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Palestinian & African Lives Matter

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Producer: 

Sponsored by Vermonters for Just Peace in Palestine/Israel (vtjp.org)

Israel is a profoundly racist, tribal, socially fractured country. Like our own, it’s a society where skin color, race, or ethnicity can determine one’s destiny and the duration of a life.

This edition of Salaam Shalom: Report on Palestine/Israel continues our series on life in Gaza two years after Israel’s most recent war against the Strip, so-called “Operation Protective Edge” in 2014. It also offers a deeply disturbing and graphic presentation by a leading Israeli-Jewish activist on systemic, publicly condoned racism in Israel and the government’s persecution of African refugees and its Ethiopian Jewish citizens.

A close look at the Palestinian experience inside Israel or under occupation in Gaza or the West Bank, and the African experience within Israel, be they dark-skinned Jewish citizens or asylum seekers, reveals devastating consequences of statutes, policies and institutional arrangements committed to the defense of European-Jewish political and cultural supremacy between the Mediterranean and the Jordan. In short, Israel is not a state of its citizens, and it is not a state committed to liberty and equality for all, or to international law. In the occupied territories, it is pursuing an aggressive program of settler-colonialism, and the racism that helps to fuel that finds daily expression inside its borders against Arabs and Africans, citizens or not.

The two documentaries aired on this episode underscore that the lives of Palestinian and African peoples do NOT matter to most Israeli leaders or a large segment of the population. The first is titled Gaza in Context, a multi-media film directed and produced by Noura Erekat for Quilting Point Productions. It is one of the finest short documentaries we have come across on Gaza under occupation and siege. It also brilliantly deconstructs the larger Zionist context, Israel’s seven-decade long project of conquest and settler-colonialism in Palestine, which is indispensable to understanding of why Gaza has been and, for the indefinite future, will continue to be subject to collective punishment, an economic blockade, and merciless military attacks. 

The second film features Israeli Jewish citizen David Sheen, explaining the structural forms and expressions of racist discrimination and persecution against African people in Israel, both Jews and non-Jews, with additional commentary on sexist and misogynistic tendencies in the Israeli military and the political uses they are put to. This is the second part of a longer public presentation Sheen gave in 2014 in Florida. 

This edition also features a short documentary by the Palestinian human rights organization Al Mezan commemorating the 551 Palestinian children killed by Israel in Gaza 2014.

Producer and Host: Mark Hage 
Co-Producer and Technical Director: Danny Weiss
 

Episode Number: 
276
Original Airdate: 
Monday, September 12, 2016

Advocacy

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