Open Shuhada Street

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The American Muslims for Palestine has joined US Palestine Community Network, the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights, Code Pink and Jewish Voice for Peace to support Open Shuhada Street  , a campaign of the Hebron-based Youth Against Settlements  . Now in its 8th year, the campaign aims to raise awareness of strict apartheid policies in Hebron that have greatly reduced Palestinians right to move about freely. About 850 settlers live within the old market area and in settlements that skirt the city. These 850 people have brought normal life for the more than 30,000 Palestinian residents of Hebron to a grinding halt.

Open Shuhada Street coincides with the commemoration of the tragic Al-Ibrahimi mosque massacre. In 1994, American Jewish physician Baruch Goldstein walked into Al-Ibrahimi mosque and opened fire on morning worshipers, killing 29 men then and there. Israeli soldiers killed an additional 11 Palestinians in the ensuing chaos. 

The Israelis have punished Palestinians for Goldstein’s atrocity. While settlers erected a statue of Goldstein in his honor, Israeli authorities closed the mosque and divided it, giving 65 percent of it to Jews. The old market area is all but dead, thanks to nearly 200 closures and several checkpoints. 

And Shuhada Street, the main thoroughfare through the old market area, is off limit to Palestinians. They cannot walk or drive on the street. They also are not allowed to cross it. 

Join us on Friday, Feb. 24, as we take to social media to protest Israeli apartheid. In addition, we must ask the IRS to revoke the tax exempt status of the Hebron Fund. The Brooklyn-based Hebron Fund, uses its US 501(c) 3 charity status to fund Hebron's settlers. Goldman Sachs donates to the Hebron Fund. Bankrolling violent extremist settlers is not charity and should not be tax exempt.

Lessons from Shuhada Street

By Kristin Szremski, AMP director of media and communications

My trip started with seven-hour detention at the Tel Aviv airport, where officials could not grasp why someone with a “Jewish-sounding” surname would be wearing a headscarf. Nor could they comprehend why a Muslim would be traveling with a group of Christians. Their incredulity was a stunning eye-opener into the bigotry that’s pervasive in Israeli society. It was apparent that in their convoluted world view, they view all Palestinians as the enemy. They also seemed to equate my headscarf with their idea of “Palestinian-ness.” They were not able to make any distinction. Equality and inclusiveness were never part of the equation. ...