(Forwarded from Ellen)
The conflict between the Israeli military and security and the popular
non-violent Palestinian resistance is reaching a crisis in large
part a tribute to the worldwide credibility and admiration the
resistance is steadily winning.
Today in Palestine, such resistance is breaking out in larger towns,
small villages, and Bedouin encampments, in both Christian and Muslim
areas. People are marching, chanting and singing, carrying signs, and
often using very funny or touching street theatre. Palestinians are
calling for their rights, joined and assisted by international and
Israeli volunteers in a new model of friendship and brotherhood that
offers hope for the future.
This movement has terrified the Israeli establishment, especially as
the usual techniques have failed to stop its momentum. Arrests,
serious and crippling injuries, deaths, and destruction of property
(the ability to earn a living), have all made huge and painful inroads
into people¹s lives and hopes. Despite this, resistance continues.
Widespread sentiment is that this is the last chance, that no-one can
stop now if they ever wish to gain their freedom and the justice that
has been denied them.
A perfect symbol of this conflict is Adeeb Abu Rahma from Bil'in: one
of the most charismatic, courageous, creative and at times hilariously
Adeeb has been convicted for crimes of “incitement” that is, urging
the villagers to come out on Fridays to join the weekly protest and
for belonging to the Bil’in Popular Committee. These manufactured
“crimes” apply to all the leaders and most of the participants of all
the nonviolent movements in all the towns and villages of Palestine.
If they are determined by the Israeli military to be illegal in
Palestine, and a heavy sentence applied, then the entire resistance
movement is threatened. Which is, of course, the point.
Adeeb is due to be sentenced in a few days. International law
specifically recognizes the right of occupied people to resist
occupation that these people have chosen to do this in a nonviolent
way shows great wisdom and restraint. This choice should be welcomed
rather than criminalized by Israel if they have any intention of
living here in peace with their neighbors.
Join us to support Adeeb:
Please contact your Embassies and Consulates in Jerusalem to ask for
their help in preventing an act that will hurt both sides as they
search for a way to live together in peace.
I/we are writing to ask for your help in preventing a miscarriage of
justice in the case of Adeeb abu Rahma, who has been convicted in
military court of "incitement" (that is, encouraging people from his
village to take part in the weekly demonstrations against the illegal
wall that confiscates most of the village land), and of belonging to a
Popular Committee in his village of Bil'in.
Lengthy efforts to convict Adeeb of stone throwing or other violent
acts have failed, and so the government is attempting to criminalize
acts of non-violent resistance. Such resistance is clearly defined in
international law as being a legal right for anyone under occupation
(1977 Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949,
and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed
Conflicts, Article 1, Paragraph 4).
When Israel was suffering from suicide bombing attacks, prominent
Israeli figures asked loudly and often, "Where is the Palestinian
Gandhi; where is a resistance that does not involve terror?" Now that
Israel faces such resistance, with leaders who are willing to talk to
them as equals, they are using every weapon at their disposal to
intimidate, discourage, wound and even kill both those who lead it and
the ordinary Palestinians who take part. Does Israel want to force
Palestinians back to a more violent path? This the time for Israel to
come to terms with the reality of Palestinian rights and needs, and to
begin to reason their way forward to a future where both peoples can
live in this land without fear of the other.
The case of Adeeb abu Rahma is a symbol of this struggle. Israel now
has a choice in his sentencing to send a signal that it wants to crush
nonviolent initiatives, or to find more creative and hopeful ways to
move toward the future. Adeeb has served over a year, with constantly
shifting charges, and should be released for time served, with an
apology and hopes for a better future.
Adeeb's daughter Raja:
We also ask your support for Adeeb¹s daughter, Raja. Though from a
simple family, Raja has won extremely high marks in the nationwide
high-school exam scores, and she is now studying medicine at Bir Zeit
University. Adeeb drives a taxi, and fees and other expenses would
never have been easy for him, but his beloved daughter¹s education has
always been his priority. Since his imprisonment, friends of Adeeb
have donated to allow Raja to continue her studies. She now needs
$1500 for next semester¹s fees, and we hope that supporters of Bil'in
and of Adeeb can help her to realize her dreams and those of her
To donate money to Raja by PayPal please follow this link:
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