Event: Edmonton Israeli Apartheid Week 2011

The Third Annual Edmonton Israeli Apartheid Week
March 14 – 18, 2011

A week of presentations, workshops, film screenings, and cultural events to raise awareness around the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israeli apartheid. All IAW 2011 events are open to everyone, and are free of charge. We look forward to seeing you there!

You can now check out the full schedule of events in Edmonton. For details of IAW events around the world, visit apartheidweek.org.

Presented by Palestine Solidarity Network, endorsed and supported by:
Alberta Public Interest Research Group (APIRG)
Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East – U of A
Cinema Politica Edmonton
Edmonton Coalition Against War and Racism (ECAWAR)
Edmonton Queers Against Israeli Apartheid (EQuAIA)
Edmonton Small Press Association (ESPA)
Independent Jewish Voices (IJV)

If you are part of an organization, union, or collective that would like to endorse Edmonton IAW 2011, please email us at psnedmonton@gmail.com.

About Israeli Apartheid Week

Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW) is an annual international series of events held in cities and campuses around the globe. The aim of IAW is to educate people about the nature of Israel as an apartheid system and to build Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaigns as part of a growing global BDS movement. Last year, Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW) took place in more than 40 cities across the globe.

The past few years have seen a sharp increase of literature and analysis that has sought to document and challenge Israeli apartheid, including reports issued by major international bodies and human rights organizations and findings published by political leaders, thinkers, academics and activists. Many of these efforts have highlighted the role that could be played by people and governments across the world in providing solidarity with the Palestinian struggle by exerting urgent pressure on Israel to alter its current structure and practices as an apartheid state. Prominent Palestinians, Jewish anti-Zionists, and South Africans have been at the forefront of this struggle.

At the same time, an international divestment campaign has gained momentum in response to a statement issued in July 2005 by over 170 Palestinian civil society organizations calling for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against apartheid Israel. Important gains have recently been made in this campaign in countries like South Africa, the United Kingdom, Canada and the United States.

The aim of IAW is to contribute to this chorus of international opposition to Israeli apartheid and to bolster support for the BDS campaign in accordance with the demands outlined in the July 2005 Statement: full equality for Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel, an end to the occupation and colonization of all Arab lands – including the Golan Heights, the Occupied West Bank with East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip – and dismantling the Wall, and the protection of Palestinian refugees’ right to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in U.N. resolution 194. In previous years IAW has played an important role in raising awareness and disseminating information about Zionism, the Palestinian liberation struggle and its similarities with the indigenous sovereignty struggle in North America and the South African anti-Apartheid movement. Join us in making this a year of struggle against apartheid and for justice, equality, and peace.

This year marks the third annual Israeli Apartheid Week in Edmonton, and the seventh year the week has been hosted internationally since its founding in Toronto.

THIRD ANNUAL EDMONTON ISRAELI APARTHEID WEEK
MARCH 14-19, 2011

** ALL EVENTS FREE **

A week of presentations, workshops, film screenings, and cultural events to raise awareness around the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israeli apartheid. All IAW 2011 events are open to everyone, and are free of charge. We look forward to seeing you there!

Presented by Palestine Solidarity Network
Endorsed and supported by:
Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East – U of A
Cinema Politica Edmonton
Edmonton Coalition Against War and Racism (ECAWAR)
Edmonton Queers Against Israeli Apartheid (EQuAIA)
Edmonton Small Press Association (ESPA)
Independent Jewish Voices (IJV)

MONDAY MARCH 14, 2011

Occupation 101
Film Screening
Monday, March 14 (Noon – 2:00 pm)
Education Building Room 315
(87 Avenue between 112 and 113 Streets, U of A Campus)
(Click here for map)

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

About Occupation 101:

A thought-provoking and powerful documentary film on the current and historical root causes of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Unlike any other film ever produced on the conflict — ‘Occupation 101’ presents a comprehensive analysis of the facts and hidden truths surrounding the never ending controversy and dispels many of its long-perceived myths and misconceptions.

The film also details life under Israeli military rule, the role of the United States in the conflict, and the major obstacles that stand in the way of a lasting and viable peace. The roots of the conflict are explained through first-hand on-the-ground experiences from leading Middle East scholars, peace activists, journalists, religious leaders and humanitarian workers whose voices have too often been suppressed in American media outlets.

The film covers a wide range of topics — which include — the first wave of Jewish immigration from Europe in the 1880’s, the 1920 tensions, the 1948 war, the 1967 war, the first Intifada of 1987, the Oslo Peace Process, Settlement expansion, the role of the United States Government, the second Intifada of 2000, the separation barrier and the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza, as well as many heart wrenching testimonials from victims of this tragedy.

Co-presented by Cinema Politica Edmonton

From Direct Action to the Freedom Flotilla:
International Solidarity and the Palestinian Freedom Struggle

IAW 2011 Keynote lecture by Huwaida Arraf
Monday, March 14 (7:00 – 9:00 pm)
Telus Building Room 150
(Corner of 87 Avenue and 111 Street, U of A Campus)
(Click here for map)

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

International solidarity in support of the Palestinian freedom struggle is growing around the world: from international direct action activists standing shoulder-to-shoulder with Palestinians fighting confiscation of their land in the occupied West Bank to the Free Gaza Movement’s naval challenges to the illegal siege of Gaza to local boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaigns across the globe targeting corporations and institutions that benefit from the occupation.

What are the ways these international movements can best support the Palestinian-led anti-Apartheid movement in the future, and how can they best respond to ongoing attempts at the national and international levels to silence, marginalize and even criminalize effective solidarity with Palestine?

About Huwaida Arraf:

Huwaida Arraf is a Palestinian with American and Israeli citizenship. She received her Bachelors degrees from the University of Michigan, and her Juris Doctor from the American University Washington College of Law, where she focused her studies on international human rights and humanitarian law. In 2001 Huwaida co-founded the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), which has twice been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Huwaida is co-author of the book “Peace Under Fire: Israel, Palestine, and the International Solidarity Movement.”

From 2007 – 2008 Huwaida taught in a human rights law clinic at Al-Quds University in Jerusalem, the first legal clinic in the Arab World. Huwaida was one of the initiators and organizers of a delegation of American lawyers to Gaza in February 2009, and co-authored the report on their findings, “Onslaught: Israel’s Attack on Gaza and the Rule of Law.”Huwaida is currently the Chairperson of the Free Gaza Movement. Since August 2008, she has led five successful sea voyages to the Gaza Strip. Huwaida was traveling with the Gaza Freedom Flotilla when it was lethally attacked by Israeli forces on May 31, 2010.

TUESDAY, MARCH 15, 2011

Queerness and Occupation: What’s the Connection?
Tuesday, March 15 (6:00 – 8:00 pm)
**ROOM CHANGE**
New Location: Central Academic Building (CAB) 273
(Click here for map)

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

What is “queer”? What is “apartheid”? Why should queer people be concerned about Israeli apartheid? If you have ever asked yourself these questions, you are invited to attend this informal workshop hosted by the Edmonton Queers Against Israeli Apartheid (EQuAIA). We will discuss as a group many questions and criticisms queer people face when standing in opposition to Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territory, and will work together to develop answers and solutions to these areas of concern. All queer- and non-queer identified individuals are welcome to attend the workshop. No previous knowledge or expertise is required, but we do expect everyone participating to contribute to the discussions.

Featuring Robert Nichols, Associate Professor, Political Science
Facilitated by Marcus Peterson, EQuAIA

About Robert Nichols:

Robert Nichols is an Assistant Professor of Political Theory in the Department of Political Science at the University of Alberta. His research is on 19th and 20th century continental philosophy, as well as the study of late-modern and contemporary imperialism and settler-colonialism, and the forms of resistance to them.

Presented by Edmonton Queers Against Israeli Apartheid (EQuAIA)

Poets Against Apartheid – A Night of Rouge Poetry
9:00 – 11:00 pm
Rouge Lounge
10111-117 Street
(Click here for map)

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

Join us at Rouge Lounge for an incredible night of spoken word and performance poetry relating the liberation struggle of the Palestinian people. This night will leave you inspired to share the stories of struggle with others and to be part of the growing movement against the injustice of apartheid in Palestine. Sorry, no minors.

Presented in collaboration with the Breath in Poetry Collective

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 16, 2011

The Season of Revolt: New Arab Uprisings and Implications for Apartheid
Wednesday, March 16 (7:00 – 9:00 pm)
Telus Building Room 236/238
(Corner of 87 Avenue and 111 Street, U of A Campus)
(Click here for map)

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

A fast-paced tsunami of revolutionary uprising is changing the social and political map of the Middle East and North Africa. Triggered by the Tunisian protest movement, this tsunami of change has already ended Mubarak’s 30-year dictatorship in Egypt, and has brought a re-birth of street politics to Algeria, Yemen, Jordan, Bahrain, Morocco, Libya, and other parts of the region. What do these developments mean for Israel and for Palestinians? What is their likely impact on the Palestinian anti-apartheid movement in the occupied territories, as well as inside Israel? Will they trigger a popular protest movement against racialized segregation and disenfranchisement? Finally, to what extent will the recent events change the balance of power in the region and the prospects of continuation of Israeli apartheid?

Panelists:
Dr. Ghada Ageel (PhD from University of Exeter)
Dr. Ibrahim Abu-Rabi (University of Alberta Department of Political Science)
Philip Weiss (Co-editor of Mondoweiss, via Skype)
Moderator: Fayyad Sabha (Palestine Solidarity Network)

About the speakers:

Dr. Ghada Ageel is a third generation Palestinian refugee. She was born and raised in the Khan Younis Refugee Camp in the Gaza Strip, were she attended high school and completed a BA in Education. In 1999, Ghada won the Jerusalem Studies’ Scholarship of the University of Exeter in Britain, where she completed her Master’s degree in Middle East Politics, and her PhD in Refugees Studies. Sine then, Ghada has worked with several organizations and institutions in Canada, UK and Palestine. She currently lives in Edmonton and works at the Canadian Islamic Centre.

Professor Abu-Rabi is a Palestinian who was born in Nazareth, Galilee. He holds dual citizenship in the U.S. and Israel. He is currently the ECMC Chair in Islamic Studies at the University of Alberta, and a professor at the department of Political Science. He has a special interest in the study and practice of interfaith dialogue between the Islamic and Christian religious traditions. Dr. Abu-Rabi specializes in issues of contemporary Islamic thought, particularly on religion and society in the contemporary Arab world, Turkey and South East Asia. Abu-Rabi is the author of Jewish-Muslim Dialogue, Israel’s Fate Will be Tied to the Middle East’s, and Trends and Issues in Contemporary Arab Thought.

Philip Weiss is, along with Adam Horowitz, the co-editor of the online magazine Mondoweiss, a “news website devoted to covering American foreign policy in the Middle East, chiefly from a progressive Jewish perspective.” He has been a contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine and a contributing editor to Esquire, Harper’s Magazine, and the New York Observer.

THURSDAY, MARCH 17, 2011

The Apartheid of Displacement: Voices from the Palestinian Diaspora
Thursday, March 17 (7:00 – 9:00 pm)
Business Building Room 1-5
(11211 Saskatchewan Drive, University of Alberta Campus)
(Click here for map)

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

Since the Nakba (Arabic for “catastrophe”) of 1947-1948, in which some 500 Palestinian villages were destroyed and at least 700,000 Palestinians were forced from their homes or lands, in what Israeli historian Ilan Pappe has called “the ethnic cleansing of Palestine.” The majority of these Palestinian refugees — now numbering over 5.5 million — have since been forced to live in exile, prevented despite multiple UN resolutions and international law to return to their homes, and unable to call any other place home. Come hear the stories of generations of Palestinians living in the diaspora, from refugee camps in neighboring Arab countries to life in western society.

About the speakers:

Dr. Ghada Ageel is a third generation Palestinian refugee. In 1948, her family was expelled from their homes and lands in the village of Beit Daras in what was then known as mandatory Palestine and is now part of Israel. Ghada, was born and raised in the Khan Younis Refugee Camp in the Gaza Strip, were she attended high school and completed a BA in Education. In 1999, Ghada won the Jerusalem Studies’ Scholarship of the University of Exeter in Britain, where she completed her Master’s degree in Middle East Politics, and her PhD in Refugees Studies. Sine then, Ghada has worked with several organizations and institutions in Canada, UK and Palestine. She currently lives in Edmonton and works at the Canadian Islamic Centre.

Samar El-Bekai is a second generation Palestinian refugee. Her father’s family are refugees from Beria, Safaad, while her mother’s family are exiled Palestinians from Salfeet, Nablus. Her parents met and married while studying in the former USSR where after completing their studies they lived for 3 years in Al Yarmook refugee camp in Syria. After which they moved to settle in a village in Lebanon, where Samar was born. There Samar grew up until 10 years of age when her family immigrated to Canada. Samar completed a BSc in Immunology and Infectious Diseases at the University of Alberta and also received a Diploma in Medical Laboratory Technology from NAIT. She is currently employed at the Provincial Laboratory of Alberta as a Medical Lab Tech.

Reem Skeik is a Palestinian immigrant. Her father’s family is from Gaza, while her mother’s family are Palestinian refugees from Jaffa. After their expulsion in 1948, the family lived in Lebanon for a few years, and eventually settled in Kuwait, where Reem was born. After the Gulf War, like many other Palestinian refugees, Reem’s family endured another expulsion. Reem and her family settled in Gaza, where she started her elementary education for the next four years, until immigrating to Canada. In Edmonton, Reem continued her education, completing a BSc in Molecular Biology and Genetics at the University of Alberta. She is currently at the University of Alberta completing her Master’s degree in the same field.

FRIDAY, MARCH 18, 2011

Academic Freedom and the Palestinian Solidarity Movement: Making the Connections
Friday, March 18 (1:00 – 3:00 pm)
Education Building Room 165
(87 Avenue between 112 and 113 Streets, U of A Campus)
(Click here for map)

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

Academics who have been active in Palestine solidarity work will address efforts to suppress dissent on university campuses and the role and responsibility of academics and scholars in this regard. Panelists will also address the role of the university (if any) in protecting spaces for dissent and whether or not dissent is an important aspect of academic freedom.

Speakers:
Dr. Mary-Jo Nadeau, Wilfred Laurier University
Dr. Keith Hammond, University of Glasgow (via Skype)
Dr. William Bruneau, Professor Emeritus, University of British Columbia (via Skype)
Len Findlay, University of Saskatchewan (via Skype)

Panel Moderator: Evelyn Hamdon, PhD Candidate, University of Alberta

About the speakers:

Mary-Jo Nadeau is a founding member and organizer with Faculty for Palestine, a network of over 450 faculty from more than 40 universities and over 15 colleges across Canada. She is also on the Coordinating Committee of the Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid (CAIA) in Toronto. As a member of Canadian Union of Public Employees Local 3908 (Trent University), Mary-Jo was one of the main organizers of the motions which passed around the boycott of Israeli academic institutions in the university workers sector in February 2009. She is a Lecturer at University of Toronto Mississauga and is co-author, with Alan Sears, of “The Palestine Test: Countering the Silencing Campaign” (Studies in Political Economy, Issue 85, Spring 2010).

Keith Hammond‘s research and teaching are on modernity as a social and political problem. Mr Hammond works in the Lifelong Learning and Social Justice knowledge transfer groups and the Glasgow Refugee, Asylum and Migration Network, looking in the main at Palestinian issues. He convenes seminars on European philosophy and the writings of Edward Said and contributes to Modern Educational Thought as part of the School’s postgraduate programme.

Bill Bruneau is a native of Saskatchewan, but a graduate of the University of Toronto. He taught at UBC from 1971 to 2003 and is a specialist in the history of universities. Bill Bruneau is past president of the Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) and a member of the CAUT’s Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee (2003-2009). His publications include a rather severe book-length criticism of performance indicators in higher education, reports and articles on academic freedom and university governance, and recently, articles and a large forthcoming book on the life and thought of Bertrand Russell in the inter-war period.

Len Findlay is Professor of English and Director of the Humanities Research Unit at the University of Saskatchewan, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and President–elect of its Academy One. Widely published in nineteenth-century comparative studies, literary theory, and the nature and role of universities and the humanities in Canada, his more recent work includes the several times reprinted “Always Indigenize! The Radical Humanities in the Postcolonial Canadian University,” “Memory’s Hegelian Estate: ‘Race,’ Class, Treaty, and the Canadas of Alexander Morris (1826-1889)” (Essays on Canadian Writing), “Can the Institution Speak? The University as Testimony in Canada Today” (Humanities Review) and “Extraordinary Renditions: Translating the Humanities Now” (in Retooling the Humanities). Co-editor of Pursuing Academic Freedom: “Free and Fearless”? and a two-term member of CAUT’s Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee, his revised translation and edition of The Communist Manifesto for Broadview Press appeared in 2004, and his book Oral Culture for Book Historians will appear soon with University of Toronto Press. He recently organized the only hosting of the photo exhibit “Human Drama in Gaza” on a Canadian university campus.

SATURDAY, MARCH 19, 2011

Day of Action Against MEC
Leafletting and information picket
Saturday, March 19 (Noon – 2:00 pm)
MEC Edmonton
12328 – 102 Avenue
(Click here for map)

The Palestine Solidarity Network is joining Palestine solidarity activists across Canada in calling on Mountain Equipment Coop (MEC) to end its partnerships with Israeli factories and to stop sourcing from Israel. Until MEC does so, we will continue to pressure MEC to act in accordance with their stated ethics by ending its partnership with Israeli factories.

During its brutal three-week assault on Gaza two years ago, the Israeli military killed 1400 Palestinians, the vast majority of them civilians. A recent report to the UN by Judge Goldstone concluded that Israel’s attack was “designed to punish, humiliate and terrorize a civilian population.” Since its founding in 1948, the State of Israel has systematically oppressed the Palestinian people and denied them the fundamental rights of freedom, equality and self-determination. The ongoing illegal occupation of Palestine is defined by racism, dispossession, and brutal violence, as the recent massacre in Gaza has demonstrated.

Since the Gaza massacre, the global Palestinian-led movement calling for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) until Israel complies with international law has accelerated. In Canada, members have been asking MEC to end its “partnerships” Israeli factories — including military contractors — that produce MEC brand seamless underwear and hydration systems. These partnerships are antithetical to MEC’s promotion of itself as an organization with “rigorous ethical sourcing requirements,” and its professed belief that “business can advance human rights.” MEC’s house brand “partner” for hydration systems is Source Vagabond, an Israeli military designer and supplier that boasts on its website (www.source-military.com) “[Founder] Yoki and most of the members of our R&D team are experienced ex-officers of elite IDF (Israeli Defence Forces) units.” As Naomi Klein said in January 2009, “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.”

WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP
* Do not buy products made in Israel at MEC (click here to see Israeli-made MEC products)
* Communicate to MEC your concerns about sourcing from Israel
* Ask friends and relatives to not buy Israeli goods at MEC
* Vote for MEC board members who support a boycott of Israeli suppliers
* Join one of our information pickets at MEC in Edmonton

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