Saturday, March 17, 2012

Background information for the Global march to Jerusalem.

Just so you know:

Three Things They Didn't Tell You About Jerusalem

As long as i've figured out how to embed youtube, here's another one

Mordechai Kedar in al-Jazeera about Jerusalem & Islam

Sexual harrassment of Solidarity Volunteers in the West bank

We written about this phenomenon before, and still, it continues. Female solidarity volunteers are facing sexual harrassment and worse at the hands of the palestinians

Its reported in Haaretz

The popular protests of Israeli and foreign leftist activists alongside Palestinians had already began in the middle of the previous decade, but had become more popular in recent years. The protests in Bil’in and Sheikh Jarrah have become points of pilgrimage for activists on the left from Israel and abroad, who join the Palestinians in protest every Friday, when these protest usually take place. In Sheikh Jarrah the protest began when Palestinians were evicted from their homes that were returned to their Israeli owners by court order. In other organization, activists help Palestinians under constant harassment of settlers in places such as south Mount Hebron.

The joint activity of Israeli leftist activists on one side and local Palestinians on the other has created rare cases of cooperation in this time of conflict. But at the same time, complaints of sexual harassment by Palestinians started to emerge. In April 2010, an American peace activist filed a complaint against a Palestinian, charging he had tried to rape her. The suspect was later freed when the activist withdrew her complaint.

Hanna Beit Halachmi, a longtime leftist feminist activist, says the outcry began in the spring of 2010, when the organization Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity, issued a message requesting that the female activists arrive to the protests dressed in a manner that is considerate toward the residents.

The statement created a rift between the organization's female activists and male activists who said their response was exaggerated. Soon after, the activists began holding meetings in which they discussed, among other issues, the issue of sexual harassment.

Alongside the struggle against the sexual harassment, the female activists have criticized the responses of their Israeli associates. The ire of many of the activists in the past and in the present is directed at their associates in the left who, according to them, are belittling the significance of the harassments, all in the name of “the opposition to the occupation.”

One activist, who in the past used to frequent the protests in the West Bank but no longer participates, told Haaretz, “Two years ago we had a meeting of women who took part in the struggle against the occupation. It took place in an apartment in Jerusalem, and disturbing things were brought up. Nearly all the women that attended told of cases of harassment or discrimination. One of the women recounted how one night, in a tent set up to help Sheikh Jarrah families, someone tried to grab her. She shouted for help and Palestinians came and asked who it was so that they could ‘take care of him.’”

“A female foreign activist of the international solidarity movement that was sleeping in one of the Palestinian villages, where protests against the fence take place, said that one night someone entered her room and tried to grab her, she began to shout and one of her friends rushed to help her. Since then I don’t go to places I ‘shouldn’t’ go to alone, as a women,” she said.

Mahmoud Zohara, a member of the Popular Committee of Masra told Haaretz that the town decided to fight the phenomenon in every way possible. “First, the person responsible for the incident was ostracized. In addition, the Popular Committee decided to file a complaint against him at the Palestinian Court. He was fined NIS 5,000 for his deeds.”

Zohara said that the residents of the town will not accept this phenomenon. “It is unacceptable that Israeli or foreign women that come to protest in solidarity with us be harassed and their human rights be infringed upon.”

Zohara added that the Popular Committee has done much to raise awareness about the issue among the town residents and youth. “One must understand that harassment takes place everywhere - in Tel Aviv and in the United States as well. In these protests there is a very open relationship between the Palestinians and Israeli and foreign activists. This creates friendships, love, and yes, incidents of sexual harassment. But we must put an end to this phenomenon, whatever the price.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

You Break it. You bought it. A suicide in Morocco

Amina al-Filali, 16, drank rat poison last week in Larache, Morocco after being forced to marry the man who raped her.

The rapist of this young girl had sought to escape prison by invoking an article of the penal code that authorizes the rapist to marry his victim to escape prosecution. 300 protesters staged a sit-in outside the local court that had approved the marriage, a demonstration organized by Morocco's Democratic League for Women's Rights.

Bassima Hakkaoui, Minister for Women and Families and the only woman in the cabinet, called for a debate to reform the law, in comments to state television channel 2M.
Her predecessor in the post Nouzha Skalli also declared herself shocked by the affair and called for the law to be changed.

On Wednesday the League's president Fouzia Assouli condemned the law, saying that while it ostensibly defended family values it did not uphold the rights of women.

"The law treats the raped minor like a criminal even if she was the victim of violence," Skalli "We have to reform the criminal code to adapt to the new constitution, which forbids violence against women and ensures the equality of the sexes."

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Hamas leader Haniyeh's children spend $15,000 a day in Qatar

Who's the 1% again?
And what were you saying about starving Gaza? What were you saying about it being an open air prison that no one can enter or leave?

From the Palestinian press News Agency

Abdul Salam Ismail Haniyeh and his sister Khawla Ismail Haniyeh, children of Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh are spending 15 thousand dollars a day in Qatar, residing in the Four Seasons hotel.

Does Haniyeh have a facebook page? Is he saying "Let them eat cake?".
Don't even try and blame this on Israel. Hamas functions as a ruling
elite in Gaza, yes, as "royalty"- the people of Gaza be damned. And its high time the world realized this.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

African, Arab nations walk out on UN gay rights session

The 47-member Human Rights Council was holding a session on sexual orientation-based discrimination for the first time after a resolution seeking equal rights for everyone was passed in 2011, to the dismay of Muslim states.

Originally in Al Arabiya

African and Arab states walked out in protest Wednesday during a U.N. Human Rights Council debate on gay rights, saying that they could not legitimize homosexuality.

The 47-member state council was holding a session on sexual orientation-based discrimination for the first time after a historic resolution seeking equal rights for everyone was passed in June 2011, to the consternation of Muslim states.

On Wednesday, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the Arab group and the African group made their opposition clear, by walking out during the meeting.
“Licentious behavior promoted under the concept of ‘sexual orientation’ is against the fundamental teachings of various religions including Islam,” Pakistan’s envoy said.

“From this perspective, legitimizing homosexuality and other personal sexual behaviors in the name of sexual orientation is unacceptable to the OIC,” he added.

At the opening of the debate, U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon signaled his support for homosexuals and transgender people in their struggle against discrimination.

“To those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender, let me say: you are not alone. Your struggle for an end to violence and discrimination is a shared struggle,” he said.

“Any attack on you is an attack on the universal values the United Nations that I have sworn to defend and uphold. Today, I stand with you -- and I call upon all countries and people to stand with you, too,” he said.

For U.N. rights chief Navi Pillay, it was clear that sexual orientation-driven discrimination was prevalent across the world.

“What emerges from all of the material we gathered is a pattern -- a clear pattern of targeted violence and discrimination directed at people because they are, or perceived to be LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender).

“It is a pattern too-long overlooked by many states and one that this Council has a duty to address,” she added.

MissRepresentation at UC Berkeley

Please come to a screening of MissRepresentation on March 17th at UC Berkeley

MissRepresentation is a documentary that exposes how mainstream media contributes to the under-representation of women in positions of power and influence in America. The film challenges the media's limited and often disparaging portrayals of women and girls, which make it difficult for women to achieve leadership positions and for the average woman to feel powerful herself.

- March 17th 1:00PM - 4:00PM 2050 Valley Life Sciences Building- UC Berkeley
- ADMISSION: Students: $5 online/$10 at the door, Non-Students: $10 online/$15 at the door
- Tickets can be purchased here:
- Following the screening, there will be a panel conversation
- The screening is open to all and is appropriate for all ages