The effort to get KPFT BDS to pass a Boycott Divestment and Sanctions resolution has gained a small amount of coverage and interest in the news. Below are links to TV coverage by Greenwatch TV, newspaper coverage by the Jewish Herald Voice, and calls to support the campaign and petition by the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel and the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation.
Houston BDS on GreenWatch TV
This conversation develops ideas about BDS, the movement for Boycott, Divestitures, and Sanctions on Israel for inhumane abuse of Palestinians. Thanks to phillybds.org for the flashdance video we found on YouTube. Here is a link to the petition about KPFT/Pacifica mentioned in the show: kmaw.net/bds
This originally aired live on Public Access TV in Houston, June 15, 2011. Produced at Houston Media Source (hmstv.org ), where you can now watch streaming video LIVE! This program sponsored by Harris County Green Party (hcgp.org ).
BDS debated at KPFT board meeting – Jewish Herald Voice
Boycott, divestment and sanctions against the State of Israel were debated at a local public radio station’s governing board meeting.
Some 20 members of the 30-person LSB of KPFT 90.1 FM, on July 13, heard presentations by supporters and detractors of a political campaign that singles out the Jewish state for condemnation and delegitimization.
BDS supporters are pressuring the member-supported station to officially sign up with the BDS “movement” by adopting a resolution that targets Israel for boycott and bans any form of collaboration or cooperation with official Israeli entities.
US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel – KPFT Boycott Campaign calls for BDS at Houston Pacifica station: Sign Petition
The KPFT BDS Campaign has launched an online petition for BDS at KPFT, the Pacifica Radio outlet in Houston, TX. The KPFT BDS campaign began when the local Israeli consulate was given a show on the station, a station previously rooted in a progressive, public-oriented, pro-peace perspective. Sign the KPFT online petition HERE.
US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation – Houston Activists Petition Local Pacifica Radio Station to Endorse BDS
Students from new US Campaign member group the University of Houston Students for a Democratic Society have joined with other Houston activists to campaign for Houston-based Pacifica Radio station KPFT to endorse the Palestinian-led campaign for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS).
An ad-hoc KPFT BDS Committee of station listeners and members originally formed in response to KPFT’s giving air-time to “Voice of Peace,” a show promoting Israel historically produced by the Israeli Government. KPFT is a listener-supported radio station with a mission to promote peace and social justice. Airing this programming was a clear violation of the BDS call. The ad-hoc committee of concerned individuals sees BDS as “the fullest action to address the current situation and prevent pro-colonial propaganda in the future.” Full Article
Proposal for KPFT’s Local Station Board
KPFT LSB members,
We ask that you pass this proposal locally and instruct our representatives on the National Board to pass this resolution for the Pacifica Network:
Proposal for Pacifica to sign on to the BDS campaign
Media collaboration boosts Israel’s image on the international stage. By refusing to participate in media partnerships, media institutions globally can send a clear message to Israel that their occupation and discrimination against Palestinians is unacceptable. While Israeli media enjoys relatively free global freedom of movement and access to well equipped facilities, Israel has subjected Palestinians to movement restrictions and a lack of adequate funding, economic damage caused by the occupation, and restrictions for media facilities.
Whereas all forms of international intervention have until now failed to force Israel to comply with international law or to end its repression of the Palestinians, which has manifested itself in many forms, including siege, indiscriminate killing, wanton destruction, and the separation wall built on occupied land and ruled illegal by the International Court of Justice,
In light of the escalation of human rights violations in the Occupied Territories of Palestine,
And until Israel meets the minimum obligations under international law by:
1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall,
2. Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality, and
3. Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194,
KPFT’s LSB recommends Pacifica Radio agree to join AMARC (The World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters) in supporting Palestinian civil society’s call for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions; and in particular:
a. There will be no form of restriction on the work of individual Israeli media workers, or on conducting interviews and debates with people from any institution, but we will not turn over program production, or enter into collaboration or joint projects with official Israeli institutions or institutions supported by the Israeli state.
b. We will discuss and hold dialogs about BDS on the air.
c. We will support Palestinian media institutions directly without requiring them to partner with Israeli counterparts as an explicit or implicit condition for such support.
We affirm our commitment to anti-racism by adding that Pacifica will not turn over program production, or enter into collaboration or joint projects with anti-Jewish racists, white supremacist, Nazi holocaust deniers, as well as Islamophobic, or any other type of racist groups.
This proposal is not meant to set up a new review board or authority, but to establish a new commitment for our programmers, staff and management in addition to our Mission and Bylaws.
Please address your emails to: email@example.com and remember to add your name and information at the bottom. You may also, of course, write your own letter or edit and add in your own thoughts to this letter.
Pacifica National Board,
Starting on Dec. 14, KPFT 90.1fm began airing during the Open Journal time slot, a regular bi-weekly program called “Voice of Peace,” produced by the Israeli Consulate of Houston. The name was taken from a pirate radio show created by an Israeli dissident who opposed settlements and occupation, and was himself oppressed by the Israeli government. KPFT management’s decision to give this show free reign for a half an hour every two weeks on KPFT assisted the Israeli Consulate in a co-optation of this legacy.
Peace and justice activists in Houston were shocked and deeply concerned. Many began organizing, emailing, circulating petitions, calling the station, and meeting with management to insist that KPFT must not give open airtime to an official voice of the Israeli government under the auspices of the far-right Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs, Avigdor Lieberman, especially during a time of an active illegal military occupation and bombing. One of the groups that responded began organizing for KPFT to sign on to the BDS campaign, so that situations like this would not occur in the future. The group drafted a BDS statement as follows:
In light of the escalation of human rights violations in the Occupied Territories of Palestine, and until the end of the Israeli military occupation, Palestinians achieve the right of return, and equal rights are achieved for all Israeli Arabs, Pacifica agrees to support the call for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions put forth by Palestinian academics and intellectuals by refraining from partnerships with Israeli institutions unless they are specifically anti-occupation.
The management of KPFT next moved to modify the program. Duane Bradley, the station manager announced that the program would no longer be produced by the consulate, and a new producer would be found. The KPFT listeners organizing against the consulate show hoped the new producer or producers would have strong peace and justice qualifications, but that’s not what happened. Management replaced the consulate with a series of individuals who each used the show to promote Israel, including Bridge Houston, a group that routinely calls any protest of Israel “anti-Semitic.”
KPFT runs shows like Arab Voices and Al Jazeera that are critical of Israel, but of course never support brutality or war-crimes, nor lavish praise on armed parties to hostilities. Programs promoting Israel are doing just that on Pacifica’s airwaves. Instead of giving airtime to such programs, management could choose from the many Jewish groups that share a similar mission with Pacifica, such as Jewish Voices for Peace, Rabbis for Human Rights, The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, Anarchists Against the Wall, Women in Black, Gush Shalom, and the Jewish Antizionist Network.
Recently, in La Plata, Argentina, the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) joined the BDS movement, making their own detailed BDS statement (http://usacbi.wordpress.com/2011/01/22/amarc-world-association-of-community-radio-broadcasters-joins-bds-movement). Instead of leading the way on a crucial human rights issue, Pacifica in Houston is moving in the opposite direction.
Decisions made by KPFT management have allowed several months of bi-weekly Pacfica airtime to be given to pro-Israel propaganda. The management and program director have not moved to correct the error, and the public has not received an apology. We request your help in moving forward a comprehensive BDS statement in the Pacifica network, as we perceive this as the fullest action to address the current situation and prevent pro-colonial propaganda in the future.
The KPFT BDS Ad Hoc Committee is a group of KPFT listeners and activists united to push for KPFT to support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement.
We are organizing for KPFT to pass our proposal supporting BDS:
In light of the escalation of human rights violations in the Occupied Territories of Palestine, and until
a) The end of the Israeli military occupation,
b) Palestinians achieve the right of return, and
c) Equal rights are achieved for all Israeli Arabs,
KPFT (LSB, Duane Bradley, the ARDC, etc.) agrees to support the call for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions put forth by Palestinian academics and intellectuals by refraining from partnerships with Israeli institutions unless they are specifically anti-occupation.
This proposal was agreed to by a meeting of more than 25 people who met on January 5th 2011 to promote the Palestinian struggle for peace, human rights and justice and push for solidarity from inside KPFT. We intend to introduce it to the stated individuals, boards and committees listed above.