Saturday, January 26, 2008

Palestine-Israel, My weekly report on the AAtW activists in the ongoing struggle - Tel Aviv, Bil'in, Al Hader, Beit Umar, Gaza

On Thursday late evening, a candles demonstration in protest of the electricity cut for the Palestinians in the Gaza strip. It marched at 22:00 at Tel Aviv Ben Zion and Rotchild boulevards. The demonstration was called by the Women Coalition and the Anarchists Against the Wall. On Friday there were two demons against the separation fence and occupation in Bil'in (West of Ramallah) and Al Hader (Bethlehem region). A direct action against the road block at Deir Ibziya was canceled as the Israeli army dismantled it in the morning... Activists of the AAtW did a solidarity visit to the injured activists of Beit Umar - two of them murdered today, and many injured in a "retaliation" of Israeli army following the shooting on settlers yesterday in Kfar-Ezyon.

------------ Al Hader ------------

"Today there were an estimated 500 people at the prayer preceding the protest, which took place on the road into El Khader (next to the gas station) in front of a huge Palestinian flag that was strung up on the cliff-face. After the prayer around 200 people went up the road, which was blocked by soldiers and police. There was chanting and shouting for half an hour, and as the protest was dispersing some kids threw a few stones, which hit the jeeps' windscreens. Very quickly the soldiers who were guarding from the top of the cliff (that runs along the road) threw shock and gas grenades. The protesters then ended."


------------ Beit Umar ------------

We were not present in the village at Friday, with tragic consequences. (The joint demonstration was planed for Saturday.) As the guide lines for opening fire to disperse demonstration forbid soldiers from using live ammunition is applied only when Israelis are participating, they did use it and plenty of them. Following the shooting on settlers yesterday in Kfar-Ezyon, the Israeli army entered today (Friday 25.01.08) to the village of Bet-Umar to a retaliation act. the spontaneous demonstration that started by the residents was brutally oppressed by the army that used live ammunition toward the demonstrators.
One Palestinian was killed one is dieing, and between 7 and 10 were injured, among them Mussa Abu Maria that was shot in his head from 2 live bullet and was operated on in Hebron hospital and is now out of danger.

----------- Bil'in --------------

The Friday demonstration marched at noon from the center of the village towards the gate to the west in the separation fence which cut more than half of the village lands. Palestinians from the village and neighboring ones, International activists, and Israeli of the anarchists against the wall initiative, chanted slogans and held banners in solidarity with the people of Gaza, suffering Israeli atrocities.

As usual last few months, the Israeli state force tried to block our way up the hill to the gate located on its top. As usual lately, we forced our way part of the way but was blocked physically by the soldiers. As the direction of the wind prevented them from using tear gas, and as the noise of the shock grenades is not deterring us any more, they had to use only threats and pushing us.

After about half an hour of their pushing and throwing of shock grenades and resistance, both sides were tired. The soldier retreated a bit and we decided to return to the village.

When we arriving at the fringe of the built area of the village, we witnessed as usual the confrontation between the State force with tear gas and rubber coated bullets and the village kids who were throwing on them stones from the near by olive groves.

------------ Demonstration against the closer of Gaza ---------------
On Saturday the coalition against the harsh closer of the Gaza strip ghetto made a big demonstration. About 1000 participants came from all over Israel to the Northern gate to the Gaza strip. Most of us converged first in Tel Aviv, where we decorated the cars and buses with placards and food stuff on the top of the cars. After the convoy arrived at the closed Erez gates there was a big assembly with the dignitaries of the left gave speeches.

In spit of the wish of the organizers, flags were held high - among them Palestinian flags, flags of various Trotskist and Stalinist splinters, and few anarchist ones.

Among the participants was a contingent of the antiauthoritarian left - including the Anarchists Against the Wall initiative and Matzpen.

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