WAR IS OVER? Let us stay well informed. Here are some of the messages we received recently and want to share with you: testimonies from the civilian front line, Arab news updates and links for background, action and protest.

this page brings posts from late august till the end of september.
most recent posts are here .

follow these links for previous posts:
August 14 / 13 / 12 / 11 / 10 / 9 / 8 / 7 / 6 / 5 / 4 / 3 / 1
July 31 / 30 / 29 / 28 / 27 / 26 / 25 / 23 / 22 / 21 / 20 / 19 / 18 / 17 / 16 / 15 / 11 / 8 / 6 / 5

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From: Emily Jacir
Date: Thursday 21 september 2006 0:17
Subject: ...To the ends of the earth

This text was written by my friend Tony Chaker in Beirut.
It is exactly perfect.
Emily



…To the ends of the earth


My non-presence with you is not a coincidence; travelling to Hong Kong would have been difficult in the circumstances that you know very well, but with the lifting of the Israeli siege it wouldn't have been impossible. And yet, I took the conscious decision not to travel abroad, not to be physically present and instead, to let a text I've written represent me. I could try and explain the reasons for my decision, like not wanting to bother with the paperwork process of obtaining the visa, or that after weeks of constant Israeli bombardments I feel too weak to take a long flight, or too weak to explain to anyone, once I arrive, what had happened and why, and especially too weak, or maybe too proud, to see even the faintest hint of pity in anyone's eyes. All of these are valid enough reasons for a person not to travel, but in fact the deep reason for my non-appearance is elsewhere.
In order for me to try and explain it, I should take a few steps back. During the long weeks of the latest Israeli aggression on my country, which felt more like centuries, I was completely paralysed, and all I managed to write was the following:

Little Hiroshima

I've got my own little Hiroshima right here in my pocket.
Sometimes I take it out, I put it on the table, and ponder.
It will take us countless years and several generations to grasp the immensity of the catastrophe that has (and is) struck us- and these women who now wear black, and who become more and more numerous with each passing day- these women are not only mourning their loved ones, but they are mourning hope itself.
Where are God's angels when you need them? I just want one of them to whisper in my ear that things are going to be ok, maybe then I can breathe again.

Obviously, this was not enough- in spite of the numerous replies I received when I sent this text by email. It is certainly not enough if measured to the immensity of the catastrophe that has come to pass over my country. The space of the catastrophe and its time are very strange formations that can only be grasped if directly experienced and then measured to the “obvious”, to what we all take for granted, to a normal state of things. The reasons for my non-presence lie precisely in this catastrophic time, and this catastrophic space, that I am yet to leave. As long as I remain in them, I will always be able to say: I am no one. I am no one, and I am legion. I am a million screaming banshees that have no name, roaming about an indefinite space that is all inside, that has no limits, that has no outside (note that the double siege established by both Israel and Syria over the sea, the air and the land transformed Lebanon into an unreachable island, a lost land). I am no one, and yet I am a howling Jezebel that can be everywhere she wishes, when she wishes: I can be in the halls of the United Nations in New York, floating around Dan Gillerman, Israel's ambassador to the UN, shutting his mouth with my thousand hands, to stop him from saying that Israel is bombarding Lebanon for its own good, or I can haunt the dreams of John Bolton, the US ambassador to the UN, when he dreams of the Lebanese victims who in his eyes are not equal, even in their death, to the Israeli victims, because the first died in “self-defence”, while the latter were victims of terrorism; I can even go underground, to the Hizballah tunnels, and find the un-findable Hassan Nassrallah, take him by my thousand hands, and give him a thousand shakes, and tell him with my thousand voices that there can be no victory over this field of ruins, and that I am sick of seeing women in black mourning their loved ones, and that all I want is to be able to “cultivate my garden”.
For these reasons I cannot be in Hong Kong: if I were to travel, I would have to go to embassies and airports, to present papers and documents that state exactly who I am and where is my place in this world-structure that we all share. I will have to regain my pre-catastrophic status of a specific person, with a specific position in a specific society, and I am simply not ready or willing to see that happening, at least for now. I don't want to “forget what happened” and return to normality. I am not willing and I am not ready to do that. So, in short, you can consider this paper as a message in a bottle, coming to you from across the seas, from a lost island.

[break]

As I said before, the space of the catastrophe is an infinite space that is all inside, and if I were to use a rather facile and reductive analogy (reductive because it concretises what cannot be concretised), I'd say that the closest representation for such a space would be one of Piranese's prison drawings. In addition to these qualifications, I would say, purely empirically, that catastrophic space and catastrophic time are absolutely irrational, and absolutely logical. I write “empirically”, and I'll give some examples: we all regained our war reflexes, and those who were too young to have any, acquired some very quickly; one of those reflexes is to “hide under”… to hide under anything actually, anything available, and it is known that the safest places are the ones that are well hidden under the ground, like basements or obscure staircases of apartment buildings; but still, many people decided that they wanted to hide on rooftops and tried to inhabit the top floors of apartment buildings. The logical reasons for this irrational behaviour are simple: these people could not stand the idea of dying asphyxiated under the rubbles of an entirely destroyed building, a very probable event with the extensive use by the Israeli army of implosion bombs and bombs that we still need to find a name for; also, choosing top floors means that one is safe enough from the shrapnel of cluster bombs that exploded on the streets. In catastrophic time, Beirut became an Upside-down City. Here's another example: during the aggression, the Israeli planes targeted bridges, tunnels, trucks, and small motorcycles. One is hardly aware of the abundance of these in normal times, but once they became targeted, moving around Beirut by car became a riddle; how to go from this point to that one without crossing a bridge, or driving behind a truck, or encountering a small motorcycle? In order to do so, each person-driver had to reinvent a mental map of the city, with black gaps for tunnels and bridges, and always taking into account the fact that chaotic variables (trucks, motorcycles, electricity cuts leaving streets in absolute darkness, or the worse variable yet: the shelling) that can never be correctly calculated. And once one gets to where he was going, he will have to calculate again the return trip, taking into account all of these variables, and if the shelling started, superimposing on the original mental map other maps, made through calculating the time between seeing the flash from the blasts and hearing the sound of the impact (thus acquiring some knowledge on the distance of the shelling). In catastrophic times, Beirut became the Kingdom of Unrelated Points and Infinite Calculations. Another example: a friend of mine had a war-dream since she was a child. In her dream, bombs are falling everywhere, but she cannot hear them; she knows the bombs are falling, like one knows in a dream, and yet there are no sounds of explosion. For a moment the bombs stop, she looks under the bed, and BOOM!, a bomb blows up in her face. There is nothing particularly unusual about that dream, except that, during this war, a mutual friend of ours had the exact same dream. Exactly the same, only in her dream, she's the one in the bed and not the original dreamer. Weeks after that incident was related to us by its protagonists, and in spite of the ceasefire, a third friend had a similar dream- not exactly the same though, but a variation on the same theme: in his dream, he is in his bed sleeping, and the sound of the bombs is deafening, and yet he cannot leave his bed. He jumps out of the bed but remains in it, and the bombs keep on falling. In catastrophic times, Beirut became the City of Borrowed and Inverted Dreams.

[break]

For some observers, especially from the outside, and more especially if the observers were observing the events through the insipid and dull screens of televisions, it would be very tempting to say that what happened transformed or reverted a modern city to a pre-modern, primitive space. The readiness to take such hasty conclusions is enhanced by the fact that, for almost 150 years now, the discourse on the “civilised self” and the “primitive other”, of the “good savage”, is well into effect. And in fact, many things that I've read emphasize the technological advancements of the Israeli army in the face of the “primitiveness” of the weapons used against them (an easy-enough analogy in the Occupied Palestinian Territories- but the same can apply to Hizballah's rockets, which have a very low level of accuracy). Do not fool yourselves: catastrophic space and catastrophic time are absolutely modern; they are modern in their irrationality, and their logical systems; in fact, they are the underside of modernity, the other world that lies behind the mirror traversed by Alice, Lewis Carroll's character, and yes, during the war we lived in Wonderland. And while the inhabitants of Beirut and its heavily bombarded southern suburb, along with the hundreds of thousands of the displaced from southern Lebanon, whose villages were absolutely erased, lived in universes of allegorical times and allegorical spaces brought forth by the catastrophe, and invented logical but irrational mental maps to guide them through the Kingdom of Unrelated Points, and borrowed each others' dreams- while all of that was happening then, both the Israeli army and Hizballah fighters were using modernist maps made of Cartesian points and precise coordinates, one more efficiently than the other, but still. They both shared the same conception of space: an absolute space of mathematics and geometry, a space with no place for allegorical time or existential memories. In such a space, both are not un-important, they simply have no place to be. The Israeli army and the fighters of Hizballah were both victims of modernity's biggest project: the geometrisation of the world. What is tragic is that they're both unaware of how much their mutual conceptions of the world are similar, and of how oppressive and violent their world is.

[break]

To conclude, allow me to return to something I had written before the latest Israeli aggression; I've written this for my last installation, “A Window to the World”:

“Given the right circumstances, the appropriate standpoint (preferably with one's back against the sea) and the correct angle of vision (preferably looking obliquely), one would have the distinct feeling that all the buildings in Beirut are packed-up and ready to leave; most of them stand on slender columns that would aid them in their journey; their antennas and dish receptors look like fancy hats that one would wear on such a voyage; their balconies are empty suitcases and boxes waiting to be filled by the small histories that unfold in every apartment: long hours of anguish and fleeting moments of excitement. At those times, Beirut would resemble a large horde of escape boats aimlessly fleeing a sinking ship, and it would be the best time to sip a cup of coffee by the sea.”

I want to return to this text to say that I am tired. I am tired of living for the sole purpose of accompanying friends to the airport (or to ports as of late, for them to be evacuated on ships to distant countries) in order for me to bid them goodbye and to wish them safe journeys. And frankly, I cannot imagine my life far from this place; true, this is the only country I have- but mostly, it is here that I learned the meaning of the words “here” and “there”, and all my life I've been measuring the distance between them, and testing boundaries. My only solace is the firm knowledge that, even after centuries of my death, Beirut will always remain the dim and flickering light that guides all those who are lost in the deserts of the Orient, whether real or imagined. So send us your weak, your marginals, your unwanted, your freaks and monsters. In catastrophic times they shall become kings and queens, from under this cedar tree to the ends of the earth.


Tony Chakar
September 2006

(**in the context of the Documenta 12 magazines as a contribution to Springerin)

____________________________________________________________________

From: info@boycottisrael.ps
Date: Monday 18 september 2006 9:56
Subject: PACBI Update 13--September 18, 2006

Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
www.pacbi.org
info@boycottisrael.ps

UPDATE 13
September 18, 2006


Calls for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions
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1.Irish academics call on EU to stop funding Israeli academic institutions
Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign| Press Release | September 16, 2006

In a letter published in the Irish Times today, (see below) 61 Irish academics from a wide variety of disciplines call for a moratorium on EU support of Israeli academic institutions until Israel abides by UN resolutions and ends the occupation of Palestinian territories.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=372_0_1_0_C

2.UN International Conference of Civil Society in Support of the Palestinian People Adopts Plan of Action
The United Nations Office at Geneva | September 8, 2006

The two-day International Conference of Civil Society in Support of the Palestinian People this afternoon adopted a Plan of Action and concluded its annual meeting.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=365_0_1_0_C

Right To Education
-------------------------
1.Appeal to the Heads of Israeli Academic Institutions and Feminist Researchers
Gender Studies Project| MADA Al-Carmel: Arab Center for Applied Social Research, Haifa | September 2006

With the onset of the academic year and in light of the difficult political circumstances facing the Palestinian people (children and adults), the Gender Studies Project (GSP) at MADA Al-Carmel: Arab Center for Applied Social Research, Haifa, appeals to all those who believe in the importance of the right to education to support us in petitioning the Israeli government to respect this right.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=371_0_1_0_C

2.A Basic Right
Ksenia Svetlova | The Jerusalem Post | September 14, 2006

At 10 a.m. on September 11, the schoolchildren of Umm Tuba, a neighborhood in east Jerusalem, weren't in their classrooms.
That day, their textbooks weren't opened and their lessons never started. Neither the principal nor the parents of these students objected to the children skipping school. In fact, they all spent the morning protesting in front of City Hall.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=374_0_1_0_C

3.For Gaza's students, classes by 'remote control'
Tamara Traubmann | Haaretz | September 5, 2006

Shaima Naji, a 21-year old from Gaza, has never attended classes at Bethlehem University where she is enrolled to study occupational therapy. Naji registered at the university four years ago, but security forces forbade her entry into the West Bank. Occupational therapy, commonly called OT, has become a vital aspect of rehabilitative treatment in the Gaza Strip since the intifada began, but Naji may only receive professional training in Bethlehem because there is no similar course of study in the Gaza Strip.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=A359_0_1_0_M

Israeli Exhibition at the Venice Biennale
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1.At the Venice Biennale, the ethnic cleansing and genocide of the Palestinian people is celebrated
| ISM Italy | September 6, 2006

ISM-Italy Press Release 06 09 2006
From an article by Esther Zandberg, an Israeli architecture expert, published on 28th August 2006 in Haaretz (enclosure 1), the contents of the exhibition named "Life Saver: Typology of Commemoration in Israel - Architecture and Society" have come to light. The exhibition has the patronage of the Israeli government and is part of the next Venice Biennale which will open September the tenth.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=363_0_1_0_C

2.The Campaign for the Cancellation of the Israeli Exhibition
Susannah Tarbush | Al-Hayat (London) | September 7, 2006

The 10th International Architecture Biennale in Venice - There is a growing international and Palestinian campaign for the organisers of the 10th International Architecture Biennale in Venice to cancel the exhibition in the Israeli pavilion. The Israeli exhibition is entitled "Life Saver: Typology of Commemoration in Israel."
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=362_0_1_0_C

3.Ban Israel from Biennale, British architects urge
Assaf Uni | Haaretz | September 6, 2006

LONDON - A British architects' association is calling on the 10th International Architecture Biennale in Venice to consider keeping an Israeli pavilion from participating in this year's exhibition, which opens Sunday."We request that the Biennale Committee consider withdrawing the Israeli entry as being provocative and counterproductive to the aims of this Biennale, and particularly distasteful in the context of the aftermath of an ugly, unnecessary war and wanton destruction of neighboring Lebanon, and a continuing one-sided war in Gaza," the group Architects and Planners for Justice in Palestine wrote in a petition to exhibition organizers.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=A361_0_1_0_M

4.Letter to the Organizers of the 10th International Architecture Exhibition at the Venice Biennale
September 3, 2006

We the undersigned groups and organizations request that the Venice Biennale cancel the country exhibition of Israel entitled "LIFE SAVER - Typology of Commemoration in Israel - Architecture and Society" for the following reasons: The Israeli participation is supported by the Israeli state, a state that continues against all International laws and UN resolutions to occupy the West Bank and Gaza Strip; to deny the right of return for Palestinian refugees; and to wage a daily war against Palestinian children, men and women, their homes and livelihoods. 
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=A356_0_1_0_M

Opinion/ Analysis
-----------------------
1.AAUP Journal "Academe" Publishes Academic Boycott Conference Papers

The American Association of University Professors (AAUP) has published papers that were to have been presented at its conference on academic boycott in February 2006. The conference was cancelled due to sustained pressure from the Israel lobby in the United States, Britain, and Israel. Several articles arguing for the academic boycott of Israel were presented to the organizers and subsequently published in the AAUP's journal Academe. An introduction by Joan Wallach Scott, co-editor of the papers in the September-October 2006 issue of Academe, discusses the background to the conference and the circumstances that led to its cancellation. The introduction and selected papers from the journal follow.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=369_0_1_0_C

2.Realignment or extinction: More withdrawals crucial to fight demographic threat
Arnon Sofer [professor at Haifa University] | YNet News | September 15, 2006

In the 1930s, Czechoslovakia and Poland ceased to exist, but even without sovereignty their citizens (not including the Jews) continued to live there.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=373_0_1_0_C

3.Making Israel take responsibility
James Bowen | Haaretz | September 15, 2006

Many countries try to excuse their failings by blaming outsiders. For several decades after independence, people in the Irish Republic blamed its economic under-performance on centuries of British rule. Similarly, Israel uses anti-Semitism to excuse its expulsion of Palestinians in 1948, its discrimination against the Palestinians who managed to remain inside the Green Line, and its territorial expansionism after 1967. 
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=367_0_1_0_C

4.Working to end Israeli apartheid
Will Youmans | The Arab American News | September, 2006

Israel's recent invasion and destruction of Lebanon should have some interesting long-term political repercussions. Israel's unreserved show of brute force against so many civilians exposed the reality that the problems between Israel and its neighbors are more fundamental than a dispute over land, hostages, or terrorism.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=363_0_1_0_C

5.Why I Boycott: A Letter to Rabbi Andy Bachman
Anthony Alessandrini | Counterpunch | September 4, 2006

Dear Rabbi Bachman:
I write to you as someone who has been protesting outside of Aroma Espresso Bar in New York City. As you probably know, Aroma is Israel's largest coffee chain, with 73 locations and growing. As you point out in your blog entry,"Meet Me for Coffee", this includes locations in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. But you don't mention that Aroma also has a cafe located in Maaleh Adumim, an illegal settlement in the West Bank (by "illegal," I simply refer to the standard of international law, which is clear about the illegality of permanent settlements in occupied territories).
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=A360_0_1_0_M

6.Criticism of Israel Is not 'anti-Semitism'
Linda Heard | Arab News | September 5, 2006

Results of a ten-month inquiry into anti-Semitism in Britain will be delivered by three members of Parliament to Downing Street on Thursday. And according to the Guardian, the report is likely to criticize calls to boycott academics working in Israel and blast "left-wing activists as well as Muslim extremists for using criticism of Israel as 'a pretext' for spreading hatred against British Jews".
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=A358_0_1_0_M

____________________________________________________________________

From: Emily Jacir
Date: Tuesday 5 September 2006 11:42
Subject: ENTRY DENIED - more Palestinians forbidden from going home

more ENTRY DENIED.
this is called ethnic cleansing.
and the sky gets continues to get smaller and smaller.
e

http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article5646.shtml
The silent transfer: Israel says I've lived with my family long enough

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/objects/pages/PrintArticleEn.jhtml?itemNo=736401
After 30 years, wife loses right to enter country
By Amira Hass

"It must be a mistake, the caprice of a clerk at border control," Aadel Samara responded when his wife Enayeh informed him by phone on May 26 that her entry to Israel, through the Sheikh Hussein Terminal (near Beit She'an), was not permitted. There was no reason to suspect anything but an error. After all, throughout their 30 years together this was the drill: Every three months, a day or two before the Israeli tourist visa in her American passport was set to expire, she would go away for a few days - to Jordan, sometimes Cyprus or Egypt, then return with a new visa for another three months.

Except when Aadel was working on his doctorate in economics, in Britain, she and the children joined him for part of the time.

The Samaras are both natives of Beit Ur al Foqa, a village west of Ramallah. Enayeh was born in 1950; Aadel in 1944. But in 1967, two months before the war, she visited her father, who was working in the United States.

After occupying the West Bank and Gaza Strip, Israel conducted a census and ruled that anyone who was not present in the territories at the time of the census ceased being a resident. Thus, like thousands of other Palestinians, Enayeh lost her residency status. In 1975, she visited her birthplace on an American passport, as a tourist. She met Aadel, they fell in love and married. When their daughter, Samer, was 39-days-old and still nursing, she accompanied her mother on the quarterly trip to Jordan for visa renewal. They submitted a dozen applications for "family reunification" - in vain.

The Israeli authorities, which have controlled the Palestinian Population Registry since 1967 to this day, refused. So over the years they had no choice but to get used to the frequent travel arrangement.

"We could have built a thriving economic enterprise with all the money we spent on these trips," Aadel tried joking at his house, which seemed so empty to him without his wife.

"Try crossing through the Allenby Bridge," he advised her on May 26. He didn't even tell his children what had happened exactly. "I try not to tell them the tough things, they'd start crying," he explained, as though he had forgotten that Samer was already 30 and Yazan was 26. But when her sister in Amman telephoned on May 28 to say that Enayeh had failed to get through once again, they realized they had been naive to think that their life, with its somewhat odd routine, would not be disrupted.

Aadel spent a month running between various offices of the Palestinian Authority and tried in vain to schedule a meeting with representatives from the American consulate. His sister-in-law in Chicago tried meanwhile to catch her senator's attention. Enayeh herself delivered a letter to the U.S. embassy in Amman and received no reply.

Similar straits
In their rushing about, they began hearing of more and more people in similar straits, and all began to conclude that this went beyond particular cases and was a matter of policy from above. Several of those refused entry say they heard from the officials and policemen at the border crossing that "there are directives from the Interior Ministry," or that "from now on we are permitted to visit once a year, for a month only."

When Enayeh realized her return home was uncertain, she decided to go to her sister in the U.S. Her two children and 3-year-old grandson, Omar, traveled to bid her goodbye. Who knows when they will see each other again.

Aadel cannot leave. In the late 1960s and early '70s, he served five and a half years in an Israeli prison: five for activity in the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and several years later - for activity in the Democratic Front (after he had already quit the group over his criticism against the Soviet Union.) In 1998 he was arrested by Palestinian intelligence for 27 days. He had been among 20 signatories to an open letter attacking Yasser Arafat for the corrupt practices of his regime and its failings in dealing with the Israeli occupation. But his periods of incarceration never impacted his wife's tourist visas, so her entry ban is clearly unrelated to his past or political views.

"From the moment we met and up to the moment we said goodbye at the airport, she cried," said her son Yazan. And you? "I cried too," he admitted. "And my sister also cried." His sister said that "Mom aged 10 years" in a month of forced absence from home and the uncertainty regarding when and if she would be able to return.

"We had so hoped," said Samer, an engineer by profession, "that now, when we're adults and earning a living, that Mom would be able to rest, work less hard" (at the beauty parlor she opened in Ramallah). In the four days they spent with her "I felt how weak I am," Yazan recounted. "I can't help my mother. We don't have an authority that can help, and the Israeli regime does as it pleases. Israel's policy is known. If it could, it would expel everyone. By any means possible it will get people out of here."


The silent transfer: Israel says I've lived with my family long enough

Sam Bahour writing from Al-Bireh, occupied West Bank, Live from Palestine, 2 September 2006

Well friends,

The mighty State of Israel has spoken. Well, to be specific, the Israeli soldiers maintaining Israel's 39-year military occupation and who are fortified -- draconian style -- in an illegal settlement called Beit El (which is built on confiscated Palestinian land, partly my family's) located on a hilltop north east of my city, El-Bireh, have spoken.

Drum roll please ...

The Occupying State of Israel has decided that I have been living with my family and two daughters long enough. After being given a one month tourist visa when I entered through the Israeli border to reach the Palestinian areas (which is the only way to enter), the Israelis have responded to my request for a three month extension by saying one more month would be more than enough. Not only that, but they were kind enough to relieve me from the humiliation and agony of requesting another extension to remain with my family by hand writing, in Arabic, Hebrew and English, LAST PERMIT, on the visa.

What does this mean? As my previous writing and that of others points out, it means I will need to bid farewell to my wife and two girls, leave home, exit Israel and attempt to reenter in order to get back to the Palestinian areas under occupation by Israel. Sounds simple enough, given I've been dancing to this routine for 13 years now.

However, Israel has been denying entry to thousands like me, foreign nationals who do not have a Palestinian I.D. card (I applied for family unification 1994 but Israel refuses, to date, to issue me a I.D. card too). So telling me, like the many before me ever since Hamas was elected into government, to leave Palestine/Israel by not providing a serious visa extension while I'm in the country, is an off-the-radar way of silently transferring Palestinians living here out of Palestine. Of course, Israel is betting that on every family it can break this way, the remaining family members will voluntarily leave to relocate in order to join their exiled loved one(

The final result of this transfer policy: a land with no people, for a people with no land. Finally, the original myth that Israel was created on can be made to come through. After creating scores of refugees by numerous wars, killing scores under occupation, deporting scores more, detaining yet scores more, making life under occupation miserable for scores more, and now by refusing to allow Palestinians that come from around the world to contribute to a better future, Israel would have finally succeeded in emptying the land from the majority of Palestinians, opening the way for more illegal settlement, land grabs and annexations.

I have much more to write about this, and will, as I wage the battle to remain with my wife, with my girls, in my home, in my father's and grandfather's homeland. I will soon write an essay to make my case and that of all Palestinians prohibited from reaching their homes and families.

If I only had the email address of the multi-lingual occupation soldier that wrote "last permit" on my visa, I would send him pictures of my two girls, Areen, 12, and Nadine, 6. I wonder if his/her children look any different on the first day of school.

I thank all those who are assisting in this issue, especially the many Israeli friends who understand that those being DENIED ENTRY are those that have come to build bridges, not walls. We have come to invest and create a new reality - a reality that ends this racist occupation and brings a brighter future, a joint future, to both Palestinian and Israeli children.

I end by passing to you the link to yesterday's bold article by Amria Hass, that never-tiring Israeli journalist living in Ramallah who forces us to always remember that peaceful coexistence is not a pipe dream, but rather a historical inevitability.

Can you really not see?

Steadfast (like never before),

Sam

Sam Bahour is a Palestinian-American living in the besieged Palestinian City of El-Bireh in the West Bank. He is co-author of
HOMELAND: Oral Histories of Palestine and Palestinians (1994) and can be reached at sbahour@palnet.com.

____________________________________________________________________

From: info@boycottisrael.ps
Date: Tuesday 5 September 2006 2:21
Subject: Ilan Pappe: Genocide in Gaza

+ More Opinion / Analysis:

1. Genocide in Gaza
Ilan Pappe | The Electronic Intifada | September 2, 2006

A genocide is taking place in Gaza. This morning, 2 September, another three citizens of Gaza were killed and a whole family wounded in Beit Hanoun. This is the morning reap, before the end of day many more will be massacred. An average of eight Palestinians die daily in the Israeli attacks on the Strip. Most of them are children. Hundreds are maimed, wounded and paralyzed.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=354_0_1_0_C

2. Supporting CUPE's Israel Boycott: Talking Points for Canadian Unions
Jason Kunin | ZNet | August 31, 2006

Not many people in North America were paying attention in July 2005 when The Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions, along with over 170 Palestinian unions, political parties, and organizations called for a global campaign of boycotts and divestment from Israel similar to those brought against apartheid South Africa.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=352_0_1_0_C

3. Rage of the elephant: Israel in Lebanon
Ronnie Kasrils | Mail and Guardian (SA) | September 1, 2006

Israel is like the elephants of the Kruger National Park, observed Ariel Sharon's former spokesperson on a recent visit to South Africa. Ra'anan Gissin was speaking as the guest of the country's Zionist Federation: "We just want to be left alone," he pleaded. "We seem docile, but if you wound us we can go crazy because we are an endangered species."
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=350_0_1_0_C

4. Can you really not see?
Amira Hass | Haaretz | August 30, 2006

Let us leave aside those Israelis whose ideology supports the dispossession of the Palestinian people because "God chose us." Leave aside the judges who whitewash every military policy of killing and destruction. Leave aside the military commanders who knowingly jail an entire nation in pens surrounded by walls, fortified observation towers, machine guns, barbed wire and blinding projectors. Leave aside the ministers. All of these are not counted among the collaborators. These are the architects, the planners, the designers, the executioners.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=347_0_1_0_C

5. Les raisons de boycotter tous les produits d'Israël en vente en Suisse: un argumentaire
Anne Gut, Christine Othenin-Girard et Bruno Vitale | | August 2006

Alors que la communauté internationale exige du Hamas qu'il reconnaisse Israël et renonce à la violence, le gouvernement israélien - aux actions duquel la communauté internationale semble aveugle - déploie sa puissance militaire sur le territoire palestinien et au Liban, étend les colonies d'occupation et intensifie les assassinats ciblés.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=A345_0_1_0_M

6. Jerusalem, a zone of contact
Jack Persekian | International Middle East Media Center | August 27, 2006

I am always amazed at the proximity and inextricability of lives between Palestinians and Israelis in Jerusalem. The rub off effect is incredible and the acquaintanceship between the two sides would only lead (as common sense prescribes) to mutual understanding and eventually more tolerance. But life has taught us that the world does not necessarily make sense or follow any logic.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=A344_0_1_0_M

7. Make Israel halt its excesses
  As'ad Abdul Rahman | Gulf News | August 26, 2006

Israeli war crimes in its last military misadventure against Lebanon have reached a level that was previously thought unreachable.
Killing and displacing civilians, taking out their infrastructure, terrorising their communities are but few of the atrocities that Israel has visited on Lebanese civilians in an apparently deliberate manner.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=A342_0_1_0_M

8. Second-class compensation
  Aryeh Dayan | Haaretz | August 22, 2006

Is a shop owner in Nahariya, who was forced to close his business during the war, entitled to more compensation than the owner of a similar store in Acre or the Haifa bay area, who had to close shop? Are lawyers and accountants who were forced to close their offices in Kiryat Shmona or Ma'alot eligible for higher compensation than that which will be given to their colleagues in Rosh Pina or Safed?
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=A338_0_1_0_M
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From: Ricken Patel - Ceasefire Campaign
Date: Tuesday 29 august 2006 0:51
Subject: Now let's tackle the root cause

Dear Friends,

Two weeks ago, over 300,000 of us from 150 countries came together to stop the war in Lebanon. Since we helped to achieve a fragile ceasefire there, we've received hundreds of emails from you suggesting that we continue our campaign by focusing on the root cause of problems in the region -- Israel/Palestine. Hundreds of civilians have been killed in Palestine over the last month, and strikes by both sides have residents caught in a desperate situation.

Images of this conflict have haunted our televisions for decades. Experts agree that the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is a root cause of the war in Lebanon, has promoted tensions between Israel and the Arab world, and been cited by Islamic radicals as a key reason for terrorist attacks on the US and other countries. And yet for years there has been no concerted effort or leadership to restart the peace process, despite several hopeful signs and opportunities. Please click below to call upon the UN Security Council, the Israeli Prime Minister, and the Palestinian President and Prime Minister to immediately implement a ceasefire in Israel/Palestine and re-launch a new and comprehensive peace process:

www.CeasefireCampaign.org

This is a moment of opportunity in the Middle East. The entire world's attention is focused on the region, and world leaders like UK Prime Minister Blair and UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan will be visiting in the coming weeks. In September, almost every world leader will be gathering in New York for a United Nations summit. US President Bush has moved quickly to focus all this attention on his agenda of a wider confrontation with Syria and Iran. We need to act quickly before this moment passes to direct attention towards the right goals. Please click below to sign our call to action and send your personalized message directly to key decision makers:

www.CeasefireCampaign.org

If enough pressure is created, a ceasefire in Israel/Palestine could be achieved within days. Restarting the peace process will take more time, but we can take a first step by helping to move this issue to the top of the international agenda...

With hope,

Ricken, Priscila, Tom, Alicia, and the rest of the Ceasefire Campaign Team.

____________________________________________________________________

From: jan ackenhausen
Date: Monday 28 august 2006 15:08
Subject: TALES FROM BEIRUT part I & II

Most of you probably know I`m back in Beirut now, here are some thoughs on the sideline; http://farfromanywhere.blogspot.com/

--
????

____________________________________________________________________

From: nat muller
Date: Monday 28 august 2006 14:00
Subject: Cinema Lebanon: Charity Screening in De Balie September 9

9 September | 18.00 h, 20.00 h, 22.00 h
Cinema Libanon: Benefietavond

Entrance: euro 10,- | combination ticket euro 25,-
Location: De Balie, Kleine-Gartmanplantsoen 10, Amsterdam
Language: English
With introductions by Pierre Sarraf (director Né à Beyrouth )

More info:

http://www.balie.nl
http://www.neabeyrouth.org/

Lebanon , and more specifically Beirut , still conjure two very dichotomous and cliché images in the West: either the lamented former glory of the pearl of the Middle East , or the atrocities of a 15-year protracted civil war. With the media saturation of the recent war between Israel and Hizbullah still fresh, and the shaky promise of a brittle ceasefire, Lebanon once again risks to fall prey to stereotyping. In defiance of the war and in solidarity with the humanitarian crisis in Lebanon , De Balie organises an evening of films, documentaries and videos by Lebanese makers, in collaboration with the Lebanese production house and film festival Né à Beyrouth.

The selection of films are testimony to the resistance of Lebanese artists to a historical and cultural amnesia, and show that being rooted in contemporary Lebanon means is as much a commemoration of an untold past, as it is a reflection on and of the present.

With thanks to: Pierre Sarraf (Né à Beyrouth), Joanna Hadjithomas & Khalil Joreige, Celluloid Dreams, Akram Zaatari, and other participating artists.

Block 1: 18.00 h

"Ce sera beau, from Beirut with love" Wael Nouredinne, 30min, 2005 (16mm)
From Beirut – with Love:. A cinematic postcard greeting, so bitter and cynical, it can only come from a city being at war with itself.

"In this house", Akram Zaatari, 30 min, 2004 (video)
At the end of the Lebanese civil war in 1991, Ali, a member of the Lebanese resistance, wrote a letter to the owners of the house his group had occupied for six years. In November 2002, Akram Zaatari took his video camera and headed to this family's village in Ain al-Mir to dig up Ali's letter.

Improvised shorts – reflections on the recent war by Joanna Hadjithomas & Khalil Joreige, Akram Zaatari, Michel Kammoun, Hani Tamba, Ziad Antar.

Block 2: 20.00 h

"Meshwar" 26 min, Ziad Antar & Marc Casal Liotier 2005 (DV cam)
The assassination of former prime minister Rafiq Harari in February 2005, and the instable security situation in Lebanon , has brought back memories of the civil war.

“All is well on the border", 43 min, Akram Zaatari (video)
Issues of representation within the occupied zone of South Lebanon are explored in this documentary. The film's three staged interviews with Lebanese prisoners in Israel illustrate aspects of life under occupation with convincing poignancy. Zaatari uses the interview format as a tribute to French filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard's Here And Elsewhere, which probed images of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict in South Lebanon 20 years earlier.

Block 3: 22.00 h

"My friend Imad and the Taxi", 19 min, Olga Nakkas/Hassan Zbib, Lebanon (1985 and 2005)
In 1985, Hassan Zbib and Olga Nakkas separately started to develop film scenarios based on simple narratives. Their work took Beirut as a stage where lonely characters drifted: a taxi driver in his car, a man walking around and talking to a Rambo poster. These films were never presented as finalized works until a Beirut-based festival, Né à Beyrouth, spotted them and asked the filmmakers to present their films with live electronic music.

"A Perfect Day", 88min, Khalil Joreige en Joanna Hadjithomas, 2005
Stuck in a traffic jam, Malek catches a glance of Zeina, the woman he loves. His mother Claudia has still not accepted his father's disappearance after 15 years. She stays at home should her husband return, Malek drives around the city alone in his car. Each of them living with a void of lost love.

____________________________________________________________________

From: Emily Jacir
Date: Friday 25 august 2006 19:56
Subject: what we did last night in NYC ; )

more projection bombings!
this time in the back of a u-haul!
salamz
emily

http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article5616.shtml

Mobile street projections in New York City
Nigel Parry, The Electronic Intifada, 25 August 2006
____________________________________________________________________

From: Lydia Wilson (through jan ackenhausen)
Date: Friday 25 august 2006 19:27
Subject: A trip to Beirut


Hello everyone,

I went to Beirut last weekend and wrote about it for open democracy:
http://www.opendemocracy.net/home/index.jsp
Or:
http://www.opendemocracy.net/openblogs/blog/od/?permalink=Beirut-after-the-bombs.html&smm=y

-----------
It's great that the ceasefire is lasting, however uneasily, but even if this is a long-term situation there's still a lot more work to be done, obviously.  Amnesty is doing some good petitions/letters campaigns for post-war accountability, go to:
http://web.amnesty.org/pages/lbn-230806-feature-eng
And send a letter...it's all made very easy for you so it doesn't take long.

----------

Thank you...

Lydia

____________________________________________________________________

From: info@boycottisrael.ps
Date: Friday 25 august 2006 6:11
Subject: Press Release: Ken Loach Joins the Cultural Boycott of Israel

Press Release: Ken Loach Joins the Cultural Boycott of Israel

August 24, 2006

Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
PACBI
www.pacbi.org
info@boycottisrael.ps

http://www.pacbi.org/press_releases_more.php?id=340_0_4_0_C

Ken Loach, the acclaimed British director and winner of this year's Palme d'Or at Cannes Film Festival, an artist who is known for his politically and socially engaged films, has declared in a personal statement his support of" the call by Palestinian film-makers, artists and others [1] to boycott state sponsored Israeli cultural institutions and urge[s] others to join their campaign". He anounced that he would not take part in the " Haifa Film Festival or any other such occasions," a clear statement of his intent to boycott Israeli film festivals, and an acknowledgment of the fact that"Palestinians are driven to call for this boycott after forty years of the occupation of their land, destruction of their homes and the kidnapping and murder of their civilians".


For more information on the cultural boycott:
Greece pulls out of Israeli Film Festival:
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=309_0_1_0_C
Locarno Film Festival drops Israeli Government Sponsorship:
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=287_0_1_0_C


STATEMENT BY KEN LOACH

I support the call by Palestinian film-makers, artists and others to boycott state sponsored Israeli cultural institutions and urge others to join their campaign.

Palestinians are driven to call for this boycott after forty years of the occupation of their land, destruction of their homes and the kidnapping and murder of their civilians.

They have no immediate hope that this oppression will end.

As British citizens we have to acknowledge our own responsibility. We must condemn the British and US governments for supporting and arming Israel. We must also oppose the terrorist activities of the British and US governments in pursuing their illegal wars and occupations.

However, it is impossible to ignore the appeals of Palestinian comrades. Consequently, I would decline any invitation to the Haifa Film Festival or other such occasions.


Best Wishes,

Ken Loach

[1] http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=315_0_1_0_C


____________________________________________________________________

From: Nader El-Bizri
Date: Wednesday 23 august 2006 15:12
Subject: Lebanon

Dear Friends,

I am a Lebanese academician living in the United Kingdom . I have been noting some thoughts on the collective crisis and savage aggression facing Lebanon via the following link, which I would like to share with you:

http://journals.aol.co.uk/nebizri/levantine/

I usually write on strictly academic topics in phenomenology, history of science and architectural humanities, but the continuing cruelties confronting the Levant resulted in this genuine personal re-awakening…

Yours truly

Nader El-Bizri

http://www.hps.cam.ac.uk/dept/elbizri.html

____________________________________________________________________

From: Emily Jacir
Date: Monday 21 august 2006 18:11
Subject: Man forced to change t-shirt bearing Arabic script at JFK before boarding plane

Dear all,

Today I want to urge all of you to get one of Laurie's t-shirts and wear them everywhere and all the time. Those of you going back to school or teaching should wear them on campus when school starts. Use your body to protest against the continuing wars in Lebanon, Iraq and Palestine by wearing the WE WILL NOT BE SILENT t-shirts (arabic+english).

You can email Laurie from Artists Against War to get a t-shirt at: wewillnotbesilent@gmail.com

See t-shirts here (by Artists Against War):
http://aawnyc.org/


LET US RESIST THEIR EFFORTS TO SILENCE US!!!! IT IS OUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO WEAR A T-SHIRT WITH ARABIC SCRIPT!

Iraqi Peace Activist Forced to Change T-Shirt Bearing
Arabic Script Before Boarding Plane at JFK


On a trip back from the Middle East, Iraqi blogger and activist Raed Jarrar was not allowed to board a flight at JFK airport because he was wearing a T-Shirt that said "We will not be silent" in English and Arabic. Representatives of Jet Blue Airways forced him to change his T-Shirt saying wearing it was like "going to a bank with a T-Shirt reading 'I am a robber.'" [includes rush transcript - partial]


For full article, see:
http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=06/08/21/1348224#transcript


____________________________________________________________________

From: info@boycottisrael.ps
Date: Sunday 20 august 2006 10:19
Subject: PACBI Update 11--August 20, 2006

Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
PACBI
www.pacbi.org
info@boycottisrael.ps

Update 11--August 20, 2006

Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions News:

1.Activists call for boycott of Connex
Ema Corro | Green Left Weekly | August 16, 2006

In 2002, the French companies Connex and Alstom, international investors in Melbourne's Citypass Consortium, won a 30-year tender to operate a light-rail system between illegal Israeli settlements around Jerusalem. The contract is worth about 500 million Euros.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=334_0_1_0_C

2.Irish tramline forced to cancel contract with Israeli occupation authorities in Jerusalem
Press Release, Irish Palestine Solidarity Campaign | Electronic Intifada | August 18, 2006

The Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC) is delighted to announce a small but significant victory in the international struggle against Connex and the illegal Israeli tramline being built by them on occupied Palestinian territory. Connex had been planning to allow the Israeli staff of an illegal tramline project in occupied Easy Jerusalem to train on Dublin's Luas light railway.
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=337_0_1_0_C

Opinions and Analysis:

1.The Question of Sanctions and a Boycott against Israel
Shir Hever | The Alternative Information Center | June 18, 2006

"It is in fact astonishing that the divestment campaign should have generated so much controversy, given that its primary demand is simply that a country that is showered with official and unofficial American assistance [.] merely acknowledge and implement the rule of law."
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=336_0_1_0_C

3.How Lebanon Looks from Malta: Forget the 50 Civilians
Adrian Grima | Counterpunch | August 12-13, 2006

On Monday, July 17, 2006, journalist Herman Grech of The Times of Malta interviewed the outgoing Israeli Ambassador to Malta Ehud Gol at the end of his five-year term ("Don't pass judgement on us"). The interview was published five days after Israel began its attack on Lebanon, "ostensibly" to free two of its soldiers who were "captured by Hizbullah in a stunningly sophisticated military operation," as the independent Palestinian analyst Omar Barghouti put it, (1) at the Lebanese-Israeli border. Right from the start of its bombing spree in Lebanon, many saw the Israeli military's"deliberate, gradual massacre of innocent Lebanese civilians as a tactic to erode Hizbullah's public support."
http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=335_0_1_0_C

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