For more than a year Bil'in is not the only persisting popular struggle. The activists of the Anarchists Against the Wall initiative joined this week the expanding popular struggle of the Palestinians in Bil'in, Ni'ilin, Um-Salmuna, Saffa, the Jordan valley, Izbet Tabib, Bnei Zid, and the Jerusalem region. In addition to rising the moral, some successes were achieved. The joint struggle get lot of publicity in the Israeli and the international media. (Just do an internet search of the phrase "Anarchists Against the Wall" and see the tens of thousands of links found.)
Some 20 Israelis and 50 internationals joined several dozens of Palestinians for the weekly demo in Bil'in. The demonstrators marched toward the wall singing and chanting against the Israeli occupation and the wall. Some of the internationals, due to pressure from the people who had organized their visit, did not march with the demonstrators, but only watched them from the side and stayed behind. As in the last two weeks, the military was not as aggressive as in previous months, and shot relatively small amounts of gas, which increased as the demo went on. When some demonstrators managed to open the gate and get between the fences, the soldiers threw shock grenades at them, but did not shoot rubber bullets. The army did, however, shoot gas grenades directly at the ambulance that cam to evict victims of gas inhalation, and used the multiple gas canister cannon when the ambulance was still turning around to head back. Three people suffered direct hits of gas grenades and few needed treatment for gas inhalation.
Naomi Klein in Bil'in 26-6-09 - link to video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HC8TX0TXcds
Link for video: Bil'in 26-6-09, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zCKwzJQS6Wk
Bil'in 3.7.2009 video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e0BjohYpfWE
Dozens of demonstrators gathered this Friday in Ni'ilin. For the third week in a row, the demonstrators managed to arrive at the fence. As in the previous two weeks, some of the demonstrators even managed to cut some of the barb wire surrounding the fence.
The military and border police forces shot tear gas canisters & grenades at the demonstration. Several demonstrators and a journalist suffered direct tear gas canisters hits. Snipers were spotted aiming at some of the demonstrators, though haven't fired eventually.
Ni'ilin 3-7-09 - link to video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oEWqOsPLqnA
Some 100 Palestinian, Israeli and international demonstrators marched in protest of the building of the Apartheid Wall on the lands of Um-Salmuna and Ma'asara. The demonstration, which commemorated the anniversary of the foundation of the "Palestinian National Initiative" party, was met (as always) with about 30 soldiers who put barbed wire on the road leading from the village to the agricultural land where the wall is to be built.
In their speeches, several demonstrators addressed the soldiers in Arabic, English and Hebrew, explaining to them that they are supporting illegal acts of settlement, water theft and land appropriation, and paying tribute to all the children of the village who have been imprisoned by the army, including one popular committee member, Hassan Bargia. During the speeches in English and Hebrew, high ranking officers who were at the scene switched on the sirens of all army and border police jeeps, so that soldiers will not be able to hear or be influenced by the demonstrators' calls towards them – to refuse, and join the peaceful movement for the end of the occupation.
Also present and the demonstration was an Israeli Samba band, teaching some of the village children how to drum, and played together.
During the week:
This Afternoon army and civil governance people arrived at Al-Malikh in the Jordan valley and announced that all of them (30 families, over 200 people including children. sick, old and babies) must leave.
Army claimed that it is for a military drill and will be allowed to return 24 hours later, but it is like that it will use it to ruin their houses and/or evicted.
The people there has asked the assistance of Israelis - if you can come tonight or tomorrow, please call
Media: "See what a miracle: early evening the harsh decree was canceled. The intervention of the activists of Betselem, Road Blocks Watch, Active Stills, Anarchists Against the Wall*, and the United Nation coordination office for humanitarian issues (OCHA), caused the canceling of the calamity."
AAtW was invited for a meeting: "Is there anyone who can make it to a meeting in Izbet Tabib tomorrow afternoon ? If so please let me know."
Meeting concerning water supply
In too many places across the West Bank there's an substantial water supply problem. Bnei Zid and six neighboring Palestinian villages in the Ramallah area have suffered insufficient water supply over the years due to Israeli controls of water distribution.
This year the problem has become unbearable. Since the beginning of April, over the last three months, water supply is almost completely cut off to these Palestinian villages, which include some 20,000 inhabitants. The villages share the water of a single source (located next to settlement Bet Arye) with three settlements. According to locals the three settlements get 90% of the water, while the other 10% is shared by the seven Palestinian villages. As a result villagers must buy their own water. Some people can afford it, while others have to beg.
The meeting concluded with an acknowledgement of the urgent need to act together with all relevant organizations. The village wants to have a demo, and asked for aid to purchase water for 50 families. We also discussed media action and advocacy to embassies and international organizations.
We start acting today through an action team coordinated by Y. A. If you're interested, please contact Yuval.
Lately. One of the focuses of struggle against the pressure for transfer of Palestinians in the Jerusalem region is in Seikh Jarrah neighborhood.
Israeli and international activists joined the families threatened with eviction.
Yanay Israeli blog about Saffa:
Due do the recurring disturbances by the military to the farmers of Saffa, we will again head there the coming Saturday [4th of July]. There's also an option of arriving earlier.
The protracted struggle of the Palestinian farmers to cultivate their lands near the colonialist settlement Bat Ain continued. State forces had to yield a bit and the farmers were allowed some hours of work in their orchards.
The AAtW continued joining them including this Saturday, in spite of the efforts of state forces to block us from joining the farmers in order to repel the assaults of the settlers.
Saffa 27-6-09 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8PUpmUMG_pA