NPK-info 07-10-2001 - Nederlands Palestina Komitee / www.palestina-komitee.nl

  • TV: Vanavond 20.30 uur BelgiŽ 2 "Beschuldigde Sharon"; de BBC-documentaire voor wie deze nog niet heeft gezien.
  • Bijeenkomst: Vrijdag 12 oktober vanaf 20:00 uur in De Rode Hoed te Amsterdam "Mensenrechten en Vrede in IsraŽl en de Palestijnse Gebieden na ťťn jaar Intifada", door Amnesty International, meer hierna. Kijk o.a. ook bij http://www.lawsociety.org
  • Oproep hierna: BIRZEIT UNIVERSITY, 2 oktober, URGENT APPEAL
  • Voorts* ..why weren't there similar outcries at earlier atrocities? John Pilger, October 4
  • En Gush Shalom meldt de bouw van vier nieuwe nederzettingen op 7 oktober.Zie ook http://www.gush-shalom.org/ 
  • GS start een protest-campagne Er zijn nu plm. 400.000 kolonisten in bezet gebied; tien jaar terug plm.200.000. 
    Voor de EU en voor Nederland [*] is ook dit nog steeds geen argument voor harde druk op Israel [boycot]. [*] Regering, Kamermeerderheid; zie meer specifiek bij www.bbo.org of www.parlement.nl voor Kamervragen van met name GroenLinks en de SP.

NPK/WL, 7-10-2001

12 oktober 2001
 20:00 - 22:00 uur
 De Rode Hoed

 "Mensenrechten en Vrede in IsraŽl en de Palestijnse Gebieden na ťťn jaar

Amnesty International maakt met twee mensenrechtenactivisten de balans op.

In september is het een jaar geleden dat de Intifada uitbrak. In een jaar
tijd zijn er aan beide kanten slachtoffers gevallen, ruim 600 aan
Palestijnse kant, ruim 150 aan IsraŽlische kant.

In het kader van 1 jaar Intifada, nodigt de Nederlandse sectie van Amnesty
International twee heel bijzondere gasten uit: advocate Allegra Pacheco en
dokter Eyad al-Sarraj.

Pacheco, geboren en getogen in de Verenigde Staten,  is een IsraŽlische
advocate die zich inzet voor Palestijnse gevangenen in IsraŽl. Zij richt
zich hierbij met name op mensenrechtenschendingen als marteling,
administratieve detentie, huisvernietiging en confiscatie van land. In 1998
was Pacheco een van de belangrijkste gasten bij de viering van 50 jaar
Universele Verklaring van de Rechten van de Mens in Parijs.

Al-Sarraj is psychiater, vredesactivist en directeur van het programma voor
geestelijke gezondheidszorg in Gaza. Hij zet zich sinds jaar en dag in voor
vreedzaam   verzet  tegen  de  IsraŽlische  bezetting  van  de  Palestijnse
Gebieden.  Ook  probeert  hij  de  wereld te wijzen op de oneindig lijkende
spiraal  van   mensenrechtenschendingen  zowel  voor als tijdens de huidige
Intifada.  In  1998  won  Al-Sarraj de Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights

Wij nodigen u uit om op 12 oktober 2001 het Publieksforum met het onderwerp
"Vrede en Mensenrechten in IsraŽl en de Palestijnse Gebieden na ťťn jaar
Intifada" bij te wonen, waar Amnesty International de balans opmaakt met
Pacheco en al-Sarraj.

Het forum zal om 20:00 uur aanvangen in de Grote Zaal van De Rode Hoed,
Keizersgracht 102 te Amsterdam (020-638 56 06).

Voor meer informatie kunt u bellen met Charles Schoenmaeckers,
Amnesty International Nederland.
Telefoon: 020-626 44 36, e-mail: c.schoenmaeckers@amnesty.nl

Visit http://www.stoptorture.org/ or http://www.amnesty.nl/ and register to
take a step to stamp out torture.

October 2, 2001


On September 28th, 2001, the Israeli Authorities stated that they would ease
travel restrictions on the Palestinian population within the West Bank and
Gaza following the signing of a cease-fire agreement between the Palestinian
Authority and the Israeli Government.

The gulf between words and actions remains apparent for the more than 5,000
students, 700 staff, and 65,000 villagers (in 35 villages in the area) whose
livelihoods and education continue to be severely curtailed by the Israeli
checkpoints blocking access along the only route remaining between the
Birzeit area and Ramallah.

Since March 2001, all residents of the area as well as students  and staff
at Birzeit University have been victim to the whims of the Israeli military
forces and their soldiers positioned at these checkpoints. Sometimes this,
the only access road, has been completely barred to pedestrians, at others
only commercial vehicles are allowed to pass through. Over the summer the
situation has hardened, and access to the University (or the return home)
can only be accomplished through the long and harrowing walk through the
checkpoints-- where students and staff  are often verbally and physically
abused by the soldiers. At various times, tear gas, sound bombs and even
live fire have been lobbed at students and staff alike -- in one case, a
University staff member after a heated discussion with a soldier
subsequently had her hip broken when he shot a tear gas grenade directly at

The checkpoints pose a dual threat; on the one hand they fundamentally
impede the ability of students to continue their education and staff and
residents to make their livelihoods or meet their work responsibilities. On
the other, they pose a constant threat to our physical safety and
psychological well-being. The damage to academic life, community service
programs, research and the very future development of the University are
very real. Equipment and book shipments cannot be brought to the campus.
Teaching staff and students lose hours of valuable educational time crossing
the checkpoints. The ability to use the libraries and labs after classes, as
well as enrichment activities are all no longer possible as it is unsafe to
cross the checkpoints after dark. Moreover, almost 20% of the 2000-2001
student body have missed an entire academic year due to being under siege in
areas such as the Gaza Strip and North and South West Bank.

The Birzeit community has over the past few months, held a number of
peaceful demonstrations, organized by the University and its friends. In
March this resulted in the filling in of the trenches that the Israeli
military bulldozers had gouged out of the road. However, subsequent peaceful
protests against the ongoing checkpoint closure - including delivering
notice to the soldiers that their actions contravened international law --
have had no impact. Instead, the checkpoints have hardened into a part of
the systematic and official policy of intimidation that is aimed at
institutionalizing the suffering of Palestinian civilians in an attempt to
break their wills and lay waste to their society and nation. We call on the
international community to defend human rights by taking immediate action
against this closure, which clearly violates the Fourth Geneva Conventions,
to which Israel is a signatory, as well as the Universal Declaration of
Human Rights and other international human rights provisions.  Indeed, it is
urgent and necessary that the High Contracting Parties to the Convention
convene and exercise their responsibilities under international law. But
alongside these comprehensive initiatives, we urge the international
community to act whenever the interests of peace and security are violated
and take concrete measures to ensure these interests.

We believe an open road to Birzeit University is a step forward to a just
and equitable peace. Your support is urgently needed.

Call the nearest Israeli Embassy in your area and send your protests to the
Israeli Government
- Benjamin Beneliezer, Israeli Minister of Defense at sar@mod.gov.il
- Shimon Peres, Israeli Foreign Minister at sar@mofa.gov.il
- Limor Livnat, Israeli Minister of Education, sar@education.gov.il
Please also contact one of the following international representatives:

H.E. Mr. Kofi Annan
Secretary General, United Nations
Fax: + 212 963 - 2155
E-mail: ecu@un.org

Mr. Terje Rod Larsen
Personal Representative of the Secretary General

to the United Nations in Palestine
Tel: + 972 8 282 2914
Fax: + 972 8 282 0966
E-mail: unsco@palnet.com

Mr. Romano Prodi
President, European Union
E-mail: romano.prodi@cec.eu.int

Mr. Koichiro Matsura
Director General, UNESCO
7 Place de Fontenoy 75352
Paris 07SP
Fax: + 33 1 45 6 7 16 90

For further information about Birzeit University, please visit the
University Website at http://www.birzeit.edu


From F r e e d o m 4-10-2001

"...and those who produce the "laundry list" of a blood-soaked historical
record are "anti American", which apparently is similar to the
"anti-semitism" of those who dare to point out the atrocious activities of
the Israeli state. "

John Pilger

The world has been in ferment since September 11, but why weren't there
similar outcries at earlier atrocities?

John Pilger
Thursday October 4, 2001
The Guardian

This week saw the end of an exhibition I helped put on at the Barbican in
London, devoted to photo-journalism that makes sense of terrible events.
Brilliant, subversive pictures from Vietnam show the systematic rape of a
country with weapons designed to spread terror. The exhibition ranged from
Hiroshima to two final, haunting images of sisters, aged 10 and 12, their
bodies engraved in the rubble of the Iraqi city of Basra, where American
missiles destroyed their street two years ago: part of a current
Anglo-American bombing campaign that is almost never reported.
Since the outrages in America on September 11, the exhibition has been
packed, mostly with young people. Many accused the media and politicians of
misrepresenting public opinion and of obscuring the reasons behind the
fanaticism of the attackers. For them, the most telling pictures are of
"unworthy victims". Let me explain. The 6,000 people who died in America on
September 11 are worthy victims: that is, they are worthy of our honour and
a relentless pursuit of justice, which is right. In contrast, the 6,000
people who die every month in Iraq, the victims of a medieval siege devised
and imposed by Washington and Whitehall, are, like the little sisters bombed
to death in their sleep in Basra, unworthy victims - unworthy of even
acknowledgement in the "civilised" west.

Ten years ago, when 200,000 Iraqis died during and immediately after the
slaughter known as the Gulf war, the scale of this massacre was never
allowed to enter public consciousness in the west. Many were buried alive at
night by armoured American snowploughs and murdered while retreating. Colin
Powell, then US military chief, who 22 years earlier was assigned to cover
up the My Lai massacre in Vietnam and is currently being elevated to hero
status in the western media, said: "It's really not numbers I'm terribly
interested in." An American letter writer to the Guardian last week, in
admonishing the
writer Arundhati Roy for producing a "laundry list" of American terror
around the world, revealed how the blinkered think. The lives of millions of
people extinguished as a consequence of American policies, be they Iraqis or
Palestinians, Timorese or Congolese, belong not in our living memory, but on
a "list". Apply that dismissive abstraction to the Holocaust, and imagine
the profanity.

The job of disassociating the September 11 atrocities from the source of
half a century of American crusades, economic wars and homicidal adventures,
is understandably urgent. For Bush and Blair to "wage war against
terrorism", assaulting countries, killing innocents and creating famine,
international law must be set aside and a monomania must take over politics
and the "free" media. Fortunately public opinion is not yet fully
Murdochised and is
already uneasy and suspicious; 60% oppose massive bombing, says an Observer
poll. And the more Blair, our little Lord Palmerston, opens his mouth on the
subject the more suspicions will grow and the crusaders' contortions of
intellect and morality will show. When Blair tells David Frost that his war
plans are aimed at "the people who gave [the terrorists] the weapons", can
he mean we are about to attack America? For it was mostly America that
destroyed a
moderate regime in Afghanistan and created a fanatical one.

On the day of the twin towers attack, an arms fair, selling weapons of
terror to assorted tyrants and human rights abusers, opened in London's
Docklands with the backing of the Blair government. Now Bush and Blair have
created what the UN calls "the world's worst humanitarian crisis", with up
to 7m people facing starvation. The initial American reaction was to demand
that Pakistan stop supplying food to the starving who, of course, fail to
as worthy victims.

The bombing intelligentsia (the New Humanitarians, as Edward Herman calls
them) are doing their bit, blaming September 11 on "an evil hatred of
modernity" and something called "apocalyptic nihilism". There are no reasons
why; the Barbican pictures are fake. Aside from a few "errors",
Anglo-American actions are redeemed, and those who produce the "laundry
list" of a blood-soaked historical record are "anti American", which
apparently is similar to the "anti-semitism" of those who dare to point out
the atrocious activities of the Israeli state.

Phyllis and Orlando Rodriguez lost their son Greg in the World Trade Centre.
They said this: "We read enough of the news to sense that our government is
heading in the direction of violent revenge, with the prospect of sons,
daughters, parents, friends in distant lands dying, suffering, and nursing
further grievances against us. It is not the way to go... not in our son's

. www.johnpilger.com





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