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Peace, Love & Occupation?

      Love & Occupation?
The Campaign to End Ben & Jerry’s Business with Israeli Settlements
By Mark Hage, Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel, Counterpunch 4/22/2014
    On March 13, 2013, Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel (VTJP) launched a campaign calling on Ben & Jerry’s, a leader of the socially responsible business community, to stop marketing, catering and selling ice cream in Israel’s illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem. We also urged the company to issue a statement expressing its opposition to the occupation and Israel’s settlement enterprise, consistent with the principles of its social mission.
    Our demands have not been met, but the campaign is strong and growing.
    Free Cone Day, 2014: Your ice cream is free today—Palestine is not!
    On April 8—this year’s Free Cone Day at participating Ben & Jerry’s scoop shops—solidarity activists in 12 states (CA, CO, CT, NY, MA, MN, NC, NH, OR, NH, VT, and WA) distributed thousands of leaflets prepared by VTJP on Ben & Jerry’s commercial ties to Israel’s settlement regime. more

Campaign to end Ben & Jerry’s complicity with Israel’s occupation intensifies
    VTJP's campaign calling on Ben & Jerry’s to end its complicity with Israel's occupation has expanded and intensified. 151 civil society organizations in the United States and across the globe that share a commitment to international law, human rights, and a just peace in Israel-Palestine have signed a letter to Ben & Jerry’s, Jostein Solheim, urging the company “to stand by its Social Mission and to ensure that its products are not sold, catered and distributed in Israeli settlements” in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem.
    The letter, organized by VTJP, calls on Solheim “to take all necessary contractual and legal measures to bring your franchise's settlement business to an end in a verifiable way, and to release a public statement of your company's commitment to end its business ties to Israel’s occupation and settlement enterprise.”

    The full text of the letter and list of signatories can be accessed here:
    If your organization would like to add its name to the letter, please go here:

Ben & Jerry’s is Profiting from Israel’s Illegal Settlements and Occupation of Palestine
    Ben & Jerry’s, one of the iconic leaders of the “values based” business movement, trumpets a “progressive, nonpartisan social mission that seeks to meet human needs and eliminate injustices in our local, national and international communities” (See their Social Mission Statement).
    In 2011, Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel learned that Ben & Jerry’s franchise in Israel is manufacturing ice cream and selling it in illegal Israeli settlements in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank. Additionally, in 2010, as Israel was expanding its illegal settlements and continuing to impose an inhuman siege on Gaza, Ben & Jerry’s opened a new factory in Israel and announced plans to re-establish 16 new stores and kiosks across the country.
    By doing business in Israel and in illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory, it violates its own Social Mission and engages in unethical practices.

More about Ben & Jerry’s complicity in the Israeli occupation
Send an Email to Tell Ben & Jerry’s to honor its Social Mission Statement
Sign the Petition to Tell Ben & Jerry’s: Peace, Love & Occupation Don't Mix!

Until Israel ends its occupation and colonization of Palestinian lands in compliance with international law, Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel Calls on Ben & Jerry’s to:
  • End the marketing, catering and sales of Ben & Jerry’s products in Israel and Jewish-only settlements in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank.
  • Stop manufacturing ice cream in Israel.
  • Issue a statement (a) calling on Israel to end its occupation and settlement enterprise and (b) appealing directly to other socially responsible companies
    to do likewise and to cease business operations in Israel and its illegal settlements.

Standing Up to Jewish Settlers in "My Neighbourhood" from Salaam Shalom
This edition of VTJP's Salaam Shalom: Report on Palestine/Israel highlights the racism, violence and discrimination inherent in the Jewish settler movement, as documented in Julia Bacha's powerful film, "My Neighborhood." The film also demonstrates the power of nonviolent resistance and Jewish-Arab solidarity as Palestinians in East Jerusalem and Israeli Jews come together to stop the forced evictions of Palestinians by Jewish settlers in Sheik Jarrah. More about Salaam Shalom.

More News...
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Uphill task for Israel’s apologists
Ramzy Baroud, Asia Times 8/18/2014
  After every bloody episode of violence perpetrated by Israel, media spin doctors are deployed with one grand mission: Absolve Israel of any responsibility in its acts of carnage.
     These apologists not only demonize Palestinians, but also anyone who dares to take a stand on their behalf. The main staple of this Israeli strategy is blaming the victim.
     There is nothing new in this tactic - this is how the so-called "Arab-Israeli conflict" has been presented in Western media.
     The narrative is always much closer to that of Israeli official and media discourses than that of Palestinians' - despite the decades-long military occupation, successive wars, and countless massacres.
     Since the Israeli siege on Gaza began, following the democratic elections that brought Hamas to power in January 2006, Israel has needed all of its hasbara savvy - alongside that of its backers in the West - to explain why a population was brutalized for making... more.. e-mail

Israel and Goldstone: numerous fears
Hisham Munawar, Middle East Monitor (MEMO) 8/20/2014
  Reuters' page reported that the USPS allegedly refuses to send packages and letters to Israel because of the nature of the current security situation.
     By using his oldest trick again, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected the International Commission of Inquiry on the occupation's war crimes in Gaza by using the narrative of the victim to justify and explain the most recent bout of Israeli aggression and hostility. During the final moments of his meeting in Tel Aviv with the Andrew Cuomo, the governor of the state of New York, Netanyahu criticised the Human Rights Council's decision to form a committee to look into the crimes against humanity that have been committed in the Gaza Strip. In response to the HRC's decision, Netanyahu said, "The Council's [decision] grants legitimacy to terrorist organisations such as Hamas and ISIS rather than... more.. e-mail

The liberal Zionist dilemma
Lawrence Davidson, Redress 8/19/2014
  Liberalism, framed as a socio-political ideal, argues that human beings are good and social progress achievable. It is a “glass half-full” outlook.
     Within this paradigm all individuals, not just members of a specific religion, race or nationality, should have political and civil rights. Here also neither the state nor the law is an end in itself. They are instruments for the creation and maintaining of an environment meant to promote freedom while minimizing social inequalities.
     Holding this ideal does not preclude identifying with a particular ethnic or religious group. It does, however, preclude any claim of exclusive rights for such groups to the detriment of others.
     Within the Western environment many Jews held to this liberal ideal. They saw it as in their interest to work towards an environment of universally applied political and civil rights while minimizing social inequality.
     For instance, by the mid-20th century in the United... more.. e-mail

Netanyahu’s zero-sum war in Gaza
Samer Badawi, +972 Magazine 8/20/2014
  As evidence of Israeli war crimes mounts in Gaza, Netanyahu’s latest escalation will only add to his country’s increasing international pariah status.
     Just over 24 hours after reports emerged that Israel and the Palestinians – with American urging – had reached a deal to gradually end the Gaza blockade, Israel began targeting the very people with whom it had been indirectly negotiating. Following a reported assassination attempt on Hamas military wing leader Mohammed Deif, which instead killed his wife and young child, Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni said she would “always support the targeted killings of terror leaders,” adding unequivocally: “I do not negotiate with Hamas.”
     But Israel’s about-face doesn’t add up. Ultimately, the indirect talks in Cairo have always been with Hamas, and though they have been tense from the get-go, preceding periods of calm – the most recent lasting six days, and interrupted first by last Friday’s Israeli fire... more.. e-mail

Palestinians in Israel beaten, arrested for Gaza support
Electronic Intifada: 19 Aug 2014 - Activists fear an increase in violent anti-Palestinian racism will persist even if Israel’s latest onslaught ends soon. ...more
Palestinian refugees in Sweden hunger strike to demand asylum
Electronic Intifada: 19 Aug 2014 - Migration board denies full protection to people fleeing Gaza and the West Bank. ...more
From Gaza to Brazil: Stop Financing Drones That Kill Our Children
Palestine Chronicle: 14 Aug 2014 - By Haidar Eid – Gaza As I write this, bombs are falling around us. Electricity is severely restricted and water is hardly available. The loud and frightening sounds of missiles, drones, constant shelling are everywhere. Awake at night, fearfully waiting for the bombing; awake during the day, assisting the injured...more

Violence and Western Civilization
Palestine Chronicle: 14 Aug 2014 - By Ron Forthofer Israel’s slaughter of over 1900 Palestinians in Gaza, by far and away most of whom were civilians, got me thinking about Western civilization. Mahatma Gandhi is often cited as responding to a question about Western civilization saying he thought it would be a good idea. However, recent...more

Israeli Apartheid: Vermonters Don't Buy It - BOYCOTT!

Save Wadi Foquin
The illegal Israeli settlement of Betar Illiit is built mostly on land stolen from Wadi Foquin and surrounding villages. Israel's government has already taken 94% of the village's land, and residents continue to receive more land confiscation orders for the construction of the apartheid wall on the northwest side of the village. The planned route of the wall will cross the green line and take even more land from the village. Fying checkpoints restrict freedom of movement in and out of the village, makiing it very difficult for residents to travel for work or school or to visit family. Help Save Wadi Foquin

Raffoul - Tears Over Palestine
Raffoul is a Palestinian rapper and human rights activist from East Jerusalem. In 2012 he graduated from the Georgetown School of Foreign Service on a scholarship for peace. "My music is inspired by the agony of war, suffering, and human loss."

Tearing Down The Wall In Al-Ma’sara

Tearing Down The Wall In Al-Ma’sara Palestine Monitor, 7/10/2010: Israeli soldiers dragged the remnants of a symbolic wall from highway 3157 near Al Ma’sara today, halting a popular demonstration on the sixth anniversary of the International Court of Justice ruling that construction of the Wall in Palestinian territory is illegal.

Reports and news pages on specific issues

The Political Economy of Israel's Occupation - The Real News - Hever: 18 families control 60% of the equity value of all companies in Israel - Shir Hever is an economic researcher in the Alternative Information Center, a Palestinian-Israeli organization active in Jerusalem and Beit-Sahour. He speaks to Paul Jay of The Real News Network about his research into the economics of Israel and its occupation of the Palestinian territories.
The Real News Network

People & Culture
Exploring the rich and inspiring culture of traditional and modern Palestine

Organize and contribute to end the occupation and support victims of US-sponsored oppression in the Middle East. Photos and Videos

Since May 2002, we have posted over 340,000 news stories and tens of thousands of articles about the occupation and the region. Investigate our archives here..

Events  more..

How Israel came to be: The real story, by Miko Peled
Miko Peled is an Israeli army veteran and the son of Israeli General Matti Peled, a veteran of the wars of 1948 and 1967. Miko is the author of The General's Son: Journey of an Israeli in Palestine. In 1997, his beloved niece Smadar was killed by a suicide bomber in Jerusalem. That tragedy pushed Peled to re-examine many of the beliefs he had grown up with as the son and grandson of leading figures in Israel's political-military elite, and transformed him into a courageous and visionary activist.

Mapping Israeli Apartheid in the Palestinian West Bank: Israeli settlements, apartheid wall and fence, closures, and territorial fragmentation. CLICK IMAGE FOR FULL STORY.
Mapping Israeli Apartheid in the Palestinian West Bank: Israeli settlements, apartheid wall and fence, closures, and territorial fragmentation. CLICK IMAGE FOR FULL STORY.
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