Queers Undermining Israeli Terrorism

“Catch a Fire,” a film about resistance to apartheid in South Africa, is showing at this theater.  Though South Africa’s apartheid system ended in 1994,


While rejoicing in the end of apartheid in South Africa, we must not forget that apartheid is alive and well is Israel, where Palestinians are routinely denied economic, political and civil rights on the basis of their national origin.  Boycott and divestment, two of the tools that were most effective in the international fight against apartheid in South Africa, can be equally effective in stopping the injustice and brutality imposed on the Palestinian population by the Israeli occupation regime, as Bishop Desmond Tutu said in this 2002 statement (excerpts; see the full statement at http://www.thirdworldtraveler.com/Israel/Israel_Time_To_Divest.html) :

“The end of apartheid stands as one of the crowning accomplishments of the last century, but we would not have succeeded without the help of international pressure. There is no greater testament to the basic dignity of ordinary people everywhere than the divestment movement of the 1980s.

“A similar movement has taken shape recently, this time aiming at an end to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories. We should hope that average citizens again rise to the occasion, since the obstacles to a renewed movement are surpassed only by its moral urgency.

“Moral and financial pressure is again being mustered one person at a time. In the United States, students at more than 40 campuses are demanding a review of university investments. Europe faces efforts ranging from consumer boycotts to arms embargoes.

“These tactics are not the only parallels to the struggle against apartheid South Africa. Yesterday's township dwellers can tell you about today's life in the occupied Palestinian territories. To travel only a few blocks in his own homeland, an elderly grandfather waits to beg for the whim of a teenage soldier. More than an emergency is required to get to a hospital; less than a crime earns a trip to jail.


“The lucky ones have a permit to leave their squalor to work in the cities, but luck runs out when security closes all checkpoints, paralyzing an entire people. The indignities, dependence and anger are all too familiar.

“Almost instinctively, the Jewish people have always been on the side of the voiceless. In their history, there is painful memory of massive round-ups, house demolitions and collective punishment. In their scripture, there is acute empathy for the disenfranchised. The occupation represents a dangerous and selective amnesia of the persecution from which these traditions were born.

“If apartheid ended, so can the occupation, but the moral force and international pressure will have to be just as determined. The current divestment effort is the first, though certainly not the only, necessary move in that direction.”






 Companies with financial interests in Israel that are targeted by an international boycott include:

AOL Time Warner
Home Depot
Johnson & Johnson Kimberly-Clark

Sara Lee
The Limited Inc
Victoria’s Secret

 This information brought to you by QUIT, Queers for Palestine.

As queers, we are part of an international movement for human rights that encompasses the movement for Palestinian liberation, and all other liberation movements. We are also part of the growing international movement seeking active ways to express our solidarity with the people of Palestine.  Join us at www.quitpalestine.org

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