Major Victory to Weaken Prisons & Immigrant Detention

Enlace, a partner with Occupation-Free Portland just achieved another great victory:

The University of California Regents, which controls one of the largest endowments in the world, has decided to end $475 million dollars of existing contracts with prison profiteer Wells Fargo. Details here.

This victory comes after a multi-year campaign led by the Afrikan Black Coalition, member of the National Prison Divestment Campaign, calling for divestment from prisons and reinvestment in Black students and communities.

The Afrikan Black Coalition writes,

By taking a stand against the amoral practices of an enormous corporation like Wells Fargo, the Afrikan Black Coalition is pushing the UC to exhibit the kind of leadership necessary for the survival of communities unfairly targeted by a criminal financial system. We dedicate this small victory to the hundreds and thousands of our people who are trapped in America’s gulags. Through the organized struggle of our masses, we believe our liberation is inevitable.

After the Prison Divestment campaign and allies revealed the role that major investors and lenders play in funding prison expansion, divestment campaigns across the country have called for Universities, Cities, Pensions, and Faith Organizations to divest their constituents' dollars from these financial backers of the prison industry.

In December 2016, Portland, Oregon became the first City to put investments these prison profiteers on hold, along with corporations complicit in the Palestinian occupation, when they voted to end all corporate investments until Socially Responsible investing could be assured. Now, the University of California becomes the first University Endowment to move towards ending their relationship with these financial backers.

These victories show us is that in an era of Trumpist attacks on our immigrant, refugee, Muslim, and Black communities, there is bold and meaningful action that leaders of Cities and Universities can take to not only protect our communities, but to uproot the problem at it's source. Prison Divestment efforts in Yale University and Princeton University are escalating, and will be the next universities to divest!

We call on Wells Fargo and other prison backers to realize that as long as they continue to fund prison expansion and the Trump agenda of widespread detention and criminalization, our communities will take strong and coordinated action to ensure that they are exposed and sanctioned.

In hope and struggle,

Amanda, Basma, Cindy, Daniel, Jamie and the Enlace community

‘We have nowhere else to go’: Bedouins say they will continue to rebuild as Israel carries out home demolitions at a record pace


A white tent is the only structure left standing among the scattered piles of twisted metal and tarp that was a Jahalin Tribe Bedouin encampment West of Jericho city in the Wadi Qilt valley.

On the morning of Wednesday, January 25th, Israeli forces escorted two bulldozers down from the main road up to the small Bedouin community. Mohammed Jahalin and his family were ordered out of their houses and forcefully gathered together on the edge of their encampment where they watched as the metal blades of bulldozers smashed through their homes.

Israeli forces destroyed every standing structure in the encampment — including three houses and two livestock barns — leaving 12 people homeless, half of whom are children.

In 2016, Israeli forces demolished homes, particularly Bedouin homes, in record numbers. According to United Nations documentation, Israeli forces in 2016 demolished or seized an unprecedented 1,093 Palestinian-owned structures throughout the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, resulting in the displacement of 1,601 Palestinians and affecting the livelihoods of another 7,101.

In the first 23 days of 2017, Israeli forces demolished 119 Palestinian-owned structures, leaving 177 Palestinians displaced. The bi-weekly average for home demolitions in 2017 is nearly a third higher than 2016’s, putting 2017 on track for another record-breaking year.

Read more on Mondoweiss:

Israel Approves Another Wave of West Bank Settlement Construction

AMONA, West Bank — Israel approved 3,000 more housing units in the occupied West Bank late Tuesday, the largest number in a wave of new construction plans that defy the international community and that open a forceful phase in the country’s expansion into land the Palestinians claim for a future state.

Emboldened by the new Trump administration and internal battles at home, Israel announced plans for the new units in about a dozen settlements a week after approving 2,500 homes in the West Bank and 566 in East Jerusalem.

“We are in a new era, where life in Judea and Samaria goes back to its normal and proper course,” the defense minister, Avigdor Lieberman, said in a statement, using the biblical name for the West Bank.

Read more on the NY Times

MET Emergency Forum! Understanding Justice and Equality for All Through the Strength of Law and Compassion

Wednesday, February 1st, 2017
6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Refreshments will be served
MET Community and Educational Center
10330 SW Scholls Ferry Road, Tigard, Oregon, 97223

Please join us on Wednesday, February 1st at 6:30 p.m. for an important forum titled "Understanding Justice and Equality for All Through the Strength of Law and Compassion. Distinguished speakers will discuss Civil Liberties in light of President Trump's Executive Order Banning Refugees. They will also address the fear that such order has created in the local American Muslim and Arab Communities.

Read more: MET Emergency Forum! Understanding Justice and Equality for All Through the Strength of Law and...

Netanyahu hails Trump’s cruel racist crackdown

President Donald Trump’s executive orders barring entry to refugees and ordering the completion of a southern border wall “have united the world against you,” former Mexican president Vicente Fox warned in a tweet on Saturday.

Even some Republican lawmakers are publicly criticizing Trump’s policies.

But through all the anger and chaos he has created, Trump has found at least a few staunch allies: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and some of his hard-line US supporters.

Netanyahu’s public alignment with Trump’s incendiary policies will likely accelerate the erosion of some of Israel’s traditional bases of support in the US.

Read more on Electronic Intifada



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