Conference was full-on as usual and I’m sure many of us have highlights to share.
One fringe I attended was by the PSC.
Alex Philllips was there and spoke. She was actually on board the Mavi Marmara when it was attacked by Israeli forces on the night of May 31st.
The recent BBC Panorama programme on that attack was slammed as propaganda by the meeting. Very much the Israeli slant on the attack was given, and it included a smear on the IHH, an important Turkish charity which was involved. A note was made of a small campaign of people pledging to withhold their licence fees in disgust. It was underscored how we cannot rely on mainstream media for balance in this issue. And how it is worse still in America. Organisations such as PSC are devoted to telling the truth on the issues and finding ways of supporting Palestinians.
The meeting ranged around Israel-Palestine issues – such as the withdrawal from Gaza in 2005. This was indeed an Israeli withdrawal but it also marked the closing of the doors on Gaza by Israel, making it a giant prison, and additionally, and importantly, it masked a major increase in settlers on the West Bank! This is typical of the dealings by Israeli authorities with Palestinians, and indeed the numerous so-called peace processes over years, always ending up disempowering Palestinians and further threatening the little territory that remains to them.
Also there was Pippa who will be on the Viva Palestina convoy leaving this month to bring aid to Gaza. This is the 5th such convoy and regular updates will be on its website – http://www.vivapalestina.org/vp5/intro.html
The convoy leaves London on Sept 18th and will meet up with sister convoys from Casablanca and Doha, all heading to Gaza.
Our helping to spread the word to whatever groups we belong to, will be very valuable.
You can also donate via the Viva website. I have been approached myself to help support a man from the area going. Our local Hull Stop the War group will be helping and if anyone can spare a tenner or whatever I shall pass it on.
I’m sure we wish Pippa and the whole convoy every strength and good wish in what they are doing for bringing much needed supplies to the people of Gaza.