Letter from the Editors, 18th April 2024

Palestine is a Climate Issue


The Camp for Gaza opposite the Bundestag is still active. You can find out more by joining the Telegram group Besetzung gegen Besatzung / Occupy Against Occupation. Or just bring your tent and join us! “The camp is open to everyone with regular workshops and rallies. The participants would welcome your support, so please visit them and bring food and drink, and anything else which could support them. Press requests should be sent to Besetzunggegenbesatzung@systemli.org. We will be publishing an interview with camp organiser Jara Nassar on theleftberlin soon.

This evening (Thursday) at 7pm, there is a public meeting Why Palestinian Liberation is a Climate Justice Issue. The meeting offers a (hybrid) space to connect, discuss, and to get informed. Why is the decades long struggle for Palestinian liberation deeply connected to climate justice? Why is it crucial for the German climate justice movement to understand those systemic links in order to take meaningful action in solidarity with Palestine and other anti-colonial struggles? The meeting takes place in the Jerusalem Kulturforum e.V – Mozaik Zentrum, Grunewaldstraße 87. Meeting organisers, Klima4Palästina are our Campaign of the Week.

Also tonight (Thursday), there is the book presentation in the Hopscotch Reading Rooms which we wrongly included in last week’s Newsletter (sorry for any confusion). John Merrick will be introducing the new book Workshop of the World: Essays in People’s History, which he has edited. “’Workshop of the World’ reveals how Raphael Samuel dived into the nineteenth century to find just how onions were pickled or the temperature of cheese tested, extending far and wide from the rough sleepers in Willesden to Roman Catholic missionaries in Wallasey. The meeting starts at 7pm at Gerichtstraße 45.

On Saturday evening, the Spore Initiative and the Jüdische Stimme will be screening H2: The Occupation Lab. Legally segregated, highly surveilled, heavily filmed and intensely guarded, H2: THE OCCUPATION LAB uncovers the way a one-kilometer long street in Hebron fuels the entire Israeli-Palestinian conflict: past, present, and future. There will be 2 screenings – one at 5pm, the other at 7pm. The second screening of the film will be followed by Q&A with Noam Sheizaf, one of the film’s directors. It all takes place in the Spore Initiative, Hermannstraße 86.

Also on Saturday evening at 7pm, we are screening the film While We Watched in Karl Liebknecht Haus on Rosa Luxemburg Platz. Declining freedom of press is a hallmark of authoritarianism, and India, clearly headed down that path under the Modi government, is no exception. Over the past decade, conditions for journalists have gone from bad to worse. While We Watched is a documentary that chronicles the tragic saga of Ravish Kumar, a journalist at NDTV: a left-liberal news platform critical of the BJP government. The screening will be followed by a discussion on press freedom under capitalism.

On Sunday, it’s the latest monthly Political Walking Tour, now under the management of theleftberlin. This month’s tour will be looking at Riots in Kreuzberg. Every year since 1987, Kreuzberg has seen protests on May 1. “Revolutionary May Day” combines Germany’s knack for organization with Berlin’s predisposition for nihilism. This is our very first tour, which we started in 2009 and have been updating ever since. Our tour will be meeting at Kottbusser Tor, at the corner of Admiralstraße, in front of Südblock. We will meet at 14:00 and leave by 14:10. The tour will end two hours later next to the Schillingbrücke. We will not be using public transportation — the tour will be entirely outside. People who register will receive an e-mail with more information on Saturday.

Our next Palestine Reading Group is on Sunday at 7pm. Last week, we spent our time discussing the cancellation of the Palestine Conference and what it meant for us. This means that this week we will be talking about Feminist Perspectives on the Occupation of Palestine, which we had planned to discuss last week. You can find the selected reading here. The Palestine Reading Group takes place every week, on either Friday or Sunday. Check the page of Events we organise for the coming dates and discussion topics. If you’d like to get more involved in the group, you can join our Telegram group and follow the channel Reading group.

Note that this week’s Reading Group will not be at the usual venue. Instead, we’ll be meeting in the Gaza camp, opposite the Bundestag. Although we’re starting at 7pm, there will probably be a rally at the Camp at 5pm, so please come early to take part in that as well.

The Arab film festival starts in Berlin on Wednesday evening. More information about the festival in next week’s Newsletter.

Finally, once more many thanks to Al Hamra who let us use their rooms to livestream and discuss the Palestine Congress last week-end. Al Hamra have a weekly Palestine film evening every Wednesday at 8.30pm. The title of the film is usually released too late for us to name it in this Newsletter, but you can stay informed by following Al Hamra on Instagram and facebook

There is much more going on in Berlin this week. To find out what’s happening, go to our Events page. You can also see a shorter, but more detailed list of events in which we are directly involved in here.

If you are looking for Resources on Palestine, we have set up a page with useful links. We will be continually updating the page, so if you would like to recommend other links, please contact us on team@theleftberlin.com. You can also find all the reading from our Palestine Reading Groups here.

In News from Berlin, police break up Palestine Congress, widow of refugee shot by police sues the state of Berlin, and U-Bahn driver reported for racism.

In News from Germany, Yannis Varoufakis banned from Germany, nearly half of AfD funding comes from the state, law passed which will make changing gender entry easier, over 80% of Germans support decriminalising abortion, and Tesla threatens job cuts.

Read all about it in this week’s News from Berlin and Germany.

New on theleftberlin, both Nina Frey from the Nicaragua solidarity movement, and Spanish activist Roser Garí Pérez look at Nicaragua’s case against Germany in the International Court of Justice, Nathaniel Flakin interviews one of the few Jews allowed into a meeting about antisemitism, we interview Zoë Claire Miller from the Visual Artists’ Union Berlin about the German Art Scene and Palestine, Ukrainian poet Ilya Kharkow argues that supporting a country and supporting its people are not always the same thing, Roser Garí Pérez looks at the ban of the Palestine Congress, Marijam Sariaslani suggests how we can stop the AfD, and we published a statement by the activists a banner drop to protest the complicity of the Berliner Philharmonie and Deutsche Bank in supporting Israeli apartheid.

This week’s Video of the Week, shows the start of Hebh Jamal’s speech at the Palestine Conference last weekend before it got shut down by the police.

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If you would like to contribute any articles or have any questions or criticisms about our work, please contact us at team@theleftberlin.com. And please do encourage your friends to subscribe to this Newsletter.

Keep on fighting,

The Left Berlin Editorial Board