‘Another Israel

On 12th March I attended the ‘Another Israel’ meeting at the NUT building in Mabledon Place near Euston.  It was described as an evening of dissenting voices from Israel.  There were five speakers from the platform and one speaker, who was contacted by phone, and who spoke from Gaza.

It was an illuminating and cheering evening.  When I went to Palestine two years ago I met some of the Israeli groups that were working for peace in the region, but there are many more - I had not realised how many.  Seventy are listed on the back of the ‘Another Israel’ leaflet.  There are also virtually constant protests and demonstrations in Israel, in particular, at the moment, against the siege of Gaza, where I understand that protests take place every day in Tel Aviv, Haifa and Jerusalem.  During the Lebanon war the marches got larger and larger - the largest being 150,000, a very large number, it seems to me, for such a small country.

Michel Warschawski spoke about the January convoy of 2000, in which he was involved, and which went to Gaza with food and medical supplies, water filters etc.  Judith Keshet spoke about ‘Checkpoint Watch’ which operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.  Matan Cohen spoke about ‘Anarchists against the Wall’, which has been protesting at Bi lin every week.  Many people have been injured and some killed at these demonstrations, by the IDF (Israeli Defence Force).  Matan was shot in the eye and is now partially blinded.

The Israeli Government was roundly condemned by all the speakers, and all the speakers called for boycotts, sanctions and disinvestments. 

Carol Clisby