Open Shuhada Street http://openshuhadastreet.org Campaigning for Human Rights in Israel and Palestine Fri, 08 Nov 2013 11:01:49 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.7.1 Call for “SA Jews to flee to Israel” must be condemned http://openshuhadastreet.org/call-sa-jews-flee-israel-unacceptable/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=call-sa-jews-flee-israel-unacceptable http://openshuhadastreet.org/call-sa-jews-flee-israel-unacceptable/#comments Wed, 06 Nov 2013 12:38:45 +0000 http://openshuhadastreet.org/?p=1365 The Cape Times this morning (6 November 2013) carried a front page article with the headlines “Call for SA Jews to Flee for Israel”. Former Israeli Foreign Affairs Minister and former Deputy Prime Minister, Avigdor Lieberman (who has recently been […]

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The Cape Times this morning (6 November 2013) carried a front page article with the headlines “Call for SA Jews to Flee for Israel”. Former Israeli Foreign Affairs Minister and former Deputy Prime Minister, Avigdor Lieberman (who has recently been acquitted of fraud charges), made the call in the wake of recent comments by South African International Relations Minister, Nkoana-Mashabane.

Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said that South Africa will “slow down” relations with Israel until things look better regarding Israel’s 46-year-old military Occupation of Palestinian Territory. Lieberman said that it is “only a matter of time” before a pogrom in South Africa breaks out.

Lieberman’s comments are appalling and irresponsible to say the least. The SA Board of Deputies and the SA Zionist Federation are right to call Lieberman out for his “alarmist and inflammatory” comments. ANC MP, Ben Turok, criticised Lieberman’s comments by saying that Lieberman was “clutching at straws” and that Jewish people in South Africa live a “very safe and secure” existence in South Africa.

However, the SAJBD and SAZF’s further criticism of Minister Nkoana-Mashabane’s comments only serves to confuse the matter. The South African government has on numerous occasions affirmed its support for a negotiated two-state solution, giving Israel and Palestine equal right to exist as states of their own. However, in the wake of continued settlement expansion – even as peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority are taking place – Israel’s actions indicate that it is not concerned with establishing a viable Palestinian state and economy. The SAJBD and SAZF would do well to stand up to the Israeli government on this matter.

Jewish people are an integral and loyal part of the mosaic which constitutes the South African citizenry. By making this statement Lieberman treats Jewish people as ‘the other’ whose loyalty to this country is questionable and whose only haven is Israel.
Furthermore, the South African government’s position in relation to Israel has nothing to do with its relationship with its citizenry, of which the Jewish community constitutes and important part.

Jewish people played an important role in helping all South Africans fight South African apartheid and creating a South Africa where all people have rights and are equal before the law. Jewish people are playing an equally important role in helping to end the Israeli Occupation of Palestinian Territories.

A negotiated two-state solution under independent mediation will safeguard the human rights of all people living in Israel and Palestine – including Israelis, Arabs, Jews, Muslims etc. It is Israel’s own actions as an Occupying Power in Palestinian Territories that represent a real threat to its own security and not those of external powers.

Failure to negotiate a meaningful and just solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict could very well result in Lieberman and his cronies leading Israel on to becoming a pariah state.

You can read the original Cape Times article: Cape Times article, 6 Nov 2013.

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FILM SCREENING: THE VILLAGE UNDER THE FOREST http://openshuhadastreet.org/film-screening-village-forest/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=film-screening-village-forest http://openshuhadastreet.org/film-screening-village-forest/#comments Mon, 28 Oct 2013 07:35:13 +0000 http://openshuhadastreet.org/?p=1353 FILM SCREENING: THE VILLAGE UNDER THE FOREST 16 November 2013 // 19:00 – 20:00 // UCT Upper Campus, Humanities Graduate School Lecture Theatre 1 Ÿ The rocks that one sees in “South Africa Forest”, located in contemporary Israel, are not just […]

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FILM SCREENING: THE VILLAGE UNDER THE FOREST

16 November 2013 // 19:00 – 20:00 // UCT Upper Campus, Humanities Graduate School Lecture Theatre 1

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The rocks that one sees in “South Africa Forest”, located in contemporary Israel, are not just pieces of nature; they are the scattered remains of Lubya, a Palestinian village that used to occupy this area and that was destroyed by the Israeli forces. They are a stark reminder to us that people once lived there.

Open Shuhada Street is hosting a screening of the renowned and award-winning documentary The Village Under the Forest. The director Mark Kaplan (an Emmy award-winning South African filmmaker), and the narrator Heidi Grunebaum (a Jewish scholar and author) will be in attendance for a Q & A session afterwards.

 

Single tickets are R50. Also, if you purchase 4 tickets you will get the fifth one free!

Click HERE to purchase online

You can EFT the money to the OSS bank account. If you book via EFT please include your full name as a reference. You can find our banking details here. If you purchase the 5 for 4 special please use your name as a reference with ’544′.

The Village Under the Forest tells the story of Lubya, a Palestinian village that was destroyed by Israeli soldiers. A forest called South Africa Forest has been planted over the remains of the village to wipe away all memory of its history. The film explores the fragments of memories, which are the only remains of Lubya and the people that once lived there. It asks difficult questions of Jewish identity, particular the Jewish Diaspora, to confront myths and uncomfortable truths of the modern Israeli state.

All proceeds from the screening will contribute to Open Shuhada Street’s work in promoting Palestinians’ right to a state of their own. If you are not able to attend the screening, you can sponsor a ticket on behalf of someone else. See the ticket transfer feature.

Single tickets are R50. Also, if you purchase 4 tickets you will get the fifth one free!

Click HERE to purchase online.

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Israel plans to build new settlement in Hebron http://openshuhadastreet.org/israel-plans-to-build-new-settlement-in-hebron/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=israel-plans-to-build-new-settlement-in-hebron http://openshuhadastreet.org/israel-plans-to-build-new-settlement-in-hebron/#comments Wed, 02 Oct 2013 08:39:19 +0000 http://openshuhadastreet.org/?p=1332 According to the Israeli movement, Peace Now, Israel is planning to build a second settlement at a house in Hebron, in the Israeli-Occupied West Bank. The Israeli High Court will soon deliver a judgement on whether the settlers own the […]

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According to the Israeli movement, Peace Now, Israel is planning to build a second settlement at a house in Hebron, in the Israeli-Occupied West Bank.

The Israeli High Court will soon deliver a judgement on whether the settlers own the house in question in Hebron. An Israeli court earlier ruled that settlers do own the house in spite of Israeli police concerns around forged ownership documents.

However, even if the Israeli High Court rules that the settlers do own the property, this does not grant them the legal right to occupy the property – there are still a number of other legal barriers that can prevent the settlers from moving in, including permission from the Minister of Defence and the military’s security requirements.

Read more here.

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Archbishop Desmond Tutu Endorses Our Campaign! http://openshuhadastreet.org/archbishop-desmond-tutu-endorses-campaign/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=archbishop-desmond-tutu-endorses-campaign http://openshuhadastreet.org/archbishop-desmond-tutu-endorses-campaign/#comments Tue, 01 Oct 2013 09:22:55 +0000 http://openshuhadastreet.org/?p=1322 Yesterday, we received a letter from Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu endorsing our Campaign To End Trade with Israel’s Illegal Settlements. Archbishop Tutu played an integral role in the anti-apartheid movement. In his letter he says that “I believe that your […]

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Yesterday, we received a letter from Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu endorsing our Campaign To End Trade with Israel’s Illegal Settlements.

Archbishop Tutu played an integral role in the anti-apartheid movement. In his letter he says that “I believe that your campaign will strengthen the global Palestinian solidarity movement”.

We are grateful for his endorsement and support, which will help considerably with building a movement in support of Palestinians’ right to a state of their own.

Read more here: Arch. Emeritus Desmond Tutu

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EU states confirm support for labelling of settlement goods. http://openshuhadastreet.org/eu-states-confirm-support-for-labelling-of-settlement-goods/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=eu-states-confirm-support-for-labelling-of-settlement-goods http://openshuhadastreet.org/eu-states-confirm-support-for-labelling-of-settlement-goods/#comments Mon, 30 Sep 2013 10:05:22 +0000 http://openshuhadastreet.org/?p=1318 Holland has been in the news recently as opposing a ban on trade in Israeli settlement goods. The Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, wrote a letter to the President of the European Jewish Congress, Moshe Kantor, stating that Holland opposes […]

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Holland has been in the news recently as opposing a ban on trade in Israeli settlement goods. The Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, wrote a letter to the President of the European Jewish Congress, Moshe Kantor, stating that Holland opposes any kind of ban or boycott of Israeli settlement products; however, he also said that European Union legislation regarding the proper labelling of settlements goods must be enforced, as confirmed in a decision by the EU Foreign Affairs Council last year. This position has also been confirmed by the United Kingdom.

Rutte’s letter was in response to a letter that Kantor sent to EU Heads of State advising them that labelling of settlement products will hamper the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, despite that labelling is in line with the law. Read more here.

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Remi Kanazi Performs in Khayelitsha http://openshuhadastreet.org/remi-kanazis-performs-in-khayelitsha/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=remi-kanazis-performs-in-khayelitsha http://openshuhadastreet.org/remi-kanazis-performs-in-khayelitsha/#comments Thu, 26 Sep 2013 09:21:40 +0000 http://openshuhadastreet.org/?p=1309 On 24 September 2013, Remi Kanazi, a world-renowned Palestinian-American performance poet, gave a performance of his poetry in Khayelitsha in Cape Town. Kanazi’s poetry covers a range of topics, including the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Islamophobia and imperialism. Despite it being Heritage […]

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On 24 September 2013, Remi Kanazi, a world-renowned Palestinian-American performance poet, gave a performance of his poetry in Khayelitsha in Cape Town. Kanazi’s poetry covers a range of topics, including the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Islamophobia and imperialism.

Audience members listen to Remi Kanazi perform.

Audience members listen to Remi Kanazi perform.

Despite it being Heritage and Braai Day, and the Pirates and Chiefs semi-finals, about 40 people attended the event. Kanazi went through a small selection of his published and unpublished poetry. Rasta, a local poet and Palestine solidarity activist, also joined Kanazi on the stage to give a taste of local performance poetry.

Kanazi says that his poetry, particularly regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, does not speak from a nationalist perspective. Rather, he says that his writing focuses on human rights and bringing the human perspective of the Occupation, “it’s about a system of oppression and what’s being done to a people”. Kanazi’s family, Palestinians on both his mother’s and father’s side, had to flee their homes after the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948.

The floor was opened for audience members to ask Kanazi questions after he performed each poem. Questions ranged from topics on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, technical question about writing poetry and life as a performer to his thoughts on his walk through Khayelitsha before the performance.

Nkosikhona Swartbooi, a resident of Khayelitsha and the Secretary of Open Shuhada Street, said that “Kanazi’s poetry brought home the human suffering of not just Palestinians, but all people suffering under oppressive systems. No report or news article can capture those emotions in the way that performance art can”. Zukiswa Qezo, an SJC member, said that Kanazi’s poetry showed her a “different perspective on Israel’s Occupation of Palestinian Territories. He also explained the issue of Palestinian refugee camps and what is like for Palestinian refugees who have to live in them. From what he told me, it seems that they experience similar living conditions to us in Khayelitsha”.

Prior to his performance in Khayelitsha, Kanazi was shown around RR and BM sections in Khayelitsha by members of the Social Justice Coalition. Here he witnessed the living conditions of many of the people that live in, such as the disastrous effects of the fires that swept through parts of Khayelitsha in January this year, which left thousands of people homeless; flooding that takes place every winter; and the poor sanitation conditions that people have to live with.

Kanazi is currently based in New York and is currently the editor of Poets for Palestine (2008) and recently published a collection of his own poetry in Poetic Injustice: Writings on Resistance and Palestine (2011). He has also been the writer in residence and an advisory board member for the Palestine Workshop.

Kanazi’s trip to South Africa was made possible by the Tri-Continental Film Festival.

For more photos or Kanazi’s trip to Khayelitsha, click here.

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Legendary Cartoonist Zapiro Endorses Us! http://openshuhadastreet.org/legendary-cartoonist-zapiro-endorses-us/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=legendary-cartoonist-zapiro-endorses-us http://openshuhadastreet.org/legendary-cartoonist-zapiro-endorses-us/#comments Tue, 17 Sep 2013 08:27:11 +0000 http://openshuhadastreet.org/?p=1272 Legendary South African cartoonist Zapiro (Jonathan Shapiro) sent us a letter yesterday endorsing our work. Zapiro has previously supported our work directly and also through his cartoons. You can read his letter Open Shuhada support letter Sept 2013 2.

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Legendary South African cartoonist Zapiro (Jonathan Shapiro) sent us a letter yesterday endorsing our work. Zapiro has previously supported our work directly and also through his cartoons. You can read his letter Open Shuhada support letter Sept 2013 2.

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Nobel Laureates Sign Petition to Stop Destruction of Villages in southern Hebron http://openshuhadastreet.org/nobel-laureates-sign-petition-to-stop-destruction-of-villages-in-southern-hebron/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=nobel-laureates-sign-petition-to-stop-destruction-of-villages-in-southern-hebron http://openshuhadastreet.org/nobel-laureates-sign-petition-to-stop-destruction-of-villages-in-southern-hebron/#comments Wed, 04 Sep 2013 07:35:34 +0000 http://openshuhadastreet.org/?p=1247 A recent petition by Israeli author, David Grossman, has garnered support from other literary superstars such as JM Coetzee. The aim of the petition is to get the Israeli government to stop the Netanyahu government from destroying Palestinian villages in […]

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A recent petition by Israeli author, David Grossman, has garnered support from other literary superstars such as JM Coetzee. The aim of the petition is to get the Israeli government to stop the Netanyahu government from destroying Palestinian villages in the southern Hebron Hills in the Occupied West Bank.

The petition says:

“We cannot bring peace today. But the least we can do is to expose and condemn ‘small’ local outrages. In a reality of ongoing occupation, of solid cynicism and malice, each and every one of us bears the moral obligation to try and relieve suffering, to do something to bend back the occupation’s giant, cruel hand.”

Read more here.

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Anti-apartheid struggle icon Ahmed Kathrada endorses our work! http://openshuhadastreet.org/anti-apartheid-struggle-icon-ahmed-kathrada-endorses-our-work/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=anti-apartheid-struggle-icon-ahmed-kathrada-endorses-our-work http://openshuhadastreet.org/anti-apartheid-struggle-icon-ahmed-kathrada-endorses-our-work/#comments Tue, 03 Sep 2013 07:36:33 +0000 http://openshuhadastreet.org/?p=1241 Earlier this month, we received a touching letter from Mr Ahmed Kathrada – an anti-apartheid struggle icon – saying that he endorses our campaign to get the South African government to end trade with the illegal Israeli settlements. Mr Kathrada […]

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Earlier this month, we received a touching letter from Mr Ahmed Kathrada – an anti-apartheid struggle icon – saying that he endorses our campaign to get the South African government to end trade with the illegal Israeli settlements.

Mr Kathrada who spent over 26 years in prison with other anti-apartheid icons such as Nelson Mandela and Walter Sisulu said that he has “lived through apartheid”.

He further said that even in the worst days of apartheid in South Africa, however, “we did not have walls to divide people, separate roads for separate races or a system of checkpoints that currently exists in the Occupied Palestinian Territories”.

Letters such as these make our work all the more meaningful and every victory all the more powerful.

Read more here: Endorsement, Ahmed Kathrada 2

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Israel’s Harsh Logic in the Occupied Palestinian Territories http://openshuhadastreet.org/israels-harsh-logic-in-the-occupied-palestinian-territories/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=israels-harsh-logic-in-the-occupied-palestinian-territories http://openshuhadastreet.org/israels-harsh-logic-in-the-occupied-palestinian-territories/#comments Mon, 02 Sep 2013 08:01:17 +0000 http://openshuhadastreet.org/?p=1238 On Monday 19 August 2013, Open Shuhada Street hosted a talk with Yehuda Shaul from Breaking the Silence about their latest book — Our Harsh Logic: Israeli Soldiers’ Testimonies from the Occupied Territories: 2000 – 2010. The book covers Israeli […]

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On Monday 19 August 2013, Open Shuhada Street hosted a talk with Yehuda Shaul from Breaking the Silence about their latest book — Our Harsh Logic: Israeli Soldiers’ Testimonies from the Occupied Territories: 2000 – 2010.

The book covers Israeli soldiers’ testimonies about their experiences in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT), particularly regarding human rights abuses. About 100 people attended the event, some via live stream, from a wide spectrum of society.

Shaul, who served as a soldier and commander in the Israeli Defence Force from 2001 to 2004, said that after reviewing hundreds of testimonies of soldiers – who spoke of similar experiences – it became clear that the IDF’s defensive role in the OPT is only a very small aspect of their core function. Read more here.

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