Sep 11, 2018
United Nations Association Lecture on Palestine

Madison Central Library
201 W Mifflin St
7:00 pm, 3rd Floor

Since 2006 the speaker has been spending from one to three months per year accompanying Palestinian children to school past Israeli settler checkpoints in the village of Tuwani and the surrounding South Hebron Hills of the West Bank. She initially volunteered with Christian Peacemaking Teams, but more recently has served with the Italian organization Operation Dove, both of which began their work in Tuwani at the invitation of the village and in response to Israeli settler attacks on schoolchildren and shepherds. She will speak about her experiences and current developments in Palestine.

More information: UNA Public Lecture — Conflict in Palestine

UNRWA Crisis: Beyond Dollars and Cents

Zaha Hassan, Palestine Square | Institute for Palestine Studies, August 3, 2018

“Continuing services to refugees is a right, not a handout.”

This was the message last week of one of the thousands in Gaza who came out to protest the UN Relief and Works Agency’s (UNRWA) decision to not renew 154 employment contracts in the occupied Palestinian territory. Despite UNRWA’s best efforts, it has not been able to make up its current $250 million budget shortfall resulting from the U.S. decision to slash its contributions to the refugee agency.

Almost 12,500 Palestinians in Gaza are dependent on an UNRWA paycheck, which in many cases helps sustain more than just the nuclear family in the enclave where the unemployment rate is over 40%. It is unclear whether there will be enough funding for the 262,000 children in Gaza’s UNRWA schools to return to their classrooms this academic year.

The existential threat facing UNRWA is deliberate, and so are the dire consequences for the 5.3 million registered refugees it serves. President Donald Trump and his Middle East Team headed by advisor, Jared Kushner, have latched onto the idea that humanitarian relief may be used as leverage to force the Palestinian leadership back to a negotiating table set by Israel. Leaked details of the Kushner-crafted peace plan indicate that it is nothing more than a souped up, donor-infused version of the status quo that Israel seeks to have legitimated with the signature of President Mahmoud Abbas. The Palestinian leader has infuriated the Administration by refusing to engage with it on these terms and so the Administration—along with the Republican-controlled Congress—has been tightening the financial noose around Palestinians.

[From the Journal of Palestine Studies | UNRWA and the Refugees: A Difficult but Lasting Marriage]

The idea of weaponizing humanitarian assistance provided to Palestinians is not new but it has never before found the currency it now has in the White House. Of late, right-wing think tanks, pro-“Greater Israel” Washington lobby groups and the “no daylight between Israel and the U.S.” politicians have been peddling the fiction that humanitarian relief to Palestinian refugees has been growing by leaps and bonds. They argue that aid money that maintains the camp infrastructure and enables the provision of essential services and work opportunities perpetuates refugeehood.

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She slapped an Israeli soldier and was sent to prison. Now a Palestinian teen is free — and in the limelight

“We can change people’s minds
by defending our cause”

She slapped an Israeli soldier and was sent to prison. Now a Palestinian teen is free — and in the limelight
Ahed Tamimi sits July 30 in the backyard of her family house in the West Bank village of Nebi Saleh, near Ramallah. (Nasser Nasser / Associated Press)

Noga Tarnopolsky, LA Times, Aug 02, 2018

Nebi Saleh, West Bank — Two days after her release from an Israeli jail, the 17-year-old Palestinian activist Ahed Tamimi sat in her parents’ yard, wearing jeans and a tired expression, the front of her mane of blond curls tied in a bun atop her head.

TV crews from the United States, Turkey, Germany and Norway vied for on-camera interviews with her. Since her release, her representatives say, she has responded to questions from about 175 media outlets. She has six media advisors, one of them Israeli, and they have worked hard to make her the face of the Palestinian resistance.

In December, Israeli authorities detained Ahed, then 16, after she was filmed slapping and kicking a soldier. She had just learned that a cousin had been shot and wounded with a rubber bullet by Israeli soldiers. It was not her first time in the spotlight: She had been filmed confronting soldiers in 2012 and again in 2015.

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Israeli lawmaker stands by call to shoot Ahed Tamimi

Tamara Nassar, The Electronic Intifada, 25 April 2018

Ahed Tamimi’s lawyer called for an investigation into sexual harassment during the teenager’s interrogation. (Oren Ziv, ActiveStills)

Israeli lawmaker Bezalel Smotrich published a tweet on 21 April calling for a Palestinian child prisoner to be shot.

Smotrich wrote that he was “very sad” that Ahed Tamimi is in jail because she “should have gotten a bullet, at least in the kneecap.”

“That would have put her under house arrest for the rest of her life,” the lawmaker added, according to the newspaper Haaretz.

Smotrich is a member of the extreme right-wing nationalist party Habayit Hayehudi (Jewish Home).

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Islam Maraqa of ISM on WORT

Gil Halstead with Islam Maraqa on Access

Shahir Hunaina, YouTube, November 16, 2016

My Blood is Palestinian (Dammi Falastini), translation by Sara Ba

Keeping my oath, following my religion
You will find me on my land
I belong to my people, I sacrifice my soul for them
My blood is Palestinian, Palestinian, Palestinian
My blood is Palestinian

We stood for you, our homeland
With our pride and Arabisim
Al-Quds land called us
(As) The sound of my mother calling me
Palestinian, Palestinian
My blood is Palestinian

Keeping my oath, following my religion
You will find me on my land
I belong to my people, I sacrifice my soul for them
My blood is Palestinian, Palestinian, Palestinian
My blood is Palestinian

O mother don’t worry
Your homeland is a fortified castle
Which I sacrifice my soul for
And my blood, and my veins

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Profile of Um Hassan from Al-Masara Village

Josie Shields-Stromsness, Middle East Children’s Alliance, Apr 12, 2018

Fatima Brejia (more commonly known as Um Hassan) is an organic farmer, community activist, founder of a local women’s organization, and most recently the head of the Al-Masara Village Council! She is the first Palestinian woman to be elected head of a village council.

Watch this video to learn more about Um Hassan and the amazing work she does for children and the rest of her community!

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April 9, 2018: Voices of the Palestinian Resistance

From the Front Lines in Palestine

Monday, April 9
Multicultural Student Center
Red Gym, UW-Madison
716 Langdon Street
7:00 – 9:00 pm

In 2002, the International Solidarity Movement grabbed world attention by bringing volunteers from around the world to defend Palestine through nonviolent resistance. They stayed with resistance fighters in the Nativity Church in Bethlehem. They brought medical supplies to the besieged Palestinians in the ancient Nablus Casbah. They documented and filmed the destruction and mass killing of Palestinians in the Jenin refugee camp. In 2002 and 2003, thousands participated at their own expense.

One was Rachel Corrie, who was killed trying to prevent demolition of a home in Gaza. Another was Tom Hurndall, killed by a shot to the head. ISM has operated continuously since then, serving at the request of the Palestinian community through participation in Palestinian nonviolent resistance. In 2009, 2012 and 2014, ISM volunteers were with the Palestinian people in Gaza, reporting the Israeli invasion and helping in the hospitals, clinics and schools that were attacked even as they served the refugees.

But ISM is today unable to fill the demand from the Palestinian popular movement. We need to recruit more volunteers, so we have brought the ISM to North America to talk to interested groups. The speaking team consists of one of our Palestinian coordinators and an experienced international volunteer.

The presentation includes a screening of an abridged version of Radiance of Resistance, a film produced by three ISM volunteers serving in Nabi Salih and featuring Ahed Tamimi and her cousin, Janna Jihad.

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April 8, 2018: Radiance of Resistance,
a Tribute to Rachel Corrie

Featuring Rachel’s parents, Craig and Cindy Corrie

Sunday, April 8
St. James Catholic Church
1128 St. James Court, Madison, WI
2:00 – 5:00 pm

Joe Catron and Islam Maraqa from the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) will also be presenting. Rachel was volunteering with this group on March 16, 2003 when she was killed by an Israeli soldier driving a Caterpillar bulldozer as she protested the demolition of a Palestinian family home in Rafah.

A clip from from the new film, Radiance of Resistance, about Palestinian youth activists Ahed Tamimi and Janna Ayyad will also be shown.


 

PLUS hummus and tabbouleh; desserts including baklawa; and the ever-popular DOOR PRIZES. Palestinian olive oil, olive oil soap, zaatar & maftool, embroidery and other crafts will be available for purchase.

The event is free and open to the public, with a $5 suggested donation to cover cost of food. Donations will be gratefully accepted to help support the Samira Remedial Education Project for disadvantaged and traumatized children in Rafah, the Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice, and the ISM tour.

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Open military courtroom for Ahed’s Trial

CODEPINK

Ahed_OpenTrial.jpg
 
After a video of Ahed confronting Israeli soldiers outside her house went viral, she was arrested in the middle of the night. Overnight, she became a hero for young women throughout the world. Israel wants her case to be forgotten so they have closed her trial to the public. No media, no diplomats, no human rights observers.

Help us call on the US State Department to demand that Ahed’s trial be opened, and that they send a US official to monitor the trial.


Dear US State Department,

It is horrible that Israel has closed the courtroom for the military trial of 17-year-old Ahed Tamimi. They are trying to hide from the international community while they try a child in a military court with an over 99% conviction rate.

Seventeen-year-old Ahed Tamimi is facing up to 10 years in prison. Each year, Israel arrests and prosecutes around 700 Palestinian children in military court. Israel’s abuse of Palestinian children must stop.

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