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(Wissam Nassar / Maan Images)

Over 150 former international anti-Apartheid activists tell South Africa’s ANC to boycott Israel

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People around the world increasingly agree with Palestinians who say they live in an apartheid system.

(Mamoun Wazwaz / APA images)

This press release was received today from Muhammed Desai of BDS South Africa:

Over 150 Former International Anti-Apartheid activists call on S. Africa’s ANC to boycott Israel

26 October 2012

At the opening plenary of the African National Congress’ (ANC) 3rd International Solidarity Conference (26-28 October), former Dutch anti-apartheid activist, Adri Nieuwhof, presented a statement on behalf of over 150 former international anti-apartheid activists to the ANC. The call has the support of signatories from more than 19 countries, belonging to over 35 organizations. It also has the backing of long-time international ANC supporters such as E.S. Reddy, Alice Walker, Victoria Brittain and Prexy Nesbitt.

The statement begins: 

“We – former international anti-apartheid activists – supported the ANC and the people of South Africa in their fight for liberation and against apartheid by mobilizing support for boycott, divestment and sanctions against the South African apartheid regime. We succeeded to put the crime of apartheid on the agenda of political parties, trade unions, churches…and concerned citizens. We called on people not to buy apartheid products and we discouraged tourism to the country. We campaigned for a weapons embargo, an oil embargo, a Krugerrand boycott, a sports, academic and cultaural boycott.”

The former international anti-apartheid activists then go on to express their “deep concern” regarding Israel’s ongoing violations of the rights of the Palestinian people with “total impunity”.

The statement by the former international activists (who once mobilized in their countries for the isolation of Apartheid South Africa) specifically calls on the ANC (South Africa’s ruling party) to explicitly support the Palestinian boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel campaign:

“On the occasion of the 3rd ANC International Solidarity Conference, we call on the ANC to support the Palestinian people in their fight for freedom, justice and equality…. We call on the ANC to support the Palestinian call for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) as expression of the party’s solidarity with the struggle of the Palestinian people to enjoy their rights.”

Nieuwhof commented after presenting the statement on behalf of her international anti-apartheid counterparts: “We once galvanized world opinion against Apartheid South Africa, the time is to now galvanize world opinion against Apartheid Israel. I am confident that the ANC will heed our call.”

Signatories to the call include the former United Nations Centre Against Apartheid director, E.S. Reddy; Prexy Nesbitt of the World Council of Churches Program to Combat Racism; the acclaimed author and US civil rights activist, Alice Walker; Mireille Fanon, the daughter of Frantz Fanon and the current President of the Fanon Foundation; Victoria Brittain from the UK Anti-Apartheid Movement and Kate Gilford of the Mozambique Angola Guinea Bissau Information Committee.

BDS South Africa salutes the former international anti-apartheid activists who have made this call to the ANC and are encouraged by their consistency – they once supported the oppressed South African people, and now the oppressed Palestinians.

The ANC’s 3rd International Solidarity Conference is taking place this weekend in South Africa’s capital city, Pretoria/Tshwane, and will conclude on Sunday the 28th of October.

Read the full statement with the names of all the signatories.

Comments

Crimminal acts from single persons or states must have consequence from other persons or states that respect the law

Thanks to the tireless efforts of these individuals and thousands of others around the world, Apartheid South Africa.no longer exists. Yet, the Africaaners and all the non-African communities planted in that land are still there--no one puched them out into the sea.

Who has the moral right today to accuse the original inhabitants of Palestine and their descendents of wanting to achieve a Palestine for all?

The boycott campaign is an effective tool as long as everyone beyond the BDS campaigners understands that the goal muyst be to turn "Israel" into a democracy, one that can begin to respect--as a first step--basic human rights, such as the right to live in one's own house and to exist as a people with a history without the threat of annihiliation from a self-crowned band of Chosen Racers and assassins.

It is now clear, judging from the swell of support and the gathering regional and international developments that Israel cannot and will not be allowed to continue in its present form.

The "Jewish State" gimick, which Netanyahu insisted the Palestinians recognize during the last round of "peace negotiations," is sounding increasingly like the last gasp of a grandiose but failed Zionist-Anglo-American plan for the region. When the Zionist project was first formally acknowledged, in 1917, it was hoisted upon a world drowing in blood and imperialist terror around the globe. The world today is still cowing with fear, too scared to raise its voice against a predator settler regime that no one really knows what to do with or what to make of.

But it's really not that hard!

The question today is how the governments in the United States and the moribund EU will react as their "powerful" little Zionist bastion of terror next door gaudally or quickly crumbles to dust and a new state is erected in its place, exactly as in South Africa.

The age of neo-imperialism is fast drawing to a close, but I guess they just haven't come around to accepting the reality.

Israel has made a two state solution impossible by placing Jewish settlers from around the world throughout that part of the land that could have been a Palestinian State.

Who can object (apart from Zionists who want an apartheid system) to a single truly democratic country affording equal rights to all, where Jews and Arabs can live side by side as they used to before the state of Israel was created?

A vigorous. comprehensive BDS campaign is an effective peaceful method of conveying the message to Israel that they cannot continue to flout world opinion and suppress millions of Palestinians, and they can have peace and security by agreeing to live with their neighbours on an equal footing.

"Who can object (apart from Zionists who want an apartheid system) to a single truly democratic country affording equal rights to all, where Jews and Arabs can live side by side as they used to before the state of Israel was created?"

But why stop there, Mr. Porter? Who can truly object (apart from genocidal, imperialist freaks) to a single, truly democratic country, affording equal rights to all, where Mexicans and US citizens can live side by side as they used to before the USA was created?

Why stop there! Who can truly object (apart from genocidal, imperialist freaks) to a single, truly democratic WORLD?

Well, I may not object to any of these things, but I will raise the issue of REALITY. There's nothing in international humanitarian law, world public opinion, or relevant human rights organizations calling for a single state. The annual vote for the two-state settlement (the word solution is arrogant) at the United Nations General Assembly (the most democratic body of the world), 'Peaceful Settlement of the Question of Palestine,' is the same every year Israel, US, some small islands VS THE ENTIRE WORLD. No joke. Last year the vote was 167 vs 7 (Israel, US, Canada, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau), previous voting is virtually identical. Am I to reason from this that those 167 countries are 'Zionists who want an apartheid system'? What about the human rights organizations? Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, etc etc--are they a bunch of 'Zionists who want an apartheid system'? What about the International Criminal Court of Justice, in 2004 they issued a ruling on the wall declaring it illegal, and they, unanimously, agreed that all of the settlements are ILLEGAL--are they a bunch of 'Zionists who want an apartheid system'?

The two-state SETTLEMENT has NOT been made impossible. All of the settlers are illegal. However, they don't all have to go, there could EASILY be a land swap, among many other options.

Thank you for your comment Shawn Dallas to my suggestion of a one-state solution to the Palestine/Israel situation.

You say:
"Well, I may not object to any of these things, but I will raise the issue of REALITY. There's nothing in international humanitarian law, world public opinion, or relevant human rights organizations calling for a single state."

There actually is Shawn.

For example Professor Mazin Qumsiyeh who teaches and does research at Bethlehem and Birzeit Universities in occupied Palestine and who serves as chairman of the board of the Palestinian Center for Rapprochement Between People and is coordinator of the Popular Committee Against the Wall and Settlements in Beit Sahour and the author of "Sharing the Land of Canaan: Human rights and the Israeli/Palestinian Struggle" and “Popular Resistance in Palestine: A history of Hope and Empowerment”.

I enjoy Prof Mazin's writings on the subject and you may like to read some of his general comments at http://popular-resistance.blog...

The UN Secretary-General has commented:
“The two-state solution is the only sustainable option. Yet the door may be closing for good,” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned last month just days before Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas launched a fresh bid for upgraded status at the United Nations.

You may like to read an article by Antony Loewenstein at

http://antonyloewenstein.com/2...

Writing in Britain’s Guardian newspaper, Loewenstein said the growth of Jewish settlement meant “a just division of the land” was no longer possible.
“It is for this reason, among others, that a one-state solution is gaining traction, even within conservative circles,” he wrote.
Proponents of a unitary state argue that settlement building breaks up the territory into “bantustans

I trust that we probably agree that something positive needs to be started and that the One-State solution could be considered