Palestinians to re-enact the Civil Rights movements “Freedom Riders”

Dear friends,

In hours, brave Palestinians will risk attack and arrest to board public
buses that are forbidden to Arabs. This could be the beginning of a
game-changing, non-violent Palestinian spring
— direct action to win  freedom and a new state. Avaaz is webcasting the action LIVE — click to   watch, and provide the global solidarity the activists need to win:

 

In the next few hours, history could be made in
Palestine.
A small number of brave Palestinians will risk
attack and arrest to commit a forbidden act — they will board a public bus.

Lacking their own state, Palestinians are forbidden to use buses and roads
reserved for non-Arabs — part of a host of race-based rules that US President
Jimmy Carter has called “apartheid”. 50 years ago, African-Americans
in the US challenged these rules by simply and non-violently refusing to follow
them. In a few hours, Palestinians will take the same approach, and their
actions will be live webcasted by Avaaz teams at the link below.

As diplomats stall in the fight for a Palestinian state, the Palestinian people
are taking the fight into their own hands, one public service at a time. And
they’re doing it with the simple, elegant and unstoppable moral force of
non-violence in the tradition of Gandhi and Martin Luther King. The
Palestinian spring begins right now – click below to watch it LIVE, register
support, and give these brave activists the global solidarity and attention
they urgently need to win:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/palestine_freedom_riders/?vl

Non-violence is the game-changing force in this long-standing conflict.
Boarding buses is a symbolic act, but so was Gandhi’s salt march, and Rosa
Park’s own courageous ride on a segregated bus in the US. Just as non-violent
protest was able to topple dictators in Egypt and Tunisia, so can it finally
free the Palestinian people from 40 years of crippling military oppression by a
foreign power.

There are many dangers. Israel has been arming the extremist settler population,
a tactic which is likely, if not intended, to provoke awful violence that will
draw the news cameras away from the brave acts of non-violence. Even the
Palestinian authorities are pushing back on the action which they fear will
start a democratic protest movement that they cannot control. But these few
brave Palestinians have had enough, and if we stand with them now, we can
help them ignite a flame that will burn its way all the way to a free and
peaceful Palestinian state:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/palestine_freedom_riders/?vl

We have no idea what will happen in the next 24 hours. Maybe the authorities
will crush this brave action. Maybe it will spark into a massive conflagration.
Maybe it will sow the first seed of an unstoppable movement with tremendous
integrity. But we can watch it live, and lend our voices to the effort. And
maybe one day, we can tell our grandchildren that we were there when
Palestinians boarded the buses that would ultimately take them to freedom.

With hope and determination,

Ricken, Emma, Alice, Raluca, Pascal, Diego and the rest of the Avaaz team

Sources:

I Woke Up This Morning with My Mind Set on Freedom

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/clarence-b-jones/i-woke-up-this-morning-wi_b_1087407.html

Freedom Riders: 1961 and the struggle for racial justice

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/19/books/review/19foner.html

Palestinian Freedom Rides echo the Civil Rights Movement

http://www.alternativenews.org/english/index.php/topics/news/3888-freedom-rides

‘Freedom Rides’ to Resume in Palestine

http://www.palestinechronicle.com/view_article_details.php?id=17242

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