Thursday, 3 June 2010

We need to build a mass global boycott movement

The widespread outrage at Israel's deadly assult on the Freedom Flotilla carrying humanitarian aid to Gaza, leading to at least 9 deaths and the detention of hundreds of activists, is galvanising millions of people to ask how they can help bring justice for Palestine.

The mass protest movement against Israel’s horrific assault on Gaza and its 1.5 million people, nearly 18 months ago, brought many people into demonstrating for Palestine for the first time. That movement led to people and organisations internationally championing boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) as an ongoing, durable way of pressuring both Israel and the wider international community.

They recognised that the Israeli Defence Force's brutal 3-week offensive, which resulted in the deaths of over 1400 people in Gaza, was part of something bigger. In this country over 100,000 people marched in the largest demonstration against Israeli violence in UK history, with student occupations in solidarity with Gaza sweeping through 35 universities and colleges. This would have to be the basis for a permanent movement of solidarity, with BDS taking a central place.

On an on-going basis the campaign for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) is, in this country and elsewhere, a major component of how people can put pressure on Israel. Considering the close political and economic links between the UK and Israel, it is also essential to challenge our own government and businesses that are complicit in supporting Israeli oppression of Palestinians.

Read more HERE.


1 comment:

  1. Craig Murray on why Israel's actions are illegal

    Every comments thread on every internet site on the world which has discussed the Israeli naval murders, has been inundated by organised ZIonist commenters stating that the Israeli action was legal under the San Remo Manual of International Law Applicable to Armed Conflicts at Sea.

    They ignore those parts of San Remo that specifically state that it is illegal to enforce a general blockade on an entire population. But even apart from that, San Remo simply does not apply.

    The manual relates specifically to legal practice in time of war. With whom is Israel at war?

    There is no war.

    Israeli apologists have gone on to say they are in a state of armed conflict with Gaza.

    Really? In that case, why do we continually hear Israeli complaints about rockets fired from Gaza into Israel? If it is the formal Israeli position that it is in a state of armed conflict with Gaza, then Gaza has every right to attack Israel with rockets.

    But in fact, plainly to the whole world, the nature and frequency of Israeli complaints about rocket attacks gives evidence that Israel does not in fact believe that a situation of armed conflict exists.

    Secondly, if Israel wishes to claim it is in a state of armed conflict with Gaza, then it must treat all of its Gazan prisoners as prisoners of war entitled to the protections of the Geneva Convention. If you are in a formal state of armed conflict, you cannot categorise your opponents as terrorists.

    But again, it is plain for the world to see from its treatment and description of Gazan prisoners that it does not consider itself to be in a formal position of armed conflict.

    Israel is seeking to pick and choose which bits of law applicable to armed conflict it applies, by accepting or not accepting it is in armed conflcit depending on the expediency of the moment.

    I have consistently denounced Hamas rocket attacks into Israel. I have categorised them as terrorism. If Israel wishes now to declare it is in armed conflcit with Gaza, I withdraw my opposition and indeed would urge Hamas to step up such attacks to the maximum.

    Does Israel really wish to justify its latest action by declaring it is at war with Gaza? That is what the invocation of San Remo amounts to.