I’m sure that you know, as I do, at least one trade union member who could stand to learn a little bit more about Israel and Palestine.
That person could be working at the desk next to you. Or it could be the president of your union.
If we are to effectively counter anti-Israel propaganda — and the growth of anti-semitism in the trade union movement — we need to get the widest possible distribution for the real news coming out of the region.
In the last month, TULIP’s website has told the story about the militant struggle being waged by Israeli workers — a struggle that is resulting in big union organizing wins that are hardly known outside the country. Here are some of the stories we ran in the last few weeks:
- “2,000 workers won’t be allowed to bring the country to its knees”
- Histadrut launches “lightning campaign” using SMS, Facebook and the web to unionize yet another insurance company
- Histadrut to launch $1.8 million ad campaign to promote unionization
- Global union reports big wage boost for Israeli workers
Meanwhile, our opponents keep saying that the campaign of boycotts, divestments and sanctions targetting the Jewish state is unstoppable, that unions everywhere are joining in, and so on. But TULIP is reporting that actually the trade union movement is deeply divided. Here are some of the stories we ran in the last month:
- German union leader: “I stay on the side of Israel”
- British and Australian trade unionists to visit Israel and Palestine
- South Africa: COSATU calls for severing of all ties with countries that violate human rights — actually, just one country …
In other words — Israel has a vibrant, independent trade union movement that deserves the solidarity of trade unionists everywhere.
And in the international labour movement, a struggle is taking place between those like the German trade union leader Michael Sommer, a strong supporter of Israel, and South Africa’s Bongani Masuku, convicted of hate speech and yet still a spokesperson for COSATU.
For our side — those who support genuine peace and reconciliation based on a two-state solution — to win, we must get our message out to many more people.
Please forward this email on to trade unionists you know who need to be better informed.
Let’s try to change at least one mind.