BOYCOTT OF ISRAEL
While Israeli sportsmen and women travel freely around the world,
sporting talent of Palestine is wasted by illegal occupation and
curfew, imprisonment and attack, in refugee camps and exile.
Palestinian children are shot while playing football. Cultural
life struggles for survival and development under attack and siege.
The sports boycott exists as a way to express people's growing
outrage over Israeli occupation and war crimes and the British government's
failure to act ethically. Its a peaceful means of putting international
pressure on the state of Israel. If politicians won't act people
Remember the sports boycott against South African racist apartheid,
now its time to boycott Israeli racist zionism.
"I've been very distressed in my visit to the Holy Land;
it reminded me so much of what happened to us blacks in South
Africa. I have seen the humiliation of the Palestinians at checkpoints
and roadblocks, suffering like us when young white police officers
prevented us from moving about ... If apartheid ended, so can
the occupation, but the moral force and international pressure
will have to be just as determined. The current divestment effort
is the first, though certainly not the only, necessary move in
"Apartheid in the Holy Land," Nobel Peace Prize winner
Archbishop Desmond Tutu
Observe a sporting boycott until Israel ends the occupation and
its racist state terrorism. It happened with South Africa and it
will happen with Israel.
Below we will update details of forth comming sports fixtures featuring
israeli participation. Contact details, sample protest letters,
etc. will be provided - the rest is up to you. Remember those anti-apartheid
actions when people mounted pickets and invaded the pitch?
Manchester United Vs
Adopt the sample letters shown below for the Leyton Orient
game and email your protest to Manchester United.
The game might make a good opportunity for a demonstration
at it might be on TV. We will keep you informed of any planned
Sept 02] From MAB Alert :
18th September 2002, Manchester United, the worlds
largest and richest football club will be competing in the
first phase of the European
Champions League, at Old Trafford. Their opponents on
this night will be a team from Israel, by the name of Maccabi
Haifa. This night coincides with the 20th anniversary of the
massacre at Sabra and Shatila.
The Israeli government makes it mandatory for all men and
some women of 18 years to spend 36 months in the Israeli Defence
Force, therefore all of the Israeli players will have spent
time carrying guns, and may have contributed to the killings
of innocent Palestinians. All of the Maccabi Haifa players
should be investigated as to whether they are indictable for
war crimes, including the atrocities in Jenin earlier this
- Sign the petition condemning the participation of Israeli
teams in UEFA competitions. It will only take 1 minute.
- Bombard UEFA with your outrage:
++41 22 994 44 44
++41 22 994 44 88
* Urge UEFA to use their position in the sporting community
to boycott Israel until there is an end to the occupation,
killing, and state racism.
* Appeal to UEFA's executive committee to suspend Israel's
membership and ban all Israeli football activities in UEFA.
* Remind UEFA that such a decision would be in harmony with
FIFA's brave decision to suspend South Africa because of
- Contact Manchester United Football Club:
0161 868 8000
Ask for Diane Law, Press Officer: Fax 0161 868 8855
or Patrick Haverson, Communications Director: Fax
0161 868 8895
* Urge Manchester United to use their position in
the sporting community to encourage a boycott of Israel
until there is an end to the occupation, killing, and state
* Further, ask Manchester United to remind UEFA that in
allowing Israeli participation in the Champions League it
is effectively annulling the very foundations and values
that the international sporting community was built on.
Sept 02] Protest Called on the Day of Match
Protesters from across the region are expected to converge
at Old Trafford in Manchester on Wednesday to protest at the
presence of the Maccabi Haifa football team.
Protesters will be discussing with Manchester United fans,
in order to create an awareness of the atrocities of the Israeli
government. The protestors will be outside Old Trafford, before
and during the game. The match itself kicks off at 7.45pm.
A broad range of religious, political and humanitarian groups
are supporting this action. These include Muslim Association
of Britain (MAB), Greater Manchester Campaign for Nuclear
Disarmament (CND), Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Stop the
War, Greater Manchester Coalition Against War.
Scotland under-21 Vs
4th September at 7.45pm
Stadium, New Douglas Park
Cadzow Avenue, Hamilton ML3 0FT Scotland
Details for Scottish Football Assoc.
Phone: 0141 616 6000
Fax: 0141 616 6001
Adopt the sample letters shown below for the Leyton Orient
game and email your protest to the Scottish Football Association.
Aug 02] From MAB Alert
Details of pickets outside the stadium and the SFA headquarters
will be announced soon. If you can help in any way with organising
the picket, making a leaflet etc please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aug 02] Newspaper Articles
- This camapign made it to the front page of Glasgows free
weekly newspaper, The Glaswegian.
Read the article: Clash
Over Israel Game.
Aug 02] From the latest MAB Alert:
The SFA has been inundated with your emails. Officially
they have not responded to MAB yet, and have also been playing down
the number of complaints they have been getting. However,
an insider has informed us that they have been flooded with
complaints. MAB has requested a meeting with SFA
Chief Exec David Taylor, and we will keep you updated with
In the media, the SFA has responded by saying that this
is only a sporting fixture and shouldn't be mixed with the
political situation in the Middle East. They also add that
there is no official boycott of Israel, as there was with
South Africa. Our response to this of course is that the
boycott of South Africa started as a grassroots movement, that
worked its way up to the corridors of power in FIFA, the
International Olympic Committee and the rest.
Similarly, the people have to set the wheels in motion
for this Boycott Israeli Goods campaign. To this end, we
need your help in the areas below.
1. Please write to the Glaswegian and register your appreciation
for the coverage given
to this story. The paper is owned by the Daily Record, also
known locally as "The Daily Racist". Any time
they have printed articles disliked by the pro-Israeli lobby
in the past (such as reporting the IDF firing at Lloyd
Quinan MSP), they have come under extreme pressure both
internally and externally to "correct" it in the
Please, let's not see a sop to the pro-Israeli lobby
in next week's Glaswegian. Write now to email@example.com
2. Sign the petition to have the game cancelled at
The SFA has been downplaying the number of complaints they
have been receiving. Let's give them and the media a real
number of the angry people. This petition will be handed
to the SFA.
3. Turn up at the actions
August at 3pm (straight after jummuah prayer)
there will be a picket outside the SFA HQ in Hampden Park.
Let's show them hundreds of angry people wanting the game
4th September, on the evening of the match itself
we have organised a picket outside the ground (Ballast Stadium,
Hamilton). After the kick-off at 7.45pm we will proceed
to a nearby hall for a mini-conference (details TBA).
If you are interested in helping with any of the above,
please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Aug 02] Picket outside SFA HQ
The picket outside the Scottish Football Association HQ,
to protest the staging of the under-21 match against Israel,
was a huge success.
Much of the media had descended on Hampden Park after jummuah
prayer - ranging from BBC TV and Scottish TV, to the Sun
and the Glasgow Herald.
Picketers held up placards saying "SFA shame on you",
"Not in my neighbourhood", and "Give racism
the red card". A colourful protest was accompanied
by firey speeches from various campaigners. This culminated
in a delegation of Aamer Anwar (human rights lawyer), Mick
Napier (PSC) and Osama Saeed (MAB) being appointed to demand
a meeting with SFA chiefs.
They held a half hour meeting with spokesman Andy Mitchell,
who held firm that the SFA were justified in holding the
match, as the goverment had advised them that our nation
holds "normal" relations with Israel. This was
depsite the delegation putting forward that many of the
Israeli players will no doubt have served in the IDF and
are thus potentially triable for war crimes.(*)
(*) 21 of the 22 man football
squad from Israel are serving SOLDIERS - war
criminals returning from Jenin no doubt! (source:
BBC Scotland News 4/9/02-6:30pm)
Photos from the picket courtesy Usamah ibn
"Give Racism The Red Card"
"End The Occupation"
"Stop Israels War Crimes"
"Dont Play Ball With Apartheid"
Aug 02] Newspaper Article
- Following the demonstration, the Scottish Trades Union
Congress condemned the match. General secretary Bill Spiers
said: "We have written to the SFA and the Scottish
Executive expressing concerns about the game. At a time
when Palestinian boys can't get to a football pitch because
of restrictions on them we think it seems particularly inappropriate."
Read the BBC article: Israeli
match sparks protest.
Aug 02] MAB Responds to Newspaper Article
- The Herald published a lead article against the boycott
on 17th August. Read it and MABs response to it (published
Case for Israel sports
* We are grateful to MAB
for their Alert on the game "Scotland vs Israel"
Leyton Orient Vs Maccabi
31 July 2002 7:45pm
Matchroom Stadium, Brisbane Road, Leyton,East
London E10 5NF
Details for Leyton Orient FC
Tel: 020 8926 1111
Fax: 020 8926 1110
- John Hines (Commercial & Stadium Manager)
- Kirstine Nicholson (Club Secretary)
- Matthew Porter (Press Officer)
"Leyton Orient hope that Wednesday's friendly against
Maccabi Tel Aviv will pave the way for ... next season involving
London & Israeli sides ...speaking from Tel Aviv vice-chair
Nick Levene ... suggested because of security fears ' the
UK should offer some sort of facility ...the start of a
decent relationship with Israeli clubs who want to play
Jewish Chronicle, July 26 2002
Leyton Orient are hoping for a crowd of 2,500 at Brisbane
Road. Please send them an email along the lines of the sample
below (please try and construct your own letter using the
points mentioned below - duplicate letters carry less weight)..
|Dear Ms Nicholson,
Could you convey to the Directors of the Club my dismay
that Leyton Orient should play an Israeli team while
the Israeli Military are killing women and children
in the Occupied Terrritories and the Israeli State shows
no signs of even wanting a peaceful end to the Occupation.
It seems to a great many of us that the most powerful
peaceful way of influencing the situation is by bringing
home to civil Israeli instutions that the International
community will not stand by and let their government
liquidate the Palestinians.
Engaging in sporting, cultural and academic events
with a country implies acceptance of that country as
a member of a civilised human collective. But Israel
stands outside that collective. It refuses to implement
international treaties, even ones it has itself signed,
it refuses to allow UN investigators, humanitarian aid
etc to talk to or deal with its victims in Gazza, Jenin,
Do you know that since the Oslo agreement in '93 it
has been incredibly difficult to arrange sporting fixtures
between teams from different Palestinian cities because
the Occupation deliberately impedes them?
It is important to point out that many Israelis are
now begging the outside world to intervene to stop their
government's actions. All encouragement of Israel to
think of itself as a 'normal' country is now morally
* sample letter based on one
written by Dr.Ahdaf Soueif of PSC
Dear Leyton Orient
I am appalled to see you are holding matches with Israeli
football clubs such as the one with Maccabi Tel Aviv
this Wednesday, July 31.
It is totally unethical to carry on 'business as usual'
with Israel when the war crimes and human rights abuses
of their illegal military occupation are stains upon
the conscience of humanity.
Please: don't play ball with apartheid! Observe a sporting
boycott until Israel ends the occupation and its racist
state terrorism. It happened with South Africa and it
will happen with Israel: justice demands a boycott.
* this sample letter was written
by Frankie Green of PSC
* We are grateful to PSC
for their Alert on Leyton Orient titled "Kick Racism
Out Of Sport ... Don't Play Ball With Apartheid!"