As Israel continues to shower death and destruction on the oppressed Palestinians in occupied Gaza, it's hard to know what to do, how to resist. My inbox is full of forwarded Stop the War Coalition emails advertising their disingenuously entitled Gaza Emergency Appeal, highlighted in red 'emergency' lettering at the top of their website. Clicking through reveals that the emergency in the StWC camp is funding their own activities and keeping their London office staffed.
Protesting at the Israeli Embassy is a great idea if you live within striking distance or feel motivated to make the journey, with or without the help of Stop the War's 'Gaza Emergency' fund. If not, how about something closer to home? Every High Street has a Barclays...
More photos in this flickr set.
Exposing Barclays Bank
We handed out hundreds of flyers (above, and attached as pdf files), concentrating on Barclays customers. Most were happy to take the information and most said they were unaware of the connections between Barclays Bank, Israel and the arms trade. Some were quite upset and one woman told us she'd be changing her house insurance which is with Barclays when it comes up for renewal next month. No one entering or leaving Barclays or using its cash machines outside was left in any doubt about the atrocities the bank is actively supporting.
Donations for Gaza
Round the other side of the stall we had a small coffin that we've used many times over the years and which unfortunately continues to be an appropriate prop, alongside a bucket for donations. In a couple of hours we collected £55. This will be sent to the Welfare Association's Palestine Emergency Appeal which, unlike the Stop the War Coalition's effort, does offer direct support to Gaza:
Gaza is already suffering from chronic medical and fuel shortages and now with the continued Israeli onslaught on Palestinian communities, the numbers of people killed and injured are rising rapidly, leaving hospitals in Gaza in crisis and in urgent need of support.
Welfare Association is working to
Provide fuel for hospitals and ambulances (Approx. £1.50 / litre)
Restock urgently needed medical and pharmaceutical supplies
Provide first aid kits (Approx. £35 / kit)
Hospital supplies are severely depleted. Please help us to support those wounded and seriously injured in Palestine.
Stand up for Gaza on Saturday 19 July from midday
We will be in the same place on Hope Street, Wrexham from midday on Saturday. Please join us if you can.
For those of you not in Wrexham, there are Barclays Banks and other companies that invest in Israel all over the place. If you want more information, then this Corporate Watch publication Targeting Israeli Apartheid (free download here) is a good place to start.