Heather Roberson Gaston

Palestinian Gandhi on Trial: Part 3 (Guilty Until Proven Innocent)

Join us as we go deeper into the case of Issa Amro before an Israeli military court, and deeper into the two very different sets of laws at work in the West Bank. We will discuss Israeli civil law, to which Israeli settlers are party, as citizens of Israel; and we will discuss Israeli military law, to which Palestinians are subjected, as non-citizens living under occupation. According to this law, it is illegal to organize more than ten people in a political meeting of any kind without first gaining the permission of the military (an impossible task). It is illegal to publish political materials, or to seek to influence one’s people, without first gaining the approval of the military.

Palestinians have called the presence of two sets of laws for two peoples occupying the same space an “apartheid system.” In this episode, we will why, and will discuss the incredible injustice and cruelty that results when one group of people is given heightened access to law, and to law enforcement, and another group experiences law only as a system of oppression.

Palestinian Gandhi on Trial: Part 2 (Non-Violent Resistance Under Occupation)

In this episode, we explore Issa Amro’s development as a non-violent activist, from his childhood spent living under intense military occupation in the West Bank city of Hebron; to his first actions as a university student during the second intifada; to the intense targeting he faces today on account of his activism.

Over the past 15 years, Issa has worked to establish a culture of non-violence in Hebron and beyond — training his fellow Palestinians to document human rights violations, to reclaim Palestinian space for community use, and to demonstrate non-violently in the face of overwhelming violence and oppression.

Beginning in 2010, Issa has been identified as a “targeted activist” — targeted with arrests, detentions, beatings, and intimidation. This targeting continues today in the form of two ongoing trials — one before an Israeli military court, and the other before a Palestinian Authority court. In this episode, Issa speaks on the impacts of this targeting on himself, on his fellow activists, and on the movement for justice in Palestine.

Palestinian Gandhi on Trial: Part 1 (Introducing Issa Amro and The Occupation)

By the time you hear this episode, Palestinian activist Issa Amro, who as of September 2019 faces trial before an Israeli military court and a Palestinian Authority court, may be behind bars. Or perhaps he will be exonerated, as he is, after all, on trial in both cases for exercising his basic freedoms of assembly and speech.

We will follow Issa’s cases closely in this series, but before we delve into every twist and turn, we must explore the overarching context, which will remain the same even if the status of his case changes. We must explore the context of military occupation of the West Bank…