Posted by: r.m. | January 18, 2009

Academic Statement from Lebanon

Dear colleagues,

Please find copied below a statement calling for our colleagues around the world to support an academic boycott of Israel, and calling for the enforcement of anti-normalization laws here in Lebanon.

As Kirsten Schied wrote, “This is not just another petition. It is a very local one, one that only academics here can sign, and if not signed will say something about the general drift of academics in a country that was recently bombed in a similar way by Israel, faces many of the same repercussions, even academic, as does Palestine from the practice of Zionism (not to say only Zionism is to blame for the results), and does not have any official peace treaty to skew academics’ options.”

On January 18, the Guardian published a letter from Israelis in which they are calling for a boycott on Israeli and its institutions!

We want to stand publicly in support of our Palestinian colleagues in academia, and, furthermore, in support of our colleagues in Canada and the UK who have publicly demanded an academic boycott within their universities. Recently, an impressive list of Israelis further called for a boycott on Israel: they asked to be boycotted themselves!

Thus, arises our statement here in Lebanon, a statement that will be publicized in Lebanon and elsewhere. Academic collaborations imply normalization, and normalization implies legitimacy, and it is this legitimacy with the apartheid, colonial, expansionist, criminal Zionist state that we need to fight.

Ali Abunimah, in his recent analysis of the situation, wrote: “What prevented South Africa’s white supremacist government from escalating their own violence to Israeli levels of cruelty and audacity was not that they had greater scruples than the Zionist regime. It was recognition that they alone could not stand against a global anti-apartheid movement that was in solidarity with the internal resistance. Israel’s “military deterrent” has now been repeatedly discredited as a means to force Palestinians and other Arabs to accept Zionist supremacy as inevitable and permanent. Now, the other pillar of Israeli power — Western support and complicity — is starting to crack. We must do all we can to push it over.”

So, if you agree with the statement, please forward it to other academic colleagues (i.e. professors, lecturers, and doctoral students) in Lebanon and please also send your signature to Rania Masri <email it directly to rania@ourwords.org>.  This statement will be ultimately published in Al-Akhbar newspaper (and perhaps elsewhere in Lebanon), and then (hopefully) published in newspapers or other avenues in Canada and the UK where academic boycotts are being resurfaced.

Sincerely,
-Rania Masri (and Rami Zurayk)

============================
Statement of Academics in Lebanon

In this latest onslaught against Palestinians, Israel has attacked a university, the Ministry of Education, schools across the Gaza Strip, and several UNRWA schools. Such attacks against learning centers are not unique for Israel.  Most particularly since 1975, Israel has infringed upon the right of education for Palestinians by closing universities, schools and kindergartens, and by shelling, shooting at, and raiding hundreds of schools and several universities throughout the occupied Palestinian territories.

Nor have these attacks been limited against Palestinians. As academics in Lebanon, we are all too familiar with Israeli onslaughts against educational centers. In its latest assault, in 2006, for example, Israel destroyed over 50 schools throughout Lebanon, and particularly schools designed for the economically disadvantaged in the South.

We thus stand, as academics in Lebanon, in urging our colleagues, regionally and internationally, to oppose this ongoing scholasticide and to support the just demand for academic boycott, divestment, and sanctions against Israel. Specifically, we ask our colleagues worldwide to support the call by the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel to comprehensively and consistently boycott and disinvest from all Israeli academic and cultural institutions, and to refrain from participation in any form of academic and cultural cooperation, collaboration or joining projects with Israeli institutions as a contribution to the struggle to end Israel’s occupation, colonization and system of apartheid.

We further call on the enforcement of Lebanese anti-normalization laws with Israel, and thus for the prosecution of individuals and institutions in Lebanon that violate those laws and conduct collaborations, associations or investments in Israel or with Israelis.

We salute the recent statement by the Scottish Committee for the Universities of Palestine calling for a boycott of Israel, the letter signed by 300 Canadian academics to Canadian Prime Minister Harper asking for sanctions against Israel, and the appeal by the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Ontario University Workers Coordinating Committee supporting a ban on collaborations between Canadian and Israeli universities.

<Please send your signature to Rania Masri at rania@ourwords.org or rania.masri@balamand.edu.lb >

To be signed by professors, lecturers, and doctoral students in Lebanon:

Name

Sawsan Abdulrahim
Sana Abidib
May Abboud
Michel Abou Ghantous
Dahna Abourahme
Mona Abu Rayyan
Mohamad Alameddine
Rayane Alamuddin
Falah Ali
Mahmoud El-Ali
Rayan El-Amine
Karma Bibi
Nabil Dajani
Nabil Fares
Nicolas Gabriel
Aline Germani
Sabah Ghandour
Rima Habib
Samer Habre
Hratch Hajetian
Roger Hajjar
Sari Hanafi
Sirene Harb
Diala Hawi
Ihad Hedroj
Sami Hermez
Ibrahim El-Hussari
Maha Issa
Samer Jabbour
Paul Jahshan
Fatme Al-Jamil
Maher Jarrar
Rasha Al-Jundi
Tamar Kabakian-Khasholian
Faysal El-Kak
Ghada Kalakesh
Rabih Kamleh
Samar Khalil
Nikola Kosmatopoulos
Michel Majdalani
Jean Said Makdisi
Maya Mansour
Muzna Al-Masri
Rania Masri
Zéna Meskaoui
Cynthia Myntti
Aida Naaman
Omar Nashabe
Hoda Nasrallah
Youssef Nasser
Mike Orr
Hibah Osman
Gillian Piggott
Daniel F. Rivera
Joelle Rizk
Nada Saab
Amal Saad-Ghorayeb
Sofia Saadeh
Naim Salem
Nisreen Salti
Helen Samaha-Nuwayhid
Rima Sarraf
Richard Saumarez Smith
Rosemary Sayigh
Kirsten Scheid
Eugene Sensing-Dabbous
Rabih Sultan
Lyna Al Tabbal
Hanan Toukan
Nazek Yared
Marian Yazbek
Samar Zebian
Hussein Zeidan
Mohammed Zubeidi
Huda Zurayk
Rami Zurayk

[updated continually]

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Responses

  1. i wanna sign!!!!

  2. I want to sign the statement.

    Thanks

  3. Any boycotting to Israel and on all levels is the minimal response to its criminal attack on Gaza.The torn up corpses of the little children burried under their collapsed homes will haunt us forever.

  4. I want to sign the academic-boycott-of-Israel statement.
    Many Thanks.

  5. The horrific massacre against the unarmed and made-homeless civilians of Gaza is unprecedented. This is state terrorism par excellence. Denouncing the barbaric act won’t do much. The Israeli cabinet and army officers MUST be brought to ICC or any criminal court, and that would be the least we can do for the thousands of casualties inflicted upon the long-besieged people of Gaza. The Israeli perpetrators of this war crime cannot be above law and must not escape PUNISHMENT if justice is to be served.

  6. Allah ma3 el 7a2

  7. I strongly suuport this and would like to sign.


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