There is to be a massive movement of people on March 30th this year to surround Jerusalem (or as close as they can come) to “demand freedom for Palestine and its capital Jerusalem.” It is timed to coincide with ‘Palestine Land Day’.
Their official website says this:
GMJ’s Concept and Objectives
The historic day 30th March marks Palestine Land Day* in Palestinian national memory. This year our aim is to mark it as an international event to demonstrate solidarity with Palestinians and to protect Jerusalem. This will be achieved by organizing a Global March to Jerusalem or to the nearest point to it. The march will demand freedom for Jerusalem and its people and to put an end to the Apartheid, ethnic cleansing and Judaisation policies affecting the people, land and sanctity of Jerusalem.
By organising the March and its preceding and parallel activities we aim to highlight the cause of Jerusalem (the City of Peace) which is considered the key to peace and war in the region and the world. The march will confirm that the policies and practices of the racist Zionist state of Israel against Jerusalem and its people are a crime not only against Palestinians but against all humanity.
The march will unite the efforts of Palestinians, Arabs, Muslims, Christians, Jews, and all citizens of conscience in the world to put an end to Israel’s disregard for international law through the continuing occupation of Jerusalem and the rest of Palestinian land.
We aim to make this march a turning point in the nature of the confrontation, with the occupation having to face millions of protesters and demonstrators demanding Freedom for Palestine and its capitol Jerusalem.
Who is behind this March?
One supportive website explains: this particular project was born in February, 2011 of discussions initiated by organizers of and participants in the Asian Caravan to Gaza. Since then, it has expanded to other groups in Asia, the Middle East, Europe, Africa and North America. Four international planning meetings have taken place in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey.
This march is gathering momentum with video clips, an official song and much international approval. Here is one advertisement listing the nations taking part and ending with the statement “Humanity Stands as ONE”:
Listen to the words of the official song [here subtitled in English – but can any Arabic speaker confirm these are the actual lyrics?] which must surely have been toned down several times before it was allowed to emerge as their official anthem. But it still denies all hope of peace from “those who humiliate you” and regards responding to the “call of Jerusalem” as an act of honour and the March to Israel’s borders as an obligation “no matter what the outcome”.
(Hypocritically, those same anti-Christian agitators who now support marching through the world to claim Jerusalem, also hotly and angrily denounce the ancient “Christian Crusaders” for doing the same thing. NOT to say that I support the Crusades either!)
There are numerous organisations and personalities supporting this initative, including the ‘usual suspects’ like George Galloway (UK): Ex-MP & Founder of the “Viva Palestina” named as ‘one of the most renowned international voices for the cause of Palestine’. And Cornell West, ‘American philosopher, author, and civil rights activist’.
What are their Plans?
The Jordan River Valley has been chosen by Arabs as a gathering point for a planned mass march on Israel at the end of the month. [Violent attempts by Arabs to cross the Lebanese and Syrian borders took place in 2011 on the anniversaries of Israel’s independence and the start of the Six Day war.]
As part of preparations for the Muslim marches on Israel, plans were laid out at a conference in Jordan, according to the Intelligence and Terror Information Center (ITIC).
The convoy is scheduled to leave India on Friday and spend four days in Karachi, Pakistan. From there it will be flown to Iran, where it will tour for five days before making its way to Turkey, and then by boat to Beirut, where it is expected near the end of the month. The ITIC expects that the regime in Tehran will exploit the convoy’s time there, as it has in the past, for a public relations campaign on its own behalf and slander against Israel and the West.
Sources in Judea, Samaria and Gaza say efforts have been made to recruit senior Palestinian Authority officials and activists in the effort. Khatem Al-Bitawi, a member of the Palestinian Authority Legislative Council and the Association of Muslim scholars, stressed that religious and national obligation require all Muslims and Arabs to protect the Al-Aksa mosque and liberate Jerusalem, and that these issues must be returned to the greater Arab and Muslim picture after having been reduced to a local issue.
ITIC also referred to a program broadcast on Al-Quds television – associated with Hamas – in which march spokesman Zahar Birawi, a Hamas activist in Britain, who called the march a “widespread popular process” which includes Israeli Arabs as well as residents of the Palestinian Authority. He called it a turning point in the nature of the struggle against Israel, which he said would be forced to deal with “millions of people”.
In the ITIC’s estimate, “Despite intensive preparations, it seems that organizers prefer at this time to lower expectations.” They noted that the march’s coordinator stressed that the event is not being called the “March of the Million” but the “World Jerusalem March” because it’s important that the march is taking place with the participation of representatives of many countries around the world and the number of participants is less important.
ITIC shows proof Iran is behind the March
One website suggests militant Islam and Iranian forces are behind the initiative. Comment-is-Free (CiF http://gm2j.co/) front page exposes as lies and misinformation the Global March official statement denouncing Israel’s recent actions in Gaza.
The official Global March to Jerusalem website issued a condemnation of what it termed “criminal Israeli assassinations of Gaza civilians” on March 13th, referring of course to last weekend’s actions to stop the firing of hundreds of missiles at Israeli civilians.
“We, the Global March to Jerusalem, condemn the Zionist campaign of killing Palestinian citizens and imprisoning the Palestinians of Gaza in an open-air prison, just as we condemn the continued occupation of Palestinian land and the intentional destruction and Judaisation of Jerusalem, as well as all of historic Palestine.”
In fact, contrary to the GMJ statement, the vast majority of those who died were not civilians, but terrorists actively involved in perpetrating attacks on Israeli civilians. Fourteen of the people killed were members of the proscribed Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror organization and six were members of the Popular Resistance Committees.
Given the prominent involvement of the Iranian regime in the Global March to Jerusalem project it is hardly surprising that the GMJ organisers would find it necessary to express support for the Iranian-backed and financed Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Popular Resistance Committees which were the main players in the latest round of terror attacks on Israeli civilians. The Global March organisers’ whitewash exposes its much-touted commitment to ‘non-violent protest’ as a farce.
Now, ITIC is presenting evidence in its possession which indicates that Iran openly and with its own propaganda supports the March 30 events and is also involved in organizational preparations for the marches. To that end, ITIC said in a report posted Wednesday, Iran employs proxies, including organizations and individuals.
The center quoted an item dated February 26, 2012 in the Fars News Agency, in which Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, was quoted as supporting the march to Jerusalem.
In the report, Khamenei said Iran should openly support movements and groups operating against Israel. Support for the marches to Jerusalem was presented as part of a new strategy designed to increase regional unity against Israel, based on the so-called “resistance axis” (i.e., Syria and the terrorist organizations) and opposition to the so-called “occupation” of Jerusalem.
In the same vein, a report in the Iranian ISNA agency, dated March 4, quoted Ghzanfar Asl Roknabadi, the Iranian ambassador to Lebanon, as saying he hoped all “Palestine” would shortly be liberated from its “Zionist occupiers” and that cries of “Allahu Akbar” would be heard throughout Rehavia, an elite neighborhood in west Jerusalem.
ITIC noted that a local committee was appointed, in Iran and other Arab countries, to make preparations for the marches. The committee, called The Board of the Global [March] to Jerusalem, is headed in Iran by Hossein Shaikhol-Eslam, who ITIC noted is likely directly connected to the Iranian regime.
The ITIC report also cites the Haganah website, which is run by American professionals specializing in the analysis of jihadist Internet sites. Haganah examined the Global March to Jerusalem website and found indications of Iranian involvement in the marches.
Haganah found three domains of march organizers sharing an IP address with Ahl al-Bayt, an Iranian institution directed by Khamenei’s office and which spreads Shi’ite and Khomeini ideology around the globe. It is headed by Khojat el-Eslam Mohammed Hassan Akhtari, the former Iranian ambassador to Syria.
ITIC also cited an Iranian website, believed to be connected to the Iranian regime, which initiated a cartoon contest in support of the marches. The cartoons are supposed to deal with the theme of the so-called “right of return” of the Arab refugees and with opposition to the so-called “occupation” of Jerusalem. Each of the three winning entries, ITIC noted, will receive a prize of $1000 and a trophy.
The report also noted that the Iranian English-language Press TV channel was also enlisted to promote a propaganda campaign for the marches.
On January 8, 2012, a video was posted on YouTube to promote the marches, produced by Press TV and featuring former British MP and pro-Hamas enthusiast George Galloway. Here he claims that “Jerusalem could be captured this March.
Finally, ITIC noted, another manifestation of Iranian participation in the propaganda campaign for the march was an open letter posted on the marches’ website on March 5, purportedly written by Iranian Jews. The ITIC believes the letter was planted by the Iranian regime.
No matter what comes of this Global March, it’s true that the effort to isolate Israel and force her to concede defeat is mounting.