Responding to an international call to action, on March 9th activists in Berkeley unfurled a large banner over the highway reading, “Justice for Mehdi Aby Ayyash,” a Palestinian youth killed two years ago by the Israeli military. On March 10th, Palestinian solidarity activists in Chicago replaced street signs that read “Honorary Ben Gurion Way” with “Honorary Mehdi Abu Ayyash Way.” More actions are expected to take place in the coming weeks in different locations around the world.
Fifty members of the Bay Area human rights community protested the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s performance at Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco on February 27th, using chants, songs and street theater to highlight the IPO’s role in whitewashing Israel’s apartheid policies against the Palestinian people. The orchestra’s performances are being met with protests in six of the seven cities on its US tour, including a protest at Carnegie Hall in New York and at Seattle’s Benaroya Opera House.
Last month, BART riders complained about anti-Palestinian ads posted in the subway system by a Los Angeles-based pro-Israeli lobby called Stand With Us. When the public complained about the ads, BART officials pulled them. In February, a new version of the same ads appeared in BART stations and this time BART officials are refusing to take them down. Bay Area culture jamming activists installed replacement ads on February 21st that say "Stop Israeli Apartheid — Human Rights for All Is The Answer."
In the fall of 2009, a group of war resisters and veterans from San Francisco traveled to Israel and Palestine to meet with their Israeli counterparts in an effort to strengthen connections and share experiences. The group, calling itself Dialogues Against Militarism (DAM), partnered with David Zlutnick, a Bay Area filmmaker, to ensure that the voices and stories of those they spoke with would be captured and return with them to the United States. The new documentary, Occupation Has No Future
, premieres in San Francisco on February 3rd and San Rafael on February 10th.
Dave Id writes:
My traveling partner Tangle and I had the privilege of visiting Jerusalem and Palestine in December 2010. We met many kind and courageous people in the West Bank. We witnessed the hardships Palestinians face daily under the Israeli occupation. We saw how the Israeli Defense Forces react to those who dare to stand up, even peacefully, for the rights of their families and fellow villagers. We met Israeli and international solidarity activists willing to risk arrest and injury themselves. And we documented as much as we could during our relatively brief stay in the West Bank.
Anarchists Against the Wall (AATW) is an Israeli direct action group established in 2003 to resist the Annexation Wall being built by Israel on Palestinian land in the Occupied West Bank. They support Palestinian civilian resistance to massive confiscation of land and denial of freedom of movement caused by construction of the Wall. AATW activists have joined thousands of demonstrations against the Wall and against the Occupation in dozens of villages throughout the West Bank. They are currently touring in the US, including giving several presentations in Northern California.
On the morning of September 22nd, settler security personnel in Silwan in East Jerusalem shot and killed Samir Solhan. Solhan, a father of four, was a well known figure in Silwan. The Palestinian residents of Silwan rioted in the following days protesting the murder. Although the police readily accepted the settlers' security personnel's version that he was in fear of his life, testimonies and video tell a different story.