We Stand With Palestinian Rights Activist Christoph Glanz Against Zionist Witch-Hunt

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We Stand With Palestinian Rights Activist Christoph Glanz Against Zionist Witch-Hunt
Jews for Palestinian Right of Return, October 13, 2016

On October 10, 2016, the Jerusalem Post published an article by anti-Palestinian propagandist Benjamin Weinthal under the screaming headline, “‘Antisemitic’ German teacher posed as a Jew to push   anti-Israel agenda.”

The designated target is Christoph Glanz, German activist, teacher, lifelong anti-fascist, and self-described former liberal Zionist. His supposed crime is having been listed as both a Jewish and non-Jewish endorser of Jews for Palestinian Right of Return (JPRR) in 2013.

This is at least the seventh time in 2016 that Weinthal has falsely accused Glanz of anti-Semitism, and reflects a pattern of such smears by Weinthal against numerous other Palestinian rights advocates.

In this case, as a simple inquiry would have revealed, Glanz’ double identification on JPRR’s statement was an inadvertent error on our part (now corrected), listing him among more than 700 other endorsers.

In any case, just what is anti-Semitic about JPRR’s observation that, “[f]or more than a century, Zionists have sought to construct a ‘Jewish state’ through forced removal of the indigenous Palestinian people”?

Or that “the Zionist regime officially denies the Nakba, the ethical equivalent of Holocaust denial”?

Or that Palestinian refugees have the inalienable right to return?

Readers are invited to read our full statement and decide for themselves.

Anti-Zionism is not anti-Semitic; it’s anti-racist, anti-apartheid, and anti-colonialist. And Weinthal’s bogus accusations reflect an increasingly desperate witch-hunt to stifle the surging worldwide support for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement — many of whose supporters are Jewish.

Christoph Glanz will not be silenced by such attacks, and neither will we.

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Jews for Palestinian Right of Return Salutes Movement for Black Lives

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M4BL JFPROR Change.org Poster

Jews for Palestinian Right of Return Salutes Movement for Black Lives
August 8, 2016

We salute the Movement for Black Lives (M4BL) platform for courageously endorsing the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign.

Rejecting false conflation of anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism, M4BL defiantly speaks truth to power: BDS is necessary because Israel is a genocidal apartheid state armed by more than $3 billion each year from the same U.S. government that practices racialized state violence at home.

This is graphically reflected in Israel’s 2014 massacre of 2200 Palestinians — including 500 children — in Gaza, and countless other crimes since the ethnic cleansing of more than 750,000 Palestinians during the Nakba (Catastrophe) that created the “Jewish State” in 1948.

Your internationalism echoes Malcolm X, SNCC, the Black Panther Party, Muhammad Ali, the League of Revolutionary Black Workers, and other freedom fighters of the 1960s who stood in solidarity with Palestine. It recalls Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s opposition to the Vietnam war on the grounds that “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,” and the movement to divest from apartheid South Africa.

M4BL’s steadfastness in the face of attack is similarly inspiring, and we are proud to stand with you for “a world in which the full humanity and dignity of all people is recognized.

JPRR Opposition to Gov. Cuomo’s Anti-BDS Blacklist, NY MTA Board Meeting

  • Marty Goodman (TWU Local 100) at 5:48 min.
  • Suzanne Adely (Labor for Palestine) at 8:10 min.
  • David Letwin (Jews for Palestinian Right of Return at 10:46 min.
  • John Mooney (TWU Local 100) at 13:22 min.(Written text of some statements, below video)

Marty Goodman (TWU 100)

My name is Marty Goodman. I am a retired Station Agent and a former TWU Local 100 Executive Board member.

I am here to oppose Governor Cuomo’s undemocratic gag act on State funding to supporters of the worldwide Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against apartheid Israel.

I, like many Jews, fervently support BDS. Israeli Occupation, terror and racism must go.

In 2003, I used vacation time to go to Nablus in the Israeli occupied Palestinian West Bank of Israel. I stayed with a Palestinian family. I protested occupation every day and roamed its’ bullet ridden streets, learning of outrage after outrage. When I left Nablus, the Palestinian father said, “Marty, you’re family now.”

I’ve learned that yet another illegal Israeli settlement is being built in Nablus, defying international law.

I’m angry as hell. I demand that the MTA reject and repudiate Cuomo’s gag order and the creation of a black list of BDS supporters!

Free speech is a first amendment right!

I also demand that this Board vote down purchases of IBM technology (p213) and Goldman Sachs services as underwriter for the Hudson Rail Yard’s “Trust Obligation” (p33).

Both IBM and Goldman are heavily involved in the Israeli garrison state.

MTA, DIVEST NOW!!!

Spend money on a decent contract for TWU Local 100. Transit workers need wage hikes above inflation to keep up with rising costs, extend maternity leave for women, improve medical care, and remove second class pay for new hires.

I say, Equality for all in Palestine!

End U.S. aid to apartheid Israel!

No to Cuomo’s McCarthyite gag act!

Long live BDS!

Suzanne Adely (Labor for Palestine)

Labor for Palestine, a national workers network, joins members of Transit Workers Union Local 100 who are here today calling on the MTA Board to reject compliance with Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order #157, an unconstitutional blacklist against those who support Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS).

BDS is a global human rights movement which demands an end to the brutal Israeli military occupation of the 1967 territories; full equality for Palestinian citizens of Israel; and the right of return for Palestinian refugees.

It has gained growing momentum in recent years, particularly the wake of Israel’s massacre of 2200 Palestinians — including 500 children — in Gaza in 2014, and a 10-year high in Palestinian casualties in the West Bank in 2015.

These crimes reflect a system that veteran South African freedom fighters call “worse than apartheid.” That is why BDS is closely aligned to Black Lives Matter and other racial justice movements, and many of its supporters are Jews of conscience.

In the past two years alone, the BDS picket line has been embraced by West Coast longshore workers of the ILWU; thousands of academic workers in the United Auto Workers and American Federation of Teachers; the United Electrical Workers; and Connecticut AFL-CIO.

Such boycotts are protected First Amendment speech, and have been used to remedy injustice, from the segregated buses of Montgomery, Alabama, to the California grape fields, to apartheid South Africa. Today’s BDS movement is similarly unstoppable, for as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

In the judgment of history, the MTA Board will find no refuge in siding with apartheid Israel, or in the excuse that it was “just following orders.” The only legal and moral choice is to refuse complicity with Governor Cuomo’s new McCarthyism.

David Letwin (Jews for Palestinian Right of Return

I’m speaking today on behalf of Jews for Palestinian Right of Return. We call on the MTA to refuse to cooperate with Governor Cuomo’s unconstitutional executive order 157 directing the state to blacklist any institution or organization that respects the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions picket line against apartheid Israel.

This illegal order is a disturbing assault on the right of free speech and expression. But it is also part of a broader campaign by authorities to intimidate into silence those who stand up for Palestinian human rights and who refuse to accept the legitimacy of a racist regime sustained through ethnic cleansing and dispossession.

The BDS call, which demands the end of the 1967 occupation, equal rights for Palestinian citizens of Israel, and right of return for Palestinian refugees, follows in the footsteps of earlier boycott campaigns against Jim Crow and apartheid South Africa. It marches hand in hand today with liberation movements like Black Lives Matter. In the spirit of those movements, we say to the members of the MTA Board of Directors: don’t do business with IBM and Goldman Sachs, both of which are deeply complicit with the apartheid Israeli regime, and don’t collude with Governor Cuomo’s witch-hunt against the growing worldwide BDS movement for justice and equality.

And the next time you see the governor, please tell him for us that his desperate attempt to muzzle BDS will only make it louder.

Thank you.

Letwin Takes Down NYT Columnist Charges of Anti-Semitism (David Letwin at 2016 Left Forum Conference, NYC)

David Letwin speaks at the panel “Silencing Dissent: False Accusations of Anti-Semitism Against Palestine Solidarity” In particular he criticizes a New York Times writer named Roger Cohen and a piece Cohen wrote “An Anti-Semitism of the Left”. The panel was at the Left Forum 2016 Second part of the panel here https://youtu.be/utwIW3kf4K4 third part of the panel here https://youtu.be/N6l1qbAQU2k

HEDY EPSTEIN (1924-2016): HOLOCAUST SURVIVOR, PALESTINIAN RIGHTS CHAMPION, ANTI-ZIONIST.

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HEDY EPSTEIN (1924-2016): HOLOCAUST SURVIVOR, PALESTINIAN RIGHTS CHAMPION, ANTI-ZIONIST.

“Palestinians are an amazing, resilient people. They will never give up. The Israeli may kill many of them, destroy their homes, destroy their lives, but they will never be able to destroy their hope.”

Salute to graduate employee members of UAW 2110, 2322, and 2865 for respecting the BDS picket line against apartheid Israel!

Salute to graduate employee members of UAW 2110, 2322, and 2865 for respecting the BDS picket line against apartheid Israel!

Jews for Palestinian Right of Return & Labor for Palestine

UAW BDS Poster

CHRGJ Co-Hosts Conference on The Palestinian Right of Return: A Legal and Political Analysis

CHRGJ Co-Hosts Conference on The Palestinian Right of Return: A Legal and Political Analysis

 

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On Friday, April 1st, the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice, together with NYU Law Students for Justice in Palestine and Palestine Works, co-hosted a panel discussion on The Palestinian Right of Return. The event brought together lawyers, activists and human rights practitioners who engaged in a political and legal analysis of the contested ‘right of return’, by addressing its grounding in international law, as well as its meaning and connotations in public and political  discourse.

During the first panel, Jamil Dakwar, Emilio Dabed and Michael Letwin addressed the political controversy surrounding the grassroots invocation of the Palestinian right of return. Dakwar discussed the struggle of internally displaced Palestinian communities, both from an activist and a legal viewpoint. A range of political and diplomatic strategies of the Israeli state, such as the declaration of a state of emergency, he argued, as well as the passing of laws like the Absentee Property Law (1950) and Prevention of Infiltration Law (1954) acted to systematically deny Palestinian refugees – including those who have gained Israeli citizenship – from returning to their homes and reclaiming their confiscated property. He underlined the importance of the concept of a ‘right of return’ -both morally and legally -as an inspiration in the struggle of Palestinian refugees including those who are considered internally displaced within the borders of 1948 Palestine. Dabed complemented this point by adding that, in his view, the Palestinian Authority’s investment in a two-state paradigm undermines a strategy of refugee return and effectively dissociates Palestinians from their national struggle. Letwin, speaking on behalf of Jews for Palestinian Right of Return, linked this discussion to the struggle that grassroots groups in the United States are engaging in, and outlined various strategies employed by various social justice movements in the U.S. that work on this issue.

The second panel zoomed in on the legal aspects of the ‘right of return’ and examined its place within an international law framework. Omar Shehabi, director and founder of Palestine Works, and Susan Akram of Boston University School of Law, discussed whether and how International Humanitarian Law, Nationality and State Succession Law, and Human Rights Law can be considered legal basis for this contested right. Akram also highlighted the rights of refugees under International Law including the legality of the right of return, the right to compensation, as well as the right to third party resettlement. She explained how the existence of the latter two rights do not negate the existence of a ‘right of return’, which she understood to be primary and durable as both an individual right, and obligation on the state. She concluded her argument by underlining the importance of a deep understanding of how law can be used as a mobilizing tool that effectively empowers activists and rights-holders.