USC Students for Justice in Palestine

history, analysis, news, and event updates on the struggle for justice in palestine

Amy Goodman Interviews Chomsky after his Address to the UN General Assembly

Posted by uscsjp on October 24, 2014

…AMY GOODMAN: What do you think is the most—the single most important action the United States can take? And what about its role over the years? What is its interest here?

NOAM CHOMSKY: Well, one important action that the United States could take is to live up to its own laws. Of course, it would be nice if it lived up to international law, but maybe that’s too much to ask, but live up to its own laws. And there are several. And here, incidentally, I have in mind advice to activists also, who I think ought to be organizing and educating in this direction. There are two crucial cases.

One of them is what’s called the Leahy Law. Patrick Leahy, Senator Leahy, introduced legislation called the Leahy Law, which bars sending weapons to any military units which are involved in consistent human rights violations. There isn’t the slightest doubt that the Israeli army is involved in massive human rights violations, which means that all dispatch of U.S. arms to Israel is in violation of U.S. law. I think that’s significant. The U.S. should be called upon by its own citizens to—and by others, to adhere to U.S. law, which also happens to conform to international law in this case, as Amnesty International, for example, for years has been calling for an arms embargo against Israel for this reason. These are all steps that can be taken…

–Democracy Now!, October 22, 2014

 

http://www.democracynow.org/2014/10/22/noam_chomsky_at_united_nations_it

 

 

 

 

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AFP: “Gaza donor states urge peace talks as millions pledged”

Posted by uscsjp on October 13, 2014

International donors pledged hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to rebuild the battered Gaza Strip on Sunday, as they urged Israel and the Palestinians to renew peace efforts.

Gas-rich Qatar led the way at a donors conference in Cairo with a promise of $1 billion in aid for the coastal enclave, devastated by its 50-day summer conflict with Israel.

Washington pledged $212 million and European Union member states 450 million euros, but there was clear concern at financing the reconstruction of Gaza yet again without a peace deal in sight.

The crowded coastal enclave, ruled by the Islamist militant Hamas movement since 2007, remained a “tinderbox,” UN chief Ban Ki-moon warned, announcing plans to visit Gaza on Tuesday.

US Secretary of State John Kerry said Gaza was facing an “enormous” challenge.

A truck loaded with goods enters the Gaza Strip from Israel through the Kerem Shalom crossing in Rafah in southern Gaza on October 12, 2014
A truck loaded with goods enters the Gaza Strip from Israel through the Kerem Shalom crossing in Rafah in southern Gaza on October 12, 2014
“The people of Gaza do need our help, desperately, not tomorrow, not next week, they need it now,” Kerry told the gathering of some 30 global envoys.

Kerry, who failed to broker a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians earlier this year, urged renewed talks and said the two sides needed to make “tough choices”. The call was echoed by Arab and European envoys.

The Palestinians asked for up to $4 billion in international aid after Gaza suffered heavy damage in its conflict with Israel in July and August.

The United Arab Emirates and Kuwait also pledged $200 million each on Sunday.

There is widespread concern that — after three destructive conflicts in the past six years — any help to Gaza will eventually be lost in more violence.

(L-R) Norway’s Foreign Minister Borge Brende, Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shokri, Egypt President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas pictured at the opening session of the Gaza Donor Conference in Cairo on October 12, 2014
(L-R) Norway’s Foreign Minister Borge Brende, Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shokri, Egypt President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas pictured at the opening session of the Gaza Donor Conference in Cairo on October 12, 2014
Ban expressed the fears of many when he told the conference the situation in Gaza remained potentially explosive.

“Gaza remains a tinderbox, the people desperately need to see results in their daily lives,” Ban said.

“This must be the last time. There is clearly some fatigue,” he later told reporters.

- ‘Neighbourhoods destroyed’ -

The Palestinian government unveiled a 76-page reconstruction plan ahead of the conference, with the lion’s share of assistance to build housing.

“Gaza has suffered three wars in six years. Entire neighbourhoods have been destroyed,” Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas told the conference.

Kerry said the new aid brought Washington’s contribution to helping Gaza to more than $400 million over the last year alone.

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon (R) greets Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sabah Al-Khalid al-Sabah during the Gaza Donor Conference in Cairo on October 12, 2014
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon (R) greets Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sabah Al-Khalid al-Sabah during the Gaza Donor Conference in Cairo on October 12, 2014
Kerry was due later to meet Abbas to press for further peace efforts.

“Make no mistake. What was compelling about a two-state solution a year ago is even more compelling today,” Kerry said.

Kerry’s dogged pursuit of an agreement to establish a Palestinian state alongside Israel collapsed in acrimony in April after a difficult nine-month process, and there is little prospect of fresh talks any time soon.

Israel and Hamas militants have yet to even translate their open-ended August ceasefire into a long-term truce.

In his meeting with Abbas, Kerry is expected to try to dissuade him from seeking further recognition of the Palestinians at the United Nations, a move vehemently opposed by Israel.

This summer’s conflict killed nearly 2,200 Palestinians, mostly civilians, while attacks by Gaza militants killed 73 on the Israeli side, mostly soldiers.

Arab League Secretary-General Nabil al-Arabi (R) speaks with Mideast Quartet envoy Tony Blair during the Gaza Donor Conference in Cairo on October 12, 2014
Arab League Secretary-General Nabil al-Arabi (R) speaks with Mideast Quartet envoy Tony Blair during the Gaza Donor Conference in Cairo on October 12, 2014
It also left the densely populated enclave in ruins, displacing more than a quarter of Gaza’s population of 1.7 million and leaving 100,000 people homeless.

- Israel consent needed -

The UN agency for Palestinian refugees UNRWA has described Gaza’s financial needs as “unprecedented”.

The United Nations already has plans for $2.1 billion of the funds, with $1.6 billion going to UNRWA and the rest to other agencies including children’s organisation UNICEF and development arm UNDP.

One crucial question will be how the aid is delivered, especially given Israel’s strict blockade of the territory since 2006.

Palestinian children sit in the window of a partially destroyed building in al-Tufah, east of Gaza City on October 11, 2014
Palestinian children sit on the window of a partially destroyed building in al-Tufah, east of Gaza City on October 11, 2014, ahead of a donors conference in Cairo
Israel was not invited to the conference but Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said any effort would need his government’s consent.

“Gaza cannot be rebuilt without the cooperation and participation of Israel,” Lieberman said in an interview with news website Ynet, though he added that Israel would be “receptive” to plans for “the reconstruction of civilian infrastructure in Gaza”.

Internal divisions among the Palestinians are also a matter of widespread concern and they strived to present a united front in advance of the conference.

On Thursday, a new unity government held its first cabinet meeting in Gaza, months after a reconciliation deal between rivals Fatah, which dominates the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority, and Hamas, which is in de facto control of Gaza.

–Jo Biddle and Jay Deshmukh, Agence France-Presse, October 12, 2014

Posted on Alternet:

http://www.alternet.org/progressive-wire/gaza-donor-states-urge-peace-talks-millions-pledged

 

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AFP: US slams Abbas UN speech as ‘offensive’

Posted by uscsjp on September 27, 2014

The United States on Friday slammed Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas’ speech at the United Nations, saying it was “offensive” and undermined peace efforts.

“President Abbas’ speech today included offensive characterizations that were deeply disappointing and which we reject,” said State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki.

“Such provocative statements are counterproductive and undermine efforts to create a positive atmosphere and restore trust between the parties,” she said.

In his address to the UN General Assembly, Abbas demanded an end to occupation, accused Israel of waging a “war of genocide” in Gaza and asserted that Palestinians faced a future in a “most abhorrent form of apartheid” under Israeli rule.

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman also blasted Abbas, accusing him of “diplomatic terrorism.”

–Agence-France Press, Sept 27, 2014

http://www.afp.com/en/node/2881681

Judge for Yourself: Full Text of Abbas Speech Here.

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Juan Cole: Must Muslim Americans Condemn IS? Must Turkish Jews Condemn Gaza War?

Posted by uscsjp on September 17, 2014

This post originally ran on Juan Cole’s Web page.

During the recent Israeli war on the Gaza Strip, a controversy broke out in Turkey about whether Turkish Jews were required to condemn Israel’s actions, as some pro-Palestinian Turks suggested.

  Turkish Jewish intellectuals wrote in an open letter to the newspaper Hurriyyet [“Liberty,” Istanbul]:

“”Israel’s latest attack on Gaza led, once again, to cries of ‘Why does the Jewish community remain silent?’ A campaign was even launched that claimed that the Jews of Turkey bear responsibility for what Israel does in Gaza.

“No citizen of this country is under any obligation to account for, interpret or comment on any event that takes place elsewhere in the world, and in which he/she has no involvement. There is no onus on the Jewish community of Turkey, therefore, to declare an opinion on any matter at all.

“It is anyway not possible for a community of 20,000 to declare a unified opinion. No human community can be monolithic and the Jewish community is not. Its members include people of all kinds, with a great variety of views.”

Many Jewish organizations stigmatized the demand as Antisemitism.

Asking people to take stances based on their ascribed identity (what they were born into most often) rather than on the basis of their individual choices in life goes against everything that modern human rights thinking stands for.  It is like forcing all Russian-Americans to say publicly what they think about Vladimir Putin.

So if all this is correct, and it certainly is, why do right wing Americans continue to demand that Muslim-Americans condemn Muslim extremists in the Middle East?  They have nothing to do with the latter and aren’t responsible for them.  Some of the inhabitants of the American Southwest in the early modern period were secret Muslims from southern Spain who had been forcibly converted to Catholicism by the Inquisition.  My birthplace, Albuquerque, is an Arabic word (al-Barquqi).  Some 10% of the some 4 million Africans kidnapped and trafficked to Southern landowners as slaves in the U.S. before the slave trade was abolished were Muslim.  Hundreds of thousands of people practiced Islam in North America long before there was a United States.  The White House was built with slave labor and likely some of that was Muslim labor.  Some of the founding Fathers likely owned Muslim slaves.  As late as the 1930s, elderly ex-slaves reported in interviews that they remembered their mothers bowing toward the east at dawn.  Some Arab-American Muslims can trace their family roots in the U.S. back to the late nineteenth and early twentieth century.  The religion is an American religion, deeply interwoven with American history and Muslim-Americans are not responsible for developments in the contemporary Middle East.

So they shouldn’t have to, but they do:

VOA: “U.S. Muslim Leaders Condemn Islamic State” 

 

Juan Cole, Truthdig, September 16, 2014,

 

http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/must_muslim_americans_condemn_isil_turkish_jews_condemn_gaza_war_20140916

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UNRWA: Why are Gaza’s kids so eager to get back to school?

Posted by uscsjp on September 9, 2014

Greetings!

 

The children of Gaza have suffered greatly during this war – for losing lives, parents and homes. They’ve lost enough. When you donate, you ensure that as the school year begins on September 14, they won’t miss out on continuing their education.
Izziddin doing a sprint in the school yard

Izziddin Hamada, 11 and Amal Al Omari, 13 are currently taking refuge in the Beach Elementary Boys School, which serves as a shelter for those displaced by this war. Izziddin’s wish to return to school is for a rather simple reason, “I want a long ceasefire to return to school. I want the blockade to end so that I can travel abroad. I want to study medicine in the future so that I can treat my sick mother.

As for Amal, her father died of cancer before the war. But before he departed, he built them a fabulous home. The home was completely flattened during the current war, leaving Amal, her mum and four siblings homeless. Amal’s wish for an education is like Izziddin’s – to make a better future for herself and others. She says, “I want to have our house rebuilt. I want peace. I want the borders to open so that my mother can travel abroad to undergo her eye surgery and I can continue education. After finishing high school, I would like to study Journalism.

Amal writing ‘Palestine’ on the blackboard of the school serving as her family’s shelter

When you give, you can educate a child like Izziddin or an entire classroom of kids like him. You can allow a Gaza student like Amal to undertake distance learning if she is experiencing difficulty accessing a school. And for the tens of thousands that require specialized psychosocial support, you can provide them with counseling sessions to help them deal with the horrors of a pitiless war.

You can make a difference in the present and future of a child of Gaza. The math is simple.

USD 30 provides a child with an hour of psychosocial support.
USD 44 will provide a student distance learning materials.
USD 135 will provide a school with arts and handicrafts materials.
USD 1,026 will provide school desks for an entire classroom.

Donate now. Your donation may be tax-deductible.

Watch Gaza’s children speak of dreams and wishes amongst the rubble

Remember, supporting education for a child of Gaza also brings her stability and gives her hope for a brighter future, for herself, her loved ones and for Palestinian society.

In solidarity,

Lionello Boscardi
Chief, Partnerships Division
United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA)

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Posted in Activism/Divestment, Blogroll, News | Leave a Comment »

Naomi Shihab Nye: On growing up in Ferguson and Palestine

Posted by uscsjp on September 5, 2014

I grew up in Ferguson, Mo. No one ever heard of it, unless you lived elsewhere in St. Louis County.

Then my family moved to Palestine – my father’s first home. A friend says, “Your parents really picked the garden spots.”

In Ferguson, an invisible line separated white and black communities. In Jerusalem, a no-man’s land separated people, designated by barbed wire.

* * *

My father and his family became refugees in 1948, when the state of Israel was created. They lost everything but their lives and memories. Disenfranchised Palestinians ended up in refugee camps or scattered around the world. My dad found himself in Kansas, then moved to Missouri with his American bride. He seemed a little shell-shocked when I was a child.

Ferguson was a leafy green historic suburb with a gracious red brick elementary school called Central. I loved that school, attending kindergarten through sixth grade there. All my classmates were white, of various derivations – Italians, French-Canadians, etc. My father was the only Arab in Ferguson. But he ran for the school board and won.

At 12, I took a berry-picking job on “Missouri’s oldest organic farm” in Ferguson. I wanted the job because I had noticed that the other berry-pickers were all black boys. I’d always been curious about the kids living right down the road whom we hardly ever got to see.

We had contests to see who could pick the most in the searing humidity. I had obliterated Ferguson’s “line.” I felt a secret pride.

My mom often warned, “Be your best self.” This seemed odd.

It would be 1968 before the Supreme Court ordered U.S. states to dismantle segregated school systems and Ferguson began mixing it up. We were gone by then.

In 1966, my father took our family to the West Bank. I was the only non-Armenian attending the ancient Armenian school in Jerusalem’s Old City. It was fine to be “the other” for a change, but I wished we could have Jewish friends too. And I wished the Jewish Israelis we weren’t seeing across that line could know the families of Palestine as we did, sharing their humble parties under blossoming almond trees.

Our father said that, when he was a boy, Jews and Arabs had been mixed together, neighbors. Now there was power and domination at stake.

Dominate – to exercise control over. Black kids in streets. Thousands of Palestinian families.

In 1967, with the Six Day War brewing, my family left Jerusalem. We settled in San Antonio, a majority Latino city, which felt like a relief. White and black people were minorities. There weren’t any lines. Maybe in the air, and in history. But people kept crossing them.

My father, a newspaper journalist, eventually left San Antonio for another paper, I ended up attending college here and have remained until now. We have our first African American female mayor in history.

Back in Israel/Palestine, nothing improved for the Palestinians and they were always blamed for it. A gigantic ominous “Separation Wall” was built. Americans elected a half-and-half president twice, which gave many of us great hope.

Summer 2014, the news exploded.

Massacres in Gaza – not the first time – people who looked exactly like our Arab families. Regular people. Kids. Sleeping kids. No tanks, no army, no due process of any kind, but they were blasted out of their lives.

Was anyone civilized? A Jewish friend sent me a one-word message that he seemed to be sending out to everyone he knew: STOP!  

What could we do?

Of course, we wished Hamas would stop sending reckless rockets into Israel, provoking oversized responses. Why didn’t the news examine those back stories more? Oppression makes people do desperate things. I am frankly surprised the entire Palestinian population hasn’t gone crazy. If the U.S. can’t see that Palestinians have been mightily oppressed since 1948, they really are not interested in looking, are they? And we keep sending weapons and money to Israel, pretending we’d prefer peace. 

We send weapons to Ferguson, too.

After unarmed teenager Michael Brown was shot, quiet old Ferguson took over the news. Citizens marching, chest placards, “I’M A MAN TOO” “DON’T SHOOT.” It’s easy to see how delusions of equality in Ferguson – where a white officer might raise a gun against an unarmed black kid – are simply wrong.

Why is that harder for people to see about Gaza? 

People in Gaza actually sent messages of solidarity to Ferguson – Internet petitions signed by Gazan citizens. I thought I was hallucinating. What if they could all march together? 1.8 million Gazans would really clog old Florissant Avenue. 

To my knowledge, Israelis have never yet been called militants by the American press, even when they blast whole families to oblivion.  It’s just “defense.” A newscaster described Ferguson as “a series of stings and hurts.” Try the open-air prison enclave of Gaza for stings and hurts.

On the news, a Kuwaiti running a Ferguson grocery says his store has been looted. I think, “He’s the Arab there now.”

Things will change again in Ferguson. Historic inequities in that community will be reexamined, no one will be able to pretend they don’t exist. But will we examine them in other communities too?

Will things change for Gaza? If they don’t, this nightmare of worst selves will keep happening and happening. Look, it already has. And what gets better? Will the United States ever speak out in solidarity with scores of exhausted people burying their dead, staring up with stunned eyes, mystified?

–Naomi Shihab Nye, The Washington Post, August 28, 2014

Posted in Opinion/Editorial | Leave a Comment »

Jonathan Cook: Partisan reporters criticise Gaza coverage

Posted by uscsjp on September 1, 2014

I have noted in several previous articles the unusual, possibly unique, problem relating to media coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The reporting corps is awash with “partisan reporters” – that is, Jews who have an ideological, social or familial connection and sympathy with one side, the Israeli side.

I have no objection to reporters having views, even strong ones, about this conflict, or any other issue in the news. I do myself. In fact, I believe journalists cannot be “objective”, as I have explained at length elsewhere.  But in the case of Israel-Palestine, many reporters are being chosen precisely for their partisanship – and these reporters are being selected because they are partisan in one direction only. Just check how many Palestinian reporters (I don’t mean glorified fixers or undervalued stringers) report for the US media on the conflict.

Editors possibly justify their policy to themselves by assuming that Jewish reporters, especially ones with family in Israel, will improve their access to Israeli elites. Given the rampant chauvinism in Israel, this may be so. But it means only one side of the elite debate is being accessed – the Israeli one.

Illustrations of the partisan reporter’s mindset have been thrown up afresh in a debate about media responsibility during Israel’s attack on Gaza. A prime example is Matti Friedman, who worked for many years at the US news agency Associated Press. AP has a pretty terrible record in its coverage of the conflict, as well as documented examples of its local staff censoring stories that reflect badly on Israel.

Preposterously, Friedman asserts in his essay for the Tablet magazine that the media’s disproportionate interest in Israel-Palestine reflects an unhealthy and “hostile obsession with Jews”. In fact, it indicates something else entirely: the West’s long and unhealthy interest in supporting the Zionist movement’s dispossession of the Palestinian people in their homeland, and a deep sense by Western elites of their political and military investment in the Jewish state project.

The media’s obsession with Israel results both from Israel’s place at the heart of the West’s perceived strategic interests in the region and from a need to pander to influential domestic Jewish readerships. There is a reason, after all, why the New York Times is probably the most Israel-obsessed newspaper in the world outside Israel itself – and it has nothing to do with anti-Semitism.

Most of Friedman’s article is so patently one-sided, and detached from reality, it barely warrants addressing. One only needs to read his claim that the big story overlooked by the media is: “The fact that Israelis quite recently elected moderate governments that sought reconciliation with the Palestinians”. Yes, in your dreams, Matti.

Similarly, Friedman apparently also knows enough Palestinians to argue that the real story they want covering is corruption within their own society. Maybe the two Palestinians you befriended think like that, Matti, but I guess that may be a rather self-selecting group. Why do you think they befriended you?

As someone who has lived among Palestinians for more than a decade, I can assure you that, however much corruption there is in Palestinian society (and there certainly is), it is considered a far less pressing concern than the occupation of the West Bank, the siege of Gaza, the continuing dispossession of Jerusalem, and the abandonment of the refugees. You may think Palestinians have their priorities wrong, Matti, but there is no disputing that those are their priorities.

Friedman also wants the conflict recharacterised as a Jewish-Muslim one rather than Israeli-Palestinian. The media apparently collude in this mistaken framing. Thus, Friedman argues:

A knowledgeable observer of the Middle East cannot avoid the impression that the region is a volcano and that the lava is radical Islam, an ideology whose various incarnations are now shaping this part of the world. Israel is a tiny village on the slopes of the volcano. Hamas is the local representative of radical Islam and is openly dedicated to the eradication of the Jewish minority enclave in Israel.

Except the conflict existed well before anyone had heard of Hamas, al-Qaeda or Isis. Religion was never at the root of the conflict, though Israel – hoping to exploit Western prejudices about a clash of civilisations – has been working hard to make it so.

Friedman again:

Jerusalem is less than a day’s drive from Aleppo or Baghdad, and it should be clear to everyone that peace is pretty elusive in the Middle East even in places where Jews are absent. But reporters generally cannot see the Israel story in relation to anything else.

But Western interests, and the resulting Western interference, Western-backed puppets, and the West’s fair-weather, Islamic allies, are never far away from wherever one is in the Middle East. That is why peace is and remains elusive. Israel is one central prong in this Western policy of interference. The real story is that reporters like Friedman – in fact, all reporters in the mainstream – are either oblivious to the West’s indelible impact on the region, or career-minded enough to avoid mentioning it.

Today in a Haaretz commentary, a former partisan reporter for the BBC, Richard Miron, added his support to this heavily distorted picture of media malfeasance. Being a former BBC journalist, he tries to be a little more “balanced” in his views than Friedman, but finds nothing in Friedman’s screed to distance himself from.

As if confirming Friedman’s claims, Miron lambasts reporters for “emoting” on the Palestinians’ behalf, citing Jon Snow of Britain’s Channel 4.  Whatever one thinks of Snow – and I think he ultimately failed his viewers by chiefly packaging Palestinian suffering in Gaza in humanitarian terms – Miron, like Freidman, is grossly misrepresenting the true picture of Western media coverage of Gaza. That rare bout of soul-searching from one prominent presenter was but a drop in the ocean of wall-to-wall sympathy for Israel in the US media. The story there echoed the assumption of President Barack Obama that Israel has a right to defend itself from … Palestinian resistance to decades of Israel’s belligerent occupation and an eight-year siege of Gaza. That part of the story was hardly ever mentioned, even by Snow.

Miron does make one sensible observation:

Knowing Gaza’s physical geography, it’s safe to conclude that if Hamas operatives did come out from the territory’s packed urban confines, they would have been quickly struck by an Israeli drone or aircraft fire.

But blinded by his partisanship for Israel, he then wants to use this observation to support Israel’s story that Palestinians in Gaza were being used as “human shields”. In fact, he specifically criticises BBC Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen for writing that “he saw no evidence … of Israel’s accusation that Hamas uses Palestinians as human shields”. But contrary to Miron’s assumption, avoiding committing suicide (on a battlefield determined by Israel’s siege policy) is not the same as turning other Palestinians into human shields. At least Bowen understands that point, even if Miron, blinded by his partisanship, cannot.

–Jonathan Cook, The Blog from Nazareth, September 1, 2014

 

http://www.jonathan-cook.net/blog/2014-09-01/partisan-reporters-criticise-gaza-coverage/

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Democracy Now! “Stop the Violence from Ferguson to Gaza: 90-Year-Old Holocaust Survivor Arrested in St. Louis”

Posted by uscsjp on August 26, 2014

Just days after her 90th birthday, Holocaust survivor Hedy Epstein was arrested Monday in St. Louis when she was part of a protest outside Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon’s office. Epstein was born in Germany and left in 1939 on a Kindertransport to England. Her parents died in Auschwitz. Epstein is a co-founder of the St. Louis Palestine Solidarity Committee and St. Louis branch of Jewish Voice for Peace. In 2011, she was part of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla and was a passenger on the U.S.-flagged ship, The Audacity of Hope. Over the years, she has made many solidarity trips to the West Bank. Epstein criticizes the police handling of protests in Ferguson. “It’s the same kind of violence that I’ve observed when I was in the Israeli-occupied Palestine,” Epstein says. “I know what it feels like to be discriminated against, to be oppressed, and I can’t stand idly by when I see there are problems.”

TRANSCRIPT

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: We end today’s show with Hedy Epstein. She is a 90-year-old Holocaust survivor who was arrested on Monday in St. Louis when she was part of a protest outside of Governor Jay Nixon’s office. Hedy Epstein is co-founder of the St. Louis Palestine Solidarity Committee and St. Louis branch of Jewish Voice for Peace. In 2011, she was part of the Gaza freedom flotilla and was a passenger on the U.S.-flagged ship, The Audacity of Hope. Over the years, she has made many solidarity trips to the West Bank. She joins us here now in Ferguson.

Hedy Epstein, welcome back to Democracy Now!

HEDY EPSTEIN: Good morning, Amy, and thank you for having me on your program.

AMY GOODMAN: We speak to you as tear gas has been in the streets of Ferguson and the Israeli assault on Gaza has just resumed. Your feelings today? And talk about why you got arrested on Monday.

HEDY EPSTEIN: On Monday, several of us gathered downtown, and then we marched to the Wainwright Building, where the office of Governor Nixon is. And we wanted to speak to him and ask him to de-escalate the violence that’s going on in Ferguson. And there were police and security people in front of the building, and they would not let us in. There is a large plaza in front of the building, and so we congregated there. There were some people speaking about their experiences. And at one point, a police lieutenant informed us that the governor is not there—I just learned that he was at the fair—and that his staff is not there, and asked us to disperse. And when we didn’t disperse, within seconds almost, the police arrested those of us who refused to disperse. There were nine of us. I was one of them. We were handcuffed, taken to the paddy wagon and to the nearest police substation.

AMY GOODMAN: What concerns you most about what’s happening here?

HEDY EPSTEIN: The ongoing violence and the ongoing oppression that has been taking place in Ferguson of the African-American community. And that has to end. The whole structure of oppression there has to end. And right now, that’s the long-range problem. But at present now, the violence has to de-escalate. Instead of it, it’s being escalated. And the police chief of Ferguson has been trained in Israel how to mishandle, I’m sorry to have to say—

AMY GOODMAN: You’re saying Police Chief Jackson?

HEDY EPSTEIN: Right, how to mishandle a large group of people. And this is what he’s doing. And it’s the same kind of violence that I’ve observed when I was in the Israeli-occupied Palestine. It’s just abominable, what’s happening.

AMY GOODMAN: Where were you born?

HEDY EPSTEIN: I was born in Germany, and I left in May 1939 on a Kindertransport, or Children’s Transport, to England. I came to this country in May 1948.

AMY GOODMAN: So, what fuels you, keeps you going? By the way, happy birthday. You just celebrated your 90th birthday.

HEDY EPSTEIN: Thank you.

AMY GOODMAN: You’re wearing a black T-shirt with white letters that say, “STAYHUMAN.” What fuels you in your activism, from Gaza and the West Bank to Ferguson, Missouri?

HEDY EPSTEIN: I know what it feels like to be discriminated against, to be oppressed, and I can’t stand idly by when I see there are problems. I can’t solve every problem, I probably can’t solve any problem, but I have to do whatever it is possible for me to do. I just cannot stand idly by, because if I did—and anyone that stand idly by becomes complicit in what is going on.

AMY GOODMAN: Do you have a message, as you stand here in the streets of Ferguson, Missouri, for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu?

HEDY EPSTEIN: Stop the violence. Go to the table and honestly discuss what might happen, that it’s—if peace ever can be there in that area. That violence there has to end. I mean, it’s terrible, what’s been going on there. Not just now, but it’s been an ongoing thing. But Netanyahu has no intention, really. He talks about peace, but he doesn’t really want peace.

AMY GOODMAN: And a message for your own president here, President Obama, who’s been dealing both with Ferguson, Missouri, and what’s happened in Israel and Palestine?

HEDY EPSTEIN: I know he’s on vacation right now, but come here to Ferguson. Show your face. Talk to the people here. Talk to the young people here. They need you.

AMY GOODMAN: Hedy Epstein, I want to say thank you so much for being with us, our last guest today here in Ferguson, Missouri, as we broadcast each day the voices of people in the streets, and we’ll continue to do so…

 –Democracy Now!, August 20, 2014

 

Posted in News, Opinion/Editorial | 1 Comment »

IJAN: “Over 300 Survivors and Descendants of Survivors and Victims of the Nazi Genocide Condemn Israel’s Assault on Gaza”

Posted by uscsjp on August 25, 2014

327 Jewish survivors and descendants of survivors and victims of the Nazi genocide have signed this letter written in response to Elie Wiesel’s manipulation of the Nazi Genocide to attempt to justify the attacks on Gaza.

 

Click here to view the press release from signatories to the letter.

 

Jewish survivors and descendants of survivors and victims of Nazi genocide unequivocally condemn the massacre of Palestinians in Gaza

As Jewish survivors and descendants of survivors and victims of the Nazi genocide we unequivocally condemn the massacre of Palestinians in Gaza and the ongoing occupation and colonization of historic Palestine. We further condemn the United States for providing Israel with the funding to carry out the attack, and Western states more generally for using their diplomatic muscle to protect Israel from condemnation. Genocide begins with the silence of the world.

 

We are alarmed by the extreme, racist dehumanization of Palestinians in Israeli society, which has reached a fever-pitch. In Israel, politicians and pundits in The Times of Israel and The Jerusalem Post have called openly for genocide of Palestinians and right-wing Israelis are adopting Neo-Nazi insignia.

 

Furthermore, we are disgusted and outraged by Elie Wiesel’s abuse of our history in these pages to justify the unjustifiable: Israel’s wholesale effort to destroy Gaza and the murder of more than 2,000 Palestinians, including many hundreds of children. Nothing can justify bombing UN shelters, homes, hospitals and universities. Nothing can justify depriving people of electricity and water.

 

We must raise our collective voices and use our collective power to bring about an end to all forms of racism, including the ongoing genocide of Palestinian people. We call for an immediate end to the siege against and blockade of Gaza. We call for the full economic, cultural and academic boycott of Israel. “Never again” must mean NEVER AGAIN FOR ANYONE!

 

Signed,

 

Survivors:

 

  1. Hajo Meyer, survivor of Auschwitz, The Netherlands.
  2. Henri Wajnblum, survivor and son of a victim of Auschwitz from Lodz, Poland. Lives in Belgium.
  3. Renate Bridenthal, child refugee from Hitler, granddaughter of Auschwitz victim, United States.
  4. Marianka Ehrlich Ross, survivor of Nazi ethnic cleansing in Vienna, Austria. Now lives in United States.
  5. Irena Klepfisz, child survivor from the Warsaw Ghetto, Poland. Now lives in United States.
  6. Hedy Epstein, her parents & other family members were deported to Camp de Gurs & subsequently all perished in Auschwitz. Now lives in United States.
  7. Lillian Rosengarten, survivor of the Nazi Holocaust, United States.
  8. Suzanne Weiss, survived in hiding in France, and daughter of a mother who was murdered in Auschwitz. Now lives in Canada.
  9. H. Richard Leuchtag, survivor, United States.
  10. Ervin Somogyi, survivor and son of survivors, United States.
  11. Ilse Hadda, survivor on Kindertransport to England. Now lives in United States.
  12. Jacques Glaser, survivor, France.
  13. Eva Naylor, surivor, New Zealand.
  14. Suzanne Ross, child refugee from Nazi occupation in Belgium, two thirds of family perished in the Lodz Ghetto, in Auschwitz, and other Camps, United States.
  15. Bernard Swierszcz, Polish survivor, lost relatives in Majdanek concentration camp. Now lives in the United States.
  16. Joseph Klinkov, hidden child in Poland. Lives in the United States.
  17. Nicole Milner, survivor from Belgium. Now lives in United States.
  18. Hedi Saraf, child survivor and daughter of survivor of Dachau, United States.
  19. Michael Rice, child survivor, son and grandson of survivor, aunt and cousin murderd, ALL 14 remaining Jewish children in my Dutch boarding school were murdered in concentration camps, United States.
  20. Barbara Roose, survivor from Germany, half-sister killed in Auschwitz, United States.
  21. Sonia Herzbrun, survivor of Nazi genocide, France.
  22. Ivan Huber, survivor with my parents, but 3 of 4 grandparents murdered, United States.
  23. Altman Janina, survivor of Janowski concentration camp, Lvov. Lives in Israel.
  24. Leibu Strul Zalman, survivor from Vaslui Romania. Lives in Jerusalem, Palestine.
  25. Miriam Almeleh, survivor, United States.
  26. George Bartenieff, child survivor from Germany and son of survivors, United States.
  27. Margarete Liebstaedter, survivor, hidden by Christian people in Holland. Lives in Belgium.
  28. Edith Bell, survivor of Westerbork, Theresienstadt, Auschwitz and Kurzbach. Lives in United States.
  29. Janine Euvrard, survivor, France.
  30. Harry Halbreich, survivor, Germany.
  31. Ruth Kupferschmidt, survivor, spent five years hiding, The Netherlands.
  32. Annette Herskovits, hidden child and daughter of victims deported to Auschwitz from France. Lives in the United States.
  33. Felicia Langer, survivor from Germany. Lives in Germany.
  34. Moshe Langer, survivor from Germany, Moshe survived 5 concentration camps, family members were exterminated. Lives in Germany.
  35. Adam Policzer, hidden child from Hungary. Now lives in Canada.
  36. Juliane Biro, survivor via the Kindertransport to England, daughter of survivors, niece of victims, United States.
  37. Edith Rubinstein, child refugee, granddaughter of 3 victims, many other family members were victims, Belgium.
  38. Jacques Bude, survivor, mother and father murdered in Auschwitz, Belgium.
  39. Nicole Kahn, survivor, France.
  40. Shimon Schwarzschild, survivor from Germany, United States.

 

Children of survivors:

 

  1. Liliana Kaczerginski, daughter of Vilna ghetto resistance fighter and granddaughter of murdered in Ponary woods, Lithuania. Now lives in France.
  2. Jean-Claude Meyer, son of Marcel, shot as a hostage by the Nazis, whose sister and parents died in Auschwitz. Now lives in France.
  3. Chava Finkler, daughter of survivor of Starachovice labour camp, Poland. Now lives in Canada.
  4. Micah Bazant, child of a survivor of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  5. Sylvia Schwarz, daughter and granddaughter of survivors and granddaughter of victims of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  6. Margot Goldstein, daughter and granddaughter of survivors of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  7. Ellen Schwarz Wasfi, daughter of survivors from Vienna, Austria. Now lives in United States.
  8. Lisa Kosowski, daughter of survivor and granddaughter of Auschwitz victims, United States.
  9. Daniel Strum, son of a refugee from Vienna, who, with his parents were forced to flee in 1939, his maternal grand-parents were lost, United States.
  10. Bruce Ballin, son of survivors, some relatives of parents died in camps, one relative beheaded for being in the Baum Resistance Group, United States.
  11. Rachel Duell, daughter of survivors from Germany and Poland, United States.
  12. Tom Mayer, son of survivor and grandson of victims, United States.
  13. Alex Nissen, daughter of survivors who escaped but lost family in the Holocaust, Australia.
  14. Mark Aleshnick, son of survivor who lost most of her family in Nazi genocide, United States.
  15. Prof. Haim Bresheeth, son of two survivors of Auschwitz and Bergen Belsen, London.
  16. Todd Michael Edelman, son and grandson of survivors and great-grandson of victims of the Nazi genocide in Hungary, Romania and Slovakia, United States.
  17. Tim Naylor, son of survivor, New Zealand.
  18. Victor Nepomnyashchy, son and grandson of survivors and grandson and relative of many victims, United States.
  19. Tanya Ury, daughter of parents who fled Nazi Germany, granddaughter, great granddaugher and niece of survivors and those who died in concentration camps, Germany.
  20. Rachel Giora, daughter of Polish Jews who fled Poland, Israel.
  21. Jane Hirschmann, daughter of survivors, United States.
  22. Jenny Heinz, daughter of survivor, United States.
  23. Miranda Pinch, daughter of Beate Sommer who was a Czeck refugee along with her father Ernst Sommer, UK.
  24. Elsa Auerbach, daughter of Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany, United States.
  25. Julian Clegg, son and grandson of Austrian refugees, relative of Austrian and Hungarian concentration camp victims, Taiwan.
  26. David Mizner, son of a survivor, relative of people who died in the Holocaust, United States.
  27. Jeffrey J. Westcott, son and grandson of Holocaust survivors from Germany, United States.
  28. Susan K. Jacoby, daughter of parents who were refugees from Nazi Germany, granddaughter of survivor of Buchenwald, United States.
  29. Audrey Bomse, daughter of a survivor of Nazi ethnic cleansing in Vienna, lives in United States.
  30. Daniel Gottschalk, son and grandson of refugees from the Holocaust, relative to various family members who died in the Holocaust, United States.
  31. Barbara Grossman, daughter of survivors, granddaughter of Holocaust victims, United States.
  32. Abraham Weizfeld PhD, son of survivorswho escaped Warsaw (Jewish Bundist) and Lublin ghettos, Canada.
  33. David Rohrlich, son of refugees from Vienna, grandson of victim, United States.
  34. Walter Ballin, son of holocaust survivors, United States.
  35. Fritzi Ross, daughter of survivor, granddaughter of Dachau survivor Hugo Rosenbaum, great-granddaughter and great-niece of victims, United States.
  36. Reuben Roth, son of survivors who fled from Poland in 1939, Canada.
  37. Tony Iltis, father fled from Czechoslovakia and grandmother murdered in Auschwitz, Australia.
  38. Anne Hudes, daughter and granddaughter of survivors from Vienna, Austria, great-granddaughter of victims who perished in Auschwitz, United States.
  39. Mateo Nube, son of survivor from Berlin, Germany. Lives in United States.
  40. John Mifsud, son of survivors from Malta, United States.
  41. Mike Okrent, son of two holocaust / concentration camp survivors, United States.
  42. Susan Bailey, daughter of survivor and niece of victims, UK.
  43. Brenda Lewis, child of Kindertransport survivor, parent’s family died in Auschwitz and Terezin. Lives in Canada.
  44. Patricia Rincon-Mautner, daughter of survivor and granddaughter of survivor, Colombia.
  45. Barak Michèle, daughter and grand-daughter of a survivor, many members of family were killed in Auschwitz or Bessarabia. Lives in Germany.
  46. Jessica Blatt, daughter of child refugee survivor, both grandparents’ entire families killed in Poland. Lives in United States
  47. Maia Ettinger, daughter & granddaughter of survivors, United States.
  48. Ammiel Alcalay, child of survivors from then Yugoslavia. Lives in United States.
  49. Julie Deborah Kosowski, daughter of hidden child survivor, grandparents did not return from Auschwitz, United States.
  50. Julia Shpirt, daughter of survivor, United States.
  51. Ruben Rosenberg Colorni, grandson and son of survivors, The Netherlands.
  52. Victor Ginsburgh, son of survivors, Belgium.
  53. Arianne Sved, daughter of a survivor and granddaughter of victim, Spain.
  54. Rolf Verleger, son of survivors, father survived Auschwitz, mother survived deportation from Berlin to Estonia, other family did not survive. Lives in Germany.
  55. Euvrard Janine, daughter of survivors, France.
  56. H. Fleishon, daughter of survivors, United States.
  57. Barbara Meyer, daughter of survivor in Polish concentration camps. Lives in Italy.
  58. Susan Heuman, child of survivors and granddaughter of two grandparents murdered in a forest in Minsk. Lives in United States.
  59. Rami Heled, son of survivors, all grandparents and family killed by the Germans in Treblinka, Oswiecim and Russia. Lives in Israel.
  60. Eitan Altman, son of survivor, France.
  61. Jorge Sved, son of survivor and grandson of victim, United Kingdom
  62. Maria Kruczkowska, daughter of Lea Horowicz who survived the holocaust in Poland. Lives in Poland.
  63. Sarah Lanzman, daughter of survivor of Auschwitz, United States.
  64. Cheryl W, daughter, granddaughter and nieces of survivors, grandfather was a member of the Dutch Underground (Eindhoven). Lives in Australia.
  65. Chris Holmquist, son of survivor, UK.
  66. Beverly Stuart, daughter and granddaughter of survivors from Romania and Poland. Lives in United States.
  67. Peter Truskier, son and grandson of survivors, United States.
  68. Karen Bermann, daughter of a child refugee from Vienna. Lives in United States.
  69. Rebecca Weston, daughter and granddaughter of survivor, Spain.
  70. Prof. Yosefa Loshitzky, daughter of Holocaust survivors, London, UK.
  71. Marion Geller, daughter and granddaughter of those who escaped, great-granddaughter and relative of many who died in the camps, UK.
  72. Susan Slyomovics, daughter and granddaughter of survivors of Auschwitz, Plaszow, Markleeberg and Ghetto Mateszalka, United States.
  73. Helga Fischer Mankovitz, daughter, niece and cousin of refugees who fled from Austria, niece of victim who perished, Canada.
  74. Michael Wischnia, son of survivors and relative of many who perished, United States.
  75. Arthur Graaff, son of decorated Dutch resistance member and nazi victim, The Netherlands.
  76. Yael Kahn, daughter of survivors who escaped Nazi Germany, many relatives that perished, UK.
  77. Pierre Stambul, son of French resistance fighters, father deported to Buchenwalk, grandparents disapeared in Bessarabia, France.
  78. Georges Gumpel, son of a deportee who died at Melk, Austria (subcamp of Mauthausen), France.
  79. Emma Kronberg, daughter of survivor Buchenwald, United States.
  80. Hannah Schwarzschild, daughter of a refugee who escaped Nazi Germany after experiencing Kristallnacht, United States.
  81. Rubin Kantorovich, son of a survivor, Canada.
  82. Daniele Armaleo, son of German refugee, grandparents perished in Theresienstadt, United States.
  83. Aminda Stern Baird, daughter of survivor, United States.
  84. Ana Policzer, daughter of hidden child, granddaughter of victim, niece/grandniece of four victims and two survivors, Canada.
  85. Sara Castaldo, daughter of survivors, United States.
  86. Pablo Policzer, son of a survivor, Canada.
  87. Gail Nestel, daughter of survivors who lost brothers, sisters, parents and cousins, Canada.
  88. Elizabeth Heineman, daughter and niece of unaccompanied child refugees, granddaughter of survivors, great-granddaughter and grand-niece of victims, United States.
  89. Lainie Magidsohn, daughter of child survivor and numerous other relatives from Czestochowa, Poland. Lives in Canada.
  90. Doris Gelbman, daughter and granddaughter of survivors, granddaughter and niece of many who perished, United States.
  91. Erna Lund, daughter of survivor, Norway.
  92. Rayah Feldman, daughter of refugees, granddaughter and niece of victims and survivors, UK.
  93. Hadas Rivera-Weiss, daughter of survivors from Hungary, mother Ruchel Weiss née Abramovich and father Shaya Weiss, United States.
  94. Pedro Tabensky, son of survivor of the Budapest Ghetto, South Africa.
  95. Allan Kolski Horwitz, son of a survivor; descendant of many, many victims, South Africa.
  96. Monique Mojica, child of survivor, relative to many victims murdered in Auschwitz. Canada.
  97. Mike Brecher, son of a Kindertransport survivor and grandson of two who did not survive. UK.
  98. Nomi Yah Gardiner, daughter and granddaughter of survivors, relative of victims, United States.
  99. Marianne van Leeuw Koplewicz, daughter of deported parents, grand-daughter and niece of victims, Belgium.
  100. Alfred Gluecksmann, son of survivors of Germany, United States.
  101. Smadar Carmon, daughter of survivor, Canada.

 

Grandchildren of survivors

 

  1. Raphael Cohen, grandson of Jewish survivors of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  2. Emma Rubin, granddaughter of a survivor of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  3. Alex Safron, grandson of a survivor of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  4. Danielle Feris, grandchild of a Polish grandmother whose whole family died in the Nazi Holocaust, United States.
  5. Jesse Strauss, grandson of Polish survivors of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  6. Anna Baltzer, granddaughter of survivors whose family members perished in Auschwitz (others were members of the Belgian Resistance), United States.
  7. Abigail Harms, granddaughter of Holocaust survivor from Austria, Now lives in United States.
  8. Tessa Strauss, granddaughter of Polish Jewish survivors of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  9. Caroline Picker, granddaughter of survivors of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  10. Amalle Dublon, grandchild and great-grandchild of survivors of the Nazi holocaust, United States.
  11. Antonie Kaufmann Churg, 3rd cousin of Ann Frank and grand-daughter of NON-survivors, United States.
  12. Aliza Shvarts, granddaughter of survivors, United States.
  13. Linda Mamoun, granddaughter of survivors, United States.
  14. Abby Okrent, granddaughter of survivors of the Auschwitz, Dachau, Stuttgart, and the Lodz Ghetto, United States.
  15. Ted Auerbach, grandson of survivor whose whole family died in the Holocaust, United States.
  16. Beth Bruch, grandchild of German Jews who fled to US and great-grandchild of Nazi holocaust survivor, United States.
  17. Bob Wilson, grandson of a survivor, United States.
  18. Katharine Wallerstein, granddaughter of survivors and relative of many who perished, United States.
  19. Sylvia Finzi, granddaughter and niece of Holocaust victims murdered in Auschwitz, London.
  20. Esteban Schmelz, grandson of KZ-Theresienstadt victim, Mexico City.
  21. Françoise Basch, grand daughter of Victor and Ilona Basch murdered by the Gestapo and the French Milice, France.
  22. Gabriel Alkon, grandson of Holocaust survivors, Untied States.
  23. Nirit Ben-Ari, grandchild of Polish grandparents from both sides whose entire family was killed in the Nazi Holocaust, United States.
  24. Heike Schotten, granddaughter of refugees from Nazi Germany who escaped the genocide, United States.
  25. Ike af Carlstèn, grandson of survivor, Norway.
  26. Elias Lazarus, grandson of Holocaust refugees from Dresden, United States and Australia.
  27. Laura Mandelberg, granddaughter of Holocaust survivors, United States.
  28. Josh Ruebner, grandson of Nazi Holocaust survivors, United States.
  29. Shirley Feldman, granddaughter of survivors, United States.
  30. Nuno Cesar Ferreira, grandson of survivor, Brazil.
  31. Andrea Land, granddaugher of survivors who fled programs in Poland, all European relatives died in German and Polish concentration camps, United States.
  32. Sarah Goldman, granddaughter of survivors of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  33. Baruch Wolski, grandson of survivors, Austria.
  34. Frank Amahran, grandson of survivor, United States.
  35. Eve Spangler, granddaughter of Holocaust NON-survivor, United States.
  36. Gil Medovoy, grandchild of Fela Hornstein who lost her enitre family in Poland during the Nazi genocide, United States.
  37. Michael Hoffman, grandson of survivors, rest of family killed in Poland during Holocaust, live in El Salvador.
  38. Sarah Hogarth, granddaughter of a survivor whose entire family was killed at Auschwitz, United States.
  39. Tibby Brooks, granddaughter, niece, and cousin of victims of Nazis in Ukraine. Lives in United States.
  40. Dan Berger, grandson of survivor, United States.
  41. Dani Baurer, granddaughter of Baruch Pollack, survivor of Auschwitz. Lives in United States.
  42. Talia Baurer, granddaughter of a survivor, United States.
  43. Evan Cofsky, grandson of survivor, UK.
  44. Annie Sicherman, granddaughter of survivors, United States.
  45. Anna Heyman, granddaughter of survivors, UK.
  46. Maya Ober, granddaughter of survivor and relative of deceased in Teresienstadt and Auschwitz, Tel Aviv.
  47. Anne Haan, granddaughter of Joseph Slagter, survivor of Auschwitz. Lives in The Netherlands.
  48. Oliver Ginsberg, grandson of victim, Germany.
  49. Alexia Zdral, granddaughter of Polish survivors, United States.
  50. Mitchel Bollag, grandson of Stanislaus Eisner, who was living in Czechoslovakia before being sent to a concentration camp. United States.
  51. Vivienne Porzsolt, granddaughter of victims of Nazi genocide, Australia.
  52. Lisa Nessan, granddaughter of survivors, United States.
  53. Kally Alexandrou, granddaughter of survivors, Australia.
  54. Laura Ostrow, granddaughter of survivors, United States
  55. Anette Jacobson, granddaughter of relatives killed, town of Kamen Kashirsk, Poland. Lives in United States.
  56. Tamar Yaron (Teresa Werner), granddaughter and niece of victims of the Nazi genocide in Poland, Israel.
  57. Antonio Roman-Alcalá, grandson of survivor, United States.
  58. Jeremy Luban, grandson of survivor, United States.
  59. Heather West, granddaughter of survivors and relative of other victims, United States.
  60. Jeff Ethan Au Green, grandson of survivor who escaped from a Nazi work camp and hid in the Polish-Ukranian forest, United States.
  61. Johanna Haan, daughter and granddaughter of victims in the Netherlands. Lives in the Netherlands.
  62. Aron Ben Miriam, son of and nephew of survivors from Auschwitz, Bergen-Belsen, Salzwedel, Lodz ghetto. Lives in United States.
  63. Noa Shaindlinger, granddaughter of four holocaust survivors, Canada.
  64. Merilyn Moos, granddaughter, cousin and niece murdered victims, UK.
  65. Ruth Tenne, granddaughter and relative of those who perished in Warsaw Ghetto, London.
  66. Craig Berman, grandson of Holocaust survivors, UK.
  67. Nell Hirschmann-Levy, granddaughter of survivors from Germany. Lives in United States.
  68. Osha Neumann, grandson of Gertrud Neumann who died in Theresienstadt. Lives in United States.
  69. Georg Frankl, Grandson of survivor Ernst-Immo Frankl who survived German work camp. Lives in Germany.
  70. Julian Drix, grandson of two survivors from Poland, including survivor and escapee from liquidated Janowska concentration camp in Lwow, Poland. Lives in United States.
  71. Katrina Mayer, grandson and relative of victims, UK.
  72. Avigail Abarbanel, granddaughter of survivors, Scotland.
  73. Denni Turp, granddaughter of Michael Prooth, survivor, UK.
  74. Fenya Fischler, granddaughter of survivors, UK.
  75. Yakira Teitel, granddaughter of German Jewish refugees, great-granddaughter of survivor, United States.
  76. Susan Koppelman, granddaughter of survivor, United States
  77. Hana Umeda, granddaughter of survivor, Warsaw.
  78. Jordan Silverstein, grandson of two survivors, Canada.
  79. Daniela Petuchowski, granddaughter of survivors, United States.
  80. Aaron Lerner, grandson of survivors, United States.
  81. Judith Bernstein, granddaughter of Holocaust victims in Auschwitz, Germany.
  82. Samantha Wischnia, granddaughter and great niece of survivors from Poland, United States.
  83. Elizabeth Wischnia, granddaughter and grand niece of three holocaust survivors, great aunt worked for Schindler, United States.
  84. Daniel Waterman, grandson of survivor, The Netherlands.
  85. Elana Baurer, granddaughter of survivor, United States.
  86. Pablo Roman-Alcala, grandson of participant in the kindertransport and survivor, Germany.
  87. Karine Abdel Malek, grandchild of survivor, Henri Waisman, Morocco.
  88. Elana Baurer, granddaughter of survivor, United States.
  89. Lillian Brown, granddaughter of survivor, United States.
  90. Devin Cahn, grandson of survivors, United States.
  91. Daniel Lévyne, grandson of a deportee, France.
  92. Emilie Ferreira, granddaughter of survivors, Switzerland.
  93. Chaim Neslen, grandchild of many victims and friend of many survivors, UK.
  94. Ann Jungmann, granddaughter to three victims, UK.
  95. Ellie Schling, granddaughter of a survivor, UK.
  96. Danny Katch, grandson of a survivor, United States.
  97. Karen Pomer, granddaughter of Henri B. van Leeuwen, member of Dutch resistance and survivor of Bergen Belsen, United States.
  98. Gilda Mitchell Katz, granddaughter of survivors, uncle and aunt killed In Dombrova, Canada.
  99. Dana Newfield, granddaughter of survivor and relative of many murdered, United States.
  100. Ilana Guslits, granddaughter of two Polish survivors, Canada.
  101. Gerald Coles-Kolsky, grandson of victims in Poland and France, United States.
  102. Lesley Swain, granddaughter and cousin of survivors, UK.
  103. Myera Waese, granddaughter of survivors of Bergen Belsen, Canada.
  104. Ronni Seidman, grandchild of survivors. United States.
  105. Mike Shatzkin, grandchild of survivors, some family members murdered and some who died in the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. United States.
  106. Nance Shatzkin, grandchild of survivors, some family members murdered and some who died in the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. United States.
  107. Karen Shatzkin, grandchild of survivors, some family members murdered and some who died in the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. United States.
  108. Myriam Burger, granddaughter of survivor. United States.
  109. Andre Burger, grandson of survivor Myriam Cohn, great-grandson of Sylvia Cohn and great-nephew of Esther Lore Cohn, both murdered in Auschwitz, United States.
  110. Sara Ayech, granddaughter of Gisela and Max Roth, survivors who lost many family members, UK.
  111. Monika Vykoukal, granddaughter of survivor, France.
  112. Patricia Reinheimer, grandaugther of survivors, Brazil.
  113. Nancy Patchell, granddaughter of resistance fighters, grandfather was caught and died in a concentration camp, Canada.
  114. Jaclyn Pryor, granddaughter of survivors from Czestochowa Ghetto, Poland; great-grandchild, niece, and cousin to many who perished, United States.
  115. Steven Rosenthal, grandson of survivor, Chile.
  116. Alfredo Hilt, grandson of victim, Germany.
  117. Arturo Desimone, grandson of a survivor of the ghetto of Çzestochowa, The Netherlands.
  118. Lazer Lederhendler, grandson of victims whose seven siblings also perished in the Warsaw Ghetto and Treblinka. Lives in Canada.

 

Great-grandchildren of survivors

 

  1. Natalie Rothman, great granddaughter of Holocaust victims in Warsaw. Now lives in Canada.
  2. Yotam Amit, great-grandson of Polish Jew who fled Poland, United States.
  3. Daniel Boyarin, great grandson of victims of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  4. Maria Luban, great-granddaughter of survivors of the Holocaust, United States.
  5. Mimi Erlich, great-granddaughter of Holocaust victim, United States.
  6. Olivia Kraus, great-grandaughter of victims, granddaughter and daughter of family that fled Austria and Czechoslovakia. Lives in United States.
  7. Emily (Chisefsky) Alma, great granddaughter and great grandniece of victims in Bialystok, Poland, United States.
  8. Inbal Amin, great-granddaughter of a mother and son that escaped and related to plenty that didn’t, United States.
  9. Matteo Luban, great-granddaughter of survivors, United States.
  10. Saira Weiner, greatgranddaughter and niece of those murdered in the Holocaust, granddaughter of survivors, UK.
  11. Andrea Isaak, great-granddaughter of survivor, Canada.
  12. Alan Lott, great-grandson of a number of relatives lost, United States.
  13. Sara Wines, great-granddaughter of a survivor and great-great granddaughter of victims, United States.

 

Other relatives of survivors

 

  1. Terri Ginsberg, niece of a survivor of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  2. Nathan Pollack, relative of Holocaust survivors and victims, United States.
  3. Marcy Winograd, relatives of victims, United States.
  4. Rabbi Borukh Goldberg, relative of many victims, United States.
  5. Martin Davidson, great-nephew of victims who lived in the Netherlands, Spain.
  6. Miriam Pickens, relative of survivors, United States.
  7. Dorothy Werner, spouse of survivor, United States.
  8. Hyman and Hazel Rochman, relatives of Holocaust victims, United States.
  9. Rich Siegel, cousin of victims who were rounded up and shot in town square of Czestochowa, Poland. Lives in United States.
  10. Ignacio Israel Cruz-Lara, relative of survivor, Mexico.
  11. Debra Stuckgold, relative of survivors, United States.
  12. Joel Kovel, relatives killed at Babi Yar, United States.
  13. Carol Krauthamer Smith, niece of survivors of the Nazi genocide, United States.
  14. Chandra Ahuva Hauptman, relatives from grandfather’s family died in Lodz ghetto, one survivor cousin and many deceased from Auschwitz, United States.
  15. Shelly Weiss, relative of Holocaust victims, United States.
  16. Carol Sanders, niece and cousin of victims of Holocaust in Poland, United States.
  17. Sandra Rosen, great-niece and cousin of survivors, United States.
  18. Raquel Hiller, relative of victims in Poland. Now lives in Mexico.
  19. Alex Kantrowitz, most of father’s family murdered Nesvizh, Belarus 1941. Lives in United States.
  20. Michael Steven Smith, many relatives were killed in Hungary. Lives in United States.
  21. Linda Moore, relative of survivors and victims, United States.
  22. Juliet VanEenwyk, niece and cousin of Hungarian survivors, United States.
  23. Anya Achtenberg, grand niece, niece, cousin of victims tortured and murdered in Ukraine. Lives in United States.
  24. Betsy Wolf-Graves, great niece of uncle who shot himself as he was about to be arrested by Nazis, United States.
  25. Abecassis Pierre, grand-uncle died in concentration camp, France.
  26. Robert Rosenthal, great-nephew and cousin of survivors from Poland. Lives in United States.
  27. Régine Bohar, relative of victims sent to Auschwitz, Canada.
  28. Denise Rickles, relative of survivors and victims in Poland. Lives in United States.
  29. Louis Hirsch, relative of victims, United States.
  30. Concepción Marcos, relative of victim, Spain.
  31. George Sved, relative of victim, Spain.
  32. Judith Berlowitz, relative of victims and survivors, United States.
  33. Rebecca Sturgeon, descendant of Holocaust survivor from Amsterdam. Lives in UK.
  34. Justin Levy, relative of victims and survivors, Ireland.
  35. Sam Semoff, relative of survivors and victims, UK.
  36. Leah Brown Klein, daughter-in-law of survivors Miki and Etu Fixler Klein, United States
  37. Karen Malpede, spouse of hidden child who then fled Germany. Lives in United States
  38. Michel Euvrard, husband of survivor, France.
  39. Walter Ebmeyer, grandnephew of three Auschwitz victims and one survivor now living in Jerusalem, United States.
  40. Garrett Wright, relative of victims and survivors, United States.
  41. Lynne Lopez-Salzedo, descendant of three Auschwitz victims, United States.
  42. Renee Leavy, 86 victims in my mother’s family, United States.
  43. Steven Kohn, 182 victims in my grandparents’ families, United States.
  44. Dorah Rosen Shuey, relative of many victims and 4 survivors, United States.
  45. Carol Lipton, cousin of survivors, United States.
  46. Catherine Bruckner, descendent of Czech Jewish victims of the holocaust, UK.
  47. Susan Rae Goldstein, carrying the name of my great-aunt Rose Frankel, from Poland and murdered along with many other family members, Canada.
  48. Jordan Elgrably, nephew of Marcelle Elgrably, killed in Auschwitz, United States.
  49. Olivia M Hudis, relative of Auschwitz victims, United States.
  50. Peter Finkelstein, relative of victims and survivors, Germany.
  51. Colin Merrin, descendant of Polish and Belarusian Jewish victims, UK.
  52. Howard Swerdloff, most of my family died in the Shoah, United States.
  53. Margarita E Freund, descendant of Breslau and Ukrainian Jewish victims, United States.
  54. Marsha Goldberg, relative of victims in Poland, United States.

–International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, 25 August, 2014

http://ijsn.net/gaza/survivors-and-descendants-letter

 

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Alternet: 3 Ways America Enables Slaughter in Gaza

Posted by uscsjp on August 21, 2014

American debate on the hundreds of civilian deaths in Gaza and the intractable Israeli-Palestinian conflict is polarized between feelings of sympathy with civilian victims on either side and mutual vilification of the Likud-led government of Israel and the Hamas-led government in Gaza.  But it may be more constructive for Americans to think about the role that the U.S. government plays in perpetuating this never-ending and heart-rending conflict.

Opinion polling during a crisis tends to reflect the passions of the moment, but Americans have told pollsters for decades that we want our government to take an even-handed position on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.  A Chicago Council Global Views survey in 2012 found that 65% of Americans want the U.S. to “not take either side”, while only 30% want it to “take Israel’s side”. That majority rose to 74% vs 17% at the height of the U.S. war in Iraq in 2004.

But despite decades of presenting itself as an “honest broker” for Middle East peace, there are three ways that the U.S. unequivocally takes the Israeli side in the conflict and effectively supports the Israeli occupation of the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) with all it entails, from illegal settlement building to horrific violence:

1. Military aid. The U.S. has provided Israel with at least $73 billion in military aid and currently gives it $3.1 billion per year.  Under the U.S. Foreign Assistance Act (FAA) and Arms Export Control Act (AECA), the U.S. is obliged to suspend or terminate military aid when U.S. weapons are used against civilians or in other ways that violate international humanitarian law, but these provisions have not been invoked or enforced in the case of Israel since 1982.  After resupplying the Israelis with ammunition during the Gaza crisis, the Obama administration has finally begun reviewing Israeli arms requests on a case-by-case basis and is witholding a new shipment of Hellfire missiles. Compliance with the FAA and AECA would require a suspension of military aid until recent alleged violations of U.S. law have been fully investigated, and stricter compliance could justify ending all military aid until a permanent peace settlement is reached and the occupation is ended.

2. Diplomatic cover. Since 1966, the U.S. has used its UN Security Council veto 83 times, more than the other four Permanent Members combined.  Forty-two of those vetoes have served to kill resolutions on Israel and Palestine, effectively shielding Israel from accountability under international law.  Israel has taken advantage of this effective immunity from the rule of law to violate the Geneva Conventions and other human rights laws, to continually expand its illegal settlements in the OPT and to ignore UN Security Council resolutions that require it to withdraw from the OPT.  The U.S. also uses its diplomatic, military and economic power in other ways to shield Israel from international accountability.  This extraordinary use of the U.S.veto and American power to shield a foreign state from the rule of law must end, before it further undermines a fragile system of international law that has already been badly damaged and weakened by the U.S.’s own illegal actions since 2001.

3. Moral support.  Israel is now a wealthy, developed country with an advanced weapons industry, so it could adapt to even a complete cut-off of U.S. military aid.  But U.S. diplomatic and Congressional support is critical to the Israeli government’s ability to ignore otherwise universal condemnation of its illegal settlement building, human rights abuses and failure to end the occupation.  The UN General Assembly passed 21 resolutions on Israel-Palestine in 2013, mostly by at least 165-6, with the US and Israel in the minority. But U.S. support confers a false sense of legitimacy on Israeli policies.  Unconditional moral support encourages the Israeli government to press ahead with an illegal territorial expansion that the world will never recognize, leading only to endless conflict and growing international isolation for Israel itself.

These three elements of U.S. policy form a stable tripod, a three-legged stool upon which this otherwise unacceptable state of conflict grinds away without end and regularly flares up in horrific slaughter and mass destruction.

Decades of UN resolutions require Israel to end its occupation of the OPT, to dismantle illegal settlements in the OPT and to treat Palestinians, both in Israel and in the OPT, according to the rights guaranteed to people everywhere by international humanitarian law.  The U.S. officially stands with the rest of the world on the fundamental questions, that the occupation must end, that Israel’s international borders are the ones recognized by the UN in 1949, and on the protections guaranteed to civilians living under occupation by the 4th Geneva Convention.

President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry adopted a public posture of “getting tough” with the Netanyahu government over negotiations and settlement-building.  But the unwavering U.S. commitment to its three pillars of unconditional support for the Israeli occupation sent Netanyahu an unmistakable message that he could safely ignore Obama’s and Kerry’s “get tough” posture.  This left them looking impotent and more than a little naive, and it emboldened Netanyahu to launch the deadliest and most destructive assault yet on Gaza.  The Israelis seem to have achieved their goal of tightening the blockade by destroying the tunnels that were Gaza’s only lifeline to the world, but this has only hardened the determination of Palestinians in Gaza to resist the even more restricted future the Israelis are seeking to impose on them.

Will Americans keep pretending that our government has been an “honest broker” in its efforts to end this horrific conflict?  Or will we finally demand real changes in the three aspects of U.S. policy that perpetuate war and occupation and deny peace to innocent civilians on both sides?

Nicolas J. S. Davies is the author of “Blood On Our Hands: The American Invasion and Destruction of Iraq.” Davies also wrote the chapter on “Obama At War” for the book, “Grading the 44th President: A Report Card on Barack Obama’s First Term as a Progressive Leader.”

 

–Alternet, 20 August, 2014

 

http://www.alternet.org/world/3-ways-america-enables-slaughter-gaza?paging=off&current_page=1#bookmark

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