Monday, May 09, 2005

"How to stop the uprooting"

Right-wing groups outline non-violent campaign guidelines

By Nadav Shragai, Haaretz Correspondent

A "trial run" of a non-violent campaign of civil disobedience aimed at preventing the evacuation of Gaza Strip and northern Samaria settlements is set for Monday, the Jewish Home right-wing movement announced Monday.

The group plans to simultaneously block dozens of intersections around the country at 5 P.M. Monday.

Activists have been instructed to find 10 or more supporters willing to help them block intersections and be "gladly" arrested.


The organizers urged that action on three levels is necessary to prevent expulsion: "A. Bringing as many Jews as possible to Gush Katif. B. Encouraging refusal among soldiers and policemen... to create a personnel shortage, and render the evacuation non-enforcable. C. Non-violent civil disobedience - Organizing citizens to disrupt daily life at the local level around the country, with the goal of delegitimizing government rule, and engaging as many policemen as possible in maintaining order."

Leaders of several extra-parliamentary right-wing movements who have supported non-violent civil disobedience, including Moshe Feiglin, Elyakim Haetzni, Orit Strock and Noam Arnon of Hebron attended Monday?s press conference in which the civil obedience plan was unveiled. National Union MK Aryeh Eldad, who spoke in favor of civil disobedience at a Gush Katif during the Passover holiday, also attended Monday's conference.

"One of the most significant factors that will help us win is removing the threat of arrest, simply by announcing: 'I am not afraid of arrest, in fact I want to be arrested. Moreover, I do not want to be released. I will be honored to sit in prison in my opposition to a criminal regime'," activist leaders said. "We must fill the detention centers from ear to ear. If the system is set up to detain 1,000 people, we must provide 3,000 detainees. When a certain number is reached, the system will collapse. We don't know what the number is, but when we reach it we will surely know."

Activists were asked Monday to enlist neighbors, colleagues and fellow synagogue members. They were urged to take sick leave, vacation days, or unpaid leave and tell their employers they will be absent from work for an extended period.

From the moment that Gush Katif is closed off, the civil disobedience plan is to unfold as follows: "1. Once Gush Katif is closed off, begin movement toward the Gush. 2. Each person decides in advance where to go and via which route. 3. Set up a meeting point with your comrades, and begin walking toward Gush Katif. 4. Those unable to walk will drive or take public transportation to the nearest point to Gush Katif, and walk from there. 5. Take provisions for at least four days. 5. Walk on roads, in order to obstruct traffic, proudly carrying flags of Israel, wearing T-shirts and bearing signs. 7. Join up with other marchers. 8. Wherever you are prevented from advancing - this is your battlefront. 9. Make sure as many cameras are present as possible: video, stills, digital camera, cellular phones. Make sure some of the pictures are taken from afar to ensure their survival. 10. Make clear that there's no way a Jew could expel Jews from his home in the Land of Israel. Explain that doing so will bring the country to a standstill. 11. Bring PR materials to distribute to commuters and pedestrians. 12. Bring an 'arrest file' (including instructions of how to behave when facing the police and the courts - N.S.) 13. Don't clash with the police. Keep walking, and don't hesitate to be arrested. Go to your arrest gladly. Remember: if you're arrested, you've won!"

Attached to the campaign outline are phone numbers of a legal hotline, a page describing prisoners' rights, and a page with instructions over how to reach Gush Katif by foot and car.

The brochure distributed to activists is entitled "How to stop the uprooting," which, among other things, explains that "the campaign of Gush Katif and Samaria is a rearguard action for them [the authorities]. If they see they are unable to uproot 8,000 Jews from their homes, and in fact an entire settlement bloc, they can forget their wild dream of uprooting another 150,000 people. This is why they are standing on their rear legs and joining forces with the person they despise most, Arik Sharon. The struggle we are currently involved in is the struggle over our right to exist in our national homeland. It is not a struggle over Gush Katif, but against the prime minister, who says that we are thieves and occupiers."


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