G4S : A security company helping Israel in Lebanon.

You might have seen their security guards, in white shirts with the logo G4S.

G4S is a global company that provide security solutions. In Lebanon they deliver many solutions such as cash solutions and manned solutions.

But in Israel it’s a whole other story, they help the Israeli zionist regime to continue their ideology of apartheid and oppression against Palestinians.

From the Boycott, Divest and Sanction movement website G4S “helps Israel to operate prisons at which Palestinian political prisoners are held without trial and subjected to torture. G4S also provides equipment and services to illegal Israeli settlements, Israel’s apartheid Wall and the Israeli military.”

Few days ago, after BDS pressure in Jordan, UNCHR dropped its contract with G4S in the country and people overwhelmingly called for the UN to drop all the contracts with the security company because the latter violates international law.

absolute-madness-carving-into-palestinian-territory

“The #UNdropG4S campaign has set up a web page that makes it easy for people to write to the UN to voice their concerns and are urging people to join a Thunderclap social media action.”

In June 2014, G4S announced that it does not intend to renew its contract with the Israeli Prison Service when it expires in 2017, adds the BDS website in a campaign timeline. Earlier, the Bill Gates foundation sold its entire state in G4S, costing $170M after wide pressure.

Why doesn’t the Lebanese state do anything to completely stop G4S in Lebanon ?

It is time we target companies in Lebanon that work with G4S and pressure them so that they drop their contracts. These companies are indirectly complicit with Israeli crimes.

More to come.

 

Lina Khattab, a Palestinian journalism student and activist, has been freed from Israeli prison.

Lina Khattab is a Palestinian journalism student and activist from the West Bank, Palestine, she has just been freed after 6 months in an Israeli Prison.

The IDF soldiers had kidnapped Lina Khattab on the 13th of December 2014, she was participating in a nonviolent protest to mark the 47th anniversary of PFLP, the leftist Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and to protest the numerous political prisoners jailed up in Israeli prisons.

IMEMC, the International Middle East Media Center has reported that she was mistreated and faced very difficult situations after her arrest and during her interrogation.

To have a strong voice against Israel in the West Bank is enough for the Israeli authorities to jail persons. Standing against apartheid, injustice, racism and the violations of Palestinian rights are crimes for Israel.

Her release doesn’t dwarf the violations of Israel against Palestinians, the Middle East Eye Monitor reports that for the last 48 years, 5 Palestinian children were arrested every day

Data provided by the Israeli military and the UN has revealed that since martial law was imposed on the occupied West Bank in 1967, around 95,000 Palestinian children have been arrested by Israel, an average of more than 5 children per day. Almost 60,000 are believed to have been subjected to some form of physical abuse whilst in detention.

The details were revealed this week in a report submitted by rights group Military Court Watch(MCW) to the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. Over 300 pages of evidence relating to the treatment of Palestinian children held in Israeli military detention were included in the report.”

Despite this alarming data, the United Nations dropped Israel from the annual list of countries that violate children’s rights. Israel not only jails up to 5 kids per day, the IDF has killed more than 500 children during last Gaza onslaught in 2014.

Lina Khattab has been freed, but many Palestinians remain detained, very often without charge or trial, Khader Adnan, starving himself for Freedom, is one of them.

To end this post in a happy note, here are some joyful pictures of Lina Khattab release from the International Solidarity movement of Palestine (ISM).

The moment of her release, Lina runs towards her family and friends.
The moment of her release, Lina runs towards her family and friends.
Lina Khattab in the arms of friends and family.

The video of her release.

Gaza is slowly dying.

The Gaza strip, blockaded by sea and land, is barely breathing 8 months after the Israeli onslaught. Operation “Protective Edge” killed 2300 people, including more than 500 children, and destroyed infrastructure like electric plants, civilians houses, schools and even hospitals.

A report, called Charting a New Course: Overcoming the stalemate in Gaza and signed by 46 international nongovernmental organizations working in Palestine, condemns Israel failure of lifting the blockade. Gaza have been effectively blockaded by Israel since 2007.

The reports adds that “Six months since donors pledged $3.5 billion towards Gaza’s recovery, many people are worse off and not a single one of the 19,000 destroyed homes has been rebuilt. 100,000 people are still homeless and many are living in makeshift camps or schools”

Israel has violated the so called ceasefire four hundreds of times when only 4 rockets have been fired into Israel in retaliation.

Omar, a Palestinian living in Gaza, tweeted a shocking reminder.

Foreign Policy, in a frightening report, presented the dreadful conditions in Gaza.

Electricity is scarce: Most Gaza residents are surviving on just three to six hours of power a day. The water in the taps is salty, because seawater from the Mediterranean has infiltrated the sole coastal aquifer — according to the AIDA report, 95 percent of the territory’s water supply is unfit for human consumption. And because the sewage plants aren’t functioning properly, thousands of cubic meters of waste are openly flowing onto the beaches.

“Gaza was under bombs, now it’s under rubble” “Nothing has changed, as the time has stopped in Gaza in this wasteland”, reports Shaima Ziara from Gaza. Watch the alarming report below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pMzCzaQECGE&feature=youtu.be

Foreign Policy adds that the damage is not only material but psychological.

Over 400,000 children — who are sufferingthe cumulative effects of multiple wars — are thought to have severe shellshock, and many of them are heavily medicated.

During last winter, 5 children died of cold due to the disastrous infrastructure and the subsequent absence of heating systems.

Israel has bombed and destroyed Gaza three times in six years.

Israel today remembers the Holocaust, while the Knesset and the Israel government are slowly killing Palestinians in a modern Warsaw Ghetto.

Despite all of Israel’s flagrant human rights violations and crimes, it condemned the decision of the International criminal court (ICC) to open a preliminary probe into possible war crimes committed against Palestinians. The United States of America, main ally of Israel, also condemned the decision by calling it “a tragic Irony”.

Facebook runs ads for illegal settlements in Israel.

The settlements of Israel and their very fast expansion is illegal and could amount to a war crime under international law. A year ago, a UN report said that Israel could be prosecuted for war crimes over settlements.

The settlements contravened the Fourth Geneva Convention forbidding the transfer of civilian populations into occupied territory and could amount to war crimes that fall under the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC), the United Nations report said.

                                                                   A woman hold a sign to protest the illegal settlements.

Facebook running illegal ads :

When Facebook runs ads for illegal settlements in Israel, it directly calls for the transfer of civilian populations, which is forbidden under the 4th Geneva convention ; the latter is completely ignored by Israel, but should not be ignored by Facebook. Facebook should ban these ads that are responsible for the discrimination of Palestinians and the destructive apartheid.

The ads run by Facebook are even banned by their policy. “Ads must not contain or promote illegal products or services” is found on their ad guidelines websites. Facebook must follow its own rules and ban those illegal ads.

Lately a petition has been circulated by Bradford activists, demanding Facebook to ban the ads.

David Humphreys, a member of the Bradford group, said: “We find it outrageous that any social platform could allow adverts from occupied Palestinian lands when most of the world’s institutions have condemned the illegal occupation of land.”

“People are always concerned about the atrocities in Palestine but because the mainstream media does not report such activities. It is via social media that we get our news. People feel passionately about this cause and will take action once they find out the situation.

Facebook has already banned illegal ads in the past so it shouldn’t refrain to ban illegal settlements ads.

Also, remember that an international firm operation in Lebanon. Re/Max is selling exclusively to Jews in Occupied East Jerusalem, which is not only illegal under international law but racist and discriminatory.

Help by signing the petition and demand that Facebook bans those unacceptable ads.

Your next #BDS target : American Eagle.

This week, it has been reported that Netanyahu received 90% of his last 3 campaign money from US donors,  Buzzfeed, the first publisher of these facts, linked the families with their businesses.

Here’s an excerpt.

Closely following them were the Book family of New Jersey, owners of Jet Support Systems, with four members each contributing $11,000 each, and the Schottenstein family, owners of the American Eagle fashion chain, whose four members donated $10,000 each.

American Eagle is present worldwide and in Lebanon.

It means that our Lebanese pounds directly go to the Shottenstein family pockets. (or through royalties) This money goes back to Netanyahu campaigns, and he doesn’t even have to ask !

“He doesn’t even have to ask and they give,” said one Likud Party campaign adviser, who asked not be named as he was not approved to speak to the media. “Their pocketbooks are always open for Netanyahu.”

For those who don’t know, Netanyahu, prime minister of Israel, has in less than 3 years, launched two wars against the already blockaded Gaza. By War I mean indiscriminate areal bombings against civilians, notably during his last war “Protective Edge” where his “brave” democratic army managed to slaughter 500 children.

Should we wait for Netanyahu to launch a war against Lebanon to start boycotting those brands ? Or should we, as citizens of conscience and ethics, fight peacefully against the Israel apartheid ?

I have seen a reaction on Twitter : the person claimed that we should not care about American Eagle, their income wouldn’t shrink considering their worldwide presence, and oh, we should first elect a president ! I don’t know if he has a list of “to-do’s” where he must first checked off the election of a Lebanese president and after that, stand against the vile Netanyahu ?

BDS arms destroying the chains of Apartheid, represented by the West Bank Wall. Courtesy of Latuff.

I guess he thinks that the boycott and BDS mouvement don’t work, but he is very wrong. He must read this list that show explicit advances against Apartheid in Israel for 2014. Here’s the link.

I have also written a call for the boycott of three other active firms in Lebanon, HP, Caterpillar, and Re/Max, the latter is a world-wide real estate company that sell exclusively for Jews in East Jerusalem, illegally occupied since 1967.

I hope American Eagle will at least lose revenues in Lebanon.

Why should Lebanon boycott HP, Caterpillar and Re/Max.

How do you combat Israeli Apartheid peacefully ? How can you help Palestinians inside and outside of Palestine grasp a bit of hope for their future ? Boycott. Divest. Sanction. BDS.

I won’t speak about Starbucks, McDonald’s, Pepsi, this rock band that will probably go to Israel. I will speak about brands that directly helps the illegal occupation of the West Bank.

It is important that citizens of conscience, before boycotting a product or a brand they have a doubt about, search for themselves the true reason and repercussion of buying this product. And I don’t mean follow untrusted or doubtful links on the internet. There are NGO’s who could advice you whether you should boycott a product and reveal its true and direct repercussion on the lives of millions of Palestinians.
The Most prominent of them is of course is the BDS movement. There is also whoprofits.org

Who Profits from the Occupation is a research center dedicated to exposing the commercial involvement of Israeli and international companies in the continued Israeli control over Palestinian and Syrian land.

It is important to not just follow rumours or conspiracy theories before boycotting something. If something caught our attention, we should research it, and in the era of fast information, research was never easier to do.

The Lebanese government tries its best to ban products that are Israeli or related to Zionism. But these products that seem acceptable should also catch their attention and the attention of every conscious Lebanese.

HP.

HP helps directly with the racist Israeli Apartheid.

Through its subsidiary EDS Israel, HP is the prime contractor of the Basel System, an automated biometric access control system installed and maintained by HP in checkpoints throughout the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt).

HP additionally helps manufacture ID cards with the Israel government that enforces the separation. HP also provides services and technologies to the Israeli Army.
I believe that the common buyer and consumer could totally boycott HP, their computers and printers are totally replaceable.

Caterpillar.

Caterpillar is the world largest manufacturer of mining and construction equipment.

Here’s an excerpt from whoprofits.org

The company’s machines were used for the demolition of Palestinian houses in the occupied Palestinian territories, the construction of settlements, the Separation Wall and settlement infrastructure on Palestinian land, for creating roadblocks, dispersing demonstrations and as weapons.

An extensive report on their involvement with Israeli racist and unjust system is available here.

A 50-ton Caterpillar D9T bulldozer, the type that crushed Rachel Corrie. This and similar Caterpillar models, sold to the Israeli government and used to demolish Palestinian homes, are the target of increasing protests.

If you happen to be in the construction business, boycott Caterpillar and try to disseminate this information.
The Lebanese exclusive provider of Caterpillar products is the Jallad Group. Jallad Group should immediatly stop their business with Caterpillar or the Lebanese government should put pressure on them. How do we Lebanese, victims of Israel harsh wars and massacres, can accept this ?

Re/Max Lebanon.

Re/Max is a Colorado-based real estate firm. It is present in Lebanon and in Israel. In Israel, it has been reported by the Electronic Intifada that it only sells home to Jews in East Jerusalem. East Jerusalem is illegally occupied by Israel since 1967.

Active in the Israeli market since 1995, RE/MAX sells and rents houses and apartments in colonies reserved exclusively for Jews in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem. Much of that work is coordinated in an office that the Israeli subsidiary of RE/MAX runs in Maale Adumim, a major settlement in the West Bank.

I don’t know how Re/Max got past this in Lebanon, but the  revelations are still new. If you plan to buy,sell, or rent a home, use another real estate firm.

I am happy the Lebanese government bans products that come from Israel. But it has to act more vigilantly as firms like HP Caterpillar and Re/Max get easily past their guard.

Hamas off the EU terror list ; Cuba and USA Bff’s

EU removed Hamas from its “terror list” because it causes the EU “procedural” problems, it comes after a vote to recognize the Palestinian state and the two-state solution. It is in fact technical and have no real consequences yet.

The court added in a statement that Wednesday’s decision to remove Hamas from the EU’s blacklist was based on procedural errors and did “not imply any substantive assessment of the question of the classification of Hamas as a terrorist group”.

Now of course, Bibi Netanyahu was very pissed off, how could the EU do that ? Are they antisemitic or something ? He was not satisfied because this move may actually help develop peace ! Not that I support the two-state solution.

The two-state solution omits completely the Palestinian refugees that fled their homes during the Nakba, a lot of these homes are in present-day Israel. And Israel keeps colonizing the West Bank by a rate never achieved before, in fact, Netanyahu has confiscated more land than previous prime ministers.
Hamas applauded the removal. Who likes to be called a terrorist ? Israel doesn’t when it bombs civilian homes…but hey !

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On the other side of the Atlantic ocean, USA and Cuba have had a historic rapprochement.

The two neighbor states have tensions since 1960 after Castro revolution and the fall of Batista.

Cuba have been under a heavy embargo since 50 years. It’s no surprise that Obama called the “isolation” a failure. Because it is. US will soon have an embassy built in Cuba, but it seems that Cuba didn’t decide yet to do the same ; I couldn’t find it in all these reports. Weird.

U.S. President Barack Obama (L) greets Cuban President Raul Castro before giving his speech at the memorial service for late South African President Nelson Mandela at the First National Bank soccer stadium, in Johannesburg Tuesday. (REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach)

A lot of US residents are applauding the reconciliation that were marked with prisoners exchange. Some cite the economic benefits, others a new “Spring Break Destination”. Guevara must be turning in his grave.

The involvement of the Pope Francis surprised me, the latter facilitated the tense relations, sending letters to USA and Cuba Leaders. Oh and Happy birthday Pope Francis.

A Palestinian minister has been killed.

I know nothing about Ziad Abu Ein, the minister that got killed by the Israeli “Army” during a clash, but I know one thing for sure, his death will be at best condemned by leaders of the west, and probably won’t even make waves in the western world.

In the status quo of Palestine, the late minister won’t get justice, like his Palestinian fellows. He was minister of Prisoners, what kind of country get a minister for prisoners ? A country under apartheid of course.

What a day to celebrate the Human Rights.

Now let’s imagine if he was an Israeli minister, imagine the reactions of the leaders of the Western World, the reaction of the bloodthirsty Netanyahu that would probably launch a new war in Gaza or the West Bank. The massacre “Protective Edge” was after all started after three Israeli teens were kidnapped and killed. Israel unexpectedly blamed Hamas without any proof and stopped the atrocity after killing 500 children, lives worthless to Israel.

The expected reaction of the Western World will show how much Palestinian blood is worthless, and how much overvalued is Israeli blood.

Update : Pictures on the Internet are showing an Israeli soldier choking Ziad Abu Ein, it may be the cause of his death, the autopsy is being conducted.

http://media3.s-nbcnews.com/j/newscms/2014_50/802026/141210-ziad-abu-ein-1120a_7420324464b9a6bed29c82518b2fd97a.nbcnews-ux-640-440.jpg

And as Expected, no real reaction from the Western World, just cowardly silence.

Never forget Palestine.

Palestine exists, their people exists, they have a dialect, origins, culture, history and patrimony.

They lack something primordial, self-determination. Palestinians are hostages of the world blindness. Yet the world has proofs and facts, it sees, but close their eyes. People of the world will be forced to admit Israeli apartheid, segregation, separation, racism and lies.

Do I have to present you facts ? Do I have to point at every injustice the holy land witnesses ? Do I have to tell you that Israel continues to steal land in the West Bank, and that in fact, no one recognizes those lands as legal propriety ? Do I have to read the names of every victim, every war, every massacre committed, every entire family wiped out ? Do I have to remind you of the inhuman blockade of Gaza, world biggest prison ?

Israel apartheid regime will fall, not with weapons, but will self-awareness and love, with international support and call for justice.

Palestine, Israel, call it whatever you want, will be one country where everybody shall be free and equal, regardless of their origins, color, religion.

It starts with you.