Eyewitness in Gaza

October 21, 2014

Destruction in Gaza City

Eyewitness in Gaza
Featuring Dr. Ghada Ageel
Tuesday, October 28 (7:00 pm)
Education Centre South Room 306
87 Avenue at 113 Street, University of Alberta Campus
(Click here for map)

Help spread the word! Invite your friends to the Facebook event.

For 50 days in the summer of 2014, Israeli forces pounded the besieged Gaza Strip from air, land and sea, killing more than 2200 Palestinians and wounding more than 11,000, most of them civilians. At the height of the bombardment, roughly a third of Gaza’s population was displaced, and by the time the August 26 cease-fire was declared over 17,000 homes had been completely destroyed and another 37,000 homes damaged.

In the midst of it all, Dr. Ghada Ageel travelled to Gaza to be with her family, spending more than a month experiencing the Israeli bombardment and the chilling aftermath of the assault. She calls it “the scariest and most stressful trip” of her life. Come hear Ghada’s story and learn what the prospects are now for Gaza’s future.

“Expecting the unexpectable, I put my documents, passports and money in a small bag and hung them around my neck and sat next to my mom’s bed fully dressed with my shoes on for most of the week,” Ageel writes of the experience. “In the case of invasion of the refugee camp, my brothers were to carry my disabled mother in a mattress similar to the way they’d done a few days earlier with my 89-year-old grandmother, Khadiaj, minutes before Israel bombed the neighbour’s house. My sister-in-laws, Wafa and Arwa, the plan says, would carry their children, the little money they have and some of their valuable belongings. I was to look after my two children and carry my mom’s medications.”

This is a free event, all are welcome.

Dr. Ghada Ageel is a Visiting Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Alberta. Her research interests focus on rights-based approaches to forced migration, Palestinian refugees in comparative perspective, oral history, women’s studies, the Arab-Israeli conflict, and the permanent status issues involved in the Middle East peace process. Dr. Ageel’s work has been widely published in several newspapers, magazines and journals worldwide, including The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The International Herald Tribune, The Hill, CNN, BBC, The Guardian, Journal for Palestine Studies, Palestine Chronicle, Occupation Magazine and many Arabic newspapers throughout the Middle East. Dr. Ageel is currently working on a book project: The Palestinian Nakba and Israeli Apartheid : The Law and The Experience. She is also active in Faculty4Palestine-Alberta.


Canada’s Tax-deductible Support for Israel’s Crimes

September 3, 2014

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Yves Engler’s latest article for the Electronic Intifada.

Canada’s Tax-deductible Support for Israel’s Crimes

Yves Engler | 22 August 2014

When is a Canadian who leaves this country to join a foreign military force and participate in the killing of innocent civilians, including children, called a “terror tourist” and sent to jail? The answer is: only when that person joins a military force the Conservative government disagrees with.

Numerous ministers in the current federal government have loudly denounced the radicalization of Canadian youth in foreign wars. Last year, the Conservatives passed a law that sets a maximum fifteen year prison sentence for “leaving or attempting to leave Canada” to commit terrorism. Jason Kenney, the minister for multiculturalism, recently said the government is trying “to monitor networks that recruit and radicalize youth.”

Last month, Somali-Canadian Mohamed Hersi was sentenced to ten years in prison for attempting to join the al-Shabab militia in Somalia. Arrested at Toronto’s Pearson airport before leaving, Hersi was not found guilty of committing or plotting a specific act of violence, but according to the presiding judge, was “poised to become a terror tourist.”

Yet our government does nothing to hundreds of other Canadians who join a different foreign military force which daily terrorizes millions of people and often uses explosives to kill thousands — most of whom are civilians. Read the rest of this entry »


Unraveling the Neoliberal, Colonial Links between Québec and Israel

September 2, 2014

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Read Stefan Christoff’s excellent analysis for the Media Co-op of the ties between Québec and Israel.

Unraveling the neoliberal, colonial links between Québec and Israel

by Stefan Christoff

Political and economic relations between Québec and Israel have developed in major ways over the past decade. A process facilitated by the Parti libéral du Québec, with open complicity from the PQ, neoliberal colonial links articulated clearly in growing business collaborations and corporate military connections.

In 2008, the former Liberal finance minister Raymond Bachand lead an important political delegation to Israel, reported as having over forty people onboard, with both corporate and academic representatives from Québec, also including representatives from the FTQ’s Fonds de la solidarité. Bachand’s trip finalized a new formal economic and technology focused bilateral accord, existing in parallel to the Canada-Israel bilateral free trade agreement signed back in 1997, recently expanded under the Conservatives.

In signing the most recent Québec accord, Bachand stated that “by signing this complementary agreement, Québec is reiterating the attachment it has with Israel and its wish for a closer collaboration in the future.”

Symbolically the accord was signed in Jerusalem, a city that all mainstream political negotiations around Israel/Palestine clearly recognize as contested territory, a point also articulated many times by the UN. Bachand’s move to sign the deal in Jerusalem signaled a direct complicity with long standing Israeli colonial moves to assert control over the historic city as a centre of Israeli political power, while working to erase Jerusalem’s Palestinian identity.

Bachand also signed the bilateral agreement with former Israeli Industry minister Eliyahu Yishai, a right-wing politician and strong backer of ongoing settlement construction on Palestinian lands in violation of international law and UN resolutions. Read the rest of this entry »


Emergency Rally for Gaza, August 9th

August 6, 2014

Emergency Rally for Gaza
Saturday, August 9 (1:00 pm)
Edmonton, Constable Ezio Faraone Park (11004 97 Ave, North side, West of entrance to High Level Bridge).

gaza-war-crimes-2Help spread the word! Invite your friends to the Facebook event.

Join us as we rally in support of the Palestinian call for an August 9 Day of Rage, where activists and supporters of Palestine all over the world will take to the streets with a unified demand for sanctions against Israel.

The Palestinian call says:
“From Gaza under invasion, bombardment, and continuing siege, the horror is beyond words. Medical supplies are exhausted. The death toll has reached 1813 killed (398 children, 207 women, 74 elderly) and 9370 injured (2744 children, 1750 women, 343 elderly). Our hospitals, ambulances, and medical staff are all under attack while on duty. Doctors and paramedics are being killed while evacuating the dead. Our dead are not numbers and statistics to be recounted; they are loved ones, family and friends.

While we have to survive this onslaught, you certainly have the power to help end it the same way you helped overcome Apartheid and other crimes against humanity. Israel is only able to carry out this attack with the unwavering support of governments – this support must end.

This is our third massacre in six years. When not being slaughtered, we remain under siege, an illegal collective punishment of the entire population. Fishermen are shot and killed if they stray beyond a 3 km limit imposed unilaterally by Israel. Farmers are shot harvesting their crops within a border area imposed unilaterally by Israel. Gaza has become the largest open-air prison, a concentration camp since 2006. This time, we want an end to this unprecedented crime against humanity committed with the complicity and support of your own governments!

We are not asking for charity. We are demanding solidarity, because we know that until Israel is isolated and sanctioned, these horrors will be repeated.

Take action this Saturday

1. Make boycotts, divestments and sanctions the main message at every protest around the world. Take banners and placards calling for sanction on Israel to every protest. Tweet them using the hashtag #GazaDayofRage. Email us your pictures and action details to GazaDayofRage@gmail.com.
2. While news of all the mass protests outside Israel’s embassies around the world have given us hope, after weeks of protests, we urge you to intensify your actions. Occupy Israeli embassies, challenge Israeli officials (and others) supporting the current aggression against Gaza whenever they appear in public and stage sit-in in government buildings.
3. Boycott all Israeli products and take action against corporations profiting from Israel’s system of colonialism, occupation and apartheid. March to boycott targets in your city and educate the public about companies complicit in Israel’s ongoing military assault and illegal siege of Gaza.
4. Palestinian trade unions are calling on our brothers and sisters in the trade union movement internationally to stop handling goods imported from or exported to Israel. The trade union movement has a proud history of direct action against Apartheid in South Africa, the Congress of South African Trade Unions has joined us in the call for direct action to end Israel’s impunity.

- See more at: http://www.bdsmovement.net/2014/gaza-calling-all-out-on-saturday-9-august-day-of-rage-12423#sthash.dAsqZQDB.dpuf


4th Annual Mahmoud Darwish – Commemoration in Poetry

August 5, 2014

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4th Annual Mahmoud Darwish: Commemoration in Poetry
Tuesday, August 12 (8:30 – 11:00 pm)
Rouge Lounge
10111-117 Street
(Click here for map)

Help us spread the word! Invite your friends to the Facebook event.

On August 9, 2008 Palestine and the world lost a powerful and incomparable voice for justice with the passing of Palestine’s national poet, Mahmoud Darwish. His poetry explored life and politics, using words that sought to change history and to humanize.

As the horror in Gaza continues to unfold, please join PSN for its fourth annual evening commemorating the life and words of Mahmoud Darwish, and his unparallelled capturing of the struggle and steadfastness of the Palestinian people.

The evening will feature readings in both Arabic and English of a number of poems by Darwish.

If you are interested in reading a poem by Darwish in either Arabic or English as part of the evening’s commemoration, please email Sara at shussein07@gmail.com.

The evening is presented in collaboration with the Breath in Poetry Collective. Entry is by donation (no one turned away), with all proceeds going to UNWRA relief efforts in Gaza.

Sorry, no minors.

You can learn more about the life of Mahmoud Darwish below in the two-part Al Jazeera feature on Darwish made shortly after his death on August 9, 2008.

Part 1:

Part 2:

You can hear Darwish reading his poetry here and find many of his poems in both Arabic and English online.


Edmonton’s Fourth Rally and March for Palestine

July 28, 2014

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Edmonton’s Fourth Rally and March for Palestine
Wednesday, July 30 (6:30 pm)
Churchill Square (9930 – 102 Street)
*** LOCATION CHANGE: MEET AT THE STEPS IN CHURCHILL SQUARE ***
(Click here for map)

Due to the warm weather, the fountain area by the Bell Tower is very crowded, so we’ll be rallying on the main steps in Churchill Square (just south of the Bell Tower).

Help spread the word! Invite your friends to the Facebook event.

With no end in sight for the misery of the Palestinian people, we will continue to march in the streets of Edmonton in solidarity with the Palestinian people.

We call on the Canadian public to pay attention to the massacre of innocent civilians occurring in the Palestinian territories at the hands of the Israeli regime, and support the Palestinian people for the sake of humanity.

We call on the Canadian government to immediately end its unconditional support for the murderous Israeli regime. Being silent about the issue (let alone condoning it), makes us complicit in the genocide that is going on in Palestine.

We call on the Canadian public to join the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) Movement and pressure the Israeli government to reconsider the root causes of this conflict – namely: the brutal occupation, colonization of Palestinian land and then, segregation, oppression, and humiliation of the Palestinian people for over 50 years.

We believe that Israel’s best bet at self-defense is with ending the siege on Gaza, ending the occupation and withdrawal from Palestinian territories and compliance with International Law.

Organized by the Canada Palestine Cultural Association and Palestine Solidarity Network-Edmonton.


Action Against the Attack on Gaza

July 23, 2014

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Against the Attack on Gaza
Saturday, July 26 (1:00 pm)
Canada Place
South Side, Jasper Avenue at 97 Street
(Click here for map)

Help us spread the word! Invite your friends to the Facebook event.

Please come this Saturday in front of Canada Place to partake in a peaceful action to protest the illegal and horrific attacks on Gaza by Israel and to lament and respect the Palestinians that have been killed.

We will be creating chalked body outlines to represent those that have been killed in these latest attacks and writing their names. The death toll is over 700. To see the most recent list of casualties, visit the International Middle East Media Center.

Please bring chalk if you can (we will also bring some) and tweet #yeg4gaza.

In the event that it rains, we will hold a die-in.

This action is in solidarity for the people of Palestine to their rights to land, livelihood, and life. Join Nobel peace laureates, academics, nation-state governments, and solidarity movements in Palestine and around the world to demand an end to Israel’s illegal war crimes and occupation, and immediately halt the killings and allow medical aid and basic services into Gaza.


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