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Boycott Divest Sanction Israel Over Troubled Waters
By Eileen Fleming
Exclusive to The Arab Daily News
Former Pink Floyd member Roger Waters has become the most active artistic leader in the BDS movement against Israel’s policies toward Palestinians. Waters recently responded to British Jewish leader Gerald Ronson who accused him of being an anti-Semite.
According to WEBSTERS Dictionary a Semite is a member of any of a number of peoples of ancient southwestern Asia including the Akkadians, Phoenicians, Hebrews, and Arabs
In an open letter published in Britain’s Telegraph, Waters whose father died in WW II fighting Nazi’s wrote:
Because I am a critic of this Israeli government’s policies and in the absence of this Israeli government producing cogent arguments to defend themselves from my criticism, I am instead routinely subjected to the accusation that I am an anti-Semite. This is a pattern, a crude pattern, but nevertheless an identifiable and repeated pattern, a part of the general tactic of ‘Hasbara.’
Do not dare to presume to preach to me, my father’s son, about anti-Semitism or human rights.
Look to your own house and the human rights abuses and racism of the Israeli government you defend.
If Jews and Palestinians are to live in peace then there must be a real acknowledgment of the fact that Israel is denying freedom to Palestinians and abusing the term ‘anti-Semitism’ to intimidate people, like me, into silence…
Ronson, is chairman of the Community Security Trust, which is British Jewry’s lead organization against what they deem is anti-Semitic.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center, the Anti-Defamation League and many other Israel advocates have also accused Waters of anti-Semitism.
In 2005, Palestinian civil society issued the call for BDS against Israel until Israel ends the military occupation of Palestine and honors international law.
The First International Week of Action Against Mekorot’s international expansion begins on March 22nd, World Water Day, and runs through March 30th when Palestinians mark Land Day.
Mekorot is Israel’s state-owned water company responsible for implementing ‘water apartheid’ on Palestinians, including the international crime of pillage of natural resources in occupied territory, discrimination against the Palestinian people as an ethnic group and vital support for the illegal settlement enterprise.”
In 2005, Mekorot established a business arm to begin a process of international expansion. Several lucrative contracts have been signed in countries like the US, Cyprus, Argentina, India and Uganda. In Greece Mekorot is vying for a share in the government’s privatization drive. Cooperation agreements have also been signed in Brazil, Portugal and Italy.”
These governments have turned a blind eye to Mekorot’s involvement in violations of international law and human rights.
Civil society campaigns have been established to kick Mekorot out in Argentina, Italy, Greece and Portugal.
In Argentina, activists recently succeeded in suspending the construction of a $170 million water regeneration plant.
Vitens, the largest water supplier in the Netherlands, ended a contract with Mekorot just days after it was signed due to the company’s involvement in violations of international law.
Mekorot is a proud partner of the JNF’s “Negev Blueprint” plan, which will see 40 000 Palestinian Bedouin citizens of Israel uprooted from their homes into reservations and their land used for Jewish-only settlement in the Negev.
Mekorot operates around 42 wells in the West Bank, which supply the Israeli settlements-and all Israeli settlements are illegal under international law.
Mekorot also works in close partnership with the Israeli military, confiscating irrigation pipes from Palestinian farmers and destroying the water supply sources of Palestinian communities.
Israel did not make the ‘desert bloom’ and historic Palestine is rich in water .
Israel has turned the Jordan River waters into a sewage pit. Israeli citizens consume twice the amount of water than Europeans average.
In a recent interview with Salon, Roger Waters elaborated:
After visiting Israel in 2005 and the West Bank the following year, I was deeply moved and concerned by what I saw, and determined to add my voice to those searching for an equitable and lawful solution to the problem – for both Palestinians and Jews.
Given my upbringing, I really had no choice.
In 2005, Palestinian civil society appealed to people of conscience all over the world to act where governments had failed. They asked us to join their nonviolent movement – for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) – which aims to end Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories, to secure equal rights for Palestinian citizens of Israel, and to uphold the right of Palestinian refugees to return to the cities and villages they were violently forced out of in 1948 and 1967.
BDS is a nonviolent, citizen-led movement that is grounded in universal principles of human rights for all people. All people! In consequence, I have determined that the BDS approach is one I can fully support.
In the furor that exists in the U.S. today about BDS and the right and wrong of a cultural boycott of Israel, a quote from one of my heroes, Mahatma Gandhi, has been on my mind. He prophetically said, ‘First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.’
The BDS movement is fulfilling its promise and fits Gandhi’s description. Once dismissed by many as a futile strategy that would “never work,” BDS has gained much ground in recent weeks, bringing with it the expected backlash.
Some wrongly portray the boycott movement, which is modeled on the boycotts employed against Apartheid South Africa and used in the U.S. civil rights movement, to be an attack on the Israeli people or even on the Jewish people, as a whole.
Nothing could be further from the truth. The movement recognizes universal human rights under the law for all people, regardless of their ethnicity, religion or color.
I believe that the root of all injustice and oppression has always been the same – the dehumanization of the other.
Let us never forget that oppression begets more oppression, and the tree of fear and bigotry bears only bitter fruit.
The end of the occupation of Palestine, should we all manage to secure it, will mean freedom for the occupied and the occupiers and freedom from the bitter taste of all those wasted years and lives.
And that will be a great gift to the world.
Ashes and diamonds
Foe and friend
We were all equal
In the end.
As the global BDS movement builds so will misplaced charges of antisemitism-and so what!
The hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict.
Work and fight until justice runs down like water, and righteousness like a mighty stream.– Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Eileen Fleming has been to both sides of The Wall 8 times since 2005, she is the Founder of WeAreWideAwake.org , Producer of “30 Minutes with Vanunu” and an Author
Leader of TNT/FREE Vanunu
Follow her at TWITTER Contact her at eileenfleming.org
This post has been viewed 3997 times.
Producer "30 Minutes with Vanunu" who founded WeAreWideAwake.org in response to her first of 8 trips to both sides of The Wall in Palestine Israel.
In 2012, Eileen ran for US House of Representatives District 5, in Fl.
Read her FREE eBooks and more at:http://www.eileenfleming.org/
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