Tell corporations to get out of Israeli settlements

On January 31, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights released a report announcing a historic database of companies doing business with illegal Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

But they didn’t name any of the 206 companies on it.

Luckily, we already know at least some of them.

The Washington Post reported in August that among the American companies that received letters informing them that they’d be on the UN list were Caterpillar,, TripAdvisor, and Airbnb.

Jewish Voice for Peace has launched an online tool where you can add your name to call on these four US-based corporations to get out of the settlement business.

The UN has spoken:

“The violations of human rights associated with the settlements are pervasive and devastating, reaching every facet of Palestinian life. Owing to settlement development and infrastructure, Palestinians suffer from restrictions on freedom of religion, movement and education; their rights to land and water; access to livelihoods and their right to an adequate standard of living; their rights to family life; and many other fundamental human rights.”

Take a stand with Jewish Voice for Peace by taking action today.

Air Canada terminates main contract with Israel’s IAI

The Canadian BDS Coalition has declared a partial victory in its #AirCanadaComplicity campaign to pressure the airline to ends its collaboration with Israel’s Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI).

Here’s is the coalition’s November 2 statement:

On November 1, 2017, we were informed in writing by Air Canada management that the five-year contract with Israel Aerospace Industries Bedek Group for heavy maintenance on its B767 jets had been terminated early. That contract, reported to be worth tens of millions of dollars, was set to run until March 2019.

Air Canada offered no reason for dropping the contract other than to say it was due to a practice of reviewing such “arrangements on a regular basis” with all service providers. Air Canada also claimed in its letter that this process happened in “early 2017” and that the contract was transferred to “another provider in North America”.

However, we need to point out that this new information was only released after our #AirCanadaComplicity campaign was taking off and receiving increasing support both from within Canada and internationally. Unions representing hundreds of thousands of members (and their families) had signed on to the new open letter, as had groups in other countries from the U.S. to Norway, France, Germany, Belgium and Ireland to Australia. The Open Letter was a shortened version of a previous official letter to Air Canada, sent 4 months earlier, which received neither an acknowledgement nor an answer.

Air Canada also said in its letter that it still has one smaller contract with IAI, where “in compliance with international safety regulations that apply to all carriers, Bedek provides a certified aircraft engineer to do a check that is required on aircraft prior to departure of regularly scheduled return flights to Canada”. However, they noted that if any substantive problems are found during that check, then Air Canada dispatches its own employees to conduct the work.

They did not address the issue of the Sabra food products being part of the on-board menu on certain flights.

However, the Canadian BDS Coalition is pleased that the largest and most significant element of Air Canada’s involvement with Israel Aerospace Industries has been terminated. Given the recent publicity IAI has received in the international press in the last months, it is not surprising that any company would want to distance themselves from such a partner. First, we heard of a subsidiary of IAI being involved with building the U.S.-Mexico border wall and then just last week, the Israeli press reported that IAI was one of the 190 companies included on the United Nations upcoming blacklist for violating international law by doing business in the occupied Palestinian territories.

Although the issue of maintenance outsourcing is still ongoing and we will continue to pressure Air Canada regarding the carrying of Sabra products and their remaining small contract with IAI, we feel that this is a significant national victory for the #AirCanadaComplicity campaign. The Coalition wishes to thank all our supporters, both here in Canada and abroad, who made the difference in showing that justice for Palestinians can be achieved. The collective will and efforts of our strong movements for social justice cannot be denied!

Open letter calls on Air Canada to end complicity with Israel’s IAI

PSN is one of the signatories to the Canadian BDS Coalition open letter to Air Canada CEO Calvin Rovinescu, calling on Air Canada to end its outsourcing partnership with drone maker Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI).

Oct. 16, 2017

Mr. Calin Rovinescu
President and CEO
Air Canada
P.O. Box 14000, Station Airport
Dorval, QC H4Y 1H4
FAX: 514-422-4945

Dear Mr. Rovinescu:

We wish to bring to your attention our concerns about Air Canada’s partnership with Israel Aerospace Industries for maintenance on the Air Canada fleet of Boeing 787 and 767 jets.

Israel Aerospace Industries [IAI] is the subject of boycotts across Europe for its deadly drone technology and production. Corporate Watch from the UK says “IAI was one of the earliest developers of drone technology and launched its first surveillance drone in 1979. IAI’s website boasts that its drones have an “unsurpassed track record of over 1,200,000 operational flight hours for over 50 users on five continents.”

A 2014 study entitled ‘Sleepless in Gaza’ by Dr. Atef Abu Saif details the terrifying impact of drone attacks on the Gaza Strip, especially on children, “Since their first use in 2000, drones have led to the death of hundreds of Palestinians and have injured thousands more. In addition, they have directly impacted Palestinian psychological and social life, as well as causing a grossly negative impact on education.”

By partnering with IAI, Air Canada becomes complicit in the war crimes of IAI. This is fundamentally wrong.

In having the maintenance of the Boeing 787 and 767 jets performed in Israel, you send valuable Canadian jobs out of the provinces of Quebec, Ontario, and Manitoba. Again, this is fundamentally wrong.

In addition to partnering with Israel Aerospace Industries, Air Canada also sells Sabra Hummus and guacamole as part of the onboard canteen service. Sabra is a partner with the Strauss Group. Strauss is the second largest Israeli food and beverage company and is known for supporting two Israeli military units implicated in human rights abuses, the Golani and Givati brigades.

We join with the Canadian groups that have already called on you to immediately halt this complicity with Israeli war crimes against the Palestinian civilian population.

Signed by:

Canadian Union of Postal Workers
CUPE 3902 (Canadian Union of Public Employees), Toronto
Fredericton & District Labour Council
New Brunswick Federation of Labour/Fédération des Travailleurs et Travailleuses du Nouveau-Brunswick
Nova Scotia Federation of Labour
UNIFOR Local 4504, University of New Brunswick

Barnard-Boecker Centre Foundation, Victoria
Bathurst United Church of Canada, Toronto
BDS Vancouver-Coast Salish
Canada Palestine Association, Vancouver
Canadian Peace Congress
Centre d’appui aux Philippines / Centre for Philippine Concerns (CAP-CPC)
Christian Peacemaker Teams-Ontario
Coalition against Israeli Apartheid CAIA, Victoria
Coalition BDS Québec
Independent Jewish Voices Canada
International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS) in Canada
Justice for Palestinians Calgary
Mid-Islanders for Justice and Peace in the Middle East, Vancouver Island
NDP Socialist Caucus
Niagara BDS
Palestine Solidarity Network – Edmonton
Palestine Solidarity St. John’s
Palestinian and Jewish Unity, PAJU, Montreal
Palestinian Solidarity Working Group, Sudbury
Peace Alliance Winnipeg
People for Peace, London, Ontario
Socialist Action.
Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights, UBC
Toronto Action for Social Change
Toronto BDS
United Network for a Just Peace in Palestine & Israel (UNJPPI) – Toronto Chapter

And also signed by the following international groups:

Association of Norwegian NGOs for Palestine
Australian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Campaign for Palestine
Australians for Palestine
BACBI (Belgian Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel)
BDS Berlin
BDS France
Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine CJPP, Sydney
Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign
Palestine Support Network Australia
Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network

Roger Waters: I hate apartheid, not Israel

Former Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters is one of the highest-profile proponents of the Palestinian-led call for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) against Israel until it “meets its obligation to recognize the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self-determination and fully complies with the precepts of international law.”

Ahead of his October 24 & 25 two-night run in Edmonton as part of his North American US + THEM tour, take the time to read this wide-ranging conversation with Israeli journalist Gideon Levy in Haaretz.

Why Israel, when there are so many other countries that do the same?

“Well, if you’re determined to stand on the side of truth, justice, liberty, human rights, individual freedoms, political equality, and freedom to worship whatever you want, all of that – from time to time, situations crop up that demand your attention more than other situations, because they’re blatant and they’ve been going on for a very long time. People also complain about anybody making comparisons between apartheid South Africa and Israel. But particularly in the occupied territories – but also in Israel, in my view – the comparisons are valid.

In the 1970s and ’80s, there was no question – we all focused on South Africa because it was the obvious place to focus. It was a place where it looked like all of us who took part in the Anti-Apartheid Movement, as it was called then, might have an effect, and might cause changes in policy in that small part of the world. Israel is that bit of the world now. Whether Israelis or anyone else like it or not, it just is.”

Call on Bryan Adams to cancel performances in Israel

Canadian singer/songwriter Bryan Adams is scheduled to play three shows in Israel in December, 2017—two in Tel Aviv and one in Jerusalem, despite calls for him to respect the Palestinian-led call for a cultural boycott of Israel.

Add your voice to those calling on Bryan Adams to stand up for human rights by respecting the cultural boycott of Israel by signing the Canadian BDS Coalition’s online petition.

The shows come despite Adams public criticism of Israel’s 2014 assault on Gaza:


UNIFOR passes BDS resolution

UNIFOR, Canada’s largest private-sector union with over 310,000 members, passed a motion in support of boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) at its August 18-20 convention.

Resolution number 5, entitled, “Palestinian Self-Determination and the Movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions,” was put forth by the Oshawa-based Local 222 and was easily adopted at the Unifor Canadian Council.

The full text of the resolution reads:

Palestinian Self-Determination and the Movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions

WHEREAS article 49 of the 4th Geneva Convention prohibits an occupying power from transferring parts of its own civilian population to territory it occupies; and

WHEREAS the International Court of Justice has ruled that Israel’s settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) violate international law; and

WHEREAS Israeli settlement expansions in the OPT are an undeniable obstacle to the Israel – Palestine peace-process; and

WHEREAS Israel has continued, despite international pressure, to expand its settlements and to demolish Palestinian homes and other infrastructure in the OPT; and

WHEREAS Canada and other nations have previously succeeded in ensuring respect for human rights through the use of economic and political sanctions, including in the case of South Africa; and

WHEREAS the Liberal and Conservative parties recently supported a motion ‘condemning’ attempts by Canadians to promote the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement; and

WHEREAS nothing in this resolution condones the use of force against innocent civilians or other human rights violations by either side in the conflict;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that Unifor supports the use of divestment, boycott and sanctions (“BDS”) that are targeted to those sectors of Israel’s economy and society which profit from the ongoing occupation of the OPT; and

THEREFORE BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that Unifor will support such a form of BDS until such time as Israel implements a permanent ban on further settlement construction in the OPT, and enters into good faith negotiations with representatives of the Palestinian people for the purpose of establishing a viable, contiguous and truly sovereign Palestinian state ; and

THEREFORE BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that Unifor opposes all efforts to prohibit, punish or otherwise deter expressions of support for BDS.


Why BDS Matters: A Town Hall Discussion


Why BDS Matters: A Town Hall Discussion
Wednesday, October 26 (7:00 – 9:00 pm)
Edmonton Clinic Health Academy (ECHA) Room 2-190
SW corner of 87 Avenue & 114 Street, U of A campus (map)

RSVP and invite your friends on the Facebook event page.

[If you’re in Calgary, here’s the Facebook event page for the October 27 town hall in Calgary]

At its August 2016 convention in Ottawa the Green Party of Canada passed a policy resolution to become the first (and only) party with representation in the House of Commons to publicly support elements of the Palestinian-led call for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) to pressure Israel to respect international law, and oppose efforts to “prohibit, punish or otherwise deter expressions of support for BDS.”

The Green Party quickly came under intense pressure from pro-Israeli organizations for its democratic adoption of the resolution. Green Party Leader Elizabeth May reacted by expressing her disagreement with the resolution, firing three members of her shadow cabinet who publicly supported the resolution, and calling a “special general meeting” on December 3-4 in Calgary to revisit, and potentially reverse, the resolution.

This public town hall is an opportunity for students, the general public, members of all political parties, and Green Party members of all perspectives on the resolution to learn more about the reality and aims of the Palestinian-led call for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS), why the Green Party resolution is significant, and what can be done to support BDS and the resolution.

The evening will feature presentations by Dimitri Lascaris, former Justice Critic of the Green Party of Canada Shadow Cabinet and author and submitter of the resolution; and Yves Engler, author of the new book, A Propaganda System: How Canada’s Government, Corporations, Media and Academia Sell War and Exploitation, followed by ample time for discussion and debate from attendees.

This is a free event, donations are welcome.

Organized by Palestine Solidarity Network and the Campaign to Defend the Green Party of Canada’s BDS Policy.

About the speakers:

Dimitri Lascaris was the author and submitter of the Green Party resolution on “Palestinian Self-Determination and the Movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions” and was justice critic in the Green Party of Canada Shadow Cabinet before he was removed in September by leader Elizabeth May.

He graduated from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law in 1991, and is a practicing lawyer called to the bars of Ontario, the State of New York, and the Federal District Court for the Southern District of New York. In 2012, Canadian Lawyer Magazine identified Mr. Lascaris as one of the 25 most influential lawyers in Canada, and in 2013, Canadian Business Magazine identified him as one of the 50 most influential people in Canadian business.

Lascaris is Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Unity Project for the Relief of Homelessness, and is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Real News Network, an independent, not-for-profit media organization based in Baltimore, Maryland. He previously served as a Board member of Toronto

In the 2015 federal election, he ran as the Green Party candidate in the riding of London West.

Yves Engler, the former vice-president of the Concordia Student Union, is a Montréal-based activist and author. the former vice-president of the Concordia Student Union, is a Montréal-based activist and author. He is the author of the recently released book A Propaganda System: How Canada’s Government, Corporations, Media and Academia Sell War and Exploitation, and has published eight other books including The Ugly Canadian: Stephen Harper’s Foreign Policy, The Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy (Shortlisted for the Mavis Gallant Prize for Non Fiction in the Quebec Writers’ Federation Literary Awards), and Canada and Israel: Building Apartheid.

Chris Alders is a former broadcaster, journalist, publisher and professional political organizer. He is currently a Senior Policy Adviser to a company in Calgary. A native of Nova Scotia, Chris holds three degrees in political science, two undergraduate from Acadia University and a graduate degree from Brock University. His research has focused on political leadership and democracy. He is a former Atlantic Canada Organizer for the Green Party of Canada and has participated in 37 campaigns with the Green Party vote going up 36 times. In the summer of 2015, he was a finalist for the position of Campaign Manager of Jill Stein for President. He has been a member of the Green Party of Canada since 2004.

Getting there:

The Edmonton Clinic Health Academy (ECHA) is located on the southwest corner of 87 Avenue and 114 Street on the University of Alberta campus (map). ECHA is adjacent to the Jubliee Auditorium.

The building’s north entrance is closest to Room 2-190.


Parking is available at the Jubilee car park (map) and just across the street on the northeast corner of 87 Avenue and 114 Street the Education car park (map).


Take the LRT to the Health Sciences Centre Station, which is located just south of ECHA or take Edmonton transit to the 114 Street and 89 Avenue stop of the University of Alberta bus loop (map) and walk just south to ECHA.


Ample bicycle parking is located near the north entrance of ECHA.

March 24 IAW 2016 Event

BDS, Dissidence, and the Fight for Free Speech
Featuring Nisha Nath and Dax D’Orazio
Thursday, March 24 (7:00 – 9:00 pm)
Edmonton Clinic Health Academy (ECHA) Room 1-190
SW corner of 87 Avenue & 114 Street, U of A campus (map)

RSVP and invite your friends on the Facebook event page.

On February 22 the Parliament of Canada passed by a margin of 229-51 (with 57 absences or abstentions) a Conservative motion to “reject the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement” and “call upon the government to condemn any and all attempts by Canadian organizations, groups or individuals to promote the BDS movement, both here at home and abroad.”

The motion was the just the latest in a string of international moves aimed at slowing the rapid growth of support for the global Palestinian-led BDS movement. More than two dozen nation, state, or local laws against BDS have been put forward in the United States since 2015, the UK recently banned publicly funded institutions from participating in BDS, and Israel itself has had an anti-BDS law in place since 2011.

But these official moves are just the most recent attack on free speech related to BDS. For years, BDS campaigns by Palestinian solidarity activists on university campuses have been stifled or silenced by anti-boycott campaigns.

This panel will explore the aims of the BDS movement, official reactions to it, the relevance of the anti-BDS backlash in the context of increasingly neoliberal and militarized spheres of power, and what the implications are for broader movements of marginalized/oppressed/dissident people’s movements and free speech.

* While PSN cannot provide childcare for this event, this event is child inclusive so children of all ages are welcome in the room during the panel.

Nisha Nath is a long-time supporter of Palestine Solidarity Network-Edmonton and is a PhD candidate in the Department of Political Science at the University of Alberta. Nisha is also a contributing editor with Voices-voix and the Dissent, Democracy and the Law Research Network. Her research looks at race, security, dissent and citizenship in Canada.

Dax D’Orazio is former member of Students Against Israeli Apartheid (SAIA) at Carleton University in Ottawa, which campaigned for the university to divest its pension fund from four companies complicit in human rights violations in Palestine. He is now a PhD student in the Department of Political Science at the University of Alberta.

Getting There

The Edmonton Clinic Health Academy (ECHA) is located on the southwest corner of 87 Avenue and 114 Street on the University of Alberta campus (map). ECHA is adjacent to the Jubliee Auditorium.

The building’s north entrance is closest to Room 1-190.


Parking is available at the Jubilee car park (map) and just across the street on the northeast corner of 87 Avenue and 114 Street the Education car park (map).


Take the LRT to the Health Sciences Centre Station, which is located just south of ECHA.

Take Edmonton transit to the 114 Street and 89 Avenue stop of the University of Alberta bus loop (map) and walk just south to ECHA.


Ample bicycle parking is located near the north entrance of ECHA.

U of Toronto Graduate Students Union endorses BDS

From the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI):

On December 10, 2012, the University of Toronto’s Graduate Student Union (GSU) voted overwhelmingly in favour of a resolution to endorse the global campaign for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS), at their annual general meeting. Over 150 graduate students were present at the meeting, of which approximately 97% voted in favour of the motion, with only a few students opposed.

The resolution states “Be it resolved that the Graduate Students Union endorse Palestinian civil society’s 2005 call for boycotts, divestment and sanctions by calling on the University of Toronto to refrain from investing in all companies complicit in violations of international law. This includes any company that: profits from the illegal occupation of Palestinian land, directly benefits from the construction of the Wall and Israeli settlements, is economically active in settlements, and profits from the collective punishment of Palestinians. This would include the companies BAE Systems, Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin and Hewlett Packard”.

The resolution was adopted in support of Palestinian rights and opposition to Israel’s illegal military occupation of Palestine and its violations of international law under the Geneva Conventions, as affirmed by the International Court of Justice in 2004. By divesting, the University of Toronto will fulfill its legal obligation not to invest in companies or organizations that are complicit in human rights violations, and will help force Israel to comply with international law.

In March 2011, Students Against Israeli Apartheid at the University of Toronto launched a divestment campaign addressing the university’s investments in companies that assist in, and profit from Israeli apartheid and the occupation of the Palestinian territories, with a specific focus on BAE Systems, Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin and Hewlett Packard, which provide the Israeli occupation with weapons and technology. In passing this resolution, U of T joins York University, University of Regina, Carleton University and universities around the world, who have all passed similar resolutions at their student unions.

The passage of this resolution is a milestone in divestment activities in North America and will hopefully pave the way for a broader campaign which demands that the University of Toronto divest from any and all companies profiting from Israel’s illegal occupation.

You can read SAIA U of T’s Divestment Report and read more about the Toronto divestment campaign.

Tell Stevie Wonder not to entertain apartheid



From the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation:

Fewer than 4 days after the global campaign to urge Stevie to cancel his gig began, the Jewish Telegraph Agency (JTA) announced Stevie’s intention to cancel his performance for the Friends of the IDF!

* Original article in the JTA: Source: Stevie Wonder to cancel Friends of IDF gig

* Re-posted in the Jewish Daily Forward: Stevie Wonder Pulls Out of IDF Fundraiser

* Mondoweiss blog: Report: Stevie Wonder pulls out of IDF fundraiser after BDS activists wage campaign

* Jerusalem Post — reported by Reuters: Source: Stevie Wonder to cancel Friends of IDF gig

This great news shows the power of the advocacy efforts so far. We are waiting for Stevie’s statement. Let’s strengthen Stevie’s resolve and finish the job. Click here to sign our petition to Stevie, which we will deliver to show him how much support behind him remains — and is growing!

Here is a portion of the JTA article:

Stevie Wonder Pulls Out of IDF Fundraiser
Petition Called on R&B Star To Shun Israel Army Event

Stevie Wonder is set to pull out of a performance at a fundraiser for the Israel Defense Forces, a source told JTA.

Wonder’s representatives will claim that he did not know the nature of the group, the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces, and that he believes such a performance would be incongruent with his status as a U.N. “Messenger of Peace,” according to a source who has read email exchanges between Wonder’s representatives and organizers of the event.

Wonder was scheduled to headline the Friends of the Israeli Defense Forces annual gala in Los Angeles on Dec. 6. The event raises millions of dollars annually to support the Israeli military.

Original post:

On November 25, 2012, YNet announced that musical legend and civil rights advocate Stevie Wonder would be performing for Israeli soldiers and major donors at the annual gala of the Friends of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) on December 6 in Los Angeles. Stevie Wonder stood against Apartheid in South Africa and has been an outspoken supporter of racial justice and civil rights in the United States. Please join us in saying to Stevie Wonder: “We Just Called to Say, Don’t Entertain Apartheid!”

In a letter to Stevie, Palestinian writerBassem Nasir wrote:

“This army, [the one you are supporting] Stevie, is a tool of oppression and subjugation that has kept me, my family, and my people occupied for over forty-five years. Every day, this army is protecting the seizure of more Palestinian land to build illegal Israeli settlements and further denying me my rights as a human being… I am urging you to cancel this performance and stand with the values of justice and peace for all.”

The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation has set up an action section on their webpage where you can sent a message to Stevie Wonder telling him not to entertain apartheid.

Here’s what you can do:

1. Tell Stevie Wonder: We Just Called to Say, Don’t Entertain Apartheid by using the US Campaign’s online tool to send a message to Stevie Wonder.

2. Twitter Alert: Use these ready-made tweets to spread the word about Stevie’s performance and call on him to not play for occupation forces.

3. Check out the US Campaign’s dedicated web page for more background information on Stevie Wonder’s performance.

4. Sign the online petition at