Welcome to 14 Friends of Palestine
22nd February, 2015
Regarding your request yesterday for info on water/wastewater situation in Gaza, as the email explained, it is dire. Following is my understanding of the infrastructure at the city:
Water: Gaza relies on wells for drinking, which draws water from an underground aquifer (or underground lake). Ideally, there should be an equilibrium of how much you draw from the aquifer and how much it is being fed by rainfall. In Gaza, the amount being drawn is way more than the replenishment rate by the rain, which is evidently being exacerbated by Israel through damming rainwater flow downstream from surrounding areas to the lower elevation of the Gaza strip along the coast. This causes salty see water to seep underground from the sea to the diminishing aquifer, resulting in brackish and poor water quality available to the Gazans. The situation continues to deteriorate with time further, and could result in permanent damage to the aquifer.
Wastewater or sewage: Sewage is collected through pipes to about a dozen pumping stations in the city that ideally would pump the flow to the treatment plant south of the city. The treatment plant would then treat the flow and discharge treated flow tot he sea. With the disruption of electricity and damage of bombing, many pumping stations don't work, causing sewage to pool in streets in neighborhoods, causing diseases and insects. The treatment also if disrupted due to power (electric) outages and damage to equipment would result in discharging untreated sewage to the sea, polluting it and causing the marine life to deteriorate.
I hope you find the above useful.
Click here for more information...
If overseas or in USA, you can donate to the MECA Water Project online using credit cards: our web page at MECA for the Water Project is here and our web page at MECA for Khitam is here.
November 1st, 2014
14 Friends of Palestine and our friends from Jewish Voice for Peace would like to thank the Latino community of San Rafael for inviting people from other cultures to take part in their Day of the Dead Memorial at Pickleweed Park.
We very much appreciated the opportunity to have an altar in memory of the over 500 children killed in the attacks on Gaza this past summer. We received a lot interest from the community, who asked many questions and took a real interest. We are grateful for the warm welcome they extended to us on behalf of the children of Palestine.
As Israelis sit on a hillside and cheer every bomb and missile that drops on Gaza:
Palestinians in Gaza suffer:
Read more about the vicious assualts on Gaza on our dedicated page here...
The below photo is of Gaza's Ark after it was sabotaged likely by a covert Israeli operation in April 2014
Read more about the sabotage here...
Below is a picture of Gaza's Ark almost completely destroyed in the Israeli bombing of Gaza's port at 2am on July 11th 2014, Gaza time.
Below is a picture of Gaza's Ark after the attack:
Read more about the bombing here...
Four years ago, Israeli commandos attacked the MaviMarmara and five other ships in the Freedom Flotilla, in international waters, while they were heading to Gaza. The Flotilla, which Free Gaza helped organize along with the Turkish charity, IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation, was determined to break the blockade of Gaza and bring humanitarian aid to the people there. Eight Turks and one American were killed on board the Comoros-flagged Mavi Marmara ( a tenth man recently died from his wounds) and many others on all the ships were injured, some seriously.
On 26 May 2014, the Istanbul Criminal Court issued arrest warrants for four former Israel military officials who ordered the 2010deadly commando raid. They are: Israel's former Military Chief of Staff, Gabi Ashkenazi, former Navy Chief, Eliezer Marom, former Military Intelligence Chief, Amos Yadlin, and former Naval Intelligence Chief, Avishai Levy.
Tibetans, North Koreans, sex slaves, Palestinians . . . among these, only the Palestinians’ lack of freedom is enabled by the U.S. government, with our tax dollars. The U.S. supplies over $8 million dollars a day in military aid to Israel, whose population is about the size of the Bay Area’s. Most of this military aid is used against Palestinian civilians who are struggling to free themselves from Israeli occupation, domination, and expansion onto Palestinian land....
read more in our flier here
Visit this link to read more about an important letter from 15 mainstream US religious leaders asking Congress to condition Israel military aid on human rights compliance.
The signers urge an immediate investigation into possible violations by Israel of the U.S. Foreign Assistance Act and the U.S. Arms Export Control Act, which respectively prohibit assistance to any country which engages in a consistent pattern of human rights violations and limit the use of U.S. weapons to “internal security” or “legitimate self-defense.”
If the above doesn't display, click here to watch it on YouTube
Samer Issawi, the Palestinian hunger striker who went without food for over 270 days in an Israeli prison, returns to his beloved Jerusalem to a joyous welcome. His sister Shireen and the rest of his family have been waiting with extraordinary patience and fortitude for this moment, so typical of the amazing endurance of the Palestinian people.
More information here...
The Sponsored Diet for Palestine is now finished - more details of how much we raised coming soon!.
For the next several months, 14 Friends of Palestine will be concentrating almost exclusively on Gaza’s Ark
For information about this exciting project, and the latest progress report, please click here...
Free Gaza sought to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza by sailing international boats to Gaza, with five of the nine attempts successfully reaching Gaza Port.
Gaza’s Ark hopes to break the blockade by doing the exact opposite – by building a boat inside Gaza and sailing it out! We have already purchased a fishing boat and are currently refurbishing it and converting it into a cargo vessel, to carry goods for export to the outside world. Palestinians want trade, not aid. This is an international effort, with Canadians, Americans, Australians, Europeans and South Africans working together.
Buy a Gaza’s Ark share for $50. Contact email@example.com
Buy a T-shirt for $20 for S,M,L,XL; $22 for 2X,3X. Price includes sales tax. Add Shipping $5. Available in four colors: Black, Teal, Green and CODEPINK. Make check payable to Turtle Island Humanitarian Aid with Gaza’s Ark in the memo line. Mail to: Gaza’s Ark, PO BOX 6634, San Rafael, CA 94903. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org More details are here...
Buy a copy of Freedom Sailors for $15. This is the story of the first breaking of the siege by the Free Gaza Movement in August 2008. A great read.
- Send a tax deductible check made out to our fiscal sponsors, Nonviolence International, with Gaza’s Ark in the memo line, to this address:-
Gaza’s Ark/14 FP
PO BOX 6634,
Thank you for supporting Gaza’s Ark.
Please visit our page dedicated to remembering The Nakba....
May 15, 2013
On the 65th commemoration of the Nakba, the struggle continues:
We have purchased Gaza’s Ark -
with your help, we will sail towards justice
When Palestinians and other people of conscience mark Nakba (Catastrophe) Day on May 15, they insist that the world acknowledge the history of Palestinian dispossession since 1948. As world leaders have ignored Palestinian dispossession in general, they have also ignored the suffering of Palestinians in Gaza under the Israeli blockade. Gaza's Ark is a people-to-people campaign to force the injustices faced by Palestinians in Gaza back onto the world's agenda.
More information on the Gaza's Ark web site here...
Members of 14 Friends of Palestine and the 2013 Sponsored Diet for Palestine
invite people of conscience to join them in a 24-hour fast in solidarity
with Samer Issawi, the Palestinian political prisoner who has now been on
hunger strike for over 210 days. Issawi has been held since July in
administrative detention; this means he has not been formally charged with a
crime. He either wants to be formally charged and given a fair trial, or
released, and will continue his hunger strike until one of these things
happens. We also demand Israel release imprisoned Palestinian hunger
strikers Ayman Sharawna, Tareq Qaadan and Jaafar Azzidine together with all
Palestinian political prisoners.
We will start the weekly fast on Fridays at 8pm, and continue until Saturday 8pm, eating no food whatsoever and drinking
This time was chosen as most people do not have to work on Saturday.
However, you are welcome to pick your own day and time to fit your schedule.
The exact date is not important; any time from now is fine. However, we
would ask you to please tell your local media that you are fasting, and why.
Also tell as many friends as possible. Our goal is to raise awareness across
the world about the plight of Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails,
often without charge or trial; men, women and even children.
If you would like to join the 24-hour fast, please accept the invitation on
the Facebook event page here.
Or email us at email@example.com
Please also visit the Free Samer Issawi Campaign Facebook page here
Finally, please read Samer Issawi's message of Feb 16th, the 209th day of
his hunger strike:
16.02.13 - "I turn with admiration to the masses of our heroic Palestinian
people, to our Palestinian leadership, to all forces, parties and national
institutions. I salute them for standing by our fight to defend our right to
freedom and dignity.
I draw my strength from my people, from all the free people in the world,
from friends and the families of the prisoners who continue day and night
chanting for freedom and an end to the occupation.
My health has deteriorated dramatically and I'm hung between life and death.
My weak body is collapsing but still able to be patient and continue the
confrontation. My message is that I will continue until the end, until the
last drop of water in my body, until martyrdom. Martyrdom is an honor for me
in this battle. My martyrdom is my remaining bomb in the confrontation with
the tyrants and the jailers, in the face of the racist policy of the
occupation that humiliates our people and exercises against us all means of
oppression and repression.
I say to my people: I'm stronger than the occupation army and its racist
laws. I, Samer al-Issawi, son of Jerusalem, send you my last will that, in
case I fell as a martyr, you will carry my soul as a cry for all the
prisoners, man and women, cry for freedom, emancipation and salvation from
the nightmare of prisons and their harsh darkness.
My battle is not only for individual freedom. The battle waged by me and by
my heroic colleagues, Tariq, Ayman and Ja'affar, is everyone's battle, the
battle of the Palestinian people against the occupation and its prisons. Our
goal is to be free and sovereign in our liberated state and in our blessed
The weak and strained beats of my heart derive their steadfastness from you,
the great people. My eyes, which started to lose their sight, draws light
from your solidarity and your support of me. My weak voice takes its
strength from your voice that is louder than the warden's voice and higher
than the walls.
I'm one of your sons, among thousands of your sons who are prisoners, still
languishing steadfasting in the prisons, waiting for an end to be brought to
their plight, their pains and the suffering of their families.
The doctors told me I became exposed to stroke because of the disorder of my
heartbeats, the shortage of sugar and the drop in blood pressure. My body is
full of cold and I can't sleep because of the continued pain. But despite
the extreme fatigue and chronic headaches, as I move on my chair, I'm trying
to summon all my resources to continue on the road till its end. There is no
going back, only in my victory, because I'm the owner of Right and my
detention is invalid and illegal.
Do not be afraid for my heart if it will stop, don't be afraid for my hands
if they will be paralyzed. I am still alive now and tomorrow and after
death, because Jerusalem is moving in my blood, in my devotion and my
Click here to visit our dedicated page to see our statement on the Gaza attacks and to find out how to stay informed, and most importantly, how you can help.
Baby Omar, 11 month old son of BBC employee killed in the Israeli attacks on Gaza
|Freedom Sailors is a much-needed account of how a small group of ordinary people conceived and executed what seemed like a grandiose and audacious plan to break Israel’s illegal military blockade of the Gaza Strip.
||Bed Bath & Beyond flash mob in Larkspur, Marin: Stop selling illegal Israeli settlement products Link...
14 Friends of Palestine sent a team of five to join MECA in the Bay to Breakers on Sunday, May 20th, to raise money for the Maia Water Project, bringing safe drinking water to the children of Gaza.
Currently the aquifer under Gaza is so low that sea water is creeping in and making the drinking water supply too salty. Kidney disease is rife among the young, as well as Methemoglobinemia, a disease of the red blood corpuscles that converts the haemoglobin to methemoglobin that prevents the red blood cells from carrying sufficient oxygen to all the organs of the body. It is caused by drinking polluted water, and an alarmingly high number of children in Gaza have resultant permanent brain damage from this disease. It is known as ‘blue baby syndrome’. This could be easily prevented by installing water purification systems in every school.
MECA is working in partnership with community organizations in Gaza to build water purification and desalination units in schools throughout the Gaza Strip, and has provided clean water to 14 large UN schools in Palestinian refugee camps and to 13 kindergartens in refugee camps, towns, and villages. Our joint goal with MECA is to raise $11,500 to provide a water purification system for one middle school in Gaza, so that the children there can have safe, clean drinking water.
Late donations for MECA will be accepted through end of July, 2012.
You may donate directly online here...
or send a tax deductible check made out to MECA, with Water Project in memo line, to us at:
14 Friends Of Palestine,
PO BOX 6634,
San Rafael, CA 94903
Thank you for your continuing support!
You can also check out the successful fund raising we did in 2010 for the Maia Water Projecet here...
We are currently focusing on collecting signatures for the Israel Divestment Campaign.
Please sign the online petition by clicking here.
Members of the Israel Divestment Campaign will be delivering the petition to the boards of the State Retirement Systems, CalPERS and CalSTRS, to request the following:
We, the undersigned, oppose investments by the California State Retirement System (STRS) and the California Public Employees' Retirement System (PERS) in any company that profits from the State of Israel's occupation of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, includingEast Jerusalem.
According to your own investment reports, more than $3 billion is invested in companies that we believe facilitate Israel's violation of human rights, its repudiation of international law and its disregard of UN Conventions and Resolutions.
Further, we are concerned that these investments put the retirement funds at risk of major loss as a result of increased worldwide divestment activity.
Therefore, we the undersigned, all of whom are either STRS and/or PERS members and/or California State taxpayers, call on you to honor your own policies prescribing socially responsible investing and respect for human rights and to begin your own defined process of engagement with the companies that supply Israel the equipment, supplies and services that facilitate the violation of human rights.
Thank you for signing this petition. You may choose not to have your name displayed on the website. When you have signed, please confirm your signature or it won’t count. Please forward widely.
Please sign the online petition by clicking here.
Statesmen will invent cheap lies, putting blame upon the nation that is attacked, and every man will be glad of those conscience-soothing falsities, and will diligently study them, and refuse to examine any refutations of them; and thus he will by and by convince himself that the war is just, and will thank God for the better sleep he enjoys after this process of grotesque self-deception.
- Mark Twain 1916
(Click on the image above to donate.)
(Click on the image above to donate.)
We support the organizations listed on the
left side of this page.
We do local outreach projects in Marin.
We work to overcome the 'them and us' mentality
that is such an obstacle to peace.
We provide educational materials to schools
and libraries including copies of A
Little Piece Of Ground
by Elizabeth Laird.
Freedom Sailors is a much-needed account of how a small group of ordinary people conceived and executed what seemed like a grandiose and audacious plan to break Israel’s illegal military blockade of the Gaza Strip.
Many books have dealt with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from the Israeli perspective. However, few reflect the Palestinian point of view. The author is Prof. Ken Ring, a resident of Marin.
It is with enormous sadness that we announce the death of Sylvia Bingham, one of the founders of 14 Friends of Palestine.
Sylvia was cycling to her new job in Cleveland, helping disadvantaged women, when she was hit by a truck and killed.
Sylvia was only 22 years old, and had just graduated from Yale. Further details are on the web site here..
Sylvia will be remembered for her compassion for the less fortunate, her integrity, and her courage to stand up for what is right.
Sylvia's determination to make the world a better place is an inspiration to us all.
A CONCERT OF ETHNIC MUSIC AND DANCE
Hannah Romanowsky and the
Live Music by Helm
Greta Berlin, co-author of
Dedicated to Rachel Corrie, the 23-year-old peace activist who was killed on
March 16, 2003, while protecting a Palestinian home from being bulldozed.
Sunday March 24, 2013 at 4pm
Thanks to the performers, Greta and to all who came - a very successful event.
A concert of Vocal Music Featuring Sing We Enchanted and Soha Al-Jurf for our sponsored child in Gaza, Khitam Qanoo'
Sunday Jan 27, 2013
Thanks to the performers and to all who came - we met our funding goal!
David Rovics performed in a concert to benefit Gaza's Ark in San Anselmo
Thanks to all who came - fantasic show - there's a rumor there might be a video in the works!
Colonel Ann Wright gave a presentation on 'Breaking the Israeli Naval Blockade by Sailing with Gaza's Exports' in San Anselmo, CA
A showing in Marin to a full house of the acclaimed movie that portrays a young woman going to Israel/Palestine in the present day, using her visit to investigate her soldier grandfather's part in the post-war phase of the British Mandate of Palestine.
Singing for Khitam
A concert of unaccompanied choral music
including music by Wilbye, Janequin, Dvorak and the Beatles
My Name Is Rachel Corrie
Directed by Lois Pearlman and Starring Mandy Cimino as Rachel With Middle Eastern music by HELM, and songs by Doug Adamz
Holiday Concert with Just Voices to Benefit the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund.
Thank you all who supported this event!
We raised $2,020. For a small donation, you can get a DVD of the event by emailing us...
You can view a recording of the event here...
Thank you all who supported this event with Adam Shapiro. We are delighted to say that we raised $915 for U.S. Boat to Gaza.
Thank you all who supported this event, which has raised $5,965 broken down to: $1,545 for Khitam Qanoo and $4,420 for MECA's Maia water project, bringing safe drinking water to the children of Gaza.
2010 Sponsored Diet Fundraiser
Thank for supporting the Free Gaza Movement.. They hope to sail to Gaza in Spring 2010.
Thank you to everyone who supported our recent event to benefit the Friends of Sabeel .
Thank you to everyone who supported our recent event: the presentation on Gaza by Donna and Darlene Wallach, in aid of the Gaza Branch of the International Solidarity Movement.
Singing for Khitam. A concert of unaccompanied choral music to benefit our little sponsored child, Khitam Qanoo
Dancing for Rachel - a Rachel Corrie Memorial Concert of Arabic Music and Dancing.
The performers : Hannah and Danceversity students, Evil Eye Belly Dance,
Terry Di Giorno, Raks Terayz,
Guest speaker Dr. Jess Ghannam, Board Member of the Gaza Mental Health Program
Israeli Peace Activist Dorothy Naor's talk
Visit AATW here
Shachaf's video of the destruction of Palestinian apricot trees is on YouTube here. .
The Free Gaza web
site is here.
The If Americans Knew web
site is here.
We were able to give Anna donations totaling $1,068, plus
For people who did not get
a copy of Anna's fact sheet handout, click here.
Anna's web site is here.
Five for Palestine web site
Thank you to everyone that supported our 2008
Summer Raffle for Palestine that raised $13,360!
Thank you all who organized
our successful educational Nakba event .