Sunday, August 17, 2014

You're Next

I have the feeling that many of the people who read this blog, and comment on it have never been actively involved in political disobedience or protest. It's a spectator sport and if something bad happens to you, it's the result of a stupid decision on your part to get involved.  Most nice people never ever get pulled over by a cop, falsely detained for being in the wrong place at the wrong time or targeted solely on the basis of their perceived ethnic identity. I have been accused of making bad choices...I have been involved in quite a few incidents since I was a teen that resulted in physical injury, being detained and arrested solely because I did choose to put my self in the wrong place at the wrong time and joined others to create an incident that was more than one pissed off person just going "off". Over the years, I have seen the evolution of techniques by law enforcement officials to deal with incidents. I was not involved in the Occupy Protests, but the brutality and sophistication of the various law enforcement agencies across America was a great example of the sophistication of techniques, the use of media manipulation and the ruthlessness now employed to suppress protest in America. I wrote a piece last week on the tragically ironic reality of the protest in Ferguson, MO. The Palestinians in Gaza were advising the protestors in Ferguson about tactics to deal with the militarized police brutality they deal with every day with the Israeli Occupation of Gaza. The militarization of the police forces in America is suddenly a big concern, as if it is new trend...but the very people who have jumped on the band wagon are the same hypocrites who have supported it all along. I noted that the St. Louis County Police Chief, Timothy Fitch will be attending a seminar in Israel next month to learn the techniques the Israeli military uses to deal with those pesky Palestinians.
But this isn't new...this has been going on for quite a while! Here is the testament of former Israeli soldier, Eran Efrati, who was born and raised in Jerusalem and served in the IDF as a combat soldier in Battalion 50 of the Nachal Division in Hebron and throughout the West Bank. He is trying to tell Americans about the involvement of the American Police Forces and the Israeli Military and in his own words: "Even if you don't care  about Palestinians...You guys should know: you are next in line."
n 2009, he was discharged and joined Breaking the Silence, an organization of veteran Israeli soldiers that is working to raise awareness about the daily reality in the Occupied Territories.
Now Efrati is working as the chief investigator of the organization. He collects testimonies from IDF soldiers about their activities and guides political tours in the West Bank.
His message for Americans about Palestine is a poignant one:

“If you don’t care about Palestinians… You guys should know: you are next in line. The next one who will die from a tear gas canister into his chest will be in Zucotti Park, will be in Denver, will be in Oakland, in San Francisco. It is happening here already. It is happening to different people, to people of color, to immigrants in this country, it is already happening. You guys are next in line. The next one will die out of brutality of the police will be one of your sons or your daughters–in a protest. Because they [U.S. police] are training together. Your police–training with our army. Our army is training them how to take care of the enemy. . . . But when they come back, you are their enemy.”Watch the video below and help spread Efrati’s message to anyone who you think needs to hear it: 

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