October 31, 2016
Our tributes to Renen Raz, a young Israeli opponent died last week
Renen Raz, an Israeli activist "Boycott From Within" (inside Boycott) refusnik who resisted all forms of harassment from the Israeli government, at the age of 28, died of a disease he fought unsuccessfully; it deprives us of a person of great heart and uncommon courage.
We unfortunately never had the pleasure of meeting Renen in person, who spent much time with the Palestinians, shared their struggles and denounced injustice and persecution inflicted upon them.
Photo: Renen arrested during a demonstration against the wall in Nabi Saleh
Renen grew up in a kibbutz near Gaza. But when he refused, at the age of 18, to serve in the occupation army, he was expelled from it.
He became a member of the small group of Israeli activists advocating the boycott of Israel ( "Boycott From Within") and supporting the BDS campaign.
"As those whites who participated in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa, he was accused of treason and" self-hatred ", report our friends BDS of South Africa, who also deplore his death.
He replied: "I cannot choose where I was born, but I can choose between the path of light and the shade."
It was as follows:
"I’m Renan Raz, I’m from Tel Aviv in Palestine. Before living in Tel Aviv, I lived in an Israeli kibbutz, which, before the ethnic cleansing of 1948, was a Palestinian village called Huj, 3km away from the Gaza strip. "
"One day when I was 11 and I was in school, I asked my teacher what about Palestine. I will always remember her terrified reaction and how she ordered me never to utter the word Palestine in school. But I did some research on my own and that’s how I discovered the ethnic cleansing perpetrated by the racist Zionist movement and by the Israeli State . "
"I also noticed that Arab Jews like me were discriminated against. My family was ashamed of being Sephardis rather than from Ashkenazi origin; my family condemned me for showing solidarity with the Palestinians, instead of trying to blend into the Israeli racist white mold, the only ones not to be considered second-class citizens.
"We are not facing a problem of war and peace, but a problem of occupier and occupied. A problem of those who have rights and those who do not. This is not a "conflict", it is colonialism, apartheid - it is a crime against humanity, and we must put an end to impunity. "
"The only way for us to stop this crime is BDS (Boycott, Divestissement and Sanctions) against Israel and all those involved in its crimes."
A huge thank you to Renen, who , just before he died, called to pursuing tirelessly this fight for justice and equal rights