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GPJA Newsletter: Picket Rakon Sat 3pm

GPJA NEWSLETTER #270 - January 14, 2009


Dear friends,

Thanks for all the support and the great 1500 strong march on Saturday against the Israeli invasion of Gaza. Some media reports managed to reduce our number to 2-300 but we know the truth. I counted a group of 500 and it was a least 3 times that size. The hundreds of shoes hitting the US consulates wall was a sight to behold.

We need to continue to demand the immediate withdrawal of all Israeli troops from Gaza and the West Bank as well as pressing forward the boycott and Divestment campaigns. One NZ company in particular that needs attention is Rakon which supplies missile guidance systems to the Israeli military.

We got many more names for the GPJA newsletter on Saturday and collected hundreds of dollars for medical relief in Gaza.

Unfortunately it appears that the GPJA website has been attacked and is down for the moment. We hope to back again as soon as possible. Dozens of sites that support Palestinian rights have been attacked around the world so it is no surprise that we have been as well. It seems Yahoo based newsletter and facebook sites have been taken down or blocked as well.

PROTEST AGAINST RAKON HELP IN ISRAELI BOMBING OF GAZA – 3PM SAT JANUARY 14

Assemble Outside Sylvia Park, Mt Wellington Highway

Rakon Industries in Mt Wellington will be targeted in a protest this Saturday against the massacre of Palestinian civilians.

Rakon provides crystal oscillators for targeted bombs used by the Israeli air force in their attacks on Gaza. The Rakon parts are supplied to the US which provides the bombs directly to the Israeli military.

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The protest will meet at 3pm on Mt Wellington Highway outside the Sylvia Park carpark for a march to the company.

In 2006 Rakon proudly asserted its intention to dominate the “lucrative and expanded guided munitions and military positioning market” within the next 5 years. They listed their military products as including “Mainstream TXCO’s (crystal oscillators) for inclusion in smart bombs…G-hardened crystals for use in smart shells…”

When Rakon’s role was exposed two years ago the company fudged saying it has not designed products specifically for military applications and doesn’t necessarily know how they are used. Given what the company has already acknowledged this is not credible. The company has previously hosted the US Ambassador and high ranking officials of the US Air Force with 2006 media reports showing 21% of their sales were to the military and aerospace customers.

GPJA protested against Rakon in 2006 when guided bombs were used to destroy the Lebanese village of Qana, killing 60 civilians, and a United Nations outpost, killing 4 UN Peacekeepers.

Rakon have been supplying these sophisticated crystal oscillators for these weapons of mass murder for 12 years and are now contributing directly to the carnage being inflicted against Palestinians trapped in Gaza.

It is unconscionable that a New Zealand company would collude in the production of weapons being used to heap devastation and suffering on the people of the Middle East.

WELLINGTON PROTEST VIGIL THURSDAY

The Wellington Palestine Group will hold the following protest vigil against the war crimes Israel is currently perpetrating in the Occupied Gaza Strip. Thursday 15 January - 12 - 2.00pm, Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade, 195 Lambton Quay (cnr. Panama Street), Wellington

The Wellington Palestine Group is calling on the NZ Govt. to condemn the Israeli Government actions and act to:

• Revoke the credentials of the Israeli Ambassador to New Zealand.

• Cut contacts with Israeli military and intelligence officials outside of official UN sponsored peacekeeping or observer liaison. New Zealand is acting with other countries in taking specific actions against the governments of both Fiji and Zimbabwe. It can take similar actions against Israel.

• Ensure that New Zealand does not import goods manufactured, in whole or in part, in the Occupied Territories.

• Ensure that the New Zealand government does not make use of Israeli products or services in its procurement provisions.

• Take steps to ensure that New Zealand sourced goods and services are not used by Israel to further its occupation of Palestinian lands.

• End the ‘Working Holiday Scheme’ for young Israelis.

• Attend meetings specific to, and advocate within, international organisations for the rights of the Palestinian people.


CHRISTCHURCH MARCH ON SATURDAY

Protest march against the Israeli bombing and invasion of Gaza. Saturday the 17th of January. 12pm. Meet at the Canterbury Museum on Rolleston Avenue. This has been organised by Justice for Palestine Christchurch and is a protest march against the Israeli bombing and invasion of Gaza. We will be marching in solidarity with the Palestinian people and their right for self determination. We will march from the museum to Cathedral Square where there will be speakers.

Please come and express your protest at the latest actions of the Israeli Government.

From more information contact: palestinesolidarity@katipo.net.nz or garage.collective@gmail.com or phone Dan 377 6290. If you would like to help organise this march then you are welcome to come to the next Justice for Palestine meeting which is this coming Tuesday night (the 13th) 6.30pm at the Quaker House ( 72 Creswell Avenue, off New Brighton Road). We will also be making banners for the Saturday march. Thanks, Dan. If you want further colour or black and white posters to distribute then contact: garage.collective@gmail.com

WHAT’S ON IN AUCKLAND

Thursday, January 14, 6pm, Unite Offices, 6a Western Springs Rd, Morningside, Auckland

FIGHTING THE 90 DAY FIRE AT WILL LAW- The next planning meeting for the 90 Day Fire at Will law action is Thursday 6pm Unite Union office. Come along, bring your friends, and your ideas. At the last meeting, we agreed to call a huge demo for Sat 28 Feb, just before the law is due to come into force, and to leaflet all of the markets around Auckland, with the giant inflatable rat to help to publicise the action and to let workers know that we'll stand with them against any rat bosses who try to implement the law. As people begin to return to work, and the economic crisis begins to bite, it's really important that we don't let the government off the hook on this fundamental attack on workers' rights.

Saturday, January 17, 3pm, Assemble Outside Sylvia Park, Mt Wellington Highway

PROTEST AGAINST RAKON HELP IN ISRAELI BOMBING OF GAZA

Saturday, January 17, 1-3pm, Four Seasons Store in Wairau Park, 1/14 Link Drive.

A REMINDER ABOUT THE ONGOING ANTI-KWILA CAMPAIGN - as per usual we will be holding a demonstration this Saturday, from 1-3pm. If your interested in coming, but need a ride, or have spear room in your car, get in touch so we can coordinate transport.

Monday, January 19, 6pm, Unite Offices, 6a Western Springs Rd, Morningside, Auckland

ORGANISING MEETING AGINST THE SALE OF KWILA PRODUCTS

Tuesday, January 20, 6pm, Unite Offices, 6a Western Springs Rd, Morningside, Auckland

FIRST CLASS ON READING CAPITAL (email mike@unite.org.nz for more information)

NEW ZEALAND PROTESTS

Auckland protest against Israeli genocide in Gaza

Auckland protest on Youtube

Protestors target Israeli tennis player

Scoop Coverage: Gaza Airstrikes

PHRC Urgent Appeal to NZ Government and MPs

Christians "die in" for Gaza in Wellington

The Wellington Palestine Group states that it was collectively responsible for the action which Gerard Burns undertook at the Yitzak Rabin Memorial in Wellington on Tuesday. Gerard Burns courageously carried out the symbolic act which was prepared and planned by the Group.

Fran O'Sullivan: Disquiet over Gaza war

WORLWIDE PROTESTS

Thousands rally in world capitals to protest against Gaza war

Hundreds of thousands across Europe, US, South Africa protest against apartheid Israel's slaughter in Gaza

Global protests condemn Gaza attack: More than 50,000 Egyptian have protested in the city of Alexandria against Israel's assault on Gaza, one of many held across the world as the conflict enters its 14th consecutive day.

ONE OF THE BRAVEST WOMEN ON THE PLANET: Woman faces down armed Israeli soldiers. Please watch this 2 minute video 53 seconds into the video an unknown woman stands in front of Israeli soldiers and prevents them from firing on unarmed protesters. First broadcast on World Wide Weekly - S Korea TV Program edited. Added to You Tube January 28, 2008

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article21676.htm

MESSAGE ON PALESTINE FROM UN SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR FOR HUMAN RIGHTS

"There is no structure of an occupation that endured for decades and involved this kind of oppressive circumstances. The magnitude, the deliberateness, the violations of international humanitarian law, the impact on the health, lives and survival and the overall conditions warrant the characterization of a crime against humanity. This occupation is the direct intention by the Israeli military and civilian authorities. They are responsible and should be held accountable."

-- Professor Richard Falk, United Nations Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories

RABIN NO PEACEMAKER – LETTER TO NZHerald

I understand that the newly formed 'Kiwis Friends of Israel' demands an apology from Father Gerard Burns for dripping symbolic blood on to a stone commemorating ex-prime minister and war criminal Yitzhak Rabin.

Mr. Rabin was certainly not a man of peace. His history of war crimes includes a key role in the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from the towns of Lydda and Ramleh in 1948. In 1967, Rabin also lead the Israeli forces that conquered the West Bank, Gaza and Golan Heights.

His infamous 'broken bones policy's openly encouraged breaking the arms and legs of peaceful Palestinian demonstrators during the first intifada.

The paint mingled with Father Burns' own blood represents the blood of thousands of Palestinians who have been massacred by Israel over the past 60 years - a massacre in which Rabin played a significant part.

If the Kiwi Friends of Israel are offended by anyone, they should be offended that their 'friend' has slaughtered thousands of Palestinians, including children, destroyed thousands of Palestinian homes for the sake of their own illegal expansion, and disenfranchised millions of Palestinians. Bravo Father Burns, I salute your actions. Not all Jews are friends of Israel.

Alia Bloom,on behalf of Aotearoa Jews for Justice, Wellington

SEE: Archbishop apologises for priest's attack

GIVE TALKBACK RADIO A CALL

Advertise march and give key facts to counter Zionist spin. Mention the GPJA website. RADIO LIVE 0800 723 465; ZB TALKBACK 0800801080; RADIO WATEA WED NIGHT 8-11PM 09 2570603

ENDING THE SIEGE, FREEING PALESTINE, BDS (BOYCOTT/DIVEST/SANCTIONS).

Message from a Canadian activist:

People and groups wanting to stand in solidarity with Palestine during the current crisis should be careful not to simply fall into the trap of only reacting to the latest crisis. We need to work instead toward building a movement that can effectively challenge Israeli apartheid over the long-term. Part of this strategy is lifting the siege on Gaza, another part is imposing BDS on Israel until it recognizes fundamental Palestinian human rights.

These rights are spelled out by Palestinian organizations spearheading the BDS campaign, they include: the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes; the right of Palestinians living in Israel to be treated as equals; and the rights of all Palestinians living under foreign military occupation to be free of the racism, fear, repression and the impunity that are all necessary for Israel to maintain its racist foundations. Calling for an end to occupation, while important, only means we're standing in solidarity with a portion of the Palestinian people. It does nothing to back the struggles and demands of Palestinians living in refugee camps or as nominal “citizens” in an Israeli state that refuses to acknowledge fundamental Palestinian rights.

Along these lines it is necessary not to counterpose our immediate, short-term demands with the longer-term strategy of BDS. Rather BDS provides a tool or mechanism through which to win these demands. For example, it makes little sense to raise a demand like “Lift the Siege of Gaza” without a concrete strategy to make this happen. The best and most effective strategy – as the experience of the Palestine solidarity movement has shown over the last few years – is to concretely cut ties with Israel apartheid in spaces where we have influence.

Every step taken toward isolating Israel for its violations of Palestinian rights, even if symbolic, makes it more likely to win short-term demands such as lifting the siege on Gaza. BDS, in other words, is not a demand. It is rather, a course of action designed to ensure that demands are met. Over the long-term the collective impact of pushing these demands through an effective strategy of BDS will ensure that the broad and inclusive vision of justice that Palestinian social movements continue to struggle for. To maximize its impacts those wishing to stand in solidarity with Palestinians should coordinate their actions with the organizations in Palestine that are spearheading this campaign.

As the crisis in Gaza continues any form of opposition is helpful. Everything from direct action, staying visible on the streets, occupying consulates, constituency offices, etc. needs to continue. Fundraising, teach-ins, etc. education, grassroots media work, etc. are all important for those moved in solidarity with Palestine. Each action has the potential to help. However, to magnify the impact of our grassroots individual or group actions, to ensure that after a successful event or action we don't go home and feel defeated by the latest news on our TV screens or inboxes, it is important to find ways of plugging into an already existing global solidarity movement that is responding directly to the BDS call from Palestine. •

In order to find out more about this campaign please visit some of the following websites:

* Global BDS Movement www.bdsmovement.net

* Stop the Wall Campaign www.stopthewall.org

* Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) www.pacbi.org

* BADIL – Resource Center for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights www.badil.org

* Ittijah – www.ittijah.org

* Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid www.caiaweb.org

* Tadamon! www.tadamon.ca
* Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights www.sphr.org
* Palestine Solidarity Campaign (UK) www.palestinecampaign.org

* U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation www.endtheoccupation.org


NAOMI KLEIN ON BOYCOTT, DIVESTMENT AND SANCTIONS

It's time. Long past time. The best strategy to end the increasingly bloody occupation is for Israel to become the target of the kind of global movement that put an end to apartheid in South Africa.

http://www.naomiklein.org/articles/2009/01/israel-boycott-divest-sanction

BOYCOTT ISRAELI GOODS AOTEAROA

The Boycott Israeli Goods Campaign Aotearoa

ANNOUNCEMENTS

FROM PMA

This message is to let you know that a Gaza update message we attempted to send through our national e-lists and to various e-groups today (twice) was apparently blocked by Yahoo - as we do not know why the message was censored, rather than attempt to send it again, it has been uploaded to our site at http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/gaza1208a.htm with an explanation of what happened. This is all the more bizarre as the content of the message has been the subject of many emails inwards and outwards over the last few days, and they have been received and sent just fine.

2009 NATIONAL PEACE WORKSHOPS

The 2009 National Peace Workshops, the national gathering for people interested in peace, social justice and human rights, will be at the Quaker Settlement in Whanganui in mid or late March - the date is currently being finalised, and will be available soon. The theme of the 2009 NPW is 'Promoting peace through active non-violent resistance' and the main focus will be participatory discussion with Maori, Pacific and Pakeha contributors who have experience of community and individual non-violent resistance, and/or non-violent direct action in Aotearoa and overseas. Preliminary information about the National Peace Workshops, including the programme outline, venue and accommodation options, is available at http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/npw09.htm

Quotes of the Week

“The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing" Albert Einstein

"A human being is part of a whole, called by us the 'Universe,' a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest--a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty." Albert Einstein

“Don't be deceived when they tell you things are better now. Even if there's no poverty to be seen because the poverty's been hidden. Even if you ever got more wages and could afford to buy more of these new and useless goods which industries foist on you and even if it seems to you that you never had so much, that is only the slogan of those who still have much more than you. Don't be taken in when they paternally pat you on the shoulder and say that there's no inequality worth speaking of and no more reason to fight because if you believe them they will be completely in charge in their marble homes and granite banks from which they rob the people of the world under the pretence of bringing them culture. Watch out, for as soon as it pleases them they'll send you out to protect their gold in wars whose weapons, rapidly developed by servile scientists, will become more and more deadly until they can with a flick of the finger tear a million of you to pieces”

"A slave-owner who through cunning and violence shackles a slave in chains, and a slave who through cunning and violence breaks the chains – let not the contemptible eunuchs tell us that they are equals before a court of morality!" -- From Leon Trotsky's 'Their Morals and Ours'

BEST ON THE WEB

PALESTINE

Hamas: What is really behind Israel's assault on the people of Gaza

John Pilger: Gaza under fire

Robert Fisk: Why do they hate the West so much, we will ask

How Israel brought Gaza to the brink of humanitarian catastrophe - Oxford professor of international relations Avi Shlaim served in the Israeli army and has never questioned the state's legitimacy. But its merciless assault on Gaza has led him to devastating conclusions

Israel Is Committing War Crimes: Hamas's violations are no justification for Israel's actions. By GEORGE E. BISHARAT, Professor at Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco.

Media Eyeless In Gaza At Key Moment

Gaza: Propaganda Does Nothing for Peace report from Australian activist on West Bank

Uncensored Video Report From Dr. In Gaza Hospital: "This is an all-out war against the civilian Palestinian population". Dr . Mads Gilbert, a Norwegian doctor in Gaza, tells Sky News that the number of civilians injured and killed in Gaza proves that Israel is deliberately attacking the population.

'As I Ran I Saw Three Of My Children. All Dead': The small dead bodies were laid next to one another on the tiled floor of the morgue corridor, the blood drained from their cheeks. One had a bandage still wrapped around his head, another lay with his mouth half-open in his oversized, bloodstained clothes.

Israel Censors the Media "Not the conduct of a democratic state"

The Bloodbath In Gaza Separating the Truth from the Hype By Mike Whitney

The Real Estate War in Gaza - The History and "Morals" of Ethnic Cleansing By Victoria Buch I arrived in Israel 40 years ago. It took me many years to understand that the very existence of my country, as it is today, is based on an ongoing ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.

U.N. official says Gaza school was clearly marked

Medics 'unable to reach Gaza wounded':

UN: Humanitarian crisis worsening:

At Gaza Hospital, Chaos and Desperation:

In Pictures: Death and suffering in Gaza Attack

Viva Chavez: Venezuela expels Israeli ambassador:

Chavez: Israel kills Gazans in Holocaust:

The Only Exit From Gaza Is Death By Dan Lieberman

ADC Calls for Investigations Into Reported Israeli use of White Phosphorus on Gaza

Robert Fisk: Why bombing Ashkelon is the most tragic irony

Starving Children Of Gaza - Channel 4 UK Report From Gaza. This Is A Must Watch Video. Meet the children left to die amoung the bodies of their parents and families.

Red Cross Finds Starving Children with 12 Corpses in Gaza 'House of Horrors'

Masters In Distortion Of The Truth By Yvonne Ridley: The media coverage of the war in Gaza by Western television companies is largely unfair and biased because of a refusal to show viewers the real images of the victims.

US plans massive arms delivery to Israel

International union aid to Gaza

The United States Promotes Israeli Genocide Against the Palestinians By Professor Francis A. Boyle

WORLD ECONOMIC CRISIS

Bank Of England Policymaker Predicts Unprecedented Dollar Collapse

Value of 2008 Bailouts Exceeds Combined Costs of All Major U.S. Wars: The total value of the bailouts undertaken by the federal government in 2008 now exceeds the combined cost of every major war the United States has ever engaged in, according to a comparison of war costs calculated by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) and the value of the bailouts as calculated by Bloomberg News or Bianco Research.

US unemployment hits 16-year high: A total of 2.6 million jobs were lost from the economy in 2008, the largest decline since 1945, the US Labour Department said on Friday.

Panic could herald dollar rout: There is growing evidence that Washington is in a state of increasing panic. Despite its massive cash injections, market manipulations and "rescue" plans, the recession is clearly deepening and spreading.
FEATURES

The Challenge of South America's Populist Left

The Great Middle East Peace Process Scam LRB Review

REVIEW

The American Ruling Class - Documentary

AFGHANISTAN

The Afghan Scam: The Untold Story of Why the U.S. Is Bound to Fail in Afghanistan

Inexplicable Wealth of Afghan Elite Sows Bitterness: In One of the World's Poorest Nations, Myriad Tales of Official Corruption

AUSTRALIA

Australian Jews protest against Israel's action: MORE than 100 Australian Jews, including two award-winning novelists and a former federal cabinet minister, have signed a statement condemning Israel's siege of Gaza, heightening tensions within the local Jewish community over the violence.

Australian soldiers killed or injured 9 Afghan civilians: Australian soldiers are being investigated over claims they wounded or killed up to nine Afghan civilians while fighting Taliban insurgents in Uruzgan Province.

Little picture, big picture by Michael Leunig: When we walk away from cruelty and rationalise it in the scheme of things, we do ourselves an invisible injury.

Cease firing to find truth by Taimor Hazou, former deputy chair of the Australian Arabic Council

COLOMBIA

Today is 120 days since Liliany Obando was detained and incarcerated on bogus charges of rebellion. A practice that has become common in Colombia under Alvaro Uribe’s regimen aimed at silencing the political opposition.

CUBA

Why Cuba Still Matters BY Diana Raby - Diana Raby is senior fellow at the Research Institute of Latin American Studies, University of Liverpool (UK) and is also professor emeritus of history at the University of Toronto.

UK

Manufacturing slumps at fastest pace since 1981: The Office for National Statistics said on Friday manufacturing output was 7.4 percent lower than a year earlier, its biggest fall since June 1981 when Britain was in the throes of an industrial meltdown that decimated its car industry and coal mines.
USA

New Trouble for an Obama Nominee: Admiral Dennis Blair Aided Perpetrators of 1999 Church Killings in East Timor

A Military Dictatorship Coming To America?: THE WORSENING ECONOMIC CRISIS has prompted the US Army War College to issue a report urging the use of military troops to contain possible civil unrest throughout America. Entitled, Strategic Shocks in Defense Strategy Development, issued on November 4, 2008, the report argues that the US military must prepare for a "violent domestic dislocation provoked by an economic collapse."

VENEZUELA

Chavez to keep sending free fuel to US poor

Why Can't Big Oil Match Hugo Chávez?

Indie supergroup to record with Venezuelan president: Mongrel, Jon McClure's dub/hip-hop project, plan to head into the studio with Hugo Chavez for a 'Buena Vista Social Club style thing', as apparently Venezuela is the new Cuba

Can Chávismo survive without Hugo? Polls show majority support Chávez seeking constitutional change so he can run in 2012 Pt2/2

Socialism seems to be working in Venezuela

ENDS

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