People ask: Why is this @sydney_festival action important? Will it liberate Palestine? Well, the state of Israel invests heavily in what they call ‘Brand Israel’, a global propaganda campaign to depict the settler-colony as a liberal and democratic state.
It exports this brand using cultural events like the @sydney_festival, its technological advancements, to distract attention from Israel’s occupation, apartheid, and human rights abuses, and it works. It is deliberate.
In 2009, a member of apartheid Israel’s Foreign Ministry told a reporter that they "send well-known novelists and writers overseas, theatre companies, exhibits... to show Israel’s prettier face." This is how apartheid is normalised. This is how they make people 'conflicted'.
People wonder, can a regime that brutalises Palestinians, that has enforced 74 years of suffering, displacement and suffocation, really be capable of making lovely art? Yes. It's made at the expense of us. It serves to stir doubt in people + proves to be a powerful distraction.
These technological advancements are made at the expense of us. Palestinians are the guinea pigs. Social movements within Palestinian society are inhibited and crushed because we are in survival mode + resisting the greatest threat to our existence.
Apartheid Israel acts with complete and total impunity. Hundreds of UN resolutions condemning its human rights abuses have gone nowhere. BDS is how we step in and ask the international community to do something – artists too.
The global boycott, divestment and sanctions movement calls for the application of international law. UN resolutions are meaningless and toothless, unless states, institutions and the collective are willing to do something about it. This is why we BDS. @sydney_festival
So no, Palestine won't liberated overnight by this. If only it were. But it's the growing delegitimisation + denormalisation of apartheid Israel, and showing you - the reader, the international community – what's under the "prettier face" is how we move toward ending impunity.

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More from @jennineak

16 Jan
Why can’t you just talk 🌸 and dialogue 🗣 and braid each other’s hair 🥺?

Because a conversation between the oppressor and the oppressed is a conversation between the sword and the neck. Boycott, divest, sanction.
The late leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, Ghassan Kanafani, in an interview with Australian reporter Richard Carleton in Beirut, 1970. As Kanafani puts it, the oppressor doesn’t want to talk — they demand surrender and capitulation.
"I have never seen any talk between a colonialist case and a national liberation movement."
Read 5 tweets
14 Jan
In acknowledging the withdrawal, I want to clarify, the 73 yr context and lead up to events is lost here. 200+ Palestinians killed in Gaza. Artists not criticised – Sydney Festival and its partnership is. Artists with moral courage set the terms. We'll focus on them + their shows
Please support the artists – links to those doing their shows independently are here. And while I welcome the act of withdrawing, I feel most indebted to artists who put out beautiful, unapologetic statements of solidarity. Uplift them and #freepalestine.
We hope that the @sydney_festival board recompenses artists for harm and loss incurred, and we hope that board members, current or withdrawn, learn deeply about the Palestinian Nakba and apartheid Israel's policies. This is not a both sides thing. There is much to be learned here
Read 5 tweets
2 Oct 21
This is a common anxiety for many Palestinians in the diaspora, young and old. Do we tell people we’re Palestinian at work? Always a cost-benefit analysis. I said screw it long ago, we’ve got nothing to hide, but it gets my heart racing because I can never anticipate the reaction
Sometimes it comes up. When you’re talking about food, culture, travel, family. So many of my friends and family members here and abroad have paid a price for it and it makes me so sad. My parents warn me to keep it to myself because they worry but 2 late 🤪
Idk it’s just so ugly, none of us want this and I hate that I have to even write these words or share these experiences because we are three-dimensional and more than this but I know it’s necessary to do so. I always feel icky, full of self-doubt and expect the worst
Read 4 tweets
2 Oct 21
What I remember vividly is how nobody stopped him. It was terrifying. His eyes almost popping out of his face. He slammed the copy in front of me + I jumped. And nobody said anything during or after.

It was less aggressive but more insidious at @abcnews too #platformpalestine
It’s why I felt nothing — nothing — seeing the recent discussion about how female journalists are attacked on Twitter. Let me be attacked on Twitter. I wasn’t allowed to use Twitter for some time because I made the mistake of being aghast at bombs being dropped on Gaza.
I found out colleagues were keeping dossiers on me too + worked closely with Zionist lobby groups including the JBD here. There’s a lot that’s happened + not only to me, but to many others. Many other journalists just, quite literally, doing their jobs. Like I said, iceberg tip
Read 5 tweets
2 Oct 21
An excerpt of my experience incl on-record confirmations from my editors that I was the subject of meetings with Israeli diplomats and I was shafted to the Arts section so I wouldn’t do any reporting on anything remotely Palestinian. I’ll use the hashtag #platformpalestine Image
Keep in mind that this is the tip of the iceberg. Many editors, journalists and Palestinians in Australia are interviewed in @TheLyonsDen book with harrowing and jaw-dropping experiences about how the Zionist lobby attacked and silenced them. #platformpalestine Image
Read 9 tweets
22 Aug 21
You’re fucking kidding me. All this because a Palestinian woman @RandaAFattah on @QandA spoke unapologetically and truthfully. These lobbyists are beyond malicious. The extents they have always gone to to silence Palestinians. This is the tip of the iceberg
So shameless, so spineless, so pathetic. They won’t stop until they’ve effectively silenced every Palestinian and made media outlets pay for the very few times they platform us. Disgusting.
if you are reading this and you want to do something about it, email

Tell them that is racist harassment of a Palestinian woman, that these lobbyists have been getting opinions published non-stop about the episode in The Australian and The Age/SMH, that this is
Read 4 tweets

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