PPRC’s Friday Rally and March Returns to the Israel/Palestine Conflict, Calling for Pressure on Congress to Cut Funding for Settlements and the Apartheid Wall

Event: PPRC Friday Rally and March Protests Israeli’s Apartheid Wall Land Grab
Date: Friday, October 3rd, 2003
Time: 5:00 p.m.
Place: Pioneer Courthouse Square

The Portland Peaceful Response Coalition 5:00 p.m. Friday rally and march for peace at Pioneer Courthouse Square returns to the conflict in Israel/Palestine, calling for and end to US funding of Israel’s illegal occupation of the West Bank and Gaza. "The Israeli Cabinet has just voted to continue to build this Apartheid Wall, a move that is nothing more than the latest scheme for stealing more Palestinian land and making life more miserable for the people living under this brutal Israeli military occupation,"1 said Will Seaman, a PPRC volunteer and member of Jews for Global Justice. "And if the US wanted it to stop, it would stop tomorrow, because we’re paying for that latest crime against the Palestinians, just like we’re paying for the illegal settlements, the settler-only by-pass roads and of course for the illegal Israeli military presence throughout the West Bank and Gaza." Seaman said that groups opposed to the Israeli occupation are now calling on Congress to cut funding to Israel in an amount equivalent to the cost of building the wall and maintaining the settlements.

"The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation2 is gearing up for an International Day of Action Against Israel’s Apartheid Wall on Sunday, November 9th," said Seaman. "Our Friday rally is a part of local efforts to build support for the campaign to bring down this illegal wall, and to support the struggle for Palestinian human and national rights."

The Friday rally will also be addressing the debate in Congress over funding for Bush’s war and occupation in Iraq. “Congressman DeFazio has just announced an "American Parity Amendment" to the $87 billion Iraq War Supplemental Appropriations bill, which would add $20.3 billion for improvements in health care, education and infrastructure in America," said Seaman. "That would match the $20.3 billion that’s been asked for to rebuild Iraq." Seaman said that DeFazio’s ammendment deserves support but does not go far enough. "We should be demanding an end to the US occupation, and an end to the Bush cronyism that has fattened the military industries and awarded no-bid contracts to Halliburton and Bechtel," said Seaman. "Those steps would save US taxpayers many times the amount DeFazio is asking for, and could finance both rebuilding Iraq as well as restoring decent healthcare, education and infrastructure for folks here in the US."

1. "Fenced in, locked out: a people in the shadow of fortress Israel", By Justin Huggler in Abu Dis, West Bank, 02 October 2003 - Independent (UK) 2. www.endtheoccupation.org


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