Ron Press of the Boycott Apartheid South Africa campaign was, at the last minute, unable to make this event. But a lady from one of the Red Choirs based in Wales admirably filled his place. She was able to give us inspiring eyewitness accounts of some of the boycott actions she had attended.
Boycott actions where people of good conscience, not criminals, were arrested in their quest to publicise the human rights abuses going on now in Israel/Palestine, Human rights abuses that Gordon Brown and friends of Israel are shamefully weak and slow in condemning.
What an indictment of our whole justice system that our police force is used against anyone who tries to expose these crimes against humanity. Our trade and arms agreements with Israel finances racism, occupation and apartheid.
It's impossible to sit on the fence where these human rights abuses are concerned, we are guilty of collusion by not condemning such breaches of International Law.
After the presentation there was a questions and answers and more harrowing details of trying to live under an oppressive apartheid regime were discussed.
One questioner in the audience raised the point that we should not fall into the trap of comparing the apartheid in South Africa with what is happening now in Israel/Palestine. It was unanimously agreed that the suffering endured in both of these countries during the struggle to overturn evil apartheid was and is immense, and our intention would never be to play down the suffering endured either South Africa or Israel/Palestine.
And one can be sure that Willy Mashida, head of the congress of South African Trades Unions was not belittling the suffering of his own people when, after a visit to Palestine in 2006, he said, “The horrendous dehumanisation of Black South Africans during the erstwhile Apartheid years is a Sunday picnic compared with what I saw and know is happening to the Palestinian people.”
These are the atrociously evil values that our country upholds when it arrests protestors for trying to publicise the awful facts of Israel’s racist apartheid occupation.
Afterwards we watched some videos of boycotting action, here is a link to one of the videos we watched which took place in France.
This video is in French but it’s not difficult to follow the general theme.
I managed to catch a few of the phrases while watching this video such as, “A shame on France”, “All these goods support Israel’s criminal activities”, “If Sarkozy won’t act to stop this, then we will”, “Shall we buy these products?” to which came the resounding reply :
"Every buyer has the right to know the origins of what he's buying".
Grateful to anyone able to provide a more extensive translation of this video.
The tee shirts the French Boycott Israel Activists were wearing said, “Palestine Vivra”:
“Palestine will Survive”.