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Almost 10 years ago Palestinian civil society issued a call for a campaign of boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel until it complies with international law and Palestinian rights. It involves boycotting goods of Israeli companies, particularly those operating from settlement land, as well as international companies involved in Israel’s human rights violations. Many experienced campaigners believe this campaign is key to bringing about change. Products to watch out for include Ahava cosmetics, SodaStream drinks machines and Eden Springs bottled water. Here are 9 ways to support the BDS campaign.
Read and share this recent statement from dozens of Palestinian civil society groups. “We Palestinians trapped inside the bloodied and besieged Gaza Strip call on conscientious people all over the world to act, protest and intensify the boycotts, divestments and sanctions against Israel until it ends this murderous attack on our people and is held to account…” You can also follow minute-by-minute updates on Twitter from doctors, journalists and civilians.
It could be in the statistics, when the death of one Israeli is reported with greater gravity than numerous Palestinian deaths. Or it could be the way a report is framed, for instance when an aggressive military superpower is described as ‘defensive’ or ‘retaliatory’ while bombarding an impoverished refugee camp. Write to news outlets and sign this letter to the BBC, supported by Noam Chomsky, John Pilger, Ken Loach and Jeremy Hardy.
There could be an active group on your campus or in your local town. In the last week there have been protests across the UK, including mass gatherings outside BBC offices, disruptions at the Sainsbury’s AGM and a cosmetics shop selling goods from occupied Palestine in Manchester was closed by local campaigners. For opportunities to protest, hold fundraisers and meet local campaigners try your local Palestine Solidarity Campaign branch.
5. Listen to dissenting Jews and Israelis
Remember not all Jewish or Israeli people support the recent attacks on Gaza. There has been protest in Israel and there are long-term active Jewish groups for peace around the world. For instance Jews for Boycotting Israeli Goods (J-Big) say many Jews are involved in the BDS campaign. Co-founder Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi stresses that the global boycott movement, started by the Palestinians themselves, does not target individual Israelis — and certainly not Jews as Jews.
Israel is one of the most heavily militarised states on earth with arms companies, such as Elbit and Israel Aerospace Industries, playing a leading role in the export of drones globally. War on Want call on the EU to assure that Israeli arms companies do not receive subsidies from European taxpayers. Campaign Against the Arms Trade provide a map of the UK revealing the arms trade on your doorstep, in this case your nearest company supplying arms to Israel. They also ask you to sign their petition to the UK Foreign Secretary.
Are you concerned that Israel is being singled-out from all of the other violent regimes around the world? Read Mike Marqusee’s response, where he dispels some common myths about the BDS campaign.
The real story behind the fire in Grande Synthe’s Linière refugee camp, Dunkirk. From 'Bordered Lives – How Europe fails refugees and migrants' by Hsiao-Hung Pai
Javier Pérez De La Cruz writes about the working class Berlin neighbourhood wrung dry by gentrifiers.
Across the world, thousands of protesters are taking on the planet’s biggest fossil fuel companies. We should support them – and if we can, we should join them. By Kara Moses
Students are suffering the effects of financial instability, stress, and slashed mental health services. Mark Crawford reports.
They're not defending free speech - they're just seeking to shore up their own power, writes Ilyas Nagdee
How can the heavily-armed Israeli state claim to be victimised by one teenage activist? By Richard Seymour.
Governments are manufacturing a new 'enemy within', write Yasser Louati and Malia Bouattia
The online currency started as an alternative to the failed financial system – but as a huge bubble inflates and bankers board the bandwagon, Tom Walker argues bitcoin has drowned in greed
Oliver Lemon explores what a 'robot tax' could look like, and whether it's an idea whose time has come.
Nic Beuret, Anja Kanngieser, and Leon Sealey-Huggins explore the effects of the COP23 negotiations on the global south.
Jeremy Hunt is poised to flog the last of the NHS
Peter Roderick sounds the alarm on an 'attack on the fundamental principles of the NHS'.
Viva Siva, 1923-2018
A. Sivanandan, who died this week, was a hugely important figure in the politics of race and class. As part of our tributes, Red Pepper is republishing this 2009 profile of him by Arun Kundnani
Sivanandan: When memory forgets a giant
Daniel Renwick calls for the whole movement to discover and remember the vital work of A. Sivanandan, who died this week
A master-work of graphic satire
American Jewish cartoonist Eli Valley’s comic commentary on America, the US Jewish diaspora and Israel is nothing if not near the knuckle, Richard Kuper writes
Meet the frontline activists facing down the global mining industry
Activists are defending land, life and water from the global mining industry. Tatiana Garavito, Sebastian Ordoñez and Hannibal Rhoades investigate.
Transition or succession? Zimbabwe’s future looks uncertain
The fall of Mugabe doesn't necessarily spell freedom for the people of Zimbabwe, writes Farai Maguwu
Don’t let Corbyn’s opponents sneak onto the Labour NEC
Labour’s powerful governing body is being targeted by forces that still want to strangle Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, writes Alex Nunns
Labour Party laws are being used to quash dissent
Richard Kuper writes that Labour's authorities are more concerned with suppressing pro-Palestine activism than with actually tackling antisemitism