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Peaceful demonstrator from Chicago violently beat down in Tel Aviv by police

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pulling them up by their arms and beating them. they kicked another women Sara chaluche,an American from Chicago in the jaw knocking her teeth out. and this is only what I saw - I have ran away soon afterwards. there were three video cameras with us - that were specifically targeted and attacked by the police. two of the cameras (indymedia) were smashed to pieces.

The Effi Eitam mentioned in the message below is the new head of the National Religious Party and has just become part of the Sharon government -- he is an extreme rightist who openly calls for 'transfer' [of Palestinians out of the Occupied Territories]). The letter below was written by Dalit Baum, a faculty member of the Community School for Women and one of its founders, and the founder of Kvisa Sh'khora [dirty laundry], a gay and lesbian anti-occupation movement. Dalit Baum writes: Yesterday the police used extreme violence to disperse a demonstration in front of a lecture given by Effi Eitam in the middle of Tel Aviv. the demonstrators were a few dozen people, mostly youth, from different organizations, including Kvisa Sh'hora. we were standing outside the lecture area, not blocking the entrance (we even helped people in, in case they seemed reluctant to come near us). we shouted slogans and used whistles to make some noise for the people inside. we had signs with slogans like "join hands to stop racism" or "I prefer Effi Ben Israel". we had several very interesting encounters with the (mostly armed!) people who came to hear the lecture. the title was "hakam lehorgecha, hashkem lehorgo". some shouts, some curses, but also several conversations, and even jokes and reactions of astonishment. the police arrived after most of the audiance had entered. Effi Eitam himself had to pass through us and hear that we think he is a racist and a Fascist. but he did not have to face any physical violence. then the Yasam Chief Nahmani had announced "this is an illegal demo and you have 1.5 minutes to disperse or else we will use force", he took one long breath and they immediately charged us. they cornered two boys and beat them up so badly that their backs look like a checkers board. they smashed a loudspeaker into a third person's face. they grabbed arbitrarily two young people and arrested them, pulled them behind the police cars and continued pulling them up by their arms and beating them. they kicked another women Sara chaluche, an American from Chicago in the jaw knocking her teeth out. and this is only what I saw - I have ran away soon afterwards. there were three video cameras with us - that were specifically targeted and attacked by the police. two of the cameras (indymedia) were smashed to pieces. the third was attacked but the woman photographer held the camera between her legs shouting "I am a reporter" and when the policemen did not know what to do she overheard his commander shouting "haven't I told you to take care of her????". this camera survived, with full record of all that went on. after this long attack, the policemen stood in line in front of the demonstrators, on the other side of the street. in other words, they could have asked us to cross the street and stand on the other side, they could have waited for us to disperse, they could have negotiated with us from the beginning. but they wanted to beat us up. there probably is a decision to prevent demonstrations, using extreme violence and lies. this is getting worse and worse - not A-Ram, not Jenin, no Palestinian flags, no excuses for the police. the line of cops stood in front of us, some covering with their hand their name tags. when asked for their names they did not answer. after a short while, they all took their nametags off. there were news photographers there - from Maariv and Yediot. the full film of the surviving camera was brough later that night to Channel 1 TV. they have NOT used the pictures documenting the police actions. instead, they have quoted "allegations that the police used accessive force" and countered them with the police announcement that "the demonstrators tried to force their way into the place" - lies that are easily contradicted by the filmed materials.
 
 

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