Ray Goodlass

Rays peace activism

Month: September, 2013

APAN (Palestine) Conference

Yesterday attended a forum organised by the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network (APAN), an umbrella organisation comprised of bodies working for justice and peace for Palestine,  which I am an individual member.

The main issues included the question of a two state solution versus a one state one, and BDS (Boycott,  Divestment and Sanctions).

I’m strongly in favour of BDS,  as it is an effective (cf South Africa) peaceful method of action, indeed the only one available to us, though I must point out that it is not to be directed against Israel per second,  only those aspects of it engaged in illegal activity, which of course is a awful lot of stuff, including anything to do with the occupation, the Wall, and the settlements.

I also volunteered to work with another member to research the links Australian universities have with the Israeli military,  which we know are many and deep,

The other big issue is that of two states, or one.  Certainly the two state solution is hardly tenable given the amount of territory Israel has appropriated,  but a one state solution would have to ensure that the Israelis didn’t rule over a dispossessed Palestinian peasantry, so it is not a cut and dried matter. A ‘bi-state’ might help to prevent that, though I’d still like to see a campaign for two states based on the pre-1967 border, the right of return, and demolition the of the wall and the settlements. A big ask, I know!

The day finished with he APAN AGM, which was uneventful except for it re-affirming APAN’s in principle support for BDS,  and being open to one or two states, depending on the wishes of the Palestinians.

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APAN (Palestine) Conference

Yesterday attended a forum organised by the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network (APAN), an umbrella organisation comprised of bodies working for justice and peace for Palestine,  which I am an individual member.

The main issues included the question of a two state solution versus a one state one, and BDS (Boycott,  Divestment and Sanctions).

I’m strongly in favour of BDS,  as it is an effective (cf South Africa) peaceful method of action, indeed the only one available to us, though I must point out that it is not to be directed against Israel per second,  only those aspects of it engaged in illegal activity, which of course is a awful lot of stuff, including anything to do with the occupation, the Wall, and the settlements.

I also volunteered to work with another member to research the links Australian universities have with the Israeli military,  which we know are many and deep,

The other big issue is that of two states, or one.  Certainly the two state solution is hardly tenable given the amount of territory Israel has appropriated,  but a one state solution would have to ensure that the Israelis didn’t rule over a dispossessed Palestinian peasantry, so it is not a cut and dried matter. A ‘bi-state’ might help to prevent that, though I’d still like to see a campaign for two states based on the pre-1967 border, the right of return, and demolition the of the wall and the settlements. A big ask, I know!

The day finished with he APAN AGM, which was uneventful except for it re-affirming APAN’s in principle support for BDS,  and being open to one or two states, depending on the wishes of the Palestinians.

Human Rights in Palestine Conference

Attending the Human Rights in Palestine conference at the ANU in Canberra today and tomorrow. It has earned the ire of Murdoch Australian newspaper, which in a perverse way is a sign of respect!

Several speakers pointed out how much the Palestinian Authority conceded to achieve the Oslo Accord. That PA politicians might have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo is a worrying thought! 

But speakers mainly focused on how Israel deprives Palestinians of their human rights,  as well as social, medical, cultural a day economic rights.

As usual, I am really reminded that like Australia,  Israel is a settler colonial society. 

There was of course much discussion of how to bring about a just peace, and though it seems so hopeless,  Professor Richard Falk, the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the OPT,  pointed out the ‘Politics of the Impossible’, in which seemingly impossible situations are overturned that no one foresaw before they happened,  such as the end of colonialism, the collapse of the USSR,  and the end of Apartheid South Africa.  The thought does give some (slight) hope.