Saturday, October 24, 2009

Palestine-Israel, The joint struggle and the celebration of the new wave of High school seniors refusniks

This week joint struggle was focused on the new wave of the High school seniors refusniks. Both in Tel Aviv demo, the various activities connected with the arrests of the first two - Efi and Or, and in the Friday joint demonstrations at Bil'in, Ni'ilin, and Ma'asara. During the week the focus was on joining the olive picking struggles of the Saffa villagers, and the staying at nights in Bil'in - to help in the confrontation with Israel state forces persecuting the village activists who participate in the struggle against the separation fence. This week, the spectrum of struggles included also usual the activities against the transfer in East Jerusalem and the Israeli Bedouins of the south, and the struggles supporting the Guest workers and resisting the transfer of their children.


Every day 17-21.10.09 there was a notice in our list: please sign up for Bil'in tonight.

There is a car leaving Haifa Thursday (21.10.09) late evening/night to Bil'in. We have 2-3 places available in the car, and we are more than willing to pick someone(s) up from Tel Aviv.


"About 40 Israelis and a similar number of internationals joined the weekly Palestinian demonstration against the wall and occupation in Bil'in. Prominent among the participants were the "shministim" (Israeli refuseniks, who had two of their members put in jail today), and retired PA workers, who led the demonstration with their original slogans and chanting. Demonstrators carried broken cardboard guns as a sign of the nonviolent struggle, while the shabab kept apart along the fence parallel to the route, throwing stones as a sign that their lives under occupation suck big time. One demonstrator brought a tennis racket to return the army's gas grenades. The racket proved less than useful, but some unexploded grenades were manually thrown back to the soldiers, who could share in the suffering of the Hashmonaim settlers, and smell some whiffs of gas. Some demonstrators made a special effort to cross the fence gate and place a Palestinian flag on the soldiers' side of the fence, and then an even more special effort to retrieve the flag in a cloud of gas - a success that marked the end of the demo. As usual, there was enough gas to bring some demonstrators down, panting and crying for a few minutes. Sound bombs also featured after a long pause in their use. When the demonstrators were on their way back, a French woman was hit directly by a gas grenade, and evacuated to a hospital for treatment."

This Friday 23-10-09 in Bil'in -


In the village of Ma'asara some 70 Palestinians, Israelis and internationals demonstrated this Friday against the Apartheid Wall, commemorating three years of struggle in the village and 40 days since the death of Popular Committee member Qaher Ala-Din.

Demonstrators marched from the village towards their lands, and as usual were stopped by occupation forces, which placed barbed wire on the village's main road. Speeches were carried in Arabic, English, French and Hebrew, amongst other things reminding the soldiers the acceptance of the Goldstone report by the UNHRC and of the option they have to refuse their commanding officers, like the young Shministim who were sent to prison the day before.

After the speeches, and while most demonstrators were chanting slogans or beating drums, several village children tried to pull away the fence, but were stopped by the angry soldiers. Eventually the demonstration ended, with no injuries or arrests.


Ni'lin's weekly protest against the wall was held in solidarity with the Israeli youths who have signed the "Seniors Letter". This week the military has begun to draft them into imprisonment for their refusal to serve in an occupation force. The protesters, Palestinian and Israeli, with a larger than usual group of internationals, marched to the wall, chanting slogans against the occupation and for refusal. Some of the village youths threw stones and paint bottles at the soldiers and jeeps patrolling the fence. Soldiers fired tear gas grenades and plastic-coated steel bullets at protesters. 10 were injured, one moderately, who was evacuated to Hospital in Ramalla. 8 of them were hit by bullets, and 2 were struck with aluminum tear gas canisters that were fired directly at them.

The plastic-coated bullets that are increasingly used in Ni'lin are round and consist of a metal core the size and shape of a marble, surrounded by a thin (less than 1mm) layer of plastic. They are fired 16 at a time, from a launching cup attached to the barrel. The bullets fly and spread out in a sort of cone shape, thus rendering this weapon extremely inaccurate, and therefore even more dangerous. During one of their incursions over the wall, a soldier fired two live rounds, apparently in the air. The soldiers also used stun grenades and the smelly water canon.

The protest ended at around 5 pm, and demonstrators dispersed home. Some of those present spent a few moments contemplating the terrible suffering experienced by the settlers of Hashmonaim. As reported in this week's Haaretz, for those poor souls who built their enormous villas on Ni'lin's land, every Friday is an ordeal, as tear gas fired by soldiers drifts over the valley, into their homes, and the sound of army weapons disrupts their precious Friday afternoon naps.

Friday 23.10.09 Ni'ilin video at


Efi Brenner and Or Ben-David from "The senior letter 2009-2010" is going to be
jailed in Thursday because they are refusing to enlist the army.

A march will come out from Dizingof square, this Wednesday (21.10) at 5:30PM.
The March will end at Magen David square.
Come to show your support with the conscience objectors and your resistance

People look like flowers at last youth demonstrate 21.10.09 in support of the high school seniors refusnics

Efi Brenner*, first Objector from New Refusal Letter in Prison

- Please distribute widely -

First prison term for Efi Brenner, the first among the signatories of the 2009-2010 Shministim (high school seniors) refusal letter to be sent to military prison. Full information and recommended action follow.

A new collective declaration of refusal by Israeli youths, the 2009-2010 high school seniors letter, went public last week. Today (22 Oct.), two of its signatories, Efi Brenner and Or Ben-David, came to the military induction base in Tel-Hashomer and there refused to enlist. Efi was indeed sent to prison, while Or has not yet been sentenced (she was told that the military prison for women was full), and will have to return to the induction base tomorrow, probably spend the weekend there and be sent to prison on Sunday. We will run a separate update on her case once she is in prison.

Efi Brenner, 18, from Rishon Le Zion (a suburb of Tel-Aviv), is a familiar figure among young anti-Occupation and animal rights activists in Israel. He was sentenced today to his first prison term of ten days (more terms in prison are likely to follow), which he serves in Military Prison no. 6 near Atlit. Following the media exposure that the Seniors’ Letter has received after it was made public, Efi was kicked out of home by his father, and spent the last days before imprisonment at a friend’s house. In prison he has already been transferred to the isolation ward for refusing to obey the military dressing code. In addition, the prison authorities decided (against all known regulations) not to allow him to take books with him into prison.

Efi has prepared the following statement upon entering prison:

I object to oppression, whether it is committed by a hierarchical organization, such as the military is, or whether it is committed by the human species against animals. The Israeli government and military conduct a policy of occupation and oppression against the Palestinian people since 1948. It began with the expulsion of Palestinians from their homes in 1948, which continues to this day, and continued with the imposition of an oppressive military rule on Palestinians, with the restriction of the freedom of movement of all people, with roads for Israelis only, with administrative detentions, house demolitions, land thefts, etc. We must act in peaceful ways and refuse to take part in the crimes committed by the military. That is our true duty. All the things mentioned above stand against the basic values of freedom and justice in which I believe and for which I struggle. I therefore refuse to enlist to the Israeli military and indeed to any military force of any kind.

Efi Brenner is due to be released from prison on 30 October, but is likely to be imprisoned again soon afterwards. His address in prison is:
* Antiauthoritarian Anticapitalist involved with the AAtW


18.10.09 A car load from Tel Aviv joined some farmers from Saffa and several PSP activists in the lands of Saffa today. We picked olives without trouble with the army patrolling up near the settlement. After about two hours of that the army showed up and pushed us out. They said that they would allow the palestinians to remain but they chose to return with the rest of us.

More work in planned for later in the week if you can come on Tuesday please let me know.

Olive Harvesting at Saffa, Palestine, Usual Military Harassment

there are still more olives to be picked and army and settlers to deal with in Saffa. if you can come on Thursday please get in touch with me.

The olive picking today 22.10.09 went a little better but people are still needed for more olive picking next week.

After Harassment on Tuesday, Farmers, Activists Successfully Harvest in Saffa
Posted on October 23rd, 2009.

"...The Abu Jabber and Hamad Soleiby families have not been allowed to work freely on their land without either Israeli settler attacks and/or Israeli military intervention, since March of this year. PSP, along with Israeli activists, have had an on-going campaign that has lasted over 5 months, accompanying the farmers to their land which lies in a valley in the Saffa area of Beit Ommar, just below the extreme right-wing Israeli settlement, Bat ‘Ayn. With the beginning of the national olive harvest, the Soleiby brothers have asked for support from solidarity activists in accessing their land freely and without fear of settler attack.

On Tuesday, after the group had managed to pick olives for about half an hour, Israeli civilian police stationed in the nearby settlement Kfar Etzion, arrived and told the group that the Israelis and internationals would have to leave. They also attempted to intimidate the group by demanding to see all of the participants’ ID cards (including the farmers and Palestinian activists), copying down their identification information. After a short deliberation, the entire group decided to leave; the Palestinian farmers fearing that, like other times in the recent past, once the solidarity activists were out of sight the police would leave and settlers would be allowed to attack them.

On Thursday, October 22, a larger group of approximately 25 international and Israeli solidarity activists, including volunteers from the YMCA, and a large representation of local media, accompanied the farmers again to their land. Though Israeli soldiers confronted the group early in the day, they were allowed to pick for over 2 hours without incident, demonstrating the effectiveness of the accompaniment program, when combined with pressure from local farmers to access their land freely as they choose. The organizations involved, particularly PSP, will continue the program in Saffa throughout the fall and winter, when they will replant the hundreds of trees destroyed by settlers over the last 6 months.


Few actions of anti expulsion of children of Guest workers born in Israel were carried during the month with divergent participants.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Palestine-Israel, The joint struggle of the direct actions of the AAtW and Palestinians escalate.

In Spite of the "competition" of other joint activities of wider circles (our comrades participate in), our initiative expand in scope and number of participants. Our activists involved this week with the African refugees in the struggle against deportation; With the Israeli Bedouins in the south who struggle against internal transfer from their lands;With the occupied Jerusalem Palestinians facing transfer steps; With Palestinian farmers suffering from harassment of settlers trying to rob their lands bordering the settlements; And of course the weekly demonstration against the separation fence in Bil'in, Ni'ilin, and Muasara (south of Bethlehem). Media reported on activists of the AAtW involved with world wide propaganda. (And we were invited to more actions than we were able to attend.)


During the week nights AAtW comrades stayed in the village in order to confront Israeli
forces harassment of the popular comity members and others.

Some 30 Israelis and 40 internationals (including a large French delegation) joined local
Palestinians for the weekly demonstration against land theft and the violent oppression of
Bil'in's people. The procession was accompanied by an inspiring march-poem read by one of
the popular committee members and echoed by the marchers. When they arrived at the gate in
the fence, the demonstrators asked the soldiers to let people through to clear the land
behind the wall to prepare for the olive harvest. The soldiers responded with gas.

(However, due to the changing winds, an evident they had, and the returning of a tear gas
grenade, the soldiers had to taste "their own medicine...".)

Instead of olive picking, the demonstrators went on to harvest another kind of local
produce: the fallen gas and shock grenades littering the entire fence area. The soldiers
responded with gas. A couple of kids through a few stones at the soldiers. The soldiers
responded with gas. The demonstrators went on to harvest grenades somewhere else. The
soldiers responded with gas. Finally, with bags full of tear gas and sound grenades, the
demonstrators returned to the village. The soldiers responded with gas.

On the way back from Bil'in we could see in the West the "fire works" of the multi rockets
barrage of 32 tear gas grenades fired on the demonstrators against the separation fence and occupation in Ni'ilin.

Bil'in - 9-10-09


Ni'lin's weekly protest against the wall began as usual with a prayer and a march through the olive groves, to the route of the wall. This time, the 100 or so group of protesters chose to march to an area that has not seen demonstrations for a while, enabling them to utilize the absence of soldiers to cut the razor wire and a section of the actual fence. a few minutes later several military jeeps arrived at the scene, and soldiers began to fire various types of tear gas grenades at the demonstration, in some cases directly at protesters, in violation of the army's own regulations. Notably, the army has renewed the use of an aluminum tear gas canister, the front end of which is shaped like a cone. dozens of these were fired at protesters, and those who were hit by this type of canister in the past said that they are not as dangerous as the extended range canisters ("Saruch" in Arabic) but that a person hit by them might still be injured.

The protesters then moved to a western section of the wall, some of them throwing stones at the jeeps patrolling the route, while soldiers fired tear gas. In the afternoon, a group of soldiers and border police crossed the barrier, triggering a temporary withdrawal of protesters back to the village. When the soldiers returned to their station over the fence, so did a small group of demonstrators, who exhausted their remaining energy by throwing a few more stones at the soldiers. All protesters then returned to the village. No injuries were recorded, aside from some tear gas inhalation and red, sore eyes.


The demo in the village of Ma'asara a smaller than usual demonstration made its way after
the Friday prayer from the center of the village towards the agricultural lands on which
the Apartheid Wall is being built. Attended by some thirty Palestinians, including many
children, twenty internationals and eight Israelis, the procession was stopped by
occupation soldiers, who placed a razor wire fence on the road near the entrance to the
Slogans were chanted and speeches carried in Arabic, English and Hebrew, explaining to the
soldiers the vital importance of the stolen lands to the Palestinian people, especially
now as the olive harvest season is coming up. After several non-violent attempts to go
around the fence failed, the demonstration ended with the promise to return next week, as
This week's demonstration was painted in green, as the children of the village wore their
new T-shirts with the slogan "Beat drums, not people" (in English and Arabic). The
children wearing the shirts have recently been taking drumming lessons from the Israeli
Qassamba group of protest drummers.


Stop calling us haters of Israel by Yuval Ofir-Oron - one of the three Israeli refusnics
on tour in South-Africa

The Israeli army, which we were required to serve, controls the lives of 3.5 million
people in the occupied territories.Already many decades that Israel, with all arms,
sending Israeli youth to control the civilian population in the territories.We refused
to do so.

In recent years we have seen the sights of the Israeli occupation in the West Bank.We
saw the faces of children, women and men whom we are asked today to suppress.We can not
serve in the army that violates the values that we believe in, and without them we can not
survive as moral community.We refuse to take part in building a wall that takes land
from farmers, a wall that its whole purpose is to annex more land to the Jewish state and
expand illegal settlements.We refuse to build dirt conceit blocks roadblocks on
Palestinian villages roads and refuse to run checkpoints on land taken by force.We
refuse to uproot olive trees in Bidu.Refuse to invade the houses of families in Azoun.
Refuse to be guards of a one and a half million people in Gaza.Refuse to destroy houses
in East Jerusalem.Refuse to kill those who are fighting for freedom.Against these
crimes we can not close my eyes, we can not sit still.

We were invited to South Africa to tell our story.People want to hear about
conscientious objection in Israel, they want to know what is really happening in the
occupied territories.During our tour we met with high school pupils, students, workers,
pensioners, Jews, Muslims, other white and black people....We are here to bring the
voices of our partner - the Palestinians who are living under foreign occupation, and our
voices, Israeli Jews who will not take part in the Israeli occupation.

Israelis do not want to end the occupation

We're all young Israelis, part of Israeli society.We fight for the future where we
live, the future of our society.This struggle is for us, for our families and friends
and for those who live with us.Today we look around with aching hearts and fear of where
we arrived and more so - were we are going.

We believe that Israeli society has proved unable or not interested, to end the
occupation by its own initiative.Forces of nationalism, militarism, and racism just
strengthening in it. Most Israelis think that the crimes conducted by Israeli governments
are only subjects for in internal political controversy in Israeli society itself, but we
believe that these crimes relate all of human society, so we call upon world community to
demand publicly and firmly that the Israeli occupation will end.

State of Israel should pay a price for the occupation, war crimes, the harm to
innocents.Withdrawal of investments from Israel, severing business ties with wealthy
Israelis, and stopping economic cooperation with Israeli companies, with an emphasis on
companies that maintain relations with the Israeli army or who earns from the existence of
the settlements, all these are legitimate acts of nonviolence and pressure on the powerful
decision makers of Israel, with the goal to put end to the occupation.We join the
Palestinian call for a boycott of Israel, alongside millions of workers unions, and tens
of thousands of individuals around the world.It's time to stop calling Goldstone Anti
Semitic and us Israel-haters.The time already arrived to look directly at the reality we
have created, and to act to change it for our neighbors and for us.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

South-Africa, Media, Israeli refusnics* tour in Capetown - a call for BSD

The refusnics in Capetown - "There is a price for the occupation!!!!"

Quotations from speeches of the three Israeli refusnics who arrived last week in South Africa for a campaign against Israel and its army. On Tuesday they held a special meeting of a few hundred students (including local Jews) in Cape Town university (UCT). In their speech - which included a harsh attack on Israel - they called on South African students to join the struggle against the occupation and to help the boycott of Israel in the world. The three, Yuval O. (20), Omer G. (20) and Sahar V. (19), summarized the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict since 1948, pointing out parallels between the decisions of Israeli governments and those of the South African racial apartheid ones.

"From Soweto to Ramallah, bullets flew and tear gas filled the streets in the efforts to strangle the resistance", said Omer in her description of the first Intifada.

The refusnics told the students about their political opinions and about the roots of their decisions to refuse to be recruited to the army.

Yuval told them about the first time he participated in a demonstration against the building of the separation fence in the Palestinian village of Ni'ilin, in which the Israeli soldiers "sprayed" unarmed demonstrators with rubber-coated bullets and tear gas:

"This experience, repeated afterwards many times, made me understand that this army I used to regard as a protector, is in fact attacking me, my friends, and all that I believe in. Yuval told them about an adult Palestinian friend [Bassem] killed by Israeli soldiers during a demonstration while calling at them to stop firing: "This unarmed struggle is a threat for the occupation forces".

"Old friends grow cold when you refuse to enlist"

Omer told them that when she had toured Cyprus during the second Lebanon war she was exposed for the first time to uncensored pictures of the war, and these caused her to understand how little she really knew about what is happening in Israel. "When it was clear that the Lebanon war was in vain, and no one in the Israeli government was admitting it, I not only lost my belief in the 'humanity' of the Israeli army, but started to doubt in the ability of this army - sent by this government, to defend me. I remember that after a demonstration in Tel Aviv against the government I told a friend: 'I am not going to take part in it... This government doesn't represent me any more. There must be another way".

Omer added: "The problem is that young Israelis are not exposed to the true reality. 99% of them have never been to the occupied territories or met Palestinians, and their first encounter with them is when they are in uniform and armed. As we (the refusnics) visited the occupied territories before enlisting, our eyes were opened to the reality. Once you saw it, there was no other way to take."

Omer described the hardship of life as a refusnic: "When you refuse to serve the society you live in or enlist, you involve your friends and family members in your decision, so there are a lot of outcomes to the choice of opposing that immoral act [of enlisting in the army of occupation]. Old friends grow colder, and sometimes the family does not show any support."

At the end of the assembly, the three called on the South African students to participate in the struggle against the occupation and to boycott Israel: "The international community must understand that the only way to save the Israelis and the Palestinians is to show the Israeli authorities that there is a price to pay for their unjust policy. There is a price for the occupation and for harming innocent people."

Yuval added that as in the time of apartheid, there is a need to boycott the Israeli academic establishment and companies, and more so those involved in military innovations and building in the colonial settlements. Omer added: "The occupation is corrupting Israel from within. It creates aggressive people and extreme chauvinism and makes people forget values such as solidarity and equality. The mandatory conscription to the IDF army is only the tip of the iceberg of that militarist state. Reservist service transforms Israel into a state in which each parent, teacher and employer continues to function as soldiers".


* The three refusnic activists were involved in the previous wave of high-school refusnics. All served a few months' time in prison, and participate in the Israeli Anarchists Against the Wall initiative.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Palestine-Israel, It is still a long way for the joint struggle against the separation fence and occupation

The Israeli increased harassment of the members of Bil'in popular comity for nonviolent joint struggle against the separation fence show us how damaging is the joint struggle to the Israeli settler colonialist project. Activists of the Anarchists Against the Wall initiative continued involvement in the struggle against transfer in Jerusalem and the struggles against water restrictions - an indirect means for forcing a "voluntary transfer". We participated in the three persistent Friday demonstrations against the separation fence in Bil'in, Ni'ilin, And in the Al-Muasara region. Comrades also joined the direct action in Qarut where rocks blocking the road were removed.


To remind us that the demonstrations in Bil'in are not just a routine ceremony, the Israeli state forces arrested Thursday - just a day before the Friday demonstration another member of the popular committee Basel Mansour 32 years old. In their desperate efforts increased lately to put end to the Friday demonstrations against the separation fence in Bil'in.

International activists and Israelis of the Anarchists Against the Wall, keep coming along the week, for nights presence and confrontation with the Israeli state forces harassing and try arresting Bil'in activist at nights.

On Friday noon, we marched as usual from the village center to the gate in the fence of the route of the separation fence. We were a few dozens Palestinian people of Bil'in and their supporters: about 15 Israelis, two dozen internationals (including a France delegation from Kaysersberg headed by its mayor), a delegation of the Union of Palestinian farmers, and few leaders of the Palestinian People's Party. Demonstrators chanted on the way against the fence that annexes the lands of Bil'in, against the night raids that the army commits in an attempt to oppress the village protest and terrorize its people and against the Israeli occupation at large.

When the demonstrators reached the fence, one of them declared in front of the soldiers there that this is a non-violent demonstration; that the night raids only strengthen Bil'in people in their struggle for freedom and livelihood; on the demonstrators' intention to harvest the olive trees that reside on Bil'in's land beyond the fence; and that the demonstrators do not need permits from the occupation to do so. Other demonstrators told the soldiers in Arabic, English and Hebrew that they are occupiers and should go away, and that the fence in its current route should fall even according to an Israeli court decision.

As it happen often, efforts to open the gate were successful. From time to time comrades succeeded to enter the route and hung a Palestinian flags on the electronic fence.

Few times the state force responded with showers of teargas grenades. Twice few soldiers opened the fence door and ran towards the demonstrators in an attempt to commit arrests and\or scare the demonstrators, but they retreated after a few stones were thrown at them. As the retreat of the activists was fast enough - the soldiers grabbed only the flags.

After the third flag was removed from the fence but not confiscated by the soldiers, it was rescued and was carried at the head of the march back to the village. At that stage - when the demonstrators already started moving towards the village, the frustrated soldiers showered us with the last round of teargas grenades.


Friday 3.10.09 After the noon prayer, about 70 Palestinians and about 20 Israeli and international activists marched from the center of the village toward the robbed lands confiscated for the building of the separation fence. As usual, the Israeli army blocked the entrance of the village with a spool of barbed wire and prevented the crossing to the lands. Speech were carried there in Arabic, English, and Hebrew, which also mentioned Haider Abed Al Shafi and Eduard Said who died a year ago.

There was a significant presence of females with Um Hasan at their head who lead the the march with chants and gave a speech about the Palestinian "Tsumud" = persistence of the resistance to the Israeli transfer pressures.


The weekly protest against the wall in Ni'lin was the first one held during the olive harvest season. This is also the first harvest season since the completion of the wall on Ni'lin land, and the village is waiting to see whether the occupation forces will fulfill their stated commitment to allow the villagers access to their land over the wall.
Families who still have remaining olive trees that haven't been stolen by the wall have begun the work of picking the olives (this year is the bad year for the olive crop). Ni'lin families with olive trees beyond the wall haven't been allowed to cross over to harvest them yet, as the army has requested a list of names from the municipality.

The protesters marched towards the route of the concrete wall placed alongside the fence, carrying pictures of the 6 Ni'lin youths who are currently detained by the Israeli army. some of the protesters pelted soldiers with stones, while others called on them to refuse to participate in the theft of Palestinian land. Soldiers fired tear gas at protesters, in some cases directly, and used for the first time in some months aluminum canisters, that are much more dangerous if fired directly at people. Additionally, they sprayed the stinking green substance at the most daring of protesters who got within the range of the jets of fluid. After a couple of hours soldiers crossed the wall, and the protesters backed off. no serious injuries were recorded, aside from some gas inhalation.

Ni'ilin Fri. 2.10.09

On the previous Friday demo see:


Saffa this Saturday
As said before this Saturday we are going to go to Saffa to work with local farmers, If anyone wants to join please call me as soon as possible


Water convoy Saturday 26.9.09 video


Palestinian protesters remove rocks blocking the road that leads to the West Bank village of Qarut, near Nablus, on October 2, 2009. A group of Palestinian protesters, Israeli and foreign peace activists demonstrated against the Israeli blockade of the main road that leads to the village of Qarut and against the nearby Jewish settlement of Shelo.