Successful BDS Protest at Max Brenner, Parramatta

BDS rally at Max Brenner, Parramatta 19/9/12From the Palestine Action Group Sydney:

150 supporters of Palestine staged a rally in Parramatta in support of the global campaign of boycotts, divestment and sanctions against Israeli apartheid today. The protest was timed to also commemorate the massacres at the Sabra and Shatilla Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon 30 years ago.

The Police had yesterday requested the Palestine Action Group cancel the event, but organisers decided to proceed as planned.

Demonstrators were addressed by South African activist Kolin Thumbadoo, who was president of the Anti-Apartheid Movement in Australia during the campaign against apartheid in South Africa.

In his speech Kolin stated, “As I was then, I am now, an implacable, unapologetic anti-racist. As I was opposed to a white minority regime in South Africa, so to am I opposed to a racist Zionist regime in occupied Palestine.”

The protest marched to the Max Brenner chocolate shop in Parramatta to highlight it’s connections with the Strauss Group, an Israeli corporation which publicly supports two of the most notorious brigades in the Israeli Defence Forces, the Golani and Gavati brigades.

“Just as in the struggle against Apartheid in South Africa, companies that support or profit from Israeli Apartheid should be boycotted,” said one of the protest organisers, Patrick Langosch.

The Palestine Action Group plans to hold more demonstrations in the future to continue to support the BDS campaign and the struggle of the Palestinians.

Related Links

BDS Action at Max Brenner, Parramatta – Photo Slideshow

Jerusalem Development Authority Implicated in Boycotted Film Funding

In the vein of its previous documentary project presenting a montage of 24 hours of life in Berlin, the German Zero One film production company has been planning a similar venture on Jerusalem.

Berlin-based Zero One Film will work alongside Palestinian producer Daoud Kuttab and newly founded Israeli prodco 24 Communications. The latter is a joint venture between Israeli prodcos Pie Films and Inosan, which worked on the original version of HBO hit In Treatment.

Medienboard Berlin Brandenburg and Jerusalem Film Fund are backing 24h Jerusalem and the producers hope to secure the remaining €400,000 (US$500,000) of its €2.4m budget at MipTV this week.

Palestinian directors have now pulled out of the project – they were unaware of the presence of the Israeli production company, nor of backing from the Jerusalem Film Fund, which is in turn funded by the Jerusalem Development Authority. Current activities of the JDA include expropriating Palestinian land in East Jerusalem for parks. The JDA received “40 million NIS in 2005 to develop green spaces around the Old City of Jerusalem”.

Designating urban space as a national park is not only easier but cheaper too, the state having no obligation to compensate owners.

The Jerusalem municipality leaves the creation of these parks to the National Planning Authority (in the Ministry of Interior), Bimkom noted, which deals more with the protection of nature and heritage than the rights of Jerusalem’s residents.

The disparity between the management of space for West Jerusalemites compared to their counterparts in the east is stark, with national parks notably absent from the west.

“The Palestinian residents of Jerusalem are crowded and they suffer from extreme neglect and shortage of public infrastructure,” Bimkom architect, Efrat Bar-Cohen, said in a statement.

“The residents are in desperate need of space by which they can improve their quality of life, even if slightly.”

The building of the park will have ramifications beyond the strangling of Issawiya and A-Tur residents.

It will stretch into the E1 area of the West Bank, which represents an important reserve of space for Palestinian development, creating a string of Jewish Israeli-only settlement between the Old City and Ma’ale Adumim settlement.

Elad Kandl is director of the Old City projects at the Jerusalem Development Authority, whose website describes their work as rehabilitating and conserving the Old City.

He expressed succinctly Israel’s aim of curbing Palestinian development in Jerusalem. “When you make it a national park,” he told The Jerusalem Post in reference to open space, “you keep the status quo.”

The JDA, which operates under the 1988 Jerusalem Development Authority Law, was established to further entrench Israeli control over the city and is also involved in the Jerusalem light rail project.

Indeed, the Prime Minister’s Office and the mayor of Jerusalem sponsored a JDA program to work toward this goal. On its website the JDA is very clear about the role of the Jerusalem light rail project, stating that “The investment in the light railway project was one of the government’s key strategies to empower Jerusalem as a capital.”

The JDA is also an instrumental actor in the proposed construction of 1,400 new housing units in the Gilo Jewish settlement colony, located near Bethlehem in occupied East Jerusalem.

In this light, the involvement of the JDA in the 24h Jerusalem project clearly designates the film as unacceptable normalisation with the Israeli occupation.

The Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) has defined normalization specifically in a Palestinian and Arab context “as the participation in any project, initiative or activity, in Palestine or internationally, that aims (implicitly or explicitly) to bring together Palestinians (and/or Arabs) and Israelis (people or institutions) without placing as its goal resistance to and exposure of the Israeli occupation and all forms of discrimination and oppression against the Palestinian people.” [2] This is the definition endorsed by the BDS National Committee (BNC).

One Palestinian participant in the 24h Jerusalem project, Enas aL-Muthaffar, made clear his objections to the film project in an open letter on August 25th. He reveals that he was not informed at all about the Israeli production partner. Nor were the Palestinian directors to be involved in the editing process.

To whom It May Concern,

When Kuttab Productions first contacted me early July, it failed to mention that Israel is part of this project, although I specifically inquired about this issue. And then again, you sent me an email on July 9th, which also failed to mention that Israel is in fact part of your film production. I only knew about Israel being a co-producer of Jerusalem 24 when I asked specific technical questions about the characters, crew and the editing phase. I was surprised to know that the selected filmmakers are only requested to film on September 6th and that we have no say in the editing phase. Then, you said: The editing phase will happen in Germany where the Palestinian and the Israeli films will be edited in one feature length documentary. This is not information that can simply be passed on in such a way!

I reject to be part of Jerusalem 24: a German/ Israeli/ Palestinian co-production for the following two main reasons:

· I respect and support Palestinian civil society campaign for Boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel until it complies with International law and respects Palestinian rights.

· I refuse to be part of a peace propaganda machine that continues to ignore Israel’s cruel colonization of Palestine.

There is a longer list of reasons related to the current steps undertaken by Israel that aim at changing the demographic, social and cultural composition of the city of Jerusalem – to name few:

· Advocating the largest act of de-population of East Jerusalem since 1967.

· Continuing expansion of illegal settlements.

· Renewal of closure of East Jerusalem Institutions.

· Building restrictions and home demolitions.

· Revoking residency rights and denying family reunification.

· Continued illegal diggings under al-Aqsa mosque compound.

There is no way in which I can separate my art from who I am, from my life, from my duty to resist everything and anything that doesn’t acknowledge my right to exist on my land in freedom and dignity.


Enas I. aL-Muthaffar

Enas’ stance is confirmed in an Al Akhbar piece [Google translation]:

Yesterday, I sent a group of Palestinian institutions and individuals working in the field of culture and art message to «Book of production» declare the absolute rejection of various forms of normalization with the occupier and «standing in the face of attempts to penetrate the cultural front as the line of the clash with the basic occupation, and intellectuals were and will remain the spearhead in the clash of cultures and civilizations with brute occupation force.

Haidar Eid further affirms terms of the PACBI boycott relevant to the joint film project [Google translation]:

That all meetings and projects that combine between the Palestinians and the Israelis must be placed in the proper context against the occupation and other forms of Israeli oppression of the Palestinians, and most importantly that these meetings be pro-boycott by directives issued by the National Committee of the province.

According to Amira Hass, 20 directors, including Israelis, have now pulled out of the film project in support of the cultural boycott and filming, scheduled for September 6, has been halted.

Related Links

24 hours in Jerusalem without inside directors : Omar Barghouti comments
Daoud Kuttab is out of step with and misrepresents PACBI and directors’ reasons for boycotting this normalising film.

Barrington Levy, Please Boycott Israel, Say No to Racism and Apartheid

You can contact Barrington Levy and let him know that breaking the boycott against apartheid Israel is unacceptable from the contact link on his web site.

Gangsters - BARRINGTON LEVYDear Barrington Levy,

We have discovered you are scheduled to play in Israel on 22 June the 28 August.

The fact that there is a cultural boycott of Israel is not something of which all musical artists are aware when they schedule to play Israel. After becoming aware, many cancel. (See

We are writing to let you know more about this global movement, and we hope you will decide to be a part of it.

Israel has claimed authority over the lives and land of millions of Palestinian people. What began in 1948 in Palestine has now escalated into what South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu and many others call apartheid. Racism runs deep in the streets of Tel Aviv, Africans seeking asylum and living as refugees are filled with fear as Israelis demonstrate on the streets against their presence. Last May brought fear to Africans in Israel as a series of fire bombings of apartments and a day nursery were set off in an area where African migrants live. Shops run by or serving migrants were smashed up and looted in violent demonstrations in which several Africans were attacked. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu stated:

“We’ll start by ejecting the infiltrators from South Sudan…and then move on to other groups.”

Israel’s Minister of the Interior, Eli Yishai said chillingly:

“The infiltrators [African immigrants] along with the Palestinians will quickly bring us to the end of the Zionist dream…we don’t need to import more problems from Africa…[they] think the country doesn’t belong to us, the white man”.

Israeli regime uses Bobby McFerrin for propaganda
Israeli regime uses Sister Bliss for propaganda
Israeli regime uses Guns n Roses for propagandaA heinous series of walls, checkpoints, and sniper towers dot the landscape for millions of Palestinians. Brutal military might is flaunted daily and children in Gaza are regularly targeted to demonstrate the “effectiveness” of new weapons. Armed soldiers raid homes, fire into schoolyards, maiming and killing children.

While some liberal “peacenik” Israelis will tell you they want you to play because they will be your audience, please know that the most effective tool to end the oppression is an unequivocal stand against the injustice by saying no. Instead listen to the brave Israelis from “Boycott From Within” who have asked many artists to stay away from the failing Zionist state. (See )

Artists who do play for apartheid are being used to promote Israel as a false democracy. The Israeli government has an official twitter and uses its position to let the world know which artists lend their name to promote Israel’s false image. Just three of many examples are Bobby McFerrin, Gun N Roses and Sister Bliss.

Please don’t allow your name to be used to whitewash racism, apartheid, and the horrible illegal annexation wall (pictured here in this recent video).

Join the boycott for justice, equality, freedom and human rights.

Yours truly,

Don’t Play Apartheid Israel (DPAI) seeks to inform musicians of the Palestinian call to boycott Israel, and the extent to which their decision to play in the apartheid state will be instrumentalized – against their will – as propaganda for the maintenance of a horrifying status quo in Israel/Palestine: that is a brutal, decades-long occupation, ongoing ethnic cleansing, continual land theft, passing of over 20 racist laws within Israel/’48, and the crackdown on human rights groups. We represent over 900 members from around the globe who believe that it is essential for musicians & other artists to heed the call of the PACBI, and join in the boycott of Israel.

For more information:


Jennifer Lopez, Please Respect the Palestinian Call to Boycott Israel

Dear Jennifer Lopez,

We are a group of over 850 people from all over the world who are united together in support of democracy, human rights, justice, and freedom for the Palestinian people.

We ask you to respect the call of Palestinian civil society, and refrain from scheduling a concert in Israel. Please stay true to the words that your management wrote on your behalf in June of 2010:

“Jennifer Lopez would never knowingly support any state, country, institution or regime that was associated with any form of human rights abuse.” [1]

You refused to play in Turkish-controlled Cyprus, as your appearance would have made a political statement in favor of human rights violations. Similarly, if you perform in Israel, you will be making a political statement affirming support for human rights violations by Israel. Your appearance will be used to whitewash Israel’s crimes against humanity since Israel uses all culture as propaganda and makes no distinction between the two. Music cannot bind people across the walls of apartheid where segregation, discrimination and brutality remain after the last song ends.

You produced and played the role of “Lauren Adrian” in the film Bordertown, calling needed attention to the plight of women in Juárez, Mexico. Your statement [2] during your award ceremony by Amnesty International 2007 shows your compassion for the oppressed:

“Since first hearing of these atrocities in 1998, when Gregory Nava came to me with this project, I desperately wanted to tell this story. I began working to ensure we made this film in order to bring the attention of the world to this tragedy and to pressure the Mexican government to bring to justice those responsible for these horrible crimes.”

You don’t need us to tell you how mainstream media in the USA has been in denial of the Israeli crimes against the Palestinians, starting from the Nakba in 1948, through the current apartheid and racism. In fact, people are often led to believe that it is important to meet the needs of suffering Israelis, while ignoring the much greater sufferings imposed by Israel, which forces millions of Palestinians into living as refugees and in destitution. The pain Israel inflicts on Palestinian women and children is well represented in children’s artwork and in the piece of artwork entitled “Torment” by Najah.

Torment by Najah


Some artists objecting to the Israeli regime’s actions have justified their booked performances in Israel as acts of support for the Israeli “peaceniks.” Another performing musician, Natacha Atlas, wrote:

“I had an idea that performing in Israel would have been a unique opportunity to encourage and support my fans’ opposition to the current government’s actions and policies. I would have personally asked my Israeli fans face-to-face to fight this apartheid with peace in their hearts…”

Natacha Atlas then confirmed that she decided to cancel, explaining:

“after much deliberation I now see that it would be more effective a statement to not go to Israel until this systemised apartheid is abolished once and for all. Therefore I publicly retract my well-intentioned decision to go and perform in Israel…” [3]

Please read about Israel’s apartheid in the letter that was written to French philosopher and prominent intellectual, Jacques Rancière (Professor emeritus, University Paris 8) by the PACBI (Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel). Jacques Rancière subsequently chose to cancel his planned lecture at the Minerva Humanities Center at Tel Aviv University earlier this year. (See

Already this year prominent artists Cassandra Wilson, tUnE-yArDs and Cat Power have chosen to respect the boycott and stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people in their struggle for justice. Also among the growing list of artists that have cancelled concerts and events in Israel are the late Gil Scott-Heron, Elvis Costello, the Pixies, Mike Leigh, Klaxons, Gorillaz Sound System and many more.[4]

We are hoping that you will choose to respect the boycott.

Don’t Play Apartheid Israel (DPAI)


[2] USA/Germany: Jennifer Lopez to receive Amnesty International award for producing “Bordertown”
[3] International Star Natacha Atlas announces Israel boycott
[4] 2011 Summary of the Cultural Boycott of Israel


NSW Police Attempt to Ban Palestinian Human Rights Rally

Organisers of a Sydney Palestine solidarity protest — Commemorate Al-Nakba: Protest Against Israeli Apartheid! — released the statement below on May 12.

NSW police initiated a Supreme Court action against the pro-Palestine Al-Nakba commemoration march to be held in Sydney on May 15. The police are seeking a court order prohibiting the public assembly and procession. Protest organisers state that they will not be intimidated and will defend the right to protest in court.

Independent journalist and author of My Israel Question, Antony Loewenstein, says: “The right to peacefully protest is a cornerstone of a democratic society. Supporting Palestinian rights is even more essential today in an age where our political and media elites choose to ignore Israeli apartheid right in front of their eyes.”

Sylvia Hale, Former Greens MLC, said: “It is critical, at a time when Israel has gaoled hundreds of Palestinians without charge or trial for protesting at Israel’s illegal occupation of their land, that we show our support for them and the thousands of other political prisoners in Israeli gaols. Australia must cut all military ties with Israel until the Israeli government abides by international law and ends its racist policies of ethnic cleansing.”

By attempting to ban the commemoration, the NSW police have shown they care more about assisting Israel in hiding from its past then upholding the democratic rights of Australian citizens.

May 15th marks the day of “The Catastrophe” (‘Al-Nakba’ in Arabic) where the state of Israel was created on the murder and dispossession of the Palestinian people. Within Israel, the state has attempted to silence protesters from speaking out against the oppression of the Palestinians and remembering this historic event. This has included intimidation and arrests of protestors and cutting funding of NGO’s involved in Al-Nakba events.

The march is planned for May 15 at Sydney Town Hall, beginning at 6pm. The rally will include speakers from the General Union of Palestinian Workers, Jews against the Occupation and many other pro-Palestinian activists.

A representative of the protest organisers has been summoned to a hearing at the Supreme Court at 10am on May 14 to contest the police actions.


The Palestinian Solidarity Organisation is calling for a Rally on the 14th May to defend the right to protest:


RALLY Supreme Court, on Macquarie Street, Monday 14 May, 10.00 am


RALLY & MARCH 6 pm Tuesday 15 May Sydney Town Hall

The NSW Police have taken the organizers of the Nakba commemoration march in Sydney to the Supreme Court demanding that the rally should be moved to a different location and the march to be cancelled. The protesters have decided to assert their rights, saying that they will contest any attempt to prohibit the march.

“In the same way that 3 Israeli activists were arrested for trying to commemorate Al-Nakba, the Victorian police charged 19 BDS protesters in Melbourne, (they are now in court), now the NSW Police are showing their true colours by trying to silence free speech and political protest in support of the Palestinians.

Al-Nakba (“the catastrophe” in Arabic) marks the anniversary of the creation of the state of Israel on May 15th 1948. The date is normally marked by commemorations and protests against the apartheid policies of the Israeli government and their continued oppression of the Palestinian people. Israel has taken measures to disrupt the commemoration of Al-Nakba including intimidation and arrest of activists and cutting of funding to NGOs involved in commemorations.

The rally and march are going to be held on Tuesday May 15th at 6pm at Sydney Town Hall and includes speakers from the Australian Unions, General Union of Palestinian Workers, Jews Against the Occupation, and young Palestinian activists. So, to defend the right to protest, we have to be at the Supreme Court, on Macquarie Street, on Monday the 14th, at 10.00, to show, outside and inside court, our decision to fights for our rights. Remember, the more people present, stronger our case will be.

Send this message wide, talk to your friends and be at the court. Ask for declarations of support from other organizations and peoples defenders of civil rights.

Also, this is a great opportunity to promote the Nakba rally because, even if the court find for the police, the rally is legal and we have the right to do it and WE WILL DO IT.

The following are the initial expression of solidarity:

The freedom to protest free from police interference is an essential right in any country that calls itself democratic. It is critical, at a time when Israel has gaoled hundreds of Palestinians without charge or trial for protesting at Israel’s illegal occupation of their land, that we show our support for them and the thousands of other political prisoners in Israeli gaols. Australia must cut all military ties with Israel until the Israeli government abides by international law and ends its racist policies of ethnic cleansing.” Sylvia Hale, former Greens MLC

The NSW government and police need to be reminded that freedom of expression is a fundamental right that cannot be either given or taken away by them. Their attempts to ban the Al-Nakba march this Tuesday can only be seen as political.

Nakba protests and commemorations marking Israel’s dispossessed hundreds of thousands of Palestinians are being organized all over the globe. Sixty four years on, it is particularly important to affirm that majorities do not condone dispossession and the apartheid-like laws Israel deploys to keep Palestinians dispossessed.
Pip Hinman, Stop the War Coalition

Antony Loewenstein, independent journalist and author of My Israel Question, says, ‘the right to peacefully protest is a cornerstone of a democratic society. Supporting Palestinian rights is even more essential today in an age where our political and media elites chose to ignore Israeli apartheid right in front of their eyes.

For more information contact PALESTINE SOLIDARITY ORGANIZATION Patrick 0422028113 Raul 0403037376

UPDATE 13/5/12

Jwire is reporting that “the police simply want the protest diverted from the city centre at peak time.

NSW Police say that the organiser of the protest, Patrick Langosch, has not responded to their request to relocate the protest.”

NSW Police have issued the following statement….

A schedule 1 form under the Summary Offences Act was received from Patrick LANGOSCH on behalf of the AL-NAKBA PLANNING COMMITTEE on the 8 May 2012. This notice informed of the intention to hold the above public assembly followed by a procession through the CBD commencing 19:00hrs and following the following route:

From Sydney Town Hall enter George Street and travel north to Market Street; proceed east on Market Street to Pitt Street; proceed North on Pitt Street to King St; proceed west on King Street to George Street; proceed South on George St back to Town Hall.

Police contacted the organiser LANGOSCH and requested that an alternative, static assembly be conducted due to the safety issues and traffic congestion that would arise for the intended activity and its timing. Police attempted to negotiate with the group providing alternatives to a procession during the traffic peak on Tuesday evening. The group have declined to negotiate or alter their proposal in any way.

As a result of the refusal of the group to negotiate police have caused the issuing of a summons by the NSW Supreme Court seeking an order to prohibit the intended procession. The matter is listed before the NSW Supreme Court at 10:00 hrs on Monday 14 May 2012.

Basis of the objection

That the proposed procession will cause an unacceptable risk to pedestrian and vehicle safety during the peak traffic period in which it is proposed. That the impact of the procession to traffic in the inner city and corresponding impact on connecting road systems is unreasonable.

The objection has nothing to do with the issue that is the subject of the protest. Police facilitate hundreds of protests in the city each year. The nature of these protests are often the subject of negotiation to achieve a safe event that does not create an unreasonable impact on the amenity of the city. Police oppose all proposals that impact on the traffic and pedestrian flow in the city during the morning and evening peak periods.

Why is this group not allowed to protest

They are allowed to protest however the nature of this proposal is unacceptable as it would be for any other group that proposed this type of event. Alternative locations and times were suggested to the group who declined to consider any amendments to their proposal.

Is this a political matter

No. Political or other interests are not the issue, the unreasonable impact of the proposed procession is the only issue.

Where are they allowed to hold a Rally

Static rally locations including Belmore Park and Hyde Park were suggested, however the group declined to consider any alternatives to their proposal. As the group declined to negotiate the potential to facilitate a procession at alternate times and locations could not be progressed.

Is it illegal for them to hold a rally

No it is not illegal for the group to hold a rally. In accordance with the summary offences act, the Supreme court will now determine if a breach of the traffic regulations can be enforced by police if the group proceed with the procession they have outlined.

Al-Nakba commemorates the declaration of the establishment of the State of Israel.

UPDATE 13/5/12
Patrick Langosch
Organiser Patrick Langosch tells me : “On 11 May 2012, the Crown Solicitor received instructions from the Commissioner of Police to commence proceedings to seek an order prohibiting the holding of a public assembly in respect to which the Notice has been served, pursuant to s. 25(1) of the Summary Offences Act 1988″ – from the papers served to me on Friday.”

and further when I asked him whether there was a mention on the writ of alternate routes and times:

“The police offered ‘alternatives’ in the form of an ultimatum. They said we could not have any kind of march and that the protest could not assemble at Town Hall (where it has been advertised as starting for a month). This was unacceptable to the planning committee. The funny thing is they claim it’s because of disruption to traffic while they have facilitated other marches along similar routes at similar times.”

UPDATE 14/5/12

The case has been deferred to 2.30pm

UPDATE 14/5/12

Patrick Langosch, organiser of the Palestinian rally to be held in Sydney tomorrow reports that “We won!” in the court hearing today against the police. Waiting for details.


Court upholds pro-palestine protesters right to march

At approximately 5.30pm today the application to prohibit the Al-Nakba demonstration by the NSW police was dismisssed by Supreme Court.

This means that the planned protest for tomorrow night (6pm Tuesday 15th May) will be larger than originally anticipated due to the publicity surrounding the case.

Protest organisers still question why, despite facilitating hundreds of protests every year, the pro-Palestine Al-Nakba protest was singled out to be taken to the Supreme Court.

Police argued that the protest would cause unacceptable disruption to traffic. Patrick Langosch, who defended the protest in court, “Palestinians can expect delays of up to 8 hours due to Israeli roadblocks. The disruption to Sydney traffic is nothing to the disruption to Palestinians lives caused by the Israeli occupation”.

“Todays ruling as a victory for civil liberties and the right to protest against the intimidation tactics of the NSW police” said Gaza Freedom Flotilla participant Michael Coleman, “had the court ruled otherwise we would be one step closer to the Apartheid state of Israel where groups are actively penalised and criminalised for commemorating Al-Nakba”

The march is planned for Tuesday the 15 th of May at Sydney Town Hall beginning at 6pm. The rally will include speakers from the General Union of Palestinian Workers, Jews against the Occupation and many other pro-Palestinian activists

Patrick – 0422028113 Michael – 0417638859

UPDATE 15/5/12

Police have issued confusing press releases saying the rally has been delayed – but it is definitely on at 6pm at Sydney Town Hall.

Jwire reports on the court hearing yesterday:

The judge failed to find any significant reason as to why this understood to be the first al-Nakba demonstration was being held in 2012. Langosch told the court that “it is not an option to have it on any other day than May 15? adding “the demonstration will go on regardless of the decision of the Court.” The judge agreed it that nbot holding on May 15 would be akin to holding Anzac Day on any other day other than April 25.

Justice Adamson said she would announce her reasons for the decision tomorrow morning.

During the hearing, Justice Christine Adamson referred to “the continuing grievances of the Palestinian people” in understanding the reasons for the protest.

Patrick Langosch comments at the bottom of the Jwire story:

This was a great victory for civil liberties and Palestine solidarity. One can only still wonder why, given that by their own admission the police facilitate hundreds of protests every year, they chose to take this one to the Supreme Court.

I also wanted to point out that the statement by the NSW police about the time of the rally and disruption to traffic is factually incorrect and the police have been made aware of this fact but have yet to issue a correction (in fact, in that time they have re-issued the same factually in correct statement).

The rally will be starting at 6pm at Town Hall and marching at 7pm. Why, given the whole day in court talking about it, did the NSW police tell motorists to avoid driving in the CBD from 5pm-7pm, which would only result in more disruption? Why have they not corrected this glaring factual inaccuracy and instead re-affirmed it? Incompetence? Malicious intent to cause more disruption then there would otherwise be as payback for the victor in the Supreme Court?

On the ABC : Sydney court rejects call to stop Palestine rally

In the SMH, the police info is also presented confusingly:

Freedom of speech trumps commuter chaos in eyes of the law

A Supreme Court judge has dismissed an application by police to prevent a pro-Palestine protest going ahead this evening, saying Nakba Day should be regarded like Anzac Day or Christmas Day.

The Al-Nakba Planning Committee plans to hold a rally from 5.30pm starting at Sydney Town Hall, with a following procession along George, Market, Pitt and King streets.

The procession was originally planned to start shortly after 5.30pm, but police advised this morning that the group planned to delay the start until 7pm to minimise disruption to commuters.

The Commissioner of the NSW Police had suggested that the procession be moved out of the CBD or to a weekend, citing concerns about disruption to commuter traffic at peak hour.

The Al-Nakba Planning Committee says the public assembly is to commemorate the day on which Palestinians were dispossessed from areas which now form part of the State of Israel, being May 15.

Justice Christine Adamson dismissed the summons last night at 6.30pm and published her reasons this morning.

“I do not regard it as reasonable to expect persons commemorating a particular date to defer or bring forward its commemoration so that it can be commemorated on a weekend,” she said.

“Nakba Day ought be regarded as a day which, like Anzac Day, Christmas Day or Australia Day, is referable to a particular date which is not movable.

“This is of significance since objection is taken by reason of the fact that the public assembly is to occur on a weekday, rather than on a weekend.”

Justice Adamson said the procession would go through the vicinity of busy Town Hall station and along George Street, “which has perhaps more bus routes than any other road”.

“If one’s purpose were to disrupt commuter traffic, one could hardly choose a better time or place. But this is not the defendant’s purpose. His purpose is to conduct a public assembly to commemorate Nakba Day. The date is the product of history,” she said.

UPDATE 15/5/12

Report on the Rally and March held from 6pm

Press release
Pro-Palestinian Al-Nakba commemoration a great success

Tonight over 500 people marched through Sydneys CBD to commemorate Al-Nakba. Al-Nakba is a significant date for the Palestinians and their supporters as it represents both the dispossession of the Palestinians in 1948 and their ongoing oppression today.

Yesterday the NSW Supreme Court dismissed the case brought by the Commissioner of Police attempting to prohibit the event.

“I don’t believe concern for traffic was the real reason the police took us to court” stated Patrick Langosch, who contested the polices case in court yesterday, “there are still 19 pro-Palestine activists in Melbourne who are in the third week of their trial after being arrested for attending a peaceful protest against the Max Brenner chocolate shop which supports the Israeli military.”

“This was part of the broader attempt around the world to criminalise solidarity with the Palestinians”, said Michael Coleman, participant of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, ” except this time it backfired for the police and has only made our movement stronger”

Event organisers have vowed to continue raising awareness and publicly campaigning in support of Palestine.

Patrick 0422028113 Michael 0417638859

On Yahoo 7 news, the numbers are deflated, and again the police furphy about the rally being delayed is repeated. Zombie cannibalist “journalism” at its most lurid.

Photos from the Sydney Al Nakba rally

Video of the March

Walid Khalidi on Nakba Day 15 May 2012 describes the zionists’ expansionist hegemonical intent in 1948:

‘As for nascent Israel’s “Davidian” status vis-a vis the Goliath of the “invading” Arab states, Ben Gurion provides eloquent testimony on it in his War Diary. Thus, on 24 May 1948, less than ten days after the Arab armies had entered those parts of Palestine allocated to the Arab state under the partition plan to preempt the advancing Jewish forces, David Ben-Gurion wrote (4):

“Maklef [Carmeli brigade] should receive reinforcements. His job is to occupy South Lebanon after bombing Tyre, Sidon and Beirut from the air. We will also shell Beirut from the sea. Yigal [Alon] should hit Syria [Syrian army] at [Mishmar Haemek] from the East and the North. Our airforce must bomb and destroy Amman. The weak link in the Arab coalition is Lebanon because Muslim authority there is artificial, and easy to undermine. We must establish a Christian state with the Litani River as its southern border (5). We will form an alliance with it.

Once we destroy the power of the Arab Legion [the army of Trans-Jordan] we will destroy Tran-Jordan and Syria will then fall. If Egypt dares to continue fighting, we will bomb Port Said, Alexandria and Cairo. This is how we shall end this war and wind up our ancestors’ accounts with Egypt, Ashur and Aram….”‘

UPDATE 17/5/12

Vivienne Porzsolt applauds the great steadfastness of the Palestinian people at the rally.

Ziolobby attempts to smear the march.