Newsletter Archive:.
  August 2013  

To My Colleagues in Rock and Roll

In the wake of the tragic shooting to death of un-armed teenager Trayvon Martin and the acquittal of his killer Zimmerman, yesterday, Stevie Wonder spoke at a gig declaring that he will not perform in the State of Florida until that State repeals its “Stand your ground” Law. In effect he has declared a boycott on grounds of conscience. I applaud his position, and stand with him, it has brought back to me a statement I made in a letter I wrote last February 14th, to which I have referred but have never published.
 The time has come, so here it is.
 This letter has been simmering on the back burner of my conscience and consciousness for some time.
It is seven years since I joined BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) a nonviolent movement to oppose Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and violations of international law and Palestinian human rights. The aim of BDS is to bring international attention to these Israeli policies, and hopefully, to help bring them to an end. All the people of the region deserve better than this.


Gaza to Tom Jones: Sing for Freedom and Justice, Not Apartheid and Ethnic Cleansing

 From the crowded streets of Gaza’s refugee camps, we are calling on you to cancel your performance in Tel Aviv, the Sun City of the Middle East, this October. We ask you to honour the global call for BDS against the Israeli apartheid regime, in the same way you … refused to entertain apartheid South Africa.


Israeli Citizens Respond to Jazz Musician Nicholas Payton

A jazz concert, no matter how beautiful the music is, does not educate the oppressor and heal the oppressed. Numerous gifted musicians … have played here over the years, arguing along the same lines. … no public movement … has emerged from the music played at these concerts.

Salif Keita cancels Israel gig after boycott calls claiming "threats"

 Resorting to unsupported claims of “threats” and potentially defamatory statements may be a tactic that some artists resort to when they do not wish to violate the Palestinian call to boycott Israel, but do not have the courage to take a political stance.


PACBI Editorial

On the Academic Boycott Front: A Pioneering Campaign

Last month, over 150 academics, including at least 50 oral historians from across the globe, launched a campaign to pressure the oral history community not to participate in the June 2014 ‘International Conference on Oral History’ organised by the Oral History Division of the Avraham Harman Institute of Contemporary Jewry, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and to put pressure on keynote speakers to cancel their participation [1].  At PACBI, we found it important to highlight this campaign for its pioneering role in mobilizing a large group of academics and in building the networks needed to cancel an academic event…
The campaign is based on the fundamental principle that the academic freedom afforded to individual academics does not extend to giving academic institutions a carte blanche to freely conduct their activities any way they like and with total disregard to international law, principles of basic morality and human rights. Institutions must be held accountable for their role in society and their complicity in their state’s criminal behaviour…   
The Hebrew University conference boycott campaign took its letter to academics around the globe to gather a base of support from which to then approach the oral history society and potential participants of the conference in Israel.  Campaign organizers have sent numerous emails to academics, and spent countless hours explaining the campaign’s position that, in Alice Walker’s words, “now is not the time” for academic engagement with Israeli institutions.  Pushing future conference organizers to choose destinations away from Israel, and ensuring participants do not attend, will need sustained action, and will need to take letter writing to the next step of building networks of support.  This campaign offers a model for how we can all sustain our action and put further pressure on international academics and their institutions.


Honoring the Dishonorable: PACBI Letter to the University Catolica de Murcia

Netanyahu is the prime minister of a state that practices the most pernicious form of colonialism and apartheid. Honoring Netanyahu with a PhD degree would function as a whitewash of these crimes



Dubai: Tell Alicia Keys those who entertain apartheid Israel are not welcome!

PACBI calls on our sisters and brothers in the United Arab Emirates to cancel Alicia Keys’ scheduled concert in Dubai on November 15 due to her support for apartheid Israel.

Boycott Oral History Conference at Hebrew University!

Oral historians and hundreds of other academics from around the world call for a boycott of  the June 2014 'International Conference on Oral History’ organised by the Hebrew University.

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  Risala in Arabic means mission, message or letter