A brief introduction to the March 2012 United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA): In recent years, Israeli settler activity in the West Bank has significantly impaired Palestinian access to, and use of, a growing number of water springs. Springs are the single largest source of water for irrigation in the West Bank and an important coping mechanism for communities not connected to a water network, or poorly supplied, to meet domestic and livelihood needs. The main methods used by settlers to that end have been intimidation and threats, and the erection of fences around the targeted areas. This phenomenon comes in the context of Israel’s longstanding policy of settling its civilian population in the occupied Palestinian territory, in violation of international humanitarian law.
B’Tselem is the preeminent Israeli human rights organization and information center for human rights in the Occupied Territories. B’Tselem endeavors to document and educate the Israeli public and policymakers about human rights violations in the Occupied Territories, combat the phenomenon of denial prevalent among the Israeli public, and help create a human rights culture in Israel. B’Tselem is the Hebrew word ofr “in the image of,” and is also used as a synonym for human dignity. The word is taken from Genesis 1:27 “And God created humans in his image. In the image of God did He create him.”
In 2011, volunteers in B’Tselem’s camera project filmed over 500 hours of footage in the West Bank. This is two minutes collected from it, in order to sum up the passing year.
Perhaps my favorite historical picture: Eleanor Roosevelt holding a copy of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights hot off the press. The UDHR was signed December 10, 1948, and every December 10th since then has been remembered and celebrated as Human Rights Day. Happy Human Rights Day everyone!
A friend’s father made this video of sings the people of Wisconsin are holding at their rallies to save their state and workers’ rights. Works’ rights are human rights and our predecessors fought very hard to secure the Labor rights that we have in this country. We will not give disgrace their memory, make lite of their sacrifice, or give up the rights that they worked so hard to leave to us. I stand with the people of Wisconsin.
Sara Benninga of the Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movements speaking at last week’s J Street conference. Sara highlights the place that the Israeli Declaration of Independence is supposed to hold in Israel as a bill of rights in the absences of a constitution. She also speaks to the importance of civil disobedience, non-violent protest, grass roots organizing and solidarity work to make change. Most importantly, Sara talks about her own personal transformation to see past the “curtain of ignorance” that separates the reality of the Occupation from the consciousness of many Israelis and Jews.
The first 4:45 of this clip is an introduction of Sara and can be skipped.
Manama, Bahrain, February 25th.
“The protest — which appeared to be twice as large as one on Tuesday that drew about 100,000 people — cut through Manama, the capital, with staggering numbers for a population of just 500,000. They marched in two huge, roaring crowds from the south and from the west, converging at Pearl Square.”
A girl leaning out of a vehicle window celebrates and displays the victory sign in Benghazi, Libya on Monday, Feb. 21, 2011. Libyan protesters celebrated in the streets of Benghazi on Monday, claiming control of the country’s second largest city after bloody fighting, and anti-government unrest spread to the capital with clashes in Tripoli’s main square for the first time. (AP Photo/Alaguri)
From inside the Wisconsin State Capitol, Ryan Harvey reports:
“Hundreds of cops have just marched into the Wisconsin state capitol building to protest the anti-Union bill, to massive applause. They now join up to 600 people who are inside.”
Ryan reported on his Facebook page earlier today:
“Police have just announced to the crowds inside the occupied State Capitol of Wisconsin: ‘We have been ordered by the legislature to kick you all out at 4:00 today. But we know what’s right from wrong. We will not be kicking anyone out, in fact, we will be sleeping here with you!’ Unreal.”