Taking Action  
Individual and group actions, both local and global,
help to organize in your area, and courageous
examples from Israel and Palestine
Injustice anywhere
is a threat
to justice everywhere.

Martin Luther King, Jr.
  
Action Alerts
TAKING ACTION HOME

ACTION ITEMS

   » Letter of Support and Thanks to Fifteen Church Leaders who have written to Congress re US Military Aid to Israel
       » Read strong responses to their Letter to Congress

   » Sign the petition of United Methodist Kairos Response for church agencies to cut financial ties to the Israeli occupation
        » See the Call to Action on divestment from Bishop Mary Ann Swenson

   » Help Shut Down AIPAC Trips to Israel for Congress

   » Stolen Beauty Campaign: Boycott AHAVA

   » Tell Obama: Hold Israel Accountable, End Siege of Gaza

   » Christian Peacemaker Team: Support BDS, tell others why

  » Join the Occupation-Free Faith Communities of US Campaign to End the Occupation
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Giving/Donations
      Relations Testy-
          Westbrook

"Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented."


Elie Wiesel
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Ongoing action alert
from Christian Peacemaker Teams:
Support Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions;
Let Others Know Why You Do


In 2010, Christians Peacemakers Teams-Palestine endorsed the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement (see here), because sixty years of negotiations and diplomacy have only enabled Israel to solidify its military occupation of Palestine.

The international community has long called for Palestinian society to resist the violence of the Occupation nonviolently, so we, as members of an international peace organization, believe that when Palestinians mount nonviolent campaigns against the Occupation, we are morally obligated to support them.

Our endorsement followed the KAIROS Palestine document, a statement from Palestinian Christians, who wrote:

"These advocacy campaigns must be carried out with courage, openly and sincerely proclaiming that their object is not revenge but rather to put an end to the existing evil, liberating both the perpetrators and the victims of injustice.

The aim is to free both peoples from extremist positions of the different Israeli governments, bringing both to justice and reconciliation.

In this spirit and with this dedication we will eventually reach the longed-for resolution to our problems, as indeed happened in South Africa and with many other liberation movements in the world."


On the fifth anniversary of the call to BDS and the sixth anniversary of the International Court of Justice's advisory opinion on the illegality of the Wall, the Palestinian Civil Society Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) calls on supporters of BDS "to celebrate our well-deserved achievements, to critically and rationally appraise our present challenges, and to further strengthen our collective resolve to end Israel's ... system of oppression against the Palestinian people by making it pay the price for it through our civil BDS campaigns in all fields."

CPT-Palestine invites you to join us, Palestinians, and people from all over the world in boycotting
Israeli goods and cultural events, divesting from all companies that profit from the occupation of Palestine, and pushing for international sanctions on Israel.  

PARTICIPATE in the BDS movement by building the numbers:

• In the US Campaign to End the Occupation's 'Hang Up on Motorola' campaign found at
http://www.endtheoccupation.org/section.php?id=209

• In this UK campaign found at http://www.inminds.co.uk/boycott-motorola.php  
or
http://www.palestinecampaign.org/Index5b.asp?m_id=1&l1_id=3&l2_id=107

• In these Canadian campaign suggestions found at
http://www.boycottisraeliapartheid.org/files/consumerboycott.pdf

SHARE how and why you're participating in the BDS movement.

Send email to: whyiboycott@gmail.com and answer these questions:
- Who are you?
- Where are you from?
- How do you participate in BDS?
- Why are you participating?

Responses will be posted on www.whyiboycottisrael.wordpress.com

CPTers have started making videos answering "Why do we boycott Israel?"

Watch some of the videos CPTers have created and share them with your friends: http://www.youtube.com/user/whyiboycott

Submit a video to our collection. Create your own video by answering the questions above. Videos can be short and simple.

If your computer has a webcam, YouTube can help you access the camera and make a video.

Just follow these directions:
http://www.google.com/support/youtube/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=57931

More general information on making a video is available here: http://www.youtube.com/t/howto_makevideo and here:
http://www.youtube.com/video_toolbox


Post your video as a "video response" to our Youtube Channel "whyiboycott."  Here's how: http://www.google.com/support/youtube/bin/answer.pyhl=en&answer=57931

If you don't have the time or ability to make a video, leave a comment on our YouTube Channel answering the same questions or find your own creative way to share your participation.  

REMEMBER the most important way you can participate in the BDS movement is to participate in BDS campaigns and to let other people know why you are doing so.
UPDATE FOR THIS ACTION ALERT, SEPTEMBER 2012:
The time has passed to support the UMKR resolution for General Conference 2012, as requested by Bishop Mary Ann Swenson in the message below.

However, United Methodist Kairos Response (UMKR) is still collecting signatures for their petition to UMC boards and agencies, to cut church financial ties to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory. See the petition and sign it at: www.kairosresponse.org

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Stand in solidarity with
the Christians of Palestine

Support the General Conference Resolution:
“Aligning UM Investments with Resolutions on Israel/Palestine”


A Message from Bishop Mary Ann Swenson

 
January 13, 2012

The beautiful season when we celebrate the birth of the Prince of Peace has just concluded, and this year it had a special meaning for me unlike any year in the past. Just before the Advent season began, I made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land with an ecumenical group of women bishops.

What I experienced on this trip affected me deeply, in ways I was not fully prepared for.

We visited Bethlehem, where I saw Christ's birthplace surrounded by an imposing concrete wall, with access granted to its residents through a dehumanizing
checkpoint.  We visited Hebron, a Palestinian town with a couple of hundred Israeli settlers planted in its midst, being guarded by well over 1000 Israeli soldiers. There are streets in Hebron that the residents are not allowed to use, not even to reach their own homes. I watched as a child climbed a ladder to a second story window to get into her home, and I was appalled to see a mother, carrying her baby in her arms, having to do the same.

We learned  how the occupation has created segregated communities, where freedom of movement and access to the basic necessities of life - such as water and medical care - are determined by ethnic identity. I found myself moved to tears on a daily basis by what I heard and saw.

Yet, despite all the despair that we witnessed, we also met courageous men and women of all three Abrahamic faiths who continue to work for peace. They have kept hope in their hearts that real peace, security and justice will be achieved for all the people of Israel and Palestine.  Among those who will never give up their faith in God's justice and God's peace are the 'living stones' - the Christians of Palestine.

SOLIDARITY, DIVESTMENT
The Palestinian Christians have given the world a statement of faith and a call to action, named Kairos Palestine: A Moment of Truth. This heartfelt and profound document includes an urgent plea to Christians around the world, asking what we are willing to do to resist the injustice of the (now) 45-year-old occupation of Palestine.  They name divestment as a courageous step forward we can take: ethical, non-violent action that will help them in their long struggle for freedom and equal rights.

I came home from this pilgrimage firmly believing that United Methodists must stand in solidarity with our Christian brethren in Palestine. Some in our church are doing that today, in a global grassroots movement named United Methodist Kairos Response (UMKR).  The laity and clergy of UMKR educate United Methodists about the reality of the Israeli occupation that we saw on our trip, and advocate that our church should not have financial investments that support that occupation.

You may be surprised to learn that the church does invest in the occupation, although our General Conference has adopted resolutions for more than a decade saying clearly that our church is opposed to the occupation of Palestinian land and wants to see it ended.  

TAKE ACTION
UMKR is supporting a resolution coming to General Conference 2012 from The General Board of Church and Society and several annual conferences.  It calls on all United Methodist agencies to align their investments with our church's resolutions regarding Israel and Palestine and, specifically, to end our investments in companies that help to sustain and expand the occupation.

I commend the efforts of United Methodist Kairos Response; I am writing to you to ask for your support of their work.
Here are some things that you can do now:

»  Please SHARE this message with your congregation, with other organizations, and forward it widely to family, friends and colleagues, asking them to take action too.

»  Read and endorse the resolution that is coming to General Conference. 
If you receive any services from the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits,
you can sign the petition also.

»  Consider donating whatever you are able to this grassroots movement:
They are working with limited resources to reach United Methodists around the world.

»  Become a volunteer. There is much to be done between now and General Conference. If you would like to be more involved, UMKR would welcome your help. You can contact them at: info@kairosresponse.org.

I have a special request for General Conference Delegates who read this message:

I know you will be concerned with many matters during General Conference that will shape the future of our church.  But please do not neglect this God-given opportunity for our church to show that we truly mean what we have said in past resolutions, and that we will not knowingly support the injustice of the occupation with our investment funds. Take a little time to visit the UMKR website (www.kairosresponse.org) and talk with your fellow delegates about the importance of supporting the resolution "Aligning UM Investments" at General Conference 2012.

Our calling as Christ's disciples includes challenging injustice and refusing to support systems of injustice wherever they are found. I hope you will prayerfully consider this justice initiative and join me in supporting it, both now and at General Conference. I look forward to seeing many of you in Tampa, Florida this spring.

Shalom, Salaam, Peace,
Bishop Mary Ann Swenson
California-Pacific Annual Conference
United Methodist Church

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