This week Anarchists Against the Wall were busier than ever: During the week activists were involved in Tel Aviv with the struggle against the harassment of the African refugees from Darfur, South Sudan, and Eritrea. Activists were busier in the struggle against the transfer of Palestinians in Jerusalem. During the weeks comrades slept in Bil'in going out to the streets when Israeli state forces invaded the village to arrest people and intimidate the involved in the on-going struggle against the separation fence and occupation. The involvement in Saffa was on lower intensity this week. On Friday we participated in the demonstrations against the fence - together with the local Palestinian villagers and guests, and internationals, in Bil'in, Ni'ilin, and Um Salmuna.
During the week, Anarchists Against the Wall activists were involved in the struggle against the continuous nightly invading of the village by the Israeli state forces, the arrests of people, and their military "courts" proceedings. Comrades slept in the village at nights, and helped in the release of Bil'iners from incarceration in the concentration camp.
The late night and early morning raids in Bil'in are linked to a recent lawsuit filed by the village in the Quebec Superior Court last month. The lawsuit is against two Montreal-based companies, Green Park International and Green Mount International, which play a role in the building of Modi'in Ilit orthodox Jews settlements on Palestinian villages lands in Bil'in region. Their activity is illegal under international law and under Canada's Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Act, established in 2000.
"Israel's military raids began exactly at the same time that we started court hearings in Canada," says Mohammed Khatib of the Popular Committee Against the Wall and Settlements in Bil'in. "Israel's army raids are aiming to stop our struggle, and our court case in Quebec. Israel is collectively punishing us for our efforts to resist [the] Israeli colonization of our lands."
"An initial ruling on the Bil'in lawsuit in the Quebec Superior Court is still pending. Justice Louis-Paul Cullen is expected to rule within the next six months. Palestinians in the village are bracing for further Israeli raids."
Another night Invasion - Imad burnat arrested http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YApgyJtuaKQ
Due to the ongoing night raids and arrests in Bilin, we wish to strengthen the presence of Israeli activists during nights there.
If you are free to join our friends in Bilin any night this week, please e-mail ASAP to firstname.lastname@example.org & email@example.com.
Also, a meeting in the village will be held tomorrow, Monday, please follow up for details.
"Some 30 Israelis, over 40 internationals and the boys and girls of the Jericho Palestinian Struggle Youth Union marching band joined several dozen Palestinians, who conducted an exceptionally big demonstrated against the annexation wall and the night and day arrests of residents of Bil'in (on the night before a 13th villager was snatched by the army for investigation, while the army's lawyers prepare to appeal a decision to release one of the local organizers). The marching band led the procession drumming and chanting toward the demonstration site, but stayed behind due to its members' young age. Upon arrival the demonstrators kicked footballs to the soldiers, who failed to follow the script of the current Israeli TV commercial and engage in a peaceful football match, possibly because in this real life situation their Palestinian opponents were clearly visible from across the barbed wire. Instead, the soldiers threw gas canisters at the demonstrators, and had to persist quite intensely until they managed to incite a handful of stones from the kids across the fence. Then the "skunk" was brought forth, spraying putrid water, locally nick-named "the shit". Only a handful of organizers, covered from head to toe in plastic suits and hospital gloves and masks, stayed at the fence keeping their post under the sickening rain. After a few rounds of gas and "the shit" the demonstration was declared over, which encouraged the soldiers to shoot even more gas at the receding demonstrators, extending the stand-off and causing some small fires in the fields."
As is frequent along the years of Friday demonstrations in Bil'in (and Ni'ilin too), the Israeli state forces use them as testing ground and demonstration arena for various weapons and tactics for dispersing demonstrations. The stinking skunk odor spray was tested last two weeks with a new version of the spray.
"The Israeli soldiers started to spray the dirty water by hoses, where the water mixed with chemical and biological materials, which make it smells very bad, furthermore demonstrators started to throw up because of using this stinky water. The Israeli has used this dirty water before one year, then they stopped using it after the intervention of international human rights organizations. Before that, the Israeli have used colored water mixed with gas. In addition to new weapons such as different kinds of the tear gas, live bullets, scream, sponge, salt balls, and green beans bags, which all-new names for dangerous weapons."
Activists of the AAtW participated in the ongoing struggle against the houses demolition and robbery in the occupied East Jerusalem.
"On Sunday, 19th, at 12:00 expires the time given to the Sheikh Jarrah families to surrender the keys to their houses to the hands of settlers. Failing to do this, they are at risk of immediate eviction and arrest.
On Sunday, at 1 pm we shall be there with them, to support, protest and launch another period of constant presence of activists in the houses to prevent their eviction and protect their rights.
Volunteers are also needed to stay in the houses for some hours, day or night, during the period from this Sunday until the 27th July."
Like every Friday, the Ni'lin demonstration proceeded to the route of the wall after lunchtime prayers. unlike in previous weeks, the protesters couldn't reach the route, as a volley of tear gas canisters was fired at them from a jeep-top launcher, forcing them to disperse, and increasing the distance needed for some of them to direct stones at the forces of occupation and land-theft. Another reason to keep one's distance from the fence was the sight of the police tanker, used to spray the "skunk" at demonstrators. Border police officers fired tear gas and rubber coater metal bullets at the protesters. Rubber coated bullets haven't been used in Ni'lin for a long while, and it was assumed that the suspension of the use of 0.22 caliber live bullets was behind this). Some police crossed the fence, but they did not enter the village and no injuries were recorded.
Ni'ilin 17-7-09 - link to video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vstLiEmtruE
Though on lower intensity as villager got partial access to their land, the joint struggle in the region continues.
"Police arrest pro-Arab anarchists near Bat Ayin July 16, 9:31 AM
The Jews are harassed almost daily by the increasingly present foreign anarchists, Israeli leftists, and Arabs. Seven anarchists were arrested for trying to provoke a fight with resident Jews"
The involvement of the AAtW activists in the struggle against the harassment of the new immigrants police of the African refugees continue in various ways. The intensive efforts of the new police intend to expel as much as possible African refugees from Israel and especially from Tel Aviv continue - and so is the resistance.
Yesterday (Friday) at noon some 30 Palestinians, 15 Israelis and 20 international marched in the Um Salmuna and Ma'asara area, protesting against the building of the Apartheid Wall and the illegal settlements on Palestinian lands. The demonstration, which marked the 220th anniversary to the French Revolution, was stopped by the Israeli Occupation Forces, who declared a closed military zone, and prevented demonstrators from reaching the appropriated lands.
In their tri-lingual speeches, demonstrators called upon the soldiers to lay down their arms, and acknowledge the fact that now - more than ever before - Israel is facing the risk of international sanctions, and must give up the occupation before it is forced to do so.
When the demonstrations was nearly at its end soldiers started shoving some of the youths who were chanting slogans, and officers threatened to arrest all demonstrators.
The demonstration ended with no arrests and none wounded, and with the promise of returning time and time again in weeks to come.
"The coming Monday evening, we'll hold a meeting to consider activities in Israel re the ongoing and increasing water shortage in the territories.
Please contact S. if you wish to join."