By Ronni Kasrils in South Africa
It is imperative that we of the international community redouble our efforts to aid the Palestinian people in solidarity actions.
The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign remains the most formidable weapon in our arsenal. It worked to bring about the demise of South African Apartheid behind the internal people’s resistance struggle, and is growing in scope and efficacy, to the extent that Israel has identified the non-violent global movement as a strategic threat. Israel, like apartheid South Africa, must pay for its crimes—above all by sanctions.
We South Africans must continue to urge our Government and the African states, to break off all relations with Apartheid Israel. We must appeal to Africa to reject Israel’s sugar-coated bribes to ensnare them. We must apply full sanctions against the Apartheid state and become an international standard bearer for the Palestinian cause.
South Africa should convene an international conference of solidarity with Palestine aimed at discussing a program of global action by governments, trade unions, and civil society to isolate Israel, strengthen the BDS campaign, end the occupation, lift the siege of Gaza, dismantle the illegal settlements, remove the apartheid wall and separation barriers, ensure the right of return of all refugees, ensure freedom of access to East Jerusalem and the rights of Palestinians residing there, declare equal rights for Palestinians within Israel.
Israeli war criminals must face the International Criminal Court and must pay reparations for all the death and destruction it has caused. Some will laugh because of the impunity in which Israel basks.
What therefore is additionally required is a boycott of USA products, everything from Coca Cola to Caterpillar Tractors, to pressurize the Biden administration and corporate business to end its strategic support for Israel, its $3.8 billion annual blood money of military hardware and aid—together with its diplomatic protection and the emasculation of United Nations resolutions that if implemented could shake Israel’s intransigence to the core.
It is a crime against humanity to allow Israel to continue to crush Palestinian lives. The world must place the USA in the dock alongside Israel, an Apartheid state. We accuse the Western cohort nation states with the same crime of complicity.
South Africans, along with international humanity, raise the battle cry Mayihlome in solidarity with the Palestinian people’s just resistance—our anger rises for the battle. There can be no neutrality in the fight for freedom and justice. A people united will never be defeated.
Palestine will be free from the river to the sea—for all who live there in peace, equality and security.
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