The Nomadic Memorial Cast Lead

Translation in French  Translation in Arabic

On 21 September 2012, the International Day of Peace, the Nomadic Memorial Cast Lead was first performed in The Hague, City of Peace and Justice. From the 30st October till the 2nd of November 2012, the nomadic monument was shown in Bozar, Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels. For the finissage on the 2nd of November 2012 – All Souls’ Day –  the acknowledged Palestinian playwright and actor, Taher Najib gave a lecture-performance.

Reminiscent of a graveyard, the Cast Lead installation consists of 1430 unique books ‘floating’ above the floor in battle-array. Each copy of the book has the name of one of the casualties of Operation Cast Lead, carried out by the Israel Army in Gaza during 2008/2009, on its cover. The books contain texts by writers, artists and thinkers from both the East and West. Each of these books is a monument filled with knowledge that proved incapable of changing the course of events.

Would you like to cooperate in the realisation of this work of art? For the price of €65, you will receive your own unique book as part of the work of art Click to order the book

  

map of the installation for Bozar, Brussels

Exhibition Bozar

Taher Najib

BOZAR
www.bozar.be

The project is a co production of Ontwerpwerk, Den Haag; Vlaams-Nederlands Huis deBuren, Brussels; Stef van Bellingen, Erwin Jans and Felix Villanueva.

For more information and to donate to this project go to  http://www.gegotenlood.nl/en 

 

Operation Pillar of Death: Naming Gaza’s Dead – a film by Harry Fear for GazaReport.com

Reliving Gaza 2009: Searching for Words!

In January 2009 when Israel bombarded Gaza for three weeks, they called their assault ‘Operation Cast Lead’, Amnesty International had a better way to describe it; they called it ’22 Days of Death and Destruction’.  Today, we are reliving that nightmare once again, and once again I find myself searching for words…

Searching for words

Gaza…I search desperately
For words… for definitions
To tell the story of ammunitions
Exploding in a child’s body
I try to shout my indignation
But I am lost in vocabulary
Drowned in phrases as old as me
And I am as old as the Occupation
I need new words

How hard it is to find
Definitions that can restore
Humanity to a small strip of land
Along the Mediterranean shore
Siege, starvation collective misery
Familiar words in my head they linger
Bombs fall from the sky every day
Powerless words I can’t use any longer
I need new words

“Palestine is occupied….”
These are now hollow words…
“Palestinians are oppressed…”
These are now daily words…
“Palestinians are dispossessed”
These are now…tired words
“Palestinians….have a right to exist”
Words often spoken…worn out words
I need new words

Gaza…my home city
My earliest memory of Jasmine flowers and  meramiah tea
My first taste of sour lemon dipped in salt
My first climb on an almond tree
Gaza, my destiny
My father’s heart sky and sea
My mother’s first love
My sister’s first breath
My pride and dignity

Gaza is under fire
Obliterated by hate
Strangled by a demonic desire
To erase my history
Gaza is in pieces
And I…the writer…
I’m speechless
What language can possibly save me?
What words?

Samah Sabawi January 2009

Press Release: A new Gaza Massacre!

Press Release: A new Gaza Massacre!

14.November.2012

Besieged Gaza, Occupied Palestine–The Palestinian Students’ Campaign for the Academic Boycott of Israel, University Teachers’ Association and The One Democratic State Group condemn in the strongest possible terms the criminal Israeli attack against innocent Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. More than 7 people have been killed within the last 6 hours, including 7-year-old child Ranan Arafat. Charred bodies of injured children are pouring in to Al Shifa hospital and the other depleted hospitals around the Gaza Strip. This heinous crime also comes one week after the re-election of Barak Obama for a second term. Tel Aviv claims to have been given the green light to annihilate as many Palestinians in Gaza as possible.

Gaza has been enduring Israeli policies of extermination and vandalism since 2006. We reiterate our condemnation of the international conspiracy of silence and Arab impotence in the face of these continuous Israeli crimes. We note that not a single action against Israel has been taken by any Arab country. Will the Arab Spring stand aside and watch while we are being butchered? Empty rhetoric will no longer be accepted. Words of condemnation have to be translated into action!

We also reiterate our call on all civil society organizations and political parties to boycott Israeli embassies and compel their governments to sever their diplomatic ties with Apartheid Israel.  This time, Apartheid Israel must not get away with its crimes against the innocent civilians of Gaza.  All students and academics should stand in solidarity with their Palestinian colleagues and peers. We ask, what more does the international community need to see to be convinced to act than the dozens of dead corpses of children in Gaza? It is left to civil society and people of conscience to stop the ongoing massacre in Gaza.

Inaction has led us to this point.

 ACT NOW BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE!

One Democratic State Group

Palestinian Students’ Campaign for the Academic Boycott of Israel

University Teachers’ Association

One Democratic State Group
odsg.org/co

“Gaza” from the soon to be released album “Sounds That Can’t Be Made”.

Gaza

When I was young it all seemed like a game
Living here brought no sense of shame
But now I’m older I’ve come to understand
Once we had houses
Once we had land
They rained down bullets on us as our homes collapsed
We lay beneath the rubble terrified

Hoping.. Dare we dream?
We gave up waiting
For us, to dream is still a dream

When I woke up, the house was broken stones
We suddenly had nothing
And nothing’s changed

We live, eight people, in this overcrowded heat
Factory-farmed animals living in our own sweat
Living like this is all my baby brother ever knew
The world does nothing. What can we do?

We will kick the ball
We will skip the rope
We will play outside. Be careful
We will paint and draw. We will say our prayers

Outside the pitiless sun bleaches the broken streets
The darkness drops in the evening like an iron door
The men play cards under torchlight
The women stay inside
Hell can erupt in a moment day or night

You ask for trouble if you stray too close to the wall
My father died ..feeding the birds
Mum goes in front of me to check for soldiers

For every hot-head stone ten come back
For every hot-head stone a hundred come back
For every rocket fired the drones come back

For thirteen years the roads have all been closed
We’re isolated. We’re denied medical supplies
Fuel and work are scarce. They build houses on our farms
The old men weep. The young men take up arms.

We’re packed like chickens in this town of block cement
I get headache from the diesel. When it rains, the sewers too
I had no idea what martyrdom meant
Until my older brother.. my older brother
I’m sorry. I can’t continue.

You sow the wind, you reap the whirlwind, it is said
When people know they have no future
Can we blame them if we cannot tame them?
And when their hopes and dreams are broken
And they feel they might as well be dead
As they go, will we forgive them
If they take us with them?

Stay close
Stay home
Stay calm
Have faith

With the love of our family we can rise above anything
Someday surely someone must help us
With the love of our family we can rise above anything
Someday surely someone must help us
Even now we will go to school
Even now we will dream to dream
Someday surely someone must help us

Nothing’s ever simple – that’s for sure
There are grieving mothers on both sides of the wire
And everyone deserves a chance to feel the future just might be bright
But any way you look at it – whichever point of view
For us to have to live like this
It just aint right
It just aint right
It just aint right

We all want peace and freedom that’s for sure
But peace won’t come from standing on our necks
Everyone deserves a chance to feel the future just might be bright
But any way you look at this – whichever point of view
For us to have to live like this
It just aint right
It just aint right
It just aint right

It’s like a nightmare rose up slouching towards Bethlehem
Like a nightmare rose up from this small strip of land
Slouching towards Bethlehem

It’s like a nightmare rose up from this small strip of land
Slouching towards Bethlehem

Stay close
Stay home
Have faith

I can’t know what twist of history did this to me
It’s like a nightmare

With the love of our family
We can rise above anything
Some day surely someone must help us…

http://marillion.com/music/lyric.htm?id=824

Smuggling some fun: Teens sneak paintball game into Gaza

By REUTERS
GAZA

It was once the Jewish settlement of Netzarim, but now the site has been turned into the Gaza Strip’s first ever paintball park.

The arrival of the strategic action game in Gaza is offering Palestinian youths a chance to try something new.

But bringing the relevant equipment and protective clothing into the blockaded territory was no small achievement: everything had to be smuggled in through one of the 1000-metre (yard) underground tunnels that link Gaza with Egypt.

“We brought it over via a very hard route, via the tunnels from Egypt, so that we can play games that are played all over the world, so that the youth of Gaza can play games that are played around the world. This is a peaceful game and it’s really, really fun. There’s no danger whatsoever,” said paintball referee Rami Eid.

Palestinian youths have been teaming up for a chance to play the new game, which involves hiding behind positions laid out in a field, before jumping out to spray competitors with balls of colored paint.

“We came to play paintball today. It’s the first time I’ve played it and it’s a really fun game, a really nice game. We were a big group but it’s a nice game with suspense, preparation, action and war. Young men like us like these kinds of games. It’s a nice game and we’ve enjoyed it a lot,” said participant Ahmad Abu Ryaleh.

Paintball has become increasingly popular around the world in recent years, with national teams going head-to-head in regional and world tournaments.

Enthusiasts say it is a game of skill and team-work – something Gaza’s new participants are just discovering.

“I am really happy, I hope there will be more things like this because it is better for young people to use up their energy playing these games, rather than getting up to no good somewhere else,” said Abu Ryaleh.

But with an entrance fee of 10 shekels ($2.5), 50 shekels ($12.8) to rent the paintball field and 30 shekels ($7.6) for 50 paintballs, the experience is beyond the reach of most Gazans.

A recent U.N. report said tougher Israeli policies and settlement expansion were pushing all Palestinian territories deeper into poverty.

Amid persistently high unemployment, one in two Palestinians was now classified as ‘poor’, the UNCTAD report said.

Gazans produce fish and vegetables in tiny rooftop spaces

by Sara Hussein

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories, Oct 29, 2012 (AFP) – Abu Ahmed looks out over a sea of grey, empty Gaza rooftops, and smiles as he looks back at the lush greenery sprouting in tubs and pipes on top of his apartment building.

He is part of a United Nations agency project to introduce cutting-edge urban agriculture to Gaza City, teaching Palestinians to farm without soil in the space available to them in one of the world’s most densely populated places.

Most of his rooftop is given over to an aquaponic system, which produces food by linking fish tanks of tilapia with gravel-filled planters.

The integrated system feeds the water from the fish tanks into the plant beds, where Abu Ahmed’s crops — lettuce, peppers, broccoli, celery and herbs — are fertilised by waste produced by the tilapia.

As the water trickles through the gravel, the plants absorb nutrients from the fish waste, cleaning the water, which then replenishes the tanks.

“The idea really was to help the poorest people in Gaza be able to grow some of their own food, and healthy food, grown without pesticides,” explains Mohammed El Shatali, the project’s deputy manager.

For Abu Ahmed, the project has been a major success.

Not only is he using the integrated aquaponic system, he had also set up his own subsidiary hydroponic system, growing additional crops in plastic pipes that are fed by the same water that runs through the aquaponic system.

“I had a bit of experience with agriculture and farming before, but nothing like this,” he says, examining the leaves of a celery plant.

Thanks to the project, the 51-year-old has been able to feed his 13-member family fresh vegetables and fish throughout the summer.

“The fish taste great, although I’m trying not to eat too many of them because I’m breeding new ones so I won’t have to buy more.”

There have also been other benefits from the system, he says, explaining that it cools the apartments below by providing shade.

“It’s great for the children. Nowadays they don’t see farming, they barely see trees or plants. It’s great for them to see this because it gets them interested in growing and planting things.”

Gaza’s 1.6 million residents live on just 360 square kilometres (140 square miles) of land, and much of that is off limits because Israel maintains a 300-metre (yard) deep exclusion zone along the length of the border fence.

Power cuts threaten fish

In Gaza’s main towns and cities, empty land is being eaten up by the construction of multi-storey apartment buildings, leaving little space for agriculture.

The challenges prompted the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) to look for new ways to maximise crop production in tiny spaces.

In Gaza City’s Zeitun neighbourhood, 34-year-old Eman Nofal tends crops in a small yard next to her apartment. Peppers have been her biggest success this year, and both sweet and spicy red peppers dot the greenery in her planters.

Nofal’s husband was killed in fighting between rival Palestinian groups Fatah and Hamas in 2006, leaving her the sole provider for their four children.

When she heard about the project, she thought it could ease the cost of feeding her family.

“It’s been great. It’s really easy, the children even help me maintain the plants,” she says, acknowledging that the concept was somewhat alien at first.

“All our lives, we learnt that farming meant growing things in the ground, in soil, so it was strange to hear it was possible to grow in water and gravel, but I love the idea.”

Nofal says the project also gives her pleasure.

“Just the way it looks is really nice. Sometimes I come out here just to enjoy the greenery and to watch the fish play with each other. It relaxes me.”

The project has faced setbacks, including the Gaza-specific challenge of power cuts of up to 12 hours a day, which shut down the pumps that transfer water between the fish tanks and plant beds.

“Electricity has been one of the most difficult challenges,” says Chris Somerville, an urban agriculture consultant with the FAO.

“At 30 degrees centigrade (86 Fahrenheit), the capacity of the water to hold oxygen reduces, and during the summer many of the beneficiaries had fish die.”

New participants will receive a battery-powered pump to tide them over during power cuts, and the FAO is experimenting with fibres that could be used in hydroponic systems to retain moisture when power cuts stop the water flow.

Initially, the project also had to overcome a certain level of scepticism, Somerville says.

“To tell agrarian societies that you’re going to grow plants without soil can sometimes be a bit of a jump,” he laughs.

But the project has been so successful that the next cycle will expand from 15 aquaponic participants to around 80, with another 80 homes operating hydroponic systems.

It will be the first time the FAO has implemented aquaponics on this scale, and the agency is now looking at implementing the project elsewhere in the world.

“To be able to take this Gaza model and bring it to other countries would really be a massive achievement,” Somerville says.

This article appeared in http://www.mysinchew.com/node/79207?tid=10

Ship to Gaza Sweden

We are sailing!

Publiceringsdatum:
2012-10-01

The port authorities in La Spezia in northern Italy finally decided to not give in to Israeli  pressure. Just minutes ago Ship to Gaza and its vessel Estelle got final clearance to depart from port. Credit to the responsible officials who showed integrity and a sense of justice!

We were beginning to recognise the pattern from last years Flotilla all too well, when a Greek government under pressure took the decision to detain all Flotilla boats in Greek ports.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry has already confirmed that it is pressuring those countries whose citizens are on board to prevent them from “approaching” Gaza. If “approaching” Gaza includes sailing from La Spezia to Napoli, that would have been a serious violation of one of the EU’s basic principles: freedom of movement.

It would be unacceptable for the EU to cave in to such pressure, turning against its own citizens and vessels. It is especially serious when such actions are taken against a peaceful, humanitarian action which enjoys wide public and political support. That support is currently being demonstrated in our petition to end the illegal and inhumane blockade of Gaza, which has been signed by thousands of people from all over the world in the last few days .

Ship to Gaza and our partners in the Freedom Flotilla Coalition urge each one of our supporters to follow S/V Estelles journey, and if necessary act in their respective roles and areas: sympathizers, local activists, support organizations, union organizations, EU parliamentarians and national parliamentarians.

Use any resources available to you to protest the Israeli government’s attempt to expand its blockade to ports in northern Italy. Ask your respective foreign ministers questions, and do the same to the EU through the EU Parliament. Conduct support actions to demand that Estelle stays free to sail.

End the blockade of Gaza!

Contacts onboard Estelle:

Victoria Strand + 46 727356564

Mikael Löfgren: +46 707983643

Ship to Gaza-Sweden

www.shiptogaza.se

Spokespersons:

Dror Feiler: +46 702855777

Mattias Gardell: +46 703036666

Ann Ighe: +46 709740739

Victoria Strand + 46 727356564

Media coordinator:

Mikael Löfgren: +46 707983643

Staffan Granér: +46703549687

media@shiptogaza.se

Website:  http://shiptogaza.se/en/Pressrum/Pressmeddelanden/we-are-sailing

The Free Gaza movement

The Free Gaza movement is a human rights group that, since August 2008, has attempted to travel ten times to Gaza by sea to break Israel’s illegal stranglehold on1.5 million Palestinian civilians. We entered Gaza successfully five times in 2008; however, we have been violently intercepted on four voyages, including Israel’s MAY 31, 2010 lethal attack on our Freedom Flotilla,when nine of our colleagues were killed and many more injured by Israeli commandos. And, on the tenth voyage in July 2011, Greece prevented us from leaving as Israel and the U.S. outsourced Israel’s occupation of Gaza to Greece.  http://www.freegaza.org/