Israel to keep receiving U.S. military aid. Click here to read more.


* US Campaign on the Radio: "Will Obama's Push for a Settlement Freeze Work?"

Last week, US Campaign National Media Coordinator David Hosey was interviewed by Sonali Kolhatkar of Uprising Radio on KPFK 90.7 FM. Kolhatkar and Hosey discussed the Israeli settlements, Obama's push for a settlement freeze, and the response of the Israeli government. They also talked about nonviolent resistance to the expansion of settlements, such as this attempt by Israeli and Palestinian members of Combatants for Peace to set up a mock "settlement outpost" on land onto which they'd been invited. Click here to read more, watch a video, and listen to the interview.


* Nadia Hijab Has Five Easy Suggestions for President Obama

US Campaign Advisory Board Member Nadia Hijab has five suggestions for what President Obama should do in order to "play from America's strength" in its dealings with Israel. Click here to read Hijab's suggestions about international law, U.S. military aid, talking to Hamas, and more.



4. STANDING AGAINST APARTHEID UPDATE:

* President Obama to Honor Critics of Israeli Apartheid

Have you seen the list of honorees to whom President Obama plans to award the Presidential Medal of Freedom? Archbishop Desmond Tutu will be honored, as will Mary Robinson, who has been critical of Israeli treatment of the Palestinians and was the United Nations High Commissioner on Refugees during the 2001 Durban Conference on Racism. Also receiving a medal is Stephen Hawking, who has classified Israel's December-January attacks on the Gaza Strip as "out of proportion" and compared the situation in Israel/Palestine to South Africa under apartheid. Click here to read--and watch--more!


* Israeli Apartheid in the News

Keep up with media coverage of the debate surrounding Israeli apartheid by clicking here.



5. BOYCOTT & DIVESTMENT UPDATE:


* U.S. Boycott and Divestment Campaigns Get the Attention of Israeli Media

In an important sign of the growth of the boycott and divestment movement in the United States, U.S. groups have been receiving coverage of boycott actions in the Israeli press. Recently, the US Campaign's Hang Up on Motorola boycott campaign got the attention of the Ha'aretz daily newspaper after a rally in New York City organized by the New York Campaign for the Boycott of Israel (NYCBI).US Campaign member group CODEPINK Women for Peace also gained Israeli media attention with a Washington, DC protest of Ahava beauty products, as part of their "Stolen Beauty" campaign. Click here to read more.


* Great Video of "Goodbye Moto" Demonstration

Want to see a great video of the New York Campaign to Boycott Israel's (NYCBI) July 25 "Goodbye Moto" demonstration in Brooklyn's Prospect Park, part of NYCBI's "Summer in the Streets to Boycott Israeli Apartheid"?

Click here to watch.


* US Campaign Reps Talk Boycott, Divestment on Radio

Naama Nagar and Muhammad Sankari of 89.9 WORT FM in Madison, WI hosted a discussion on the Boycott & Divestment movement with US Campaign National Conference speaker Omar Barghouti, Eilat Maoz from the Coalition of Women for Peace in Israel, Katherine Fuchs of the US Campaign to End Israeli Occupation and US Campaign BDS Intern Ilana Rossoff of Students for Justice in Palestine at Hampshire College. Click here to learn more and listen to the program.


* Tell Amnesty International that Entertaining Apartheid Israel Deserves No Amnesty!

A coalition of eleven organizations, including US Campaign member groups Adalah-NY and Jews Against the Occupation, have issued a call to Amnesty International to withdraw its support from Leonard Cohen's upcoming concernt in Israel. According to the groups, "Despite a Palestinian call for artists like Leonard Cohen to boycott Israel, Amnesty International has agreed to manage a fund for the proceeds of Leonard Cohen's concert in Israel. By supporting Cohen's concert, Amnesty International is undermining the Palestinian boycott, a successful effort by Palestinian and international civil society to end Israel's occupation and other violations of international law and human rights principles. Amnesty International also is partnering in the initiative with Israeli institutions that undermine peace, including a bank directly involved in supporting Israeli settlement construction. The only alleged Palestinian partner has announced it is not taking part." For more information, click here.


* Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions in the News

The Motorola boycott makes the Israeli news. Norway examines its Israeli investments. Canadian churches consider divestment. Interested in reading these and other recent articles covering the global movement for boycott, divestment, and sanctions against Israeli occupation and apartheid? Click here to check out our BDS in the News database.


6. 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 300 coalition members represented by state:




* Thanks for Helping Us Reach 300!

Thank you! With your help, we've met and surpassed our summer goal of 300 member organizations! We currently have 304 member groups in our national coalition--4 more than our goal!

Want to find out what all the excitement is about? Click here to see if your organization is a member group of the US Campaign, and join if you're not. 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.

Please welcome the following organizations to our coalition:

CODEPINK - National

Minnesota Peace Project - Minnesota

International Solidarity Movement Chicago - Illinois

Tacoma Peace Justice and Healing - Washington

Ann Arbor Justice in the Middle East Action Group - Michigan

CODEPINK Taos - New Mexico

CODEPINK WV - West Virginia

Watertown Citizens for Environmental Safety - Massachusetts

Peace Farm - Texas

Lutheran Peace Group - New Mexico


* Update Your Member Group Contact Information

Is your member group contact information up to date on our website? Click here to check it, and if there are corrections or changes to be made, email us by clicking here.


* Art Exhibit - Gaza Conversations
June 5-September 4 - Washington, DC

The 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 this exhibition. A percentage of the artists' proceeds will be donated to a Gaza charity of their choice. Registration is not required to attend.

Gallery hours: M - F, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., or by appointment.



* Reception for the Nakba Photo Exhibit: "The Story of the Palestinians, 1948 to 2009"

The Howard County Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation (HCCEIO) and Washington Interfaith Alliance for Middle East Peace (WIAMEP) invite you to a reception marking the opening of a month-long display at Howard County Central Library of the Nakba Photo Exhibit: "The Story of the Palestinians, 1948 to 2009." George Hishmeh, a survivor of the Nakba, will be present to talk about his experiences and discuss the photos. Refreshments will be served. Click here to learn more.


* Friends of Sabeel North America Conference: Seek Peace, Pursue Justice
October 1-3 - Washington, DC

Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA) is sponsoring a conference on October 1-3 at Shiloh Baptist Church, 1500 9th St., NW, Washington, DC. Check out the FOSNA website for more information.


* Call for Hosting Zuhdi Al-Adawi Art Exhibit
Spring 2010 - Santa Cruz, CA

The Resource Center for Nonviolence in Santa Cruz, CA is working with the Farhat Museum of Modern and Contemporary Arab Art to bring Zuhdi Al-Adawi, Palestinian artist and former political prisoner whose work is featured in the "Made in Palestine" exhibition, to California to accompany a series of exhibits in Spring 2010.  Al-Adawi and Muhammad Rakouie were imprisoned while teenagers by Israel. They taught themselves how to draw with the materials they could acquire -- crayons and cut pillowcase linen, while imprisoned in the notorious Ashkelon prison in Israel. Al-Adawi's expressionist drawings depict the psychological anguish and physical torture he endured in prison. He now lives in a refugee camp in Damascus, Syria, but will travel to the United States to accompany exhibition of his work. If you are interested in hosting this exhibit, please contact Scott Kennedy at 831-457-8003 or by email by clicking here.


* US Campaign Calendar of Events

Looking for events in your region? Want to publicize your event? Check out the US Campaign's event calendar. Post events, find upcoming activities in your region, and view recurring gatherings by clicking here.



7. RESOURCES AND EVENTS: 


* Stand Up for Jerusalem

The Hannoun family is one of the families in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of East Jerusalem recently evicted from their homes as part of a plan to implant a new Jewish settlement in the area. The family members are refugees from 1948, after being displaced from their home in Haifa during the Nakba, and currently consist of 18 people, 6 of whom are children. They have lived in Sheikh Jarrah since 1956 when the Jordanian Government and UNRWA gave them their houses as part of a project to house Palestinians forced to flee their homes. Now that all legal avenues have been exhausted, the family's last hope is that international pressure can help them stay in their homes. The international community must act now to force the Israeli government to stop its continued policy of ethnic cleansing in East Jerusalem and save the Hannouns, and other Palestinian families, from forceful eviction from their houses. To learn more and take action, click here.


* Second U.S. Social Forum Coming to Detroit in June 2010

The US Social Forum II will take place June 22-26, 2010 at Cobo Hall and Hart Plaza in downtown Detroit. Other workshops and community art and culture programs will take place across the city. The USSF will convene social movements from across the United States and globally. Organizers are reaching out to young people, people of color, unionists, laid off and unorganized workers, welfare recipients, veterans, persons with disabilities, indigenous people, freedom fighters, collectives, and many others. Click here to learn more.



8. DELEGATIONS TO ISRAEL/PALESTINE:


* Global Exchange's Delegations to Palestine & Israel 


October 30-November 9, 2009 (Olive Harvest)

December 5th-15th, 2009 (Prospects for Peace with Justice)



Interfaith Peace-Builders Delegations to Israel/Palestine



October 26th - November 8th, 2009

May 22nd - June 4th, 2010

July 24th - August 6th, 2010


* 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.


* Christian Peacemaker Team Delegations to Israel/Palestine

October 6 - October 19, 2009

November 17 - November 30, 2009


* 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 Witness Trips.



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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 42-year occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem, and that deny equal rights for all.