American Rabbi prevented from traveling to Israel/Palestine

Sunday, July 23, 2017

The Israeli government denied 5 members of an interfaith delegation (Jewish, Muslim and Christian) from boarding a flight at Dulles Airport to Israel.

The five people prohibited from flying were Rabbi Alissa Wise, Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) deputy director, Philadelphia, PA; Alana Krivo-Kaufman, Brooklyn, NY and Noah Habeeb, Virginia, both also of JVP; Rick Ufford Chase, of the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship, Rockland County, NY; and Shakeel Syed, a national board member with American Muslims for Palestine, Los Angeles, CA.

Read the press release issued by Jewish Voices for Peace.

I think the Israeli government is retreating from the community of Nations behind its carefully constructed “security” apparatus, apparently fearful of everything.

I’ll just put this information here in case anyone feels it’s necessary to contact the Israeli Embassy in the US.

Embassy of Israel

3514 International Drive N.W.

Washington D.C. 20008
 
Tel: 202-364-5500

Email:
Consular Services consular@washington.mfa.gov.il
General Information info@washington.mfa.gov.il

 

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Day #18 – July 24, 2014 – What does Congress know?

I’m sharing my post from two years ago. Sadly, nothing much has changed for the Palestinians on the ground in Gaza. In fact, it’s only gotten worse.

Displaced Palestinian children from Beit Hanun in the northern Gaza Strip stand behind the window of a classroom on July 23, 2014 at a UN school in the refugee camp of Jabalia where displaced families have taken refuge after fleeing heavy fighting in the Gaza Strip. (Photo credit: Juliana Jiménez is a former Slate photo editor and now a contributor writing on Latin American politics and culture for the Slatest.)

Source: Day #18 – July 24, 2014 – What does Congress know?

Today marks the 18th day of Israel’s genocidal assault against the men, women and children in Gaza last summer.

No doubt, “purists” will object to this characterization, but I have no doubts that the intent and the impact was genocidal.

I visited Capitol Hill yesterday (July 23, 2015) to speak with my member of Congress about Israel and Palestine.  She knows of my interest (and hopefully my expertise) because we have talked about it many times, both in DC and in Albuquerque.  I was disappointed but understand why she wasn’t in her office yesterday when I arrived. Her daughter went into labor early and delivered her first grandchild, so she was on a plane headed back to Albuquerque. Congratulations!!

I sat with her legislative assistant for foreign affairs. John and I have talked several times, and I felt the meeting was a success because we’re building bridges.  I may not agree with every vote, but I believe in my Congresswoman’s sincerity when she says she wants to do the right thing. My job is to help her (and John) understand what is the right thing.

I shared the following letter and we discussed these points for nearly an hour.  My shock and dismay came when I asked whether Congress and/or staff have received any briefings about Israel’s Operation Protective Edge. John said they were briefed last summer during Israel’s military assault, but he’s not aware of any follow-up briefings since then.   Day #18 – July 24, 2014 – What does Congress know?

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Day #17 – July 23, 2014 – Speaking out in Geneva 

Source: Day #17 – July 23, 2014 – Speaking out in Geneva

On 23 July 2014, the Geneva International Center for Justice delivered an oral statement during the 21st Special Session of the Human Rights Council, addressing the Human Rights situation in Palestine. GICJ stated that the right to self-defense had repeatedly been abused by Israel in order to justify its systematic reprisals against Palestinians and demanded an immediate ceasefire for the “Operation Protective Edge,” the establishment of an urgent and independent commission of inquiry and for all responsible to be brought to the International Criminal Court.

Now that I’ve recently completed an International Humanitarian Law class, I have a new appreciation for the statements made in this video.

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Day #15 – July 21, 2014 – Execution Israeli-style #OperationProtectiveEdge

Source: Day #15 – July 21, 2014 – Execution Israeli-style

Shuja’iya will certainly go down in the history books as the ‘Deir Yassin of Israel’s Operation Protective Edge. In two days (July 19-20, 2014) the Israeli military killed 55 civilians, including 19 children and 14 women, in the process of razing Shuja’iya.

The most moral army in the world executed an unarmed young man searching for his family in the Shuja’iya rubble.  The U.N. Independent Commission of Inquiry described the killing:

At about 3.30 p.m., Salem Shamaly, a local resident who had joined a group of international volunteers while searching for his missing cousin, was killed. As the volunteers were crossing a small alley, they heard a shot. The group immediately divided into two and took cover at opposite ends of the alley. Shortly afterwards, Salem Shamaly moved out of the area where he was taking cover and was shot. As he lay injured on the ground, he was shot twice again and killed. This incident was recorded on video.

Salem Shamaly’s parents learned of his death when they heard his voice on a video posted online by human rights activists who witnessed the killing.  (Palestinian Family Finds Missing Son in YouTube Video of His Shooting, New York Times, July 22, 2014)   Joe Catron, an American activist in Gaza, witnessed the murder and posted these photos.

Until someone in the Israeli military is held accountable for Shamaly’s execution, the IDF will continue to act with impunity.

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Cameraman in Gaza films the attack that killed him #OperationProtectiveEdge

Two years after Operation Protective Edge, Aljazeera World produced this video to remember the journalists and cameramen killed during Israel’s assault on Gaza.

On July 8, 2014, Israel launched Operation Protective Edge, aimed at stopping alleged rocket fire from Gaza into the occupied territories.

One of the most densely populated neighbourhoods in the Gaza Strip, Shujayea was claimed by Israel to be the site of Hamas “terror tunnels”.

The attack started late on July 19, initiating 24 hours of sustained air bombardment and artillery fire.

An American military officer talking to Al Jazeera said 11 Israeli artillery battalions fired around 7,000 shells into Shujayea over that 24-hour period, in which at least 65 Palestinians were killed and 288 wounded.

One paramedic reported more than 200 calls for help at the peak of demand, one from virtually every house on targeted streets.

The emergency services responded to every callout with scant regard for their own safety.

In this film, cameraman Khaled Hamad joins local paramedics in Shujayea as they attend to the dead and wounded at the height of the raid. Risking his life, he documents the atrocities committed against civilians in the neighbourhood during Operation Protective Edge.

A number of journalists were killed. News photographer Rami Rayan died while shooting stills of a busy market where locals were shopping during a brief humanitarian truce.

Knowing the risks, Hamad continues to film until his camera dramatically captures the raid in which he and paramedic Fouad Jaber come under direct attack.

Paramedics, Hamad’s fellow journalists and family all maintain that Israel targeted journalists in order to try and minimise coverage of what the Palestinians described as a “massacre”.

Most of the footage in the film is Hamad’s, his camera never stops shooting even after he is struck, and continues rolling long after he has taken his final breath.

Source: Al Jazeera

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Action versus apathy

Today I participated in a Twitter Storm from Gaza #IseeGaza #UnlockGaza

Twitterstorm

Yesterday I was arrested outside Senator Murkowski’s office in the Hart Senate Office Building in DC with an estimated 40-50 others protesting #StopTrumpCare.

Megan from Ohio again

The day before I wrote postcards to my two US Senators from New Mexico.

The National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 2810) has passed the House, with an additional $3.8 Billion for Israel plus $705 million for US-Israel missile defense cooperation, a $558 million increase above the President’s request.

I urge you to submit an amendment to delete the $3.8 Billion and the $705 Million from the NDAA. Peace and security are not enhanced with these expenditures.

Tomorrow?  I’m not sure what action I’ll be taking but I know I will do something.

After walking out of the Capitol Police detention facility yesterday, a filmmaker making a documentary about the #Resistance asked me why I do these actions.

I spoke about the need to resist being lulled into complacency and treating current events as normal — they are not.

I spoke about the horrific consequences if the GOP’s healthcare bill is passed and about ignoring climate change.

I spoke about how inaction leads to depression, at least for me. Action is hope.

Finally, I said the most important thing.  I do this action for my family, my three sons and granddaughter. It’s their future that is on the line now.

Lila - 4 years old and Jeremy

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Day #10 – July 16, 2014 – The four Bakr boys #OperationProtectiveEdge

Source: Day #10 – July 16, 2014 – The four Bakr boys

On July 16, 2014, the IDF killed four Palestinian children playing on the beach, Ismael Mohammed Bakr, 9; Ahed Atef Bakr, 10; Zakaria Ahed Bakr, 10; and Mohammed Ramez Bakr, 11. By this date, more than 200 Palestinians had been killed, including 43 children, in Israel’s so-called “Operation Protective Edge.”

Newsweek reported: Journalists from NBC News witnessed the attack and say that the children were playing soccer with journalists on the beach just moments before the shelling. Three other children survived but were wounded, one critically. Zakaria’s father told NBC News, “He was my only son…. He died with his cousins, they all died together.”

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