Demonstration in front of the Tel Aviv municipality, Israel, 15.01.2012 | Israeli activists protest in front of the Tel Aviv municipality following the eviction of Ha’Tikva protest camp, Tel Aviv, January 15, 2012. |Photo by: Keren Manor/Activestills.org cc: flickr
Weekly commentary by Rabbis for Human Rights: Parshat VaEra
Lately there has been a struggle between the social wing and the nationalistic wing. On the one hand, there is an escalation of social unrest that brings fraternity and solidarity with the poor, the weak and the homeless. On the other hand, there is abuse of refugees, new settlements and hatred between different populations in Israel. In parashat hashvua you can read the ironic letter Rabbi Ascherman sent to the Minister of Education reminding him of the results of the new law against infiltrators: “Considering all this, as a rabbi and a concerned citizen, I would like to turn your attention to the present need; there is a real need to examine deeply the way that we, as a State, teach the Jewish history in our educational system. It will be a hypocrisy if we will continue to teach it as we did until now, when the main lesson was to criticize the countries that shut their doors to Jewish refugees in the dark hours of our history.” Shabbat Shalom.
Rabbi Yishai Ron opens our weekly report and analyzes parashat “VaEra” and shows the connection between managing a relationship and the separation process of the People of Israel from the Egyptians.
In the framework of our campaign for the Jahalin Bedouin, we sent letters to leading figures of the Jewish Diaspora and asked them to influence the decision makers of the State of Israel not to transfer the Jahalin Bedouin to a dangerous garbage dump site and that every step concerning their future should be discussed with them. In addition, Rabbi Yehiel Grenimann demands that the ombudsman of the civil administration answer two questions concerning the Jahalin’s faith in the Judean desert and especially in Khan El Akhmar. Please read the position paper of the coalition of organizations regarding the National Park on Mount Scopus, and learn about the political interests that are at work in the are instead of the welfare of the residents of the Palestinian neighborhoods of Issawiyya and al-Tur.
The Hatikva encampment was evicted this week and many remained without a housing solution. On January 16th there were demonstrations in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Haifa regarding the issue of public housing. In addition, we published a call to join the Tel Aviv demonstration, in which the Mayor, Ron Huldai was told that the evictions of Ein Breira encampments will not pass quietly. We published a call to join us tomorrow, January 18th in launching the public housing lobby in the Knesset. In this launching, we demand to find proper homes for 41,000 people who have waited for a long time to have a roof over their heads.
What is the meaning of the state’s preference to help with rent and not provide public housing? Rabbi Idit Lev gives one example in “Black Labor” and “The Main Protest” Site. Rabbi Arik Ascherman in an open letter to the Minister of Education was published in Mako.
We will be happy if you will volunteer:
- Rabbis’ visit to Silwan – to fix a date, please contact Rabbi Arik Ascherman: 050-5607034 or firstname.lastname@example.org; Moriel Rothman: email@example.com or 054-3157781; or Rivka at the office: 02-6482757, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Eviction Danger – it is expected that today, January 17th the eviction of residents from an Amidar apartment in Beer Sheba will take place. Presence of volunteers is very important and can prevent the eviction.
- January 18th – Please join the launching of the lobby for public housing in the Knesset, on Wednesday - The event will take place from 14:00-16:00. There is room for 120 people. Please call the office in order to get a permit to enter the Knesset.
- January 26th – Protest against Prawer – the protest will take place in front the government offices in Beer Sheba. At 11:00 we will march from the Bedouin market in the direction of the government offices.
- February 8th – Tu BiShvat – the Tu BiShvat tree planting event, please write down the date. Details will follow.
Other organizations (we are not responsible for the contents):
- Ynet: Europe to pursue Area C projects – Official document by EU delegates criticizes Israel’s policies in West Bank, suggests bloc must pursue ventures in Israeli-controlled area even without Israel’s cooperation
- Solidarity Sheikh Jarrah: Join our campaign: Help stop the construction of a national park on Palestinian land in East Jerusalem!