Newsletter Archive:.

  March  2012  

Shakespeare Festival challenged for inviting complicit Israeli Theatre

Leading British actors, directors and authors are challenging the Globe to Globe World Shakespeare Festival, part of the Cultural Olympiad, over its invitation to an Israeli theatre company which performs for settlers on illegally occupied Palestinian land.  In an open letter published in The Guardian (March 29), David Calder, Trevor Griffiths, Jonathan Miller, Mark Rylance, Emma Thompson and Harriet Walter, along with 31 others, say the Israeli National Theatre, Habima, “has a shameful record of involvement with illegal Israeli settlements in Occupied Palestinian Territory”.  They call on Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, on London’s South Bank, to withdraw the invitation “so the festival is not complicit with human rights violations and the illegal colonisation of occupied land”. 

Habima is scheduled to perform The Merchant of Venice in Hebrew at the Globe on May 28 and 29 as one of 37 Shakespeare plays in 37 world languages during the seven week festival.  The Guardian letter notes that a number of Israeli theatre professionals have declared that they will not take part in performances in “halls of culture” built in two large Israeli settlements. Habima, however, has pledged to continue doing so.  “I sign this letter in support of those artists within Israel who are resisting the requests to play in the illegal settlements,” said actor Mark Rylance.   He drew a parallel with earlier campaigns supporting change in apartheid South Africa.


Roger Waters announces in Brazil World Social Forum-Free Palestine

Legendary UK musician, Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters, has reiterated his strong support for the Palestinian campaign for self-determination in a statement announcing a forthcoming conference in Brazil to support and expand the global movement for Palestinian rights.


NY activists protest Batsheva performance in Brooklyn

Eighty New York human rights activists and cultural workers protested Israel’s Batsheva Dance Company’s performance at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM). They called on attendees to boycott Batsheva due to its complicity with Israeli human rights violations.

Carleton Grad Students Vote to Divest from Israeli Occupation

On March 21st and 22nd, graduate students at Carleton University overwhelmingly voiced their support for the Palestinian people, by voting for the university’s pension fund to divest from four companies that are complicit in the occupation of Palestine.


PACBI Editorial

Debating BDS: On Normalization and Partial Boycotts

Over the years, PACBI has consistently outlined its position on normalization in an effort to gain new allies and to clarify to our partners the premise of Palestinian and Israeli exchanges.  It is important to note that in the BDS movement, there are several Israeli partners who also support our comprehensive rights under international law. A key partner is Boycott! Supporting the Palestinian BDS Call from Within.  Furthermore, reading the BDS Call of 2005, endorsed by the overwhelming majority of Palestinian civil society, one can note an explicit call on conscientious Israelis to join the movement for freedom, justice and equal rights for all.  Therefore, what is important for determining normalization is not mere collaboration with Israelis, but rather, the substance and premise of this collaboration.

Partial or Full Boycott of Israel?

After failing to slow the spread of BDS, motivated by genuine fear of the demise of Zionism, and with an explicit “save apartheid Israel” agenda, some so-called left-leaning Zionists have recently tried to muddy the waters by suggesting a Zionist-friendly boycott to undermine the Palestinian-led BDS movement [9], which is attracting an increasing number of younger Jewish activists in the West, especially on college campuses.  BDS is an ethically-consistent rights-based movement that is anchored in international law and universal human rights. As such, BDS rejects and cannot coexist with racism of any type, including Zionism. A “Zionist BDS” is as logical as a “racist equality”!   


UN body "appalled" by Israel’s racial segregation policies

UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) report indicates that Israel’s racial prejudice can be found in almost every facet of Israeli life in violation of the right to equality. 

Seattle LGBT Commission Cancels “Pinkwashing” Event

Seattle LGBT Commission canceled a pinkwashing event sponsored by the Israeli Consulate and right-wing Israel advocacy group StandWithUs, following similar cancellations elsewhere in the US.

"The New Black" by The Mavrix - Official Release

In a first ever musical collaboration between South Africa and Palestine, South African band, The Mavrix, and Palestinian Oud player, Mohammed Omar, have released a music video called "The New Black".
  Risala in Arabic means mission, message or letter