Report by Bruce/Photos courtesy of Inminds
Saturday, 14 January 2012
Outside the Natural History Museum (NHM), twenty-six human rights activists successfully engaged with museum visitors to unmask Veolia, sponsor of the NHM’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition in a blatant example of corporate whitewashing by this toxic company.
Present alongside London BDS and other campaigners were Palestine solidarity activists from London Metropolitan and Roehampton Universities, as well as activists from France and San Francisco. The Palestine Solidarity Campaign and the Tower Hamlets Jenin Friendship Association were also represented.
A large banner was displayed that read: “VEOLIA MUST STOP SUPPORTING ISRAEL’S ILLEGAL SETTLEMENTS.”
A visitor from Spain approached campaigners after reading the banner and said: “I know what Israel is doing to Palestinians and am glad that you are here.” A tourist from France said: “It’s important that people know about this.” A London resident out with his son gave the thumbs up and told a campaigner: “Well done mate.”
French multinational Veolia has been accused of complicity in Israel’s violation of international law and continues to be a legitimate global target for human rights activists.
Veolia was involved in the construction of and currently manages the controversial Jerusalem Light Rail project that links Israeli Settlements – which are internationally recognised as illegal - reinforcing the apartheid Zionist government’s hegemony over the region.
Veolia also manages the Tovlan landfill, built on stolen Palestinian land in the Occupied Jordan Valley, where rubbish from Israel and its illegal settlements are transported to by Veolia subsidiaries TMM Integrated Recycling Services and YRAV Sherutei Noy 1985. Under international law, Israel is prohibited from using occupied land to benefit its civilian population.
Another Veolia subsidiary, Connex, operates apartheid bus services connecting Israel to its illegal West Bank settlements along Road 443 which is often referred to as an ‘apartheid road.’ Not only are Palestinians prohibited from using these bus services, but portions of Road 443 are off-limits to them as well.
Activists have been successfully lobbying against Veolia in the UK and have taken credit for the company’s exclusion from numerous public service contracts worth billions.
The four Zios who turned up outside the NHM were typical of their ilk; willowy and bearded Zionist flag-waver Martin Sugarman, an Exams Officer employed by Westminster Kingsway College, was once escorted by police from Portcullis House (a Parliamentary Building in Westminster) after Sugarman raised his arm and shockingly shouted “Sieg Heil” during a 27 January 2010 lecture delivered by 85 year-old anti-Zionist Holocaust survivor Dr Hajo Meyer.
Dark-haired, shifty and spectacle-wearing South African ‘Sharon Klaff,’ another apartheid advocate, tried unsuccessfully to distribute Zionist propaganda to visitors queuing outside the NHM. ‘Klaff’ who often expresses admiration for ultra-right wing hate groups on blogs, once blatantly called a Jewish anti-Zionist campaigner in front of witnesses, “A dirty little Jew Boy,” a comment that earned her a warning from police outside the former Ahava shop on Monmouth Street.
The quote of the day was when one of the few Zionists present accused a Jewish campaigner of being a ‘self-hating Jew,’ the campaigner replied: “I’m not a self-hating Jew, I just hate you.”
Travelling on the Underground a few weeks ago, we noticed this billboard (below) advertising the NHM’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year Exhibition that has earned our nomination for a Truth in Advertising Award. Within the past few days, we’ve been receiving reports of billboards that have been supplemented with similar information, which is a promising sign.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
- Leave an appropriate message stating your objection to Veolia on the Natural History Museum’s Facebook page.
- Tweet an appropriate message to the Natural History Museum: @NHM_London
- Join us outside the Natural History Museum on Saturday, January 28th between 12-2pm – All welcome!
An Inminds report of this event can be found here.