LAMP mural project threatened by Israeli govt

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Wed Aug 20 07:16:03 MDT 2003


Dear Friends,

The Labor Art and Mural Project's delegation to Palestine/Israel is
facing a grave challenge: This morning, four cars of Israeli
authorities- the IDF, the Civil Administration, and the police
department- arrived at the work camp in East Jerusalem where LaMP
activists are helping to construct a peace center in memory of Rachel
Corrie. The authorities issued a 'stop work' order and confiscated
building materials.  They also announced that the building and mural-
both scheduled for completion on Thursday- would shortly be demolished.

Israeli and Palestinian activists are massing to spend the night in the
building, or arranging to be at the site at 4:30 tomorrow morning in an
attempt to stall or prevent the demolition. Some activists will carry
out civil disobedience. Your messages of protest are crucial as well.

The building, called the Beit Arabia Peace Center, is the project of the
Israeli Committee against House Demolitions. As an act of resistance to
the occupation, ICAHD is holding a work camp to rebuild on the site of
the home of Arabia and Salim Shawamreh of Anata. The Israeli authorities
have demolished the Shawamreh home four times. In addition to
memorializing Rachel Corrie, the center will memorialize the death of
Nuha Makadma Sweidan, a pregnant Palestinian woman killed in Gaza in
March 2003 when an Israeli bulldozer demolished her home on top of her.
  The center will house a permanent exhibit of the ongoing tragedy of
house demolitions, and will also serve as a center for educational
activities, study tours, activist events and peace-building between
Palestinians and Israelis. It is poignantly located across a valley from
a new Israeli police and interrogation center.

The mural being painted by U.S. labor muralist Mike Alewitz is anchored
by an image of broken  bulldozers and war equipment. In the sky float
images of Corrie and Sweidan. A railroad track runs to the horizon,
reminding viewers of the collective dreams of radical Jewish and Arab
unionists in the mandate period who fought for joint organizing of the
Haifa rail workshops. It is this kind of vision- of Jews and Arabs
fighting for socialist future where the interests of working people will
be central- that the Israeli authorities hope to bury in their
escalating demolitions of rebuilt houses and structures.

Please protest this outrage by contacting the U.S. State Department,
your representatives in the Senate and Congress, and the U.S. Consulate
General, Jerusalem, at

18 Agron Road, Jerusalem 94190 / 27 Nablus Road, Jerusalem 94190;PHONE:
972-2-6227230 / 972-2-6253288;FAX: 972-2-6259270.

The following Israeli authorities should hear your protest as well:

Coordinator of Activities in Judea and Samaria

General Yaakov Orr

Ministry of Defense
Ha-Kirya Tel Aviv, Israel
Phone: 972-3-697-5351
Fax: 972-3-697-6306;

Spokesperson:
Mr. Shlomo Dror
Mobile: 972 2 50-398-652



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