Series: Report from Gaza - 2009

On July 14, 2009 200 people gathered at the Brecht Forum in New York City to hear members of the Code Pink June delegation to Gaza report on what they had seen and heard. Questions to the panel included: what the people of Gaza are asking from the people of the U.S.; whether enlightened public opinion is shifting to more recognition of the legitimacy of the aspirations of the Palestinians; the role of the Jewish community in the U.S. in opposing Israel's agenda for the Palestinians. And whether it is possible for growing numbers of the Jewish community to support Palestinian rights and oppose the occupation. One woman mentioned the courage of those Israelis who have stood against their government's brutal and illegal treatment of the Palestinians and its fostering of hatred and fear of Arabs. Another called to openly confront the contradiction that throughout history we have all been fighting anti-semitism, "now we must fight the semitism." How do you deal with the fact that the Jews who have been persecuted all their lives suddenly become the persecuted? Others spoke to the need to accelerate activity in support of the people of Gaza. This included growing support for a Boycott-Disinvestment-Sactions (BDS) campaign and the building of a massive march in December 2009, in Gaza, of thousands of people from the U.S. in opposition to Israel's blockade and siege. Norman Finkelstein described Israel as a marauding state and compared what it had done in south Lebanon in 2006 to what they did in Gaza in 2009.turning people's homes and neighborhoods into rubble. But, he said, there are no grounds for despair or hopelessness. "We have the truth on our side; we have the facts on our side; we have justice on our side; and finally we have mainstream enlightened opinion on our side. With those weapons and our own energy, conscientiousness, and just a tiny little bit of backbone, with those weapons, I say, we can win."

Year: 2009

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