[News] This is What Palestinian Solidarity Looks Like: Major BDS Victories in 2018

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Thu Nov 29 12:53:40 EST 2018


  This is What Solidarity Looks Like: Major BDS Victories in 2018

November 29, 2018

Four decades ago, in 1977 the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) 
named Nov. 29 as the International Day of Solidarity with the 
Palestinian People. Since then, every year on this day the U.N., 
different countries, rights groups, and activists express their 
solidarity with Palestine.

Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces, the President of the 73rd Session of the 
UNGA wrote on Twitter 
<https://twitter.com/UN_PGA/status/1068098685312094209>, "Let us 
demonstrate our commitment to the Palestinian people by strengthening 
multilateralism and making the @UN work for all people - For human 
rights, peace and security and sustainable development.”

Thirty years prior to the declaration of Nov. 29 as the 
international day for solidarity with Palestinians, in 1947, the U.N. 
adopted resolution 181 (II), which called for the establishment of an 
independent Israeli and Palestinian state as well as a Special 
International Regime for Jerusalem.

The U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres reaffirmed the 1947 
resolution Wednesday, saying that the leadership of Israel and Palestine 
should take “bold steps and restore faith in the promise of Resolution 
181, of two states living side-by-side in peace and security, fulfilling 
the legitimate national aspirations of both peoples, with borders based 
on the 1967 lines and Jerusalem as the capital of both states - East 
Jerusalem being the capital of the Palestinian state."

India and South Africa also showed their solidarity with Palestinian people.

While this symbolic message of solidarity with Palestinian people is 
seen every year, the reality and brutality of Israel’s occupation 
remain unchanged.

Diplomatic delcarations and resolutions may not affect Israel's ongoing 
occupation, human rights violations, and outright colonization of 
Palestinian land, as they represent no tangible cost for Israel.

However, far away from diplomatic centers, the Palestinian-led Boycott, 
Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement 
<https://bdsmovement.net/what-is-bds> has scored major victories that 
threaten Israel's normalization of the occupation of Palestine through 
economic pressure and increasing cultural and academic isolation.

The non-violent BDS movement, founded in 2005 by 170 Palestinian unions, 
political parties, refugee networks, and among others, women 
organizations has gained such renown that it was nominated for the Nobel 
Peace Prize.

Inspired in South Africa’s anti-apartheid movement, BDS calls for 
non-violent pressure on Israel through boycotting organizations linked 
to Israel, withdrawing investment from Israeli companies, and 
sanctioning the county until Israel 1) recognizes the right of 
Palestinian refugees to return, 2) ends the military occupation of 
Palestine, and 3) ending the apartheid regime by recognizing 
Palestinians equal rights.

Here are five of the BDS Movement's main victories this year:

*1. Meteor Festival Dropped by 15 Artists *

After calls by BDS activists, 15 artists boycotted Israel’s Meteor 
Festival in September. Among the most important artists to cancel their 
performance in Tel Aviv was Lana Del Rey from the United States and Of 
Montreal from Canada.

Del Rey was reluctant at first, arguing that her performance was not 

Yousef Munayyer, responded: "When a civil society movement of oppressed 
people asks you not to play in the state that oppresses them and uses 
cultural performance to whitewash their image, rejecting their request 
*IS* a political statement and it is not one history will judge kindly."

After enough pressure she and 14 more artists refused to "whitewash" the 
Israel occupation.

*2. Filmakers Boycott Tel Aviv LGBT International Film Festival*

In June, the BDS movement celebrated that 14 film directors from Brazil, 
France, Ireland, Spain, Pakistan, and more canceled their participation 
in the Tel Aviv LGBT International Film Festival citing BDS.

"In total, fourteen filmmakers and other artists canceled their 
participation or declared their support for boycotting the festival 
because it is sponsored by the Israeli government, and is therefore 
clearly subject to the Palestinian call for cultural boycott until 
Israel ceases its systematic violations of Palestinian human rights. 
Filmmakers also expressed their opposition to the festival’s 
“pinkwashing,” or cynical use of LGBTQI rights to cover up and normalize 
Israel’s regime of oppression against Palestinians,"  BDS stated.

*3. Argentina Cancels Friendly Match with Israel*

    How BDS' Non-Violence, Not 'Threats,' Led Argentina to Cancel Match
    With Israel

Under the hashtag #NothingFriendly BDS activists and footballers in Gaza 
who had sustained injuries due to Israeli use of live ammunition against 
Palestinian protesters taking part in the Great March of Return, urged 
the Argentine team to cancel a friendly match with Israel.

After announcing the decision to cancel the match, Israel tried to spin 
the story as the result of freightened football players and violent 
Palestinians. However, days after the announcement the president of 
the Argentine Football Association Claudio Tapia said “I hope everyone 
understands this decision I made as a contribution to world peace” and 
player Gonzalo Higuain said in an interview with ESPN “I think at the 
end we were able to do the right thing.”

In July Adidas stopped sponsoring the Israel Football Association (IFA). 
The decision came after over 130 Palestinian football clubs urged the 
company to end its sponsorship to IFA, which includes clubs based in 
settlements, "stolen land."

*4. Ireland's Ban of Goods Produced in Illegal Israeli Settlements*

BDS secured another victory when in July, Ireland became the first 
country to approve a ban on all trade with illegal Israeli settlements 
in the occupied West Bank.

The Irish senate approved the Occupied Territories Bill. The Irish 
government opposed the legislation, but 25 independent and opposition 
lawmakers secured its approval.

*5. Academics Turn Their Backs of Apartheid*

This May students of the Department of Philosophy and Humanities 
of Chile’s largest public university, Universidad de Chile, voted to 
endorse BDS.

As the Israeli army was shooting and killing Palestinian protesters 
in Gaza and the United States inaugurated their new embassy in the 
occupied city of Jerusalem, students in Chile voted to sever ties with 
the University of Tel Aviv and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

In the U.S., in September, a professor and a teaching assistant from the 
University of Michigan denied writing recommendation letters to two 
students whose destination of the study was Israel. They cited BDS.

BDS supporters have faced growing criticism by Israeli officials and 
Zionist organizations that insist in accusing them of being 
anti-semitic. Pink Floyd’s former member Roger Waters and BDS 
promoter has responded to this accusations arguing that defending the 
human rights of Palestinans cannot be called anti-semitic 

Its most symbolic endorsement this year was by prominent Israeli theatre 
actor and director, Itay Tiran, who came out in defense of the BDS 
movement in September, calling it “a perfectly legitimate form of 

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