We Are All Palestinians

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By Gilad Atzmon

 

 

Most solidarity activists in this country would agree that the PSC (Palestine Solidarity Campaign)  is potentially an invaluable institution. Yet, the National Office, under its current leadership, has made some serious mistakes.

The PSC’s task is not easy. We all operate in a Zionised environment and we’re subject to constant pressure and abuse. Moreover, it’s not always clear what we should do for Palestine. It is obvious that Palestinian resistance is more than just single political perception or a vision of conflict resolution.

Palestine is basically a dynamic discourse of negation with Palestinians themselves divided on different issues to do with their struggle and their fate. Consequently, Palestinian solidarity is also far from being a rigid or monolithic discourse. Furthermore, the enemy also is far from being any obviously singular identity or monolithic political discourse.

The Jewish national project is a varied discourse, driven by many conflicting thoughts such as Zionism, Israeli patriotism, Israeli escapism, Jewishness, Jewish messianic militancy, pseudo-peaceful propaganda, pre-traumatic stress and so on. So it makes sense that Palestinian solidarity must encompass many voices reflecting the immense complexity of the conflict and its possible resolution.

Initially, the PSC was an attempt to provide an umbrella for diverse intellectual and political thoughts, ideas and tactics. However, because of internal political struggles and a relentless internal Jewish campaign, its national office has become a policing operation, engaged mainly in restricting the discourse and stifling freedom of speech, thought and expression. The organisation that was founded to fight for the rights of the expelled Palestinians, has itself, started to expel and abuse its most notable and dedicated activists and thinkers.

I believe that the PSC should never attempt to dominate the discourse. Anyway, it lacks both the political power and the intellectual capacity to do so.  It should instead facilitate a wide debate that would transform this solidarity movement into a mass movement.

Instead of suggesting what is ‘right’ and who is ‘kosher’, the PSC should come up with a single, short, incisive but inclusive statement.

“WE ARE ALL PALESTINIANS”

Dominated by a Zionist power structure and ideology, with 80% of our leading party’s MPs being Conservative Friends of Israel  (CFOI), our media editorials being controlled by BICOM, and our country having been involved in criminal wars to serve Israeli interests – we are indeed, all Palestinians. So, like Palestinians, we also need to be liberated.

Our solidarity with Palestine should start, right here at home. We could begin by exposing our local MP who is more than likely to be a CFOI, LFI or Lib Dem Friends of Israel member.  It’s about time the British public grasped that we have far too many ‘Friends of Israel’ in our government but nowhere nearly enough friends of Britain.

We live in unique times. Yesterday’s ideologies and political institutions are crumbling. We are living in a post-ideological and post-political age. Thanks to the internet and the social networks, each one of us is an independent broadcasting outlet.

Each one of us is capable of disseminating information at the speed of light – wider and faster than any institutional media corporation. People are now free to choose who they follow and what they believe. In sum, this technology offers us a unique opportunity to democratise the realm of thoughts, ideas and action. It’s a window of opportunity and we’d better make the most of it.

To some extent the PSC – just like the JC, the Guardian, the Trade Unions the parties – belongs to the old world, the world of stagnation and political power games. Perhaps this explains why the PSC leadership is so desperate for the approval of the JC, the Guardian and Parliament.

Instead, the PSC should communicate with the masses and proclaim far and wide that same, vital, humanist message:

WE ARE ALL PALESTINIANS

But, as ever, there’s some good news. The old Red Commissar is dead and so  are the ‘liberal’ newspapers, radio and  TV.  Politics, as we knew it has become a meaningless activity. McCarthyism, witch-hunting and other Talmudic forms of excommunication and general abuse, they also belong to the past. Change is in the air and the PSC National Office had better get used to it – and fast. If it doesn’t, it will, quite simply and unfortunately, disappear.

 

DEPUTY SECRETARY OF DEFENSE MESSAGE ON POTENTIAL GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN.

States News Service April 7, 2011 WASHINGTON (NNS) — The following information was released by the U.S. Navy Reserve:

Special From Deputy Secretary of Defense William J. Lynn III Affairs Deputy Secretary of Defense William J. Lynn III sent a message on April 7 to the Deprtment of Defense workforce on a potential government shutdown.

“The department remains hopeful that a government shutdown will be averted. The President has made it clear that he does not want a government shutdown, and the administration is working to find a solution with which all sides can agree. However, prudent management requires that we plan for an orderly shutdown should Congress be unable to pass a funding bill before our current funding expires on April 8.

The President and the secretary know that the uncertainty of the current situation puts federal employees in a difficult position, and are very much aware that a shutdown would impose hardships on our military and civilian personnel as well as our military families. As we approach the expiration of the current continuing resolution, we will provide you with updated information as soon as it becomes available. For now, I want to provide you with information on how the potential shutdown – should it occur – will impact our military and civilian personnel. go to web site government shutdown military pay

Department of Defense (DoD) Operations During a Shutdown Operations and activities that are essential to safety, protection of human life, and protection of our national security, are ‘excepted’ from shutting down. The DoD will continue to conduct activities in support of our national security, including operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Japan; Libya-related support operations; and other operations and activities essential to the security of our nation. The department must also continue to provide for the safety of human life and protection of property.

Other excepted activities will include inpatient and essential outpatient care in DoD medical treatment facilities; emergency dental care; non-appropriated funds activities such as mess halls and child care activities; certain legal activities to support ongoing litigation and legal assistance for deployed DoD personnel; contracting and logistics operations that are in support of excepted activities; certain education and training activities to include the DoD education activity schools; and financial management activities necessary to ensure the control and accountability of funds.

In the absence of appropriations, non-excepted activities that have not already been fully funded will need to be shut down in an orderly fashion. In accordance with existing laws and regulations, I will issue more detailed guidance to the department regarding specific activities that are considered excepted or non-excepted. However, the secretary and I understand that the military departments and defense agencies and individual commanders must tailor this guidance to many different situations around the world. Therefore, should there be a government shutdown, DoD personnel will be informed through their chain of command about how a shutdown may affect them personally.

Duty Status Military personnel are not subject to furlough and will report for duty as normal during the shutdown. Reserve component personnel should refer to the DoD Contingency Guidance document and to their chain of command for more specific information.

Civilian personnel deemed to be performing excepted activities will continue to work during the period of a shutdown.

If there is a government shutdown beginning on Saturday, April 9, all DoD personnel should still report to work on their next scheduled duty day, beginning at their normal duty hours to receive additional instructions.

Civilians will be briefed by their supervisors by Friday, April 8, as to whether their work and responsibilities fall into excepted or non-excepted status, as defined by applicable laws and regulations. Excepted status categories are outlined in the DoD Contingency Guidance document, which is being distributed through the chain of command. If their work and responsibilities are non-excepted, or if they are not needed to carry out excepted work and responsibilities, employees will be furloughed in a non-pay status. Furloughed employees may not telework or volunteer to work. go to web site government shutdown military pay

Generally, contractors performing work on contracts funded prior to a shutdown, whether supporting excepted activities or not, may continue working and will be paid out of the obligated funds, subject to further direction from the contracting officer. New contracts, or increases in funding of existing contracts, needed to support excepted activities may be entered into during the period of a shutdown, but payments under such contracts cannot be made until Congress provides additional funding. Contract personnel should also report to work on Monday, April 11, to be briefed on their status.

Military, Civilian, and Retiree Pay If the government shuts down due to the absence of funding, the DoD will have no funds to pay military members or civilian employees for the days during which the government is shut down. However, both military and civilian personnel will receive pay for the period worked prior to the shutdown. Military personnel, and civilians occupying excepted status positions and required to work, are entitled to be paid for work performed during the shutdown, and will be paid retroactively once the department receives additional funding. Congress would have to provide authority in order for the department to retroactively pay non-excepted employees for the furloughed period.

Military retirees and annuitants are not paid from annually appropriated funds, and therefore their benefits should continue without interruption.

Additional Resources The department’s leadership will do our very best to provide clear information about the status of events as the week progresses. Additional information regarding military and DoD civilian pay, leave, and other DoD policies applicable to a potential shutdown will be posted on the department’s main website as soon as it becomes available.

Thanks to the hard work and dedication of all of you, the Department of Defense provides critical services to the American public. Your contributions touch people’s lives in so many significant ways, and I want you to know how deeply I appreciate your dedication and your expertise. Our decisions concerning which functions are excepted or not excepted are based on government-wide legal, regulatory, and policy guidance as well as our best judgment on how to reconcile our national security requirements with the limitations imposed by a government shutdown. The fact that certain functions are not excepted or that certain personnel may be subject to furlough should not be taken as a statement that the secretary or I or the department do not value those functions or employees. Thank you for your continued service to the department and the nation.”

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Gilad Atzmon is an Israeli-born British jazz saxophonist, novelist, political activist and writer. Atzmon's album Exile was BBC jazz album of the year in 2003. Playing over 100 dates a year,[4] he has been called "surely the hardest-gigging man in British jazz." His albums, of which he has recorded nine to date, often explore the music of the Middle East and political themes. He has described himself as a "devoted political artist." He supports the Palestinian right of return and the one-state solution in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. His criticisms of Zionism, Jewish identity, and Judaism, as well as his controversial views on The Holocaust and Jewish history have led to allegations of antisemitism from both Zionists and anti-Zionists. A profile in The Guardian in 2009 which described Atzmon as "one of London's finest saxophonists" stated: "It is Atzmon's blunt anti-Zionism rather than his music that has given him an international profile, particularly in the Arab world, where his essays are widely read." His new book The Wandering Who? is now availble at Amazon.com