Monday, March 28, 2011

Starting this fall, I'll be going to the demonstrations in Bil'in/Nabi Saleh every Friday. Bil'in is very supportive of Nabi Saleh, as they undergo many of the same hardships: night raids, arrests of minors, detention of prominent organizers--Bil'in's Abdullah Abu Rahma was just released after serving 15 months for incitement, and a few days ago the IDF stormed the house of Nabi Saleh's Bassem Tamimi, the coordinator of the Nabi Saleh Popular Committee, hitting his wife and daughter in an attempt to seize their cameras during his arrest. Aside from being illegal, unethical, and well, a little fascist, it's just impractical. Does anyone really believe that arresting non-violent activists for incitement will have anything but an inciting effect?

Joseph Dana-Waves of Arrests in Weekly Nabi Saleh Demonstrations

Only a day after the arrest of Bassem Tamimi, the coordinator of the village’s popular committee, the IDF has escalated its attempts to suppress protest in Nabi Saleh. During the early hours of the morning, long before the weekly demonstration began, large groups of Israeli soldiers and Border Police deployed on the three roads leading into Nabi Saleh, and in the groves surrounding the village, bringing movement in and out of the village to a standstill. Three Israeli activists were detained in the groves as they tried to march, despite the siege ... When the demonstration began, protesters skirted the soldiers by walking between the houses, and managed to reach the road leading to the spring threatened by settler takeover. When the soldiers noticed the march peacefully heading towards the spring, they immediately opened fire at it, shooting tear-gas projectiles directly at the crowd.

The following article in YNet describes the organization of the Nabi Saleh demonstrations as semi-militaristic and funded by the Palestinian Authority and foreign sources. It's so disheartening to read the comments on YNet and see that people actually believe this garbage.

YNet-Secrets of Nabi Saleh protests

Left-wing activist Jonathan Pollack said, "It is intriguing that the police forgot to mention that the wild tales described in the article are all based on the testimony of a fourteen year-old boy who was taken from his bed in the dark of night and on gunpoint, beaten by the soldiers and then interrogated the morning after without being allowed sleep. It is even more fascinating that the police forgot to mention that it has already been proved in court that the boy was questioned in absence of his parents, albeit obliged by law, was not informed of his right to remain silent, and was denied legal consul.