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News :: Human Rights
Rethinking Hanukkah: Jewish Activists Remind Holiday Shoppers of Oppression in Gaza
10 Dec 2007
BOSTON, MA - Sunday, December 9, 2007 - As the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah draws to a close, Jewish activists and community members working for human rights and justice in Israel/Palestine marked the occasion by creating a giant human menorah in the midst of the holiday season hustle and bustle in Downtown Crossing.
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Rethinking Hanukkah: Jewish Activists in Remind Holiday Shoppers of Oppression in Gaza
The demonstrators distributed literature and carried signs to remind holiday shoppers of the illegal collective punishment, occupation, economic destitution, humanitarian crisis and grave human rights abuses in Gaza and the West Bank committed by Israel, as well working to disrupt the myth that all Jews support the actions of Israel.

The groups handout read in part "Today is the fifth day of Hanukah, the Jewish Festival of Lights, celebrating the Maccabees’ victory over King Antiochus IV who forced the Israelites to worship idols and desecrated their holy temple. According to the story, when the Israelites rededicated the temple there was only enough oil to light the sacred lamp for one day, but miraculously the small jug of oil lasted for eight. To remember this miracle, Jewish people around the world light a menorah candle for each of the eight nights. While we celebrate the Festival of Lights, we face a glaring irony in Israel and Palestine: Israel is currently severely restricting fuel and electricity supply in Gaza. Through this form of illegal collective punishment, Israel deepens the humanitarian crisis in Gaza – disrupting daily life and preventing access to medicine, food, clean water, economic opportunity and medical attention."

Although officially “disengaged” from Gaza since 2005, the Israeli military controls all borders, placing Gaza's 1.5 million residents in a virtual prison. The situation in the West Bank is not much better. There, Palestinians live under a brutal military occupation, facing hundreds of checkpoints, travel restrictions, land appropriation, and daily violence all in the name of “security” for the Israeli, and Jewish, people.

In the spirit of Hanukkah and its message, the action urges Jewish and non-Jewish people of conscience to speak out in their communities for justice, democracy and human rights for Palestinians.
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Rethinking Hanukkah: Jewish Activists in Remind Holiday Shoppers of Oppression in Gaza
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Rethinking Hanukkah: Jewish Activists in Remind Holiday Shoppers of Oppression in Gaza
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Rethinking Hanukkah: Jewish Activists in Remind Holiday Shoppers of Oppression in Gaza
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Rethinking Hanukkah: Jewish Activists in Remind Holiday Shoppers of Oppression in Gaza
See also:
http://jonathanmcintosh.smugmug.com/gallery/3966539

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