HUWAIDA ARRAF: “Our global grassroots constituted a threat to Israel’s entire colonial, apartheid project”

Huwaida Arraf — Palestinian with American and Israeli citizenship; lawyer, the chairperson of the Free Gaza Movement, and co-founder of the International Solidarity Movement
(The responses were received from U.S.A. on 18 March 2011 via e-mail)

“The Freedom Flotilla is more than just about Gaza. It’s about the power and responsibility of the global civil society to collectively organize and stand up to brutal regimes. It’s about what average civilians can do to defend freedom and human rights when our governments are shamefully silent.”

“We were only 17 on the Challenger 1, but we used our bodies to try to keep Israeli commandos from taking over our vessel. We put up as much resistance as we could, but Israeli commandos with their guns, tasers, sound bombs and attack dog beat us down.”

“A soldier bashed my head against the deck and proceeded to step on it, pressing so hard that I began to scream. My hands were cuffed behind my back. A sack was placed over my head, and I began screaming, ‘I can’t breathe!’ but the soldiers wouldn’t listen.”

“We were and are politically motivated. We are not interested in simply delivering aid, but aim to end the policies that leave Palestinians in need of aid. The Palestinians want their human rights respected so that they can work and provide for their families, and lead a life with dignity.”

“After the flotilla attack, the majority of the Israelis became more irrational and fascist, and thousands of them demonstrated calling for death to Arabs and down with Turkey; whereas the Palestinians were extremely supportive of our flotilla, and happy to see a strong global civilian front standing up to Israel.”

Click the link below to read the full interview
HUWAIDA ARRAF

*All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced, in any form whatsoever, without written permission from the publisher/editor, except in the case of brief quotations given with reference to the book.

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