international solidarity

reported 25,000 at Toronto’s al-Quds Day rally…”the largest in our history”

…and they were calling for a Free Gaza, Free Palestine.

100% Free…no pathetic smoke-and-mirrors, Swiss-cheese “Two State solution”.

The global al-Quds Day demonstrations occur annually. According to organizers, in Toronto’s history this was the largest, and the most pluralistic, …including not only the usual Canadian Peace Alliance, Palestine House, Independent Jewish Voices, and other core affiliations, as well as numerous faiths… but new faces. Many of them, and many from all walks of life and ages, so-said a Cuban solidarity activist who has been standing for justice for over a decade, if not more.

On the ground, behind the speaker’s pick-up truck podium, I could only see the immediate masses, which were already overwhelming. But organizers standing in the greater vicinity of Queen’s Park noted 5,000, which grew as we marched an hour later to amass in front of the representative of Gangster number One: the US Embassy, for it is the US which funds and vetoes UN resolutions for the Zionist regime. By the end of the speeches in from of the Embassy, organizers cited as many as 25,000 supporters of peace and justice spilling down the avenue.
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sharing call-out: Trapped Palestinian medical staff and ISM volunteers need your help #Gaza

Source: ISM call-out

“At 19:00 Beit Hanoun Hospital was hit by an Israeli tank shell. Inside the hospital are 61 medical staff, civilians, three patients and two ISM volunteers, Charlie Andreasson and Fred Ekblad, both from Sweden, who are all trapped inside.

Israeli soldiers are close to the hospital. Gunfire can be heard in the area. A thick smoke is rolling into the hospital.

We need you to call your own representatives to demand that they fulfill their obligation to insure that Israel adheres to international law and immediately cease to target medical staff and facilities.

international volunteers, including some from Sweden, the U.S., and the UK, went to Beit Hanoun in North Gaza to accompany ambulances fallowing the targeting of an ambulance in Beit Hanoun this afternoon by Israeli forces. The Israeli attack on the ambulance killed one paramedic and the critical injury of another

The attack on the hospital in Beit Hanoun is the second Israeli attack on Gazan medical facilities and personnel in the last 24 hours. The first resulted in the destruction of Al Durrah Children’s Hospital in Gaza City last night. A two year-old child in the Intensive Care Unit was killed, and 30 others injured.

Due to shelling nearby, Beit Hanoun hospital has evacuated most of its patients to al-Shifa Hospital. Three patients remain in the hospital.

Since Israel began its attack on Gaza, 13 ambulances have been completely destroyed and two paramedics have been killed. Throughout the massacre, medical staff and facilities have been repeatedly targeted.

“Israel’s attacks on Gaza hospitals are ongoing, with those in areas by the separation barrier forced to evacuate their patients, paramedics and other rescue workers are doing what they can under conditions of great risk.” Stated Joe Catron, U.S. International Solidarity Movement activist.

According to the Gazan Ministry of Health, six out of Gaza’s 13 hospitals have already been severely damaged. One, el-Wafa rehabilitation hospital, has been completely destroyed. Two medical clinics have been completely destroyed, seven other clinics have been damaged, 13 medical staff members have been injured, and five have been killed.
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“this is just an intensification of the occupation by the oppressor, against a free people who simply want to live in peace and harmony”

Photo: Statistics of #Israel ongoing aggression on #Gaza till yesterday (day 6) by EuroMid ! #GazaUnderAttack #GazaUnderFire

Statistics of #Israel ongoing aggression on #Gaza till yesterday (day 6) by EuroMid ! #GazaUnderAttack #GazaUnderFire

Omar Ghraeib: Day 5-6 of Israeli aggression on Gaza: 172+ killed, 1150+ injured

“Imagine losing your mom, And your dad, And your siblings. Oh, And your relatives. Oh wait, there is more, And your neighbors. If you were lucky to survive this, your whole life that you once knew has ended. Maybe those who survive are unlucky. I don’t know. Imagine waking up to find your whole family dead, your house was destroyed, even your neighbors and relatives are no longer there. Would you say: Thank god I am alive?

172+ Palestinians killed, 1150+ injured, 2500+ Israeli attacks on Gaza (360 square meter of a highly populated strip), nearly 750 houses\mosques bombed, destroyed or severely damaged. Houses. Mosques. Medics. Hospitals. Ambulance centers. Cemeteries. Farmlands. Coastline. Shore. Boats. Cars. Motorbikes. Buses. Residential areas. Banks. Schools. Colleges. Universities. And pretty much everything. Depressing huh? Well, that’s what we are going through. According to UNRWA, an estimation of about 70% of the fatalities are civilians, from which 30% of them are children. I think the percentages are even higher. Don’t believe me? Google UNRWA and Chris Gunness.”

 

Rana Baker’s Supplies exhausted at Gaza hospitals, but not medical workers’ commitment:

“Incursions in the past were not as bad. This time, most of the injuries fall into one of two categories: first, there are injuries which are the direct result of missiles; these are often very severe, body parts ripped apart. The other category consists of injuries which result from rubble falling down on people: broken ribs and so forth. They [the Israeli army] bombard houses, so there are those who have their walls collapse over their bodies [long silence] and so on.”

I asked him whether there are many women and children in the hospital.

“Yes, a lot,” he said. “I mean, many women, but many more children. They [the Israelis] are probably blind.”

What about amputations?

“A lot. I am sure you’ve seen the pictures. There are so many children whose limbs we had to amputate. There’s a child who came with his belly ripped and legs already gone.”

“In past wars, the border crossing [with Egypt] was opened and they [the Egyptians] allowed many causalities to be transferred to Egypt. This time, only ten were allowed.”

“What we are really running out of is sutures, antiseptics, gauze, antibiotics, basically supplies we exhaust in surgeries, supplies that cannot be reused…”

“In the past [Cast Lead and Pillar of Defense],” Dad complained, “delegations used to visit Gaza all the time. They brought all we needed and there was no shortage. Today, no one is allowed to come.  I do not know what on Earth Egypt is thinking.”

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Gaza Speaking tour, USA, Ireland, Britain 2014

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[see feedback from my 2013 talks]

Facebook US Speaking Tour Page

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Related Campaign:  Stand up for academic freedom at Columbia College: What you can do

ITINERARY [COMPLETED VENUES LISTED AT END OF POST]:

IRELAND, MARCH 2014

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Last night’s…and every night of Eva Bartlett‘s speaking tour of Gaza in Ireland has been a resounding informative success. Don’t miss out on the last talk in Belfast this evening at 7pm in Palestine Aid, city centre of Belfast hosted by Fra Hughes. You will not regret it as the information relayed is a true representation of the suffering that is put on Gaza. –Eileen Carr

Sat Mar 29: 7 pm, Dublin 2, Ireland Institute, Pearse st

Sun Mar 30: 7 pm, Belfast, Palestine Aid, 48 Kind st

Mon Mar 31:  3 pm, Dublin, meet with Emer Costello, MEP Dublin

Tues Apr 1: Manchester, organized by Adie & the Manchester Palestine Solidarity campaign

Wed Apr 2: Sheffield, organized by Mousheir al Farra

 

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Gaza talks, Ireland leg, Gaza still in crisis

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Ireland is treating me well!  The talks I’ve given in Kinsale, Cork and Galway, Dublin have been well-attended and well-received, and managing to have lots of random encounters with folks who are willing to engage in discussion on Palestine, even if they aren’t familiar with the facts. It’s these meetings and the positive feedback that inspire me, aside from the Palestinians’ steadfastness:

Thanks very much for your informative and professional talk today at UCC in Cork. I do not know how you kept so calm while presenting those true images without getting angry or breaking down with emotion, especially the ones of the injured and dead children. If I were presenting it, then it would just be too much for me to handle.
I was amazed by the way you would stand up to the soldiers with nothing more than a loud speaker. I would not be brave enough to stand up to them with a gun in my hand. You are truly an outstanding, brave and courageous woman and it was a pleasure to meet you.

-Trevor Lawrance, Cork, Ireland

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Thank you Eva Bartlett for sharing your inside knowledge of Gaza and the suffering of the people with us yesterday evening. You are one inspirational and very brave woman. I haven’t stopped thinking about it since I left the Friary …….all night questions and thoughts just kept coming to me. 

–Sally Thelen, Kinsale, Ireland

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Today Eva spoke in UCC and tonight she is speaking in Galway. Eva spoke with passion and knowledge and experience of what she has witnessed and shared many reports and actualities that do not reach us on mainstream censored media. Both adults and young people entered in discourse and left with much more information and hopefully a passion to share and create further awareness and change. Do not miss out on this opportunity to hear direct reports from Eva following Eva’s years of experience living through the atrocities of 2008/9 and 2012.

-Eileen Carr, Dublin, Ireland
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Iymen Chehade gets ringing endorsements from ’5 Broken Cameras’ director and AAUP committee chair

AAUP Backs Iymen Chehade, Supports Academic Freedom at Columbia College Chicago

Iymen Chehade, a professor at Chicago's Columbia College.
Iymen Chehade, a professor at Chicago’s Columbia College.

By Eva Bartlett, Palestine Chronicle, Mar 28, 2014

American Association of University Professors (AAUP) Illinois statement of support for Iymen Chehade, a professor at Chicago’s Columbia College, marks the latest, and most significant, step forward in the fight against pervasive attempts to control discourse on Occupied Palestine, via stifling academic freedom on college and university campuses.

Chehade, employed by Columbia since 2007, has taught three different courses on the Middle East, but by far most popular has been his Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, a course he designed in 2010.

“The class is popular on campus. Students hear about it from other students and try consistently enroll in it,” says Chehade. “Its one of those history classes that is not history, it’s actually present, its also future. As we are speaking, history is being made.”

Considerable student demand for the course led to Chehade’s teaching three sections of it at one point. As of fall 2013, Columbia offered Chehade two sections to his Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.

As part of his course content in fall 2013, Chehade showed his students the award-winning documentary 5 Broken Cameras.

“The film itself is about the occupation of the village of Bil’in, the occupation of Palestine. My objective in showing the film was to humanize the issue,” says Chehade. “Student reaction was very positive.”

In spite of student demand for the course and student interest in the documentary, not long after showing it in his class, one of Chehade’s two spring 2014 sections was canceled.

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Respect academic freedom: Columbia College cancels class because of 5 Broken Cameras

CLICK HERE TO SIGN;  PLEASE SHARE WIDELY

Facebook event: Tell Columbia College: Respect Academic Freedom

Petition Background

This petition is in protest of Columbia College’s decision, following a student complaint about “bias,” to cancel one of the two sections of a course about the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The course is well grounded in fact and presents a diverse overview of Israeli/Palestinian history, including interviews with both Israelis and Palestinians.  The class receives overwhelmingly positive evaluations by students, and many report having to wait to get in to the class.  After registration opened last November, however, Columbia College removed its second section of the course only hours after it was posted. 

After Professor Chehade’s in-class screening of the Oscar-nominated film 5 Broken Cameras, which depicts life under and popular resistance to Israeli military occupation, a student complained about “bias.”  Dr. Steven Corey, the chair of the Department of Humanities, History, and Social Sciences, then held a meeting with Professor Chehade informing him that he should address the subject matter in a more “balanced” way.    

Showing a movie depicting popular resistance to Israeli occupation does not constitute bias, and retaliating against a professor for engaging students about pressing social issues is a blatant violation of academic freedom.  Furthermore, professors are not obligated to present an opposing view to every opinion or fact presented in class. Columbia College’s own academic freedom policies protect professors against such interference.  The cancellation also restricts Columbia students from participating in learning and discussion about Israel-Palestine, a topic for which they have demonstrated a clear interest.        CONTINUE READING

Gaza: The world has forgotten about us…people think we are just numbers…

9125617314_21791ecef4_b[photo: Emad Badwan]

This is why I’m doing the Gaza speaking tour now in the States:

Israeli forces shoot man near Gaza border

Crowds bury ‘mentally ill’ Gaza woman shot dead by Israeli forces

shared from Eileen Carr and “I am From Gaza“:

A friend sent me two messages in the last two days. He said that he is ok and that he does not like to complain but that he and his family are suffering more and more everyday.

“I am tired. I am very much tired. Now nobody talks about Gaza. No news channels. Again the same thing is happening. We have no work….not much money….not much work….we go to study. We study good but for what reason I wonder and I ask to myself….we really have no hope in our hearts. I see my Father when he thinks my mother is not watching to him. I see he is sad and very old. More old than is his age. And so I worry and I cry in secret because I cannot help because even if I have good degree … no work. and so I cannot help and am only like a child and burden to my family. Not like a man at all. Two days now we think the crossing is open. But only few pass….all the rest come home again. Not much power…not much fuel…not much medicine and not much hope in out hearts. If anyone in Gaza tell you they do not depression do not believe to them. Maybe they hide this from their own hearts. But I know. I really know. We are all depression here. But hamdulillah for everything”  CONTINUE READING