Members of the South African 'revolutionary' political party EFF (Economic Freedom Fighters) and their leader Julius Malema took the streets of Johannesburg, marching to the Constitutional Court at Constitution Hill against President Jacob Zuma. The protestors are calling on the president to pay back some of the R 246 million of public funds spent on his home in Nkandla, Cape Province.
The EFF and the DA (Democratic Alliance ) took Zuma to court for violating the Constitution and his oath of office.
PRETORIA, SOUTH AFRICA (RECENT MARCH AUGUST 2014)
1.VARIOUS OF PEOPLE MARCHING IN THE STREETS OF PRETORIA
(VO) “Shock and outrage are expressed by thousands of South Africans across the country. They are venting their anger over Israel’s unrelenting bombardment of Gaza.
Palestine, they say, is as much of a victim of apartheid as South Africa was for decades. They have joined their voices and hope the South African Government will act soon by showing leadership in resolving the Israel-Palestine crises. “
2.(SOUNDBITE) (English) ZWELINZIMA VAVI, GENERAL SECRETARY OF SOUTH AFRICAN CONGRESS OF TRADE UNIONS, (COSATU) SAYING:
“We here are all former victims of a brutal apartheid system that humiliated us on daily basis, that took our dignity away, that invaded our country and continent and took everything that we used to say it belongs to us away, that did everything that we detested, throughout our lives. But something very important you said, Muhammed, and that is, what we went through over three hundred years of Colonial oppression in South Africa, is like a Sunday school picnic toward the Palestinian people are going through every day in their own land. An invading Army came and took their land through a barrel of the gun, forced hundred and hundred of thousands of the citizens of that country… forced them into exile, took every square, every inch of that land and put in a new board, now Israel, no longer Palestine, confined that population into a small piece of land, now called the Gaza Strip, whilst occupying the rest of the country through the guns, received most sophisticated and powerful support from that Hippocratic State called the United States of America… down with them! Shame on you, Barack Obama, shame on you and your name that represents the opposite of what you are doing on daily basis, to the brothers and sisters of ours in Palestine. So we are here, comrades, because we understand that injustice anywhere constitutes a threat to peace everywhere in the world. We are here because our own intellectual icon, Nelson Mandela, told us so many times that we will remain unfree until the people of Palestine have been freed. We are here because we love humankind. We are firstly anti-racist to the core; we don’t like racism, we don’t like people being discriminated on the basis of a race, gender, religion or any of the divisions amongst our people. This nonsense that we are anti-Jews is something that we must condemn all the time because it is an attempt to shame the struggle, the legitimate struggle of the people of Palestine.”
(VO) “Professor Steven Friedmann, a Jewish academic at the University of Johannesburg, comments further on the position the US has taken on this issue.”
3.VARIOUS OF PROFESSOR FRIEDMAN WITH VARIOUS OVERLAYS OF ISRAELIS ATTACKS ON GAZA
4.(SOUNDBITE)(English) STEVEN FRIEDMAN, PROFESSOR AND ACADEMIC AT THE UNIVERSITY OF JOHANNESBURG, SAYING:
“There are absolutely no grounds for the Americans to say that this is about the Israeli Right of self defense, because in International Law, a country which is occupying another country has no right to self defense against the country it is occupying. In fact in the South African context, it will be a bit like the Government in Pretoria saying that has got the right to defense against the Western Cape… it’s nonsense. The Israelis claim that they don’t occupy Gaza because they haven’t been physically there for a while, but once again, in terms of International Law, first of all the Israelis are maintaining a siege on Gaza, and that is illegal. Secondly, International Law doesn’t say that you actually have to be physically there to be the occupying Power. You have to be the Power in control, and quite clearly the Israeli State is in control of Palestine. So in International Law there is no Right to self-defense. If you look at the recent History, you see that the Claim that Israelis are defending themselves against rockets is untrue. The rockets started after the Israelis started attacking Gaza… they were not there before. The Israelis attacked Gaza because they used an excuse. The excuse, of course, was that three teenagers on the West Bank, not in Gaza, had been kidnapped and murdered. Now, at the time in which they were kidnapped and murdered, the Israeli State produced no evidence whatsoever that Hamas had any involvement in this. Subsequently, the Israeli Police had said publicly that Hamas was not involved in this. So what the Israelis did instead was they trumped up a charge against Hamas, they used that as an excuse to invade, and when people responded by firing rockets, they then said they were protecting themselves against the rockets, and the Americans, for domestic and political reasons, have simply bought it into that story.
(VO)”Since the bombardments began, protests like this one have been a frequent occurrence.”
5.MORE OF PEOPLE MARCHING
6.(SOUNDBITE) AND OVERLAYS OF MARCH IN CAPE TOWN(English) SOMAYA OMAR, SPOKEPERSON BDS SOUTH AFRICA , SAYING:
“The biggest protest which everybody in South Africa celebrating at the moment since the dawn of Democracy was on the 9th of August in Cape Town. We marched to the South African Parliament. We’ve seen over two hundred thousands people came out, from Mpumhalanga, Limpopo, Gauteng, Free State… all the Provinces in South Africa and it was really amazing, I mean we had key speakers, like Archbishop Desmond Tutu, deputy Minister in the Presidency, Buthi Manemela and other various, Qhuary Akhricano, who is the National spoke person for BDS was also there, she was the MC. What was historic about this event was that was also on Women’s Day, and in this protest, the women were actually leading the protest, we had over a thousand women at the front with banners, BDS banners, other different banners, leading the protest in the name of Palestine, obviously against Israeli attacking Gaza. And we can see that the momentum from this protest is keeping up, we have other events that are occurring throughout the country still, not only protests, not only marches. People are having screenings, campaigns… In terms of hosting people, such as Ronnie Kasril, people from the BDS Organization, and they’re calling us, and they telling us we are having this event please can you send speakers, please can you send flyer material. We want BDS to be involved. We want to work under the banner of boycott diverse in sanctions for Palestine against Israel.”
(VO)”BDS South Africa says they will be unrelenting in their objective to get the Government to take decisive action against Israel.”
7.VARIOUS OF POSTERS
8.(SOUNDBITE)AND OVERLAYS OF POSTERS (English) SOMAYA OMAR, SPOKEPERSON FOR BDS SOUTH AFRICA SAYING:
“We need History, our own History, to teach us where to go from now. We need to take the lesson of the Anti-Apartheid Movement and strategically and constructively use that to free Palestine. Why the ANC, and why the AVAT? They are the comrades, they are the veterans, they fought the actual Anti-Apartheid Movement in South Africa against the South African Apartheid Regime. This is why we are saying not only are the ANC leading Government, but they have a closed History, they know too well. We’ve seen here Nelson Mandela’s famous quote everybody uses: “We know too well that South Africa will only be free when Apartheid is free.” So we made a commitment to the South African people, we made a commitment to the people of Palestine in particular, that we will take constructive action, that we will do something.”
9.(SOUNDBITE)(English) PROFESSOR STEVEN FRIEDMAN SAYING:
“In fairness to the South African Government, and I am very often not fair, not sympathetic to the South African Government on this particular issue. They are doing more than other Governments though they can make, obviously more than the Americans, but because of the particular political reality, they are doing better than any other Middle Eastern Government who should be doing something. But to say that is nearly enough is not the case. There is a great deal more that the South African Government should do and which they aren’t doing. That said, I don’t think that the correct response to that is for people to simply fold their hands and to say, ‘Well South African Government, when are you going to have a more active stance on Palestine?’ In Democratic Societies, and we are a Democratic Society, governments respond if there are political voices in the political spaces for them to respond, so really those people who feel, in my view correctly, that it ought to be a stronger Government reaction need to make their voices heard. People like me, for what it is worth, make my voice heard when I am fortunate enough. I did have the privilege of speaking to the parliamentary Committee on International Relations. I have had the privilege of times of being in discussions with Senior members of the South African Government on this issue, and you obviously put the point to them there. But the reality is they are not going to change their position until they get the sense that thousands and probably millions of South Africans want them to change their position. My view-- I cannot produce a survey-- my view from my interaction particularly with my Black colleagues, is that the vast majority of South Africans support great pressure on the Israeli State, but those voices need to be organized and those voices need to be heard. “
(VO) “There are however characteristics of Apartheid Israel that does not quite fit the South African Scenario, when brutal killings took place back then. For one: Israeli aggression is far more brutal, inhumane and merciless, so says Professor Friedman.”
10.VARIOUS OF OVERLAYS DURING (VO)
11.(SOUNDBITE)(English)PROFESSOR FRIEDMAN SAYING:
“In the 1920s, there was a Zionist leader called Jabotinsky. He was a Right Wing Zionist leader at the time, and he wrote some famous articles and really what those articles said, he was criticizing the other Zionists, he was saying: “ Look, it is a waste of time, pretending that Palestinians will ever accept what we want to do here because we want to do here is to create a State on their Land, and no human being will ever accept that.” So Jabotinsky’s solution to that problem was : “We must create, we being Zionists, we must create an iron wall which ensures whether the Palestinian like the presence there or not, they have to accept it.” Now although that was originally a Right Wing Zionist feud, in the 1930s, David Ben Gurion became the first Prime Minister of the Israeli State, who was regarded as Left Wing neighbor Zionist, made almost identical speech, and what Ben Gurion said was : “We need to create a situation where the Arabs as he put it, will despair. And if they despair, they will accept what we impose up on them.” And that is the basis of the way in which the State operates, so you have to use massive levels of violence because you don’t really want to negotiate with people, you don’t want to really live with them, you want to make sure they are terrified.”
12.VARIOUS OF MUSLIMS IN FORDSBUG (SOUTH OF JOHANNESBURG)
(VO)” Muslim in South Africa might have an attachment to Palestine and perhaps remain more forthright about the Issue. But make no mistake, judging by the large turnout of South Africans protesting across the Country, this is viewed as a South African story.”
13.VARIOUS OF ALAN HORWITZ IN THE STREET OF JEOVILLE , A SUBURB WEST OF JOHANNESBURG.
(VO)” Alan Horwitz is a South African Jew who served as an Israeli soldier and grew up as a Zionist. He is now a Human Rights activist and a strong opponent of Israel.”
14.(SOUNDBITE)(English) ALAN HORWITZ, AUTHOR AND HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST.SAYING:
“When I looked through these photographs of myself as a tank driver in the Israeli Army, really it is coming from another life time. And yet this continuity, because I understand my background, and I have accepted my identity in a positive spirit of being a Jewish person, and at the same time what defines me more essentially is the fact that I am a human being. But the turning point came where towards the end of my two-year period, for the first time assigned to, we were instructed to go to Chevron, which was part of the West Bank, and joining a search for arms, because one of the Palestinian resistant groups had had an incident with the Israeli Army, and we were sent in- it was a shortage of manpower- to search for arms. We were instructed to go into a village and search that village, and I remember clearly standing in the central part of the village. The other soldiers had instructed the inhabitants, the villagers, to come in to that square, and standing guard over these people, civilians. I stood there while the other soldiers went and searched the houses and I was standing guard over these defenseless people and I said : “no, no, these people are not my enemies, and they are not necessarily enemies of the Jews. Their country, their villages, their land, has been threatened by an other force, by another Nationalism.” And that was the turning point, and together with three or four other soldiers, and ironically all of us were Jews from outside of Israel, some South Americans, one or two other South Africans, we went to our commander literally that night and said: “we not prepared to do this, we are in the paid Force, but we are not prepared to act as soldiers of the Occupation.”
15.(SOUNDBITE)( English )ALAN HORWITZ SAYING:
“ I think the solution is really what we practice in South Africa, and that is to have an open society, where irrespective of one’s national language or religious background, you are first and foremost an equal citizen of that particular entity, the Republic of South Africa, so that in Israel and Palestine are such a small territory compared to South Africa, it’s laughable that two people cannot somehow find the way to guaranty each other’s, lets say cultural autonomy, religious rights, but at the same time to maintain what we call a civilized intercourse, because the economic tide in between the two should be strong, and Israel and Palestine could become very important cultural scientific and economic hub in the Middle East, let’s say together with Lebanon. That dream is not necessary utopia; it is something that could be realised that from both sides there was acceptance that the clock cannot entirely turn back. But to go forward, there has to be a re evaluation of what national Rights constitute.
16.MS OF SPEAKER
(SOUNDBITE)(English) ALAN HORWITZ PUBLIC SPEECH SAYING: “Comrades, I stand before you as a Jewish South African, as a Human Rights Activist, and as someone who cannot support the use of violence in the name of Liberation. What we have seen in the Middle East today that violence is destroying many different societies on the basis of tribal identity, on the basis of religions, and the conflict Israel and Palestine has gone on for centuries, will be marked by tragedies because of the confusion of liberation with the suppression of particular people for the dispossession of their land. We in South Africa, we know the our of settlement of 1994 has not been perfect. We do not have an equal South Africa, or perfectly just South Africa, however we know that our Movement which was largely non violent, brought us the fruit of the downfall of Apartheid in the worst of manifestation. Now I say that the Jews of South Africa and those in the Middle East or whatever persuasion who believe that violence is the answer, in particular addressing to the Israeli Government, that violence will never bring about security for Jews people or liberation of Jewish people. It is allow to say that Zionism is truly a Liberation Movement when is dispossessing and oppressing in the first point murdering other people particularly the civilian population of Gaza? We know that the so-called Settlement Pronunciation undertaken by the United States over the last year, we were smoke screened let the Israeli Government provoke in good Faith and have no intention to reach a compromise. Many Israeli Jews themselves have been very critical of their own Government. Now we in South Africa, what can we do to support the Palestinian cause? I believe that it is one very clear answer: we must support BDS to the maximum, because only BDS can show the Israeli leadership that the rest of the world, including South Africa, will have no further track, and
the rest that they are using in the name of Jewish Liberation. That is a gross distortion, and
in fact that discredits the suffering of Jewish people at the hands of other fascist
s in many other societies over the centuries. So we must call upon our own
government and exercise maximum pressure to see that Israel as it is concurrently constituted is isolated and shamed and brought to a genuine settlement to the Palestinian people. Amanndla:"
17.VARIOUS OF PROTESTERS CHANTING
18.VOX POPS “ They must be free. Free Palestine free."
19.VOX POPS” This is not a matter of Religion, it’s more of Humanity. We are not against Jewish people and Jewish people are here to protest with us. It’s just so much , people are killing innocent children, innocent lives, just because of political problems and we can’t just stay here and do nothing about it. We need to take a stand as a Country as a whole , we should take a stand and we should free Palestine , free Gaza “
20.VOX POPS” Our point is that the Palestinian struggle is our struggle as the people of South Africa. We know very well to be discriminated in your own land, we know very well that forced removal. We were yesterday the recipient of that international solidarity from the whole world. Therefore, we have to give that solidarity to the Palestinian people”.
21.MORE OF PROTESTERS CHANTING
July 18, 2014
Johannesburg, South Africa
Residents of Johannesburg protest against the Israeli bombardment of Gaza, demanding their government freeze relations with Israel, expel the Israeli ambassador from South Africa and recall the South African ambassador from Tel Aviv.
Benedict Daswa, a devout Roman Catholic from rural Limpopo Province, South Africa, is set to become South Africa's first saint. The church, in the diocese of Tzaneen, lead by Bishop Joao Rodriguez is finalizing the process that could see Benedict Daswa beatified and then canonized for his martyrdom.
Daswa, was fourtysix at the time he was murdered in 1990, by an angry mob of villagers, for refusing to partecipate in hiring a withcdoctor, which He himself strongly refused to believe in that practice, to sniff out those they believed were responsibile for lighting strikes in the area.
" The Cause of Benedict Daswa is martyrdom, we believe he was kill in hatred of the Faith which he publicly and privately professed" Says Bishop Rodriguez.