During his presidential campaign, Biden committed to rejoining the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. But a year and a half into his term, he failed to return the U.S. to the deal. He has also imposed additional sanctions on Iran, shamefully capitulating to Israeli pressure. In the Jerusalem Declaration, Biden, on behalf of the United States, signed a “commitment never to allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon, and [pledged] that it is prepared to use all elements of its national power to ensure that outcome.” When asked in an interview on Israeli television whether he would use military force against Iran, Biden ominously replied, “As a last resort, yes.” Biden has refused to reverse other Trump actions that pandered to Israel as well. He has not withdrawn Trump’s illegal recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
Conversations with Palestinians both young and old almost always end with them saying to me, “you [a Jewish Israeli] can say these things, but if we were to say them we would be excluded from all spaces and we would be called anti-semitic.” A young Palestinian interning in Washington, D.C. told me she felt that she needed an Israeli beside her to give her legitimacy. Not in her own eyes, but in the eyes of the D.C. establishment. Sadly, she is probably correct; in the anti-Arab, and particularly anti-Palestinian atmosphere in Washington, this is very likely true.
Palestinians yesterday flew a drone carrying the Palestinian flag over occupied East Jerusalem, where thousands of Israeli settlers held a provocative march in the Old City. Locals reported that the flag was raised using a "small drone from a distance, just before the Israeli forces began chasing the Palestinian man who was controlling the drone." Israeli forces were mobilized amid a state of panic that appeared among the marching settlers, as the flag flew over the Damascus Gate area. Settlers yesterday held the provocative Flag March to mark Israel's illegal capture of occupied East Jerusalem. To protect the March occupation forces fired stun grenades and rubber-coated metal bullets at Palestinians protesting against it.
The Israeli High Court on Wednesday greenlit the forcible expulsion of 1,200 Palestinians in the Masafer Yatta area of the southern occupied West Bank, ending a more than two-decade battle in the courts. The Israeli government claims the residents of eight herding communities in an area of the South Hebron Hills, known as Masafer Yatta, are residing “illegally” in a military firing zone, and has been attempting to expel them from the area for decades. The residents of Masafer Yatta, however, date their presence in the area several decades ago, before the area was occupied by Israel in 1967, and declared a firing zone by the military in the 1980s. Late Wednesday night, the High Court rejected an appeal by the residents against their expulsion, paving the way for the Israeli military to demolish their homes and forcibly expel them from their land, a crime under international law.
The JNF (Jewish National Fund) once again is in the news, this time for collaborating with the State of Israel in dispossessing Palestinian residents of the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah. According to a 2010 UN report, this is not the first time Sheikh Jarrah’s residents have been dispossessed and, while illegal under international law, it is not illegal according to Israeli law. It is one more act of brutality, brought to you on a regular basis by Israel and the JNF since 1948. On the evening of January 18, 2022, in Sheikh Jarrah, Israeli police attacked the home of the Salahiya family—a family that was originally displaced by Israel in 1948. The destruction of homes and land in such attacks is executed by the JNF. In the January attack, police arrested Mahmoud Salahiya and his sons and violently removed the rest of the family from their home.
Palestine Action have raided Elbit System’s subsidiary, UAV Engines Ltd, in Shenstone, Staffordshire at 7.15 this morning. The activists have sprayed blood-red paint and begun dismantling the weapons factory, whilst occupying the roof to prevent site operations. With windows smashed and equipment dismantled, the action draws parallels with Israel’s forced demolitions of Palestinian homes, sounding the alarm on the ethnic cleansing Israel is currently enacting in Sheikh Jarrah, Palestine. Elbit Systems are Israel’s largest arms manufacturer and hold a significant presence in Britain. A key subsidiary, UAV Engines Ltd has been a target of Palestine Action since the group’s launch in July 2020, when activists shut the site five times in five months and caused millions of pounds of losses.
At least 30 major artists, performers and organizations have pulled out of the Sydney Festival in Australia over a $20,000 sponsorship deal with the Israeli embassy. Comedian Tom Ballard stated that “I love the Festival and I love telling jokes, but standing up for human rights and standing against a system of apartheid is more important.”
United Kingdom - Three activists who defaced an Israeli drone engines factory in the UK were found not guilty of criminal damage on Monday. The two-day trial took place at Newcastle-under-Lyme Magistrates Court, near Stoke-on-Trent in central England. Palestine Action co-founder Huda Ammori told The Electronic Intifada that the victory showed they were on the right track. “We’re going to continue to take direct action in order to shut down and undermine Israel’s arms trade,” she said. It was reassuring to have court backing for taking action against Israeli arms makers, she added, and that “to disrupt them and throw red paint over their buildings is something that’s perfectly within our rights to do.”
Jerusalem — “I need a cell for a Jew,” the Israeli cops driving the jeep called into the jail. I was the Jew they were referring to and the jail was the infamous “Muskobia,” in the heart of West Jerusalem. This was the end of a long and tiring day that began with a protest in the village of Nabi Saleh in Palestine. I was covered in sweat, tear gas, dust, and quite a bit of the disgusting skunk liquid that the Israeli army sprays on protestors. It was a hot day and my arms were full of bruises, my elbow and wrists sprained from the soldiers twisting them during the arrest. But regardless of the fact that I was protesting with Palestinians, I was still a Jew and when I was sent to jail for the night the authorities needed to make sure I was in a cell for Jews.
Israel agreed on Thursday to release a hunger-striking prisoner in four months after lengthy negotiations. Miqdad Qawasmeh suspended his hunger strike on Thursday after refusing food for 113 days to protest his detention without charge or trial after Israel agreed to release him in February 2022. His victory came after lengthy and arduous negotiations between the leadership of the Hamas prisoners’ group and Israeli authorities. The 24-year-old was the youngest of six Palestinian men who have been refusing food for weeks and months in protest of Israel’s detention of them without charge or trial. Five others are still fighting for their freedom on empty stomachs.
Raja Shehadeh, Palestinian writer, and activist, and founder of the rights group Al-Haq, talks about the recent Israeli decision to designate six organizations as terrorists. He explains the context for the Israeli move, the long history of repression of Palestinian activists, and the resistance put up by these groups and the Palestinian people.
A small town in northern British Columbia was recently the backdrop for a chilling display of how Emirati influence and power can be used to attempt to suppress popular support for Palestine. On June 14, Prince Rupert was the scene of a Block The Boat community picket against the Israeli Zim Volans ship that had been chased away from Oakland. For a day and a half, members of ILWU 505 had respected the picket line and the Volans had sat idle. Eventually, an emergency injunction was granted, and the Volans was finally unloaded and left for Shanghai, China. A week later, DP World, the company that handles the specific terminal in Prince Rupert Port where the Volans docked, sent out notices delivering a 3-day suspension to 94 port workers who had respected the picket.
A 69-year-old activist has scaled and spent the night atop a 200 metre high crane near the United States embassy in London, in solidarity with Palestinians. Nick Georges, who is a grandfather, climbed up the crane in the Battersea area of south London at 4am on Tuesday, unfurling a Palestinian flag from the summit. In a video address, he said he had climbed the tower frame "to tell the world about Palestine". "For three months, I was sent to Palestine as a humanitarian witness," Georges said. "I witnessed the atrocities and the horrors of the illegal Israeli occupation of the Palestinian homeland." A 69 year old, Nick Georges has risked his life climbing a 650ft crane and planting a Palestinian flag on it next to the US embassy.
Nearly 200,000 protesters attended a pro-Palestine demonstration in Central London on Saturday afternoon, another clear sign that support for Palestinian rights is becoming increasingly mainstream and the imperialists are losing control of the Israel narrative. The real consequence of this is that people will begin losing trust in the government and media institutions which support Israel, because without trust the empire can’t propagandize people, and without the ability to propagandize us our rulers cannot rule. There’s no risk for Israel of losing US backing due to the US government suddenly evolving a conscience or listening to its constituents, that won’t happen, but losing control of the narrative poses a major problem for the empire.
Over the last number of weeks and days Palestinian protests to #SaveSheikhJarrah, in occupied East Jerusalem, have grown in size. They have been met with brutal repression by Israeli apartheid security forces, including police officers trained in Israel’s police training academy partially owned by G4S and Allied Universal. Indigenous Palestinian residents of Sheikh Jarrah have fought lengthy legal battles in Israeli courts against eviction orders which would see them ethnically cleansed, forcefully evicted from their homes, and replaced with illegal Israeli settlers. Last week, 7 May 2021, Israeli settlers have submitted their response to the rightful claims of the residents of Sheikh Jarrah to the Israeli court, an apparatus of Israel's apartheid regime.