Tuesday, April 21, 2009
By Frank Barat
(Frank Barat is in the organizing committee of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine and a member of Palestine Solidarity Campaign UK.)
(Left: Bassem Abu Rahme. (Activestills.org))
"On April the 17th, like any Fridays afternoon for the last 4 years, the small village of Bil'in, north of Ramallah, was preparing for the usual demonstration against Israel's annexation wall (some people call it apartheid wall or separation wall. The Israeli government refers to it as the security fence).
The village of Bil'in has, since the mid eighties, lost more than 60% of its land for the purpose of Israeli growing settlements and the construction of the wall......
....As soon as prayer was over with, the demonstration started to move forward in direction of the wall, a few kilometers away.
You can be sure that Bassem (aka Phil) was right at the front of the march. He always was. I had met Bassem a few times while visiting Bil'in. He was a strong looking man, singing the loudest.....
....and Bassem too, screamed “We are in a non violent protest, there are kids and internationals...”. He was shot in the chest and never managed to finish his sentence. He fell on the floor, moved a little bit, fell again, and died......
The international community (for what it means) will not mention this “incident” (it is for them) and continue issuing calls for the Palestinians to renounce violence and resist peacefully while saying nothing about Israel's killings (since the start of the second Intifada, 87% of the dead have been Palestinians), violations of international law and oppression of the Palestinians......."