Danny Glover, Rosario Daw­son sign let­ter to ‘free Ahed’

Jerusalem Post - - NEWS - • By AMY SPIRO

A slate of Amer­i­can ac­tors, mu­si­cians, writ­ers and ac­tivists have signed a let­ter calling for Pales­tinian teenager Ahed Tamimi to be freed and for US rep­re­sen­ta­tives to take ac­tion.

The let­ter, pub­lished on Mon­day by the Dream De­fend­ers or­ga­ni­za­tion, is signed by ac­tors Danny Glover, Rosario Daw­son and Jesse Wil­liams, mu­si­cians Tom Morello and Vic Mensa, NFL player Michael Ben­nett and ac­tivists in­clud­ing Cor­nel West, Alice Walker and An­gela Davis.

“From Trayvon Martin to Muham­mad Abu Khdeir and Kalief Brow­der to Ahed Tamimi – racism, state vi­o­lence and mass in­car­cer­a­tion have robbed our peo­ple of their child­hoods and their fu­tures,” the let­ter reads.

Tamimi, 17, whose trial be­gan on Tues­day, was ar­rested in De­cem­ber for throw­ing rocks at and shov­ing and slap­ping IDF sol­diers. She has been de­tained in an Is­raeli prison since her ar­rest.

The Dream De­fend­ers is an ac­tivist or­ga­ni­za­tion as­so­ci­ated with the Black Lives Mat­ter move­ment and was founded in 2012 af­ter the fa­tal shoot­ing in Florida of Martin, an un­armed 17-year-old, by a neigh­bor­hood watch of­fi­cer. Brow­der, an African-Amer­i­can from the Bronx, was ac­cused in 2010, at age 16, of the theft of a back­pack and its con­tents in­clud­ing a cam­era, $700, a credit card and an iPod. Brow­der was im­pris­oned for three years with time in soli­tary con­fine­ment. He was re­leased when the case was found lack­ing in ev­i­dence. The main wit­ness had left the United States. Two years af­ter his re­lease from prison, Brow­der com­mit­ted sui­cide.

Last week the Supreme Court in Jerusalem up­held the mur­der con­vic­tions and life sen­tence of the killers of Abu Khdeir, a Pales­tinian teen who was bru­tally mur­dered by three Jews in 2014.

“In the US, we know all too well what it’s like to be op­pressed sim­ply be­cause you ex­ist, be­cause you refuse to give up your fight for free­dom,” ac­cord­ing to the let­ter. “Last year, a Dream De­fend­ers del­e­ga­tion of artists trav­eled to Pales­tine to bear wit­ness to life un­der Is­rael mil­i­tary oc­cu­pa­tion and met the Tamimi fam­ily in their vil­lage of Nabi Saleh. Songs and sto­ries of strug­gle were shared, from the US to Pales­tine.”

In the let­ter, the or­ga­ni­za­tion called on US con­gress­men to push for­ward a bill in­tro­duced in the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives in Novem­ber by Rep. Betty McCol­lum of Min­nesota, a mem­ber of the Demo­cratic-Farmer-La­bor com­pany. The bill, ti­tled Pro­mot­ing Hu­man Rights by End­ing Is­raeli Mil­i­tary De­ten­tion of Pales­tinian Chil­dren, calls to “pre­vent United States tax dol­lars from sup­port­ing the Is­raeli mil­i­tary’s on­go­ing de­ten­tion and mis­treat­ment of Pales­tinian chil­dren.”

(Am­mar Awad)

AHED TAMIMI

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