Posts Tagged ‘intifada’

by Daphna Whitmore

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Ahed Tamimi in a military court yesterday remains in detention without legal representation or charges

So, Lorde has been invited to a meeting with the Israeli Ambassador to New Zealand after announcing she would cancel her concert in Tel Aviv. Mr Yitzhak Gerberg wants to tell Lorde that Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East and to discuss the the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement.

Sure, Israel is a democracy of sorts for Jewish Israelis. There are anomolies, such as religious intermarriage being outlawed. This does contravene the notion of basic freedoms and resembles the old segregation seen in the Southern States of the US and the former apartheid regime in South  Africa. There are also no civil divorce rights in Israel – only religious bodies can rule on divorce – and there are numerous other democratic shortcomings, but for Jews many of the features of a democracy do exist.

For the 1.4 million Palestinian and other Arab populations in Israel, however, the democracy is very second rate. They face discrimination that is among the worst by Western standards. But all the limitations of democratic rights in Israel pale in comparison to the brutal military occupation carried out by the Israeli state for the past 50 years over the Palestinian people in Gaza and the West Bank.

Will Ambassador Gerberg explain what sort of democracy it is that imprisons children? There are currently 400 Palestinian children in Israeli prisons. This week the case of 16-year-old Ahed Tamimi highlighted the situation when she was seized in the middle of the night by Israeli soldiers after video footage showed her slapping two Israeli solidiers who were on her family property, just hours after a 15-year-old cousin of Ahed had been shot in the head by soldiers. (more…)

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by Daphna Whitmore

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Ahed Tamimi

On December 15 sixteen year old Ahed Tamimi became the face of Palestinian resistance when videos of her slapping and pushing Israeli soldiers out of her driveway made headlines. Her younger cousin had been shot through the head at close range just a few hours earlier.

In the middle of the night on December 20 Israeli soldiers raided Ahed’s home and detained her. They arrested her mother the following day when she went to the police station to visit Ahed, and also arrested Ahed’s cousin Nour who had pushed the soldiers from the family driveway.

Fifty years of occupation, continual land confiscations, demolition of homes, grabbing of resources, martial law, curfews, checkpoints, abductions, imprisonment without due process, are a horror without end for Palestinians. Lorde’s announcement yesterday that she is cancelling her planned concert in Tel Aviv at the request of the Boycott Divestment Sanctions (BDS) campaign is very good news and a sign that the campaign is broadening its support. (more…)