Since Wednesday Israel has carried out a massive bombing campaign against two million people trapped in the Gaza Strip. At the time of writing, 33 Palestinians, including six children, are reported killed. In addition, at least 250 civilians have been wounded.
Issue 41 - February-March 2013
On September 21, ABC employee Jill Meagher was abducted as she walked home along Sydney Road in Melbourne after a night out with friends. Meagher was brutally raped and murdered, and her body was dumped in a shallow grave.
Issue 37 - December-January 2012
More than 100,000 Egyptians packed Tahrir (Liberation) Square on Friday, November 27 for the ninth consecutive day since new protests began on November 18, calling for democracy, social justice and an end to the military’s control of the country.
Issue 36 - October-November 2011
Mahmoud Abbas surprised even his critics on September 23 by giving a stirring and emotional speech to the UN General Assembly as part of the Palestine Liberation Organisation’s highly publicised bid for UN recognition of Palestinian statehood.
Issue 35 - September 2011
In the largest show of support for the Palestinian-initiated boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign so far in Australia, more than 350 persons marched on 29 July in solidarity with the Palestinian struggle – and in opposition to an attempt by Victorian Police to criminalize Palestine solidarity activism in Melbourne.
Issue 34 - August 2011
On July 19, three Israeli missile ships and seven commando boats intercepted the French boat Dignite-Al Karama in international waters as it attempted to break Israel’s illegal blockade of Gaza.
Issue 33 - June-July 2011
Melbourne visual artist Van Thanh Rudd’s art work titled Pop Goes the System, which depicts Justin Bieber supporting Palestinian human rights, was banned from the 2011 Human Rights Arts and Film Festival by festival organisers.
On April 19, the same day that Marrickville Council met to reconsider its vote in support of the Palestinian-initiated boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign for Palestinian human rights and against Israel, the Socialist Party of Australia issued a statement opposing the BDS campaign.
Issue 32 - May 2011
Writing in the Washington Post on April 1, Richard Goldstone, who headed the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict in the wake of Israel’s 2008-09 Operation Cast Lead, which killed 1400 Palestinians, the majority of them civilians, announced he was “reconsidering” some of the findings of the report that bears his name.
Shock is the first word that comes to mind. When I first read about the murder of Juliano Mer-Khamis just hours after he was killed on April 4, like so many others, I reeled in shock. Then I burst into tears for a man I had never met. I cried for him, for his family and for the Palestinian people.
Issue 31 - April 2011
Tens of thousands of Palestinians rallied for national unity across the occupied West Bank and Gaza on March 15. The rallies, led by Palestinian youth and inspired by the recent uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt, sought to bring to an end three and a half years of bitter division and rivalry between Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas.
Issue 30 - March 2011
Ramallah, occupied Palestine – More than 1000 people, predominately Palestinian youth, rallied in Ramallah on February 17 to call for unity between Fatah and Hamas, the two main Palestinian factions.
Issue 29 - February 2011
Ramallah, occupied Palestine – In 2005, more than 170 Palestinian civil society organisations issued an international call for the boycott of Israel. Inspired by the struggle of South Africans against apartheid, the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign is conducted in the framework of international solidarity and resistance to injustice and oppression.
Issue 28 - November-December 2010
More than 150 Palestine solidarity activists and supporters of human rights from around Australia gathered in Melbourne October 29-31 for Australia’s first national boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) conference in support of Palestine.
Issue 27 - October 2010
On September 23, Samir Shirhan, a 34-year-old Palestinian father of five, was shot dead by an Israeli private security guard paid by the Israeli government to protect illegal settlers attempting to colonise the Silwan neighbourhood in occupied East Jerusalem.
Issue 26 - September 2010
Israeli military and police razed the Bedouin village of al-Arakib in the Negev desert for a fourth time on August 17, leaving homeless more than 300 Palestinian Bedouin from the al-Turi tribe, the majority of them children.
Rafeef Ziadah, a Palestinian activist, unionist, academic and spoken word artist will be the keynote speaker at the Building Solidarity, Combating Occupation and Apartheid conference, which is being held in Melbourne from October 29 to 31. This will be the first Australian national conference in support of the Palestinian-initiated boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign.
Issue 25 - August 2010
Haneen Zoabi, a member of the Israeli Knesset, was stripped of her parliamentary privileges on July 13 following her participation in the Gaza flotilla, which was attacked by Israeli commandos who murdered nine human rights activists.
Australian Palestine solidarity activists and supporters of human rights will gather in Melbourne in October for the first national conference in support of the Palestinian-initiated boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign.
Issue 24 - July 2010
Israel announced on June 17 that it would “liberalise” its three-year siege of Gaza, allowing more categories of goods to enter the blockaded territory. Non-essential items such as tomato sauce, snacks, mayonnaise and cosmetics will now be allowed in.
Issue 23 - June 2010
On May 7, US-backed “proximity talks” began two months after US special Mideast envoy George Mitchel, announced that the Fatah-led Palestine Authority (PA) and Israel had agreed to resume “indirect” negotiations. The “proximity talks” have been hailed by the Obama administration as a way of supposedly kick-starting the failed Arab-Israeli “peace process”.
Issue 22 - May 2010
A new Israeli military order will enable the deportation of tens of thousands of Palestinians from the occupied West Bank or their imprisonment for up to seven years. Military order No. 1650, which was enacted on April 13, amends a 1969 military order known as the Order Regarding Prevention of Infiltration.
Issue 21 - April 2010
If one were to believe the almost breathless reports coming from the Israeli, US and other corporate media, a major ruction in US-Israeli dealings had occurred and the demise of their “special relationship” was imminent.
Issue 20 - March 2010
Last November, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that his government would be implementing a 10 month “settlement freeze” as a supposed concession to calls by US President Barack Obama for a halt to the construction of Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) so as to clear the way for a resumption of “peace” talks with the Palestinian Aut
Issue 17 - November 2009
A special session of the 47-member United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on October 16 voted for a resolution calling for the adoption of the “Goldstone report” on Israel’s December-January war on Gaza.
Issue 16 - October 2009
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has claimed victory in the wake of US President Barak Obama’s first speech to the United Nations General Assembly and the September 22 meeting in New York between Netanyahu, Obama and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
On September 15, the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) released a report it commissioned into Israel’s war on Gaza in December-January, during which some 1400 Palestinians were killed by the Israeli military. Thirteen Israelis also died, including four civilians.
Issue 15 - September 2009
On August 26, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu offered to freeze the building of new Israeli settlements in the Israeli-occupied West Bank for nine months.
In August 2008, the NSW Labor government announced plans to privatise both the Parklea and Cessnock prisons in the wake of a budgetary blowout of $23 million in overtime payments to prison guards.
Issue 14 - August 2009
Kill Khalid: Mossad’s failed hit ... and the rise of Hamas
By Paul McGeough
Allen and Unwin (2009) 440 pp $35
Issue 13 - July 2009
The much anticipated speeches on the Middle East “peace process” by US President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last month have been touted by the international corporate media as significant steps toward resolving conflict in the region. However, neither speech was a step forward.
Issue 12 - June 2009
Since Barack Obama’s swearing in as US president, both the Israeli and US media have peddled the idea his administration would take a strong stand with the newly-elected Israeli hard-right government of PM Benjamin Netanyahu and foreign minister Avigador Lieberman.
Issue 11 - May 2009
The Australian Labor government joined the all-white boycott of the UN’s Durban Review Conference held in Geneva on April 20-24.
Issue 10 - April 2009
Testimony given by Israeli soldiers involved in Israel’s 22-day December-January assault on Gaza to a pre-military preparatory program at the Oranim Academic College in Israel on February 13, and which the March 18 Haaretz daily began printing daily excerpts of, revealed that they repeatedly committed crimes with impunity in Gaza.
Issue 9 - March 2009
Six weeks after the formal cessation on January 18 of Israel’s 22-day war on the 1.5 million Palestinians who live in Gaza, Israel continues to carry out sporadic airstrikes on the small coastal region.
Issue 8 - February 2009
On January 23, just days after the Israeli military finished its 22-day war against the 1.5 million inhabitants of the Gaza Strip, Israel’s military censor banned both the Israeli and international media from publishing the names of, or information about, Israeli military officers who participated in the war.
Issue 7 - December 2008
The election of Barack Obama to the US presidency has generated hope among many that not only will the US soon be out of Iraq, but there will also be a resolution to the Israel-Palestine conflict. However, a closer look at Obama’s stated views on Israel and Palestine reveals that he is unlikely to depart significantly from the pro-Israel policies of George W. Bush.
Chicago 10: Speak Your Peace
Written and directed by Brett Morgen
Limited release as part of the Australian International Human Rights Film and Arts Festival.
Visit www.hraff.org.au for details.
On November 7, the UN General Assembly conducted its annual vote on a range of resolutions relating to the Middle East “peace process”.
Issue 6 - November 2008
Violent attacks by Jewish residents in the Israeli city of Acre last month have left 14 Palestinian families, a total of 72 people, homeless. All 72 are Israeli citizens who had their homes destroyed.
Issue 5 - October 2008
On October 7, the upper house of the Victorian state parliament will vote on the Victorian Abortion Reform Bill, which was passed in the lower house on September 11 by 48 votes to 35.
Issue 4 - September 2008
Forty-six human rights activists from 17 countries broke the Israeli siege of Gaza on August 23. The SS Free Gaza and SS Liberty, two refitted Greek boats carrying 40 people, some food and medical supplies, left Cyprus on August 21 to make the 350-kilometre, 32-hour journey to Gaza.
In 1964, a 22-year-old Palestinian poet named Mahmoud Darwish shared the struggle of his people with the world, writing: “Record!/ I am an Arab/ And my identity card is number fifty thousand/ I have eight children/ And the ninth is coming after a summer/ Will you be angry? … Record! I am an Arab/ I have a name without a title/ ...
Issue 3 - August 2008
Ramallah, occupied Palestine – In April, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers became the latest union internationally to support Palestinians’ call for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel.
Ramallah, occupied Palestine – It’s a Thursday night – the beginning of the Palestinian weekend – and the Ramallah Cultural Palace is packed. There are young Palestinian men and women in their late teens and 20s, as well as parents with their pre-teen children streaming into the large auditorium.
Issue 2 - July 2008
In Ramallah, Occupied West Bank – Thirty extra truckloads of food and commercial goods were allowed into the besieged Gaza Strip on June 22, as Israel temporarily opened the Kerem Shalom crossing. Since April, Israel had been permitting only 60 truckloads of supplies per day to enter the region via the nearby Sufa crossing.
Issue 1 - June 2008
In Ramallah, Occupied West Bank – On March 12, Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd moved a motion calling on the House of Representatives to “celebrate and commend the achievements of the State of Israel in the 60 years since its inception” and to reconfirm Canberra’s support for “Israel’s right to exist” and a “two-state solution” to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.