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PACBI-OPEN LETTER TO PETER HAIN FROM SCOTTISH PALESTINE SOLIDARITY CAMPAIGN


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August 2006

OPEN LETTER TO PETER HAIN FROM SCOTTISH PALESTINE SOLIDARITY CAMPAIGN

Dear Peter
You are now a Cabinet Minister under Tony Blair, sitting alongside the odious Margaret Becket as Foreign Minister. Some remember you, however, as the Chair of an excellent campaign which disrupted tours by the South African Rugby Union and cricket teams in 1969 and 1970. Your advocacy of direct action led to successful, high-profile, disruptions of the South African tours and gave hope to many living under brutal apartheid rule. You paid a small price and were found guilty of Criminal Conspiracy and fined £200. Years later, in 1976 you were tried for, and acquitted of, bank robbery having been framed by South African intelligence agents for your role in fighting apartheid by non-violent direct action.

Arcbishop Tutu says, quite rightly, that the struggle of the Palestinians makes that of the South Africans look like "a picnic", incredibly heroic though that struggle was, and terribly brutal the responses of the apartheid regime.

We confront again, as many of us have seen with our own eyes, a people in agony under a brutal, racist regime. And now the Israeli regime is destroying Lebanon.

We in the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign will be employing against the Israeli cricket team those very same tactics that you advocated successfully against apartheid South Africa: disruption, pitch invasion and all ther non-violent tactics which can STOP all Israeli state-endorsed visits to Scotland while the rogue state of Israel continues with its crimes, which your leader and other colleagues endorse.

As you were prepared to face the consequences of your then principled position, and have your day in court here in Britain, so are many Scottish people today prepared to move from sympathy to action in support of the victims of Israeli crime and all those who resist it.

We intend to call you as a witness, Peter, in any forthcoming trials which result from our planned non-viiolent civil disobedience and direct action in Glasgow and Paisley this week. We would dearly like to call Margret Becket to show the depths of British government criminality. We are sure she is so immersed in protecting the murderers of Lebanese civilians that she is beyond the pale of civilised humanity. We still wonder, however, Peter, even though you serve loyally the governments of Tony Blair and george Bush, if there is not yet still a spark of conscience from an earlier era.

Will you appear to defend those who remind you of your previous incarnation as a champion of direct action against brutal crime?

Mick Napier
Chair, Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign
c/o Peace & Justice Centre
2 Princes Street
Edinburgh EH2 4BJ
00 44 131 620 0052 / 00 44 780 32 44 739
[url=http://www.scottishpsc.org.uk]www.scottishpsc.org.uk[/url]

Posted on 01-08-2006


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