Welcome to the website of Liverpool Friends of Palestine.
On other pages you will find out more about what we do. You’ll also find some recommendations of books, films and so on and some links to other organisations. There’s a ‘basic history’ in the ‘Palestine’ section and there’s even a quiz to test your knowledge!
Elsewhere on the net, we have a Facebook page and you can just follow this link. You can also follow us on Twitter at @Livfop.
On this page we list some events coming up shortly, at which you are welcome to join us:
On until 22 March – Visual Rights, a photographic exhibition at the Open Eye Gallery, 19 Mann Island L3 1BP. Five artists present visual studies of Palestine, bringing together different methods of revealing how power subtly operates and affects the fabric of everyday life. Open Tuesdays to Sundays 10am to 5pm, entrance is free.
Wednesday 4th, 7pm – our monthly meeting is at Jack Jones House (the Unite building). Agendas etc go out separately to members
Saturday 7th, 12 noon to 1.30pm – our regular monthly stall at the bottom of church Street outside HSBC. Our leaflet and petition is about HSBC’s role in supporting Israeli apartheid and we have other leaflets to take away. Come and help for half an hour.
Monday 30th, 4.30 to 6pm – we will mark Palestine Land Day and the anniversary of Gaza’s March of Return by leafieting outside Lime Street station. (For an account of Land Day, see the 1976 passage in the Basic History section on this site)
UP AGAINST THE SYSTEM
The BBC’s Storyville series recently broadcast an illuminating documentary A Lawyer Without Borders. It is about Israeli lawyer Lea Tsemel who is a fearless advocate for Palestinians who face political trials in Israeli courts. The programme (92 minutes) is available on iPlayer HERE until about Easter.
TRUMP’S PLAN FOR PALESTINE
President Trump’s much-trailed plan for Palesine was finally released to a sceptical world on 28 January and it makes depressing reading It endorses the position of the Israeli government on every issue and makes only half-hearted promises of a Palestinian state which are subject to conditions that no one thinks can be fulfilled. You can find the whole plan HERE and our leaflet about it HERE. The plan has been roundly rejected by the United Nations Secretary General, the EU foreign policy spokesman and most other bodies. The British Government has given it a cautious welcome.
SOME MOVEMENT BY HSBC
The banking giant HSBC has come under a lot of pressure for the loans it makes that prop up the Israeli arms trade and finance the oppression of the Palestinians. So it was good to see that the bank has withdrawn its financial support for the Israeli arms firm Elbit (which has factories in Britain). That is however only one small step. HSBC continues to do business with over a dozen companies selling military equipment and technology used in human rights violation, including Caterpillar (whose bulldozers are used in demolition of Palestinian homes and properties) and BAE Systems (whose weapons are used in war crimes by Israel, Saudi Arabia, and other repressive regimes). The campaign to end HSBC’s links with these companies continues.
It feels a long time ago that the United Nations Security Council passed resolution 2334 on 23 December 2016, declaring settlements on the West Bank and in East Jerusalem to be a ‘flagrant violation under international law’. You can read the full text of the resolution HERE. But it remains a matter of record thanks to the United States abstaining rather than vetoing it.
However, it is business as usual when Israel’s settler-led government passes legislation that allows for legalisation of settlements built on stolen Palestinian-owned land and starts on further settlement activity. There is plenty of international condemnation but the United States gives a green light to further house demolitions and land-grabbing in East Jerusalem and all over the West Bank.
THE BEAUTIFUL GAME
If you need any reminding of why racism has no place in sport, watch THIS TRAILER for the documentary ‘Forever Pure’ on the Israeli football club Beitar Jerusalem. It is a withering critique of a club that prides itself on having no Arab players. Just to make the point, the club recently renamed itself Beitar Trump Jerusalem!
Elsewhere in the footballing world, the Israeli FA has been under pressure to exclude six of its member clubs that are based in illegal settlements. See HERE for a detailed investigation by Human Rights Watch. A ruling from FIFA (the international federation) has let them off the hook but the issue remains live.
As Israeli football clubs take part in European competition, so the protests follow them. The biggest demonstrations have been at Celtic Park where demonstrators held Palestine flags aloft in defiance of UEFA officialdom (and later raised over £150,000 for Palestinian charities).
THE ISRAEL LOBBY
Labour apologists for Israeli apartheid were well and truly caught out by THIS DOCUMENTARY made by Al-Jazeera. A six-month investigation in 2016 by an undercover reporter produced compelling footage of an Israeli embassy official openly discussing setting up pro-Israel groups and ‘taking down’ politicians up to and including a Government minister. Needless to say there were cries of outrage about the programmes but all the complaints made to Ofcom were dismissed. In fact the programme won a CINE award in the USA.
Then it was the turn of the Conservatives. The then Development Secretary Priti Patel visited Israel, spent much of her 2017 ‘holiday’ meeting several Israeli government officials and came back with plans to divert British aid money to help Israel’s war effort against Syria (by funding hospitals in the occupied Golan heights). Whoops, the story got out and she had to resign. Was she acting alone? She is now Home Secretary.
Al-Jazeera have since made an expose of the Israel lobby in the USA. It was kept under wraps for some time but eventually leaked out and can be found on the website of the Electronic Intifada HERE.