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Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Next they'll collect pennies in little blue boxes!


When I was a child, we all had little blue boxes from the Jewish National Fund (JNF). You'd put your pennies in the blue box, and eventually you'd save up enough to plant a tree in Israel. You'd send the money to the JNF and they would plant a tree in Israel and send you a nice certificate saying that you'd planted a tree in Israel.

For many years now, the 'Palestinians' have been trying to adopt the Israeli narrative as their own (in keeping with the Muslim tradition of trying to coopt other religions' holy sites as their own - see the Temple Mount, the Church of the Ascension in Nazareth, and various Hindu sites in India). The latest part of the Israeli narrative that they have adopted is planting trees.

A 'respected' British current affairs magazine, which actually looks like a fairly right-wing magazine based on its table of contents, is now making all of you a special offer. If you take out a one-year subscription to the New Statesman for only 78 British pounds, you can join the Trees for Life Campaign and sponsor the planting of three new olive trees in 'Palestine.'
By subscribing to the New Statesman magazine, not only will you receive Britain’s leading current affairs weekly but you will also join the Trees for Life campaign and help to repair the enormous destruction years of war have inflicted on the olive groves of Palestine.

Your subscription sponsors the planting of three new olive trees in Palestine.

Each tree represents a long-term source of income for Palestinian families, who have been harvesting olive oil, fruit and wood for generations.

In addition to receiving a certificate to mark your support of the campaign, the New Statesman will also provide you with updates on the progress of the scheme.

The Trees for Life campaign is run by Olive Co-operative.
Notice that the destruction has no cause other than the "years of war" (which were of course caused by no one) and that the 'Palestinians' have been harvesting olive oil for 'generations' (a debatable claim to put it mildly).

And who is Olive Cooperative?
Olive Co-operative seeks to raise awareness of the difficulties faced by Palestinians, and to support those working for a just peace in Palestine and Israel. It aims to do this by two main means: arranging tours to Palestine and Israel and selling Palestinian fairly traded goods in the UK.

Olive Co-operative enables people to travel to the Middle East, to meet with Palestinians and Israelis and to hear their stories at first hand. It also aims to support the Palestinian economy through working with Palestinian suppliers in arranging tours, for example the Alternative Tourism Group in Beit Sahour, as well as through developing a market in the UK for fairly traded Palestinian goods. Olive Co-operative also offers advice and information on Palestine and travel in the region

Olive Co-operative believes that its activities are positive methods of increasing understanding amongst a wide range of communities and groups in the UK, of actively contributing to the Palestinian economy, and of creating dynamic links between people working to raise awareness in the UK and peace activists in Palestine and Israel.

Olive Co-operative is a workers' co-operative founded in 2003 by a group of peace activists in Manchester, UK. Currently, there are seven director members, including one Palestinian, and other staff and directors come from a range of backgrounds, including Muslim and Jewish communities. It is a not-for-profit organisation, where the part-time workers pay themselves a basic hourly salary, and keep paid hours to a minimum.
I can just imagine which Israelis meet with this group.... And then there's their 'ethical policy' which includes the following:
Travellers with Olive are supplied before their trip with a substantial amount of information about the situation in Palestine and Israel, both for their own security and comfort and for the sake of the people they will be visiting - this includes, for example, information on not communicating the details of Palestinian individuals to the Israeli authorities. The tours themselves are also, of course, focused on increasing people's knowledge and experience of the 'social and political situation in each destination.' Travellers are also advised of the culturally appropriate ways to behave in different areas, depending on issues such as the religious tendencies of individual towns etc, and cultural sensitivity in areas such as dress, public touching and eating is stressed. Our structure also includes an induction meeting with a local guide (usually from ATG) at the beginning of each tour and the presence of a local guide at all relevant times.

Almost all of the traveller destinations on Olive tours constitute "local social projects with direct or indirect benefits to the host community." These include projects promoting cross-cultural communication between children, supporting refusers of Israeli military service, providing medical care in Palestinian communities and opening up educational opportunities for children in Palestinian refugee camps.
Maybe this is what they have in mind.

3 Comments:

At 6:49 AM, Blogger opine6 said...

Palestinians don't know how to nurture olive trees, or anything else living. They destroyed the olive groves the Israeli's left for them in Gaza. The only thing the Palestinians know is death and destruction. One of the Hamas leaders just said so.

 
At 7:04 PM, Blogger Yael said...

It took me some days to find this, but they DO have little "charity" boxes -- in the shape of the Dome of the Rock. Hezbollah's fund-raising leaflet (found in southern Lebanon by the IDF) shows coins going into the top of the box, and bullets dropping out the bottom, into a Star of David.
http://bokertov.typepad.com/btb/2006/08/know_your_enemy.html

 
At 7:12 PM, Blogger Yael said...

trying again to give you the link

http://bokertov.typepad.com/btb/2006/08/know_your_enemy.html

 

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