The following inspirational overview of events and actions in 2021 by the Collectif Palestine Vaincra is available in the original French at the Collectif’s website. The Collectif is a member organization of the Samidoun Network engaging in daily work for Palestine — and especially, the liberation of Georges Abdallah — in Toulouse and beyond.
The year 2021 was marked by a significant development of our activities and our audience despite the challenging public health situation and multiple attacks by supporters of the Israeli extreme right. Throughout the year, we have intensified our solidarity with the Palestinian resistance alongside the Samidoun international network and many partner organizations inside Palestine and around the world. In this article, we offer a retrospective of our main activities during the past year. We hope this will inspire you to join us if you are in Toulouse, and also support us through a donation or by buying activist material to distribute and use in your area.
We began the year with our participation in the International Week of Action for the Liberation of Ahmad Sa’adat from January 15 to 23, 2021 initiated by Samidoun . On this occasion, we put up posters, made large poster collages and distributed flyers at various locations in the city of Toulouse and set up a Palestine Stand at the exit of the Capitole metro station on Saturday January 16 which publicized Sa’adat’s case.
In addition, we co-organized and provided simultaneous translation into French of the webinar “Determination and Resistance: The Palestinian Prisoner Movement and the Case of Ahmad Sa’adat” with the participation of various coordinators from Samidoun and Lena Meari, Palestinian academic with whom we also conducted a video interview .
On Saturday February 13, we co-organized and provided simultaneous translation into French of the webinar “A Palestinian Feminist Vision” with Nahla Abdo, anti-colonial activist and Palestinian feminist.
The next day, we took action at the HP Store in Toulouse which called for a boycott of Hewlett Packard because of its complicity with the Israeli army.
On Friday February 19 and Saturday February 20, we organized Palestine Stands in the popular Bagatelle district and at the Capitole metro exit in downtown Toulouse. These two initiatives aimed to promote the boycott of Israel and in particular the campaign to boycott Puma, a company complicit in Israeli apartheid through its sponsorship of the Israeli Football Federation.
On Sunday February 28, the Israeli Minister of Defense and war criminal Benny Gantz designated Samidoun, including the Collectif Palestine Vaincra and its website, as “terrorist” organizations. This new attack provoked an important wave of solidarity and a significant development of the international network on a global level.
On the occasion of a “Solidarity Day at Mirail against student precarity” , we launched the #FreePalestinianStudents campaign locally in support of imprisoned Palestinian students. The campaign brings together more than 350 organizations around the world, including most of the student unions in Toulouse. This initiative was followed by a twitterstorm on March 11 and a Palestine Stand on March 13.
On the occasion of International Women’s Day on March 8, we participated in the Toulouse demonstration to support the release of Palestinian women prisoners.
On Tuesday March 16 in front of the Court of Lyon, a delegation of the Collectif Palestine Vaincra took part in the rally in support of Olivia Zémor as she faced a lawsuit against the Israeli pharmaceutical company Teva following calls for a boycott of this firm on the website of the EuroPalestine association. A few days earlier, we stepped up our initiatives to promote #BoycottTeva, especially in front of pharmacies in Toulouse.
On Saturday March 20, we participated in a rally in tribute to the victims of anti-Semitic crimes at the Ozar Hatorah school while publishing a text, “Our anti-racist fight is indivisible!” “
On Tuesday, March 23, an LREM deputy addressed a parliamentary question to the Minister of the Interior to demand the dissolution of the Collectif Palestine Vaincra following a smear campaign by NGO Monitor, an organization close to the Israeli extreme right whose objective is to silence and suppress solidarity with the Palestinian people. This new threat was widely denounced, particularly by the National Collective for a Just and Lasting Peace between Palestinians and Israelis, which brings together most of the unions, political parties and support organizations for Palestine in France.
As part of the month of Ramadan, we organized a campaign to boycott Israeli dates with numerous collages and flyer distributions. In addition, we asked many merchants from the districts of Bagatelle, La Faourette, Arnaud Bernard, Les Izards, Reynerie, Bellefontaine and Les Pradettes to display posters, agreeing to show their support for this campaign.
On April 2, we organized a Palestine Stand at the exit of the Bagatelle metro to call for the release of Georges Abdallah, Lebanese Arab struggler for Palestine imprisoned for over 37 years in French prisons. This initiative was preceded by an action to symbolically rename the “Place Ytzhak Rabin” to “Place Georges Abdallah”.
In addition, we organized a Palestine Stand at the exit of the Jean Jaurès metro in Toulouse s part of April 17 actions marking the international day of solidarity with Palestinian prisoners.
At the end of April, we organized another Palestine Stand at the exit of the Capitole metro to promote the #BoycottTeva campaign, and then we participated in a rally against Islamophobia. On Friday April 30, we organized a new initiative at the exit of the Bagatelle metro to confront the intensification of fascist violence and ethnic cleansing in occupied Jerusalem.
On the occasion of May 1, International Workers’ Day, we organized a solidarity action for the release of Georges Abdallah during the Toulouse demonstration and we supported the initiative of the CGT Haute-Garonne trade unionists who called for a boycott of the Histadrut, the Israeli trade union federation.
On Friday, May 7, we organized a Palestine Stand at the exit of the Bagatelle metro in order to promote the boycott of Israel. On this occasion, we collected 245.55 € as part of a fundraiser to support the repair of a popular ambulance in a Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon.
As Israeli repression intensified in occupied Jerusalem and the Israeli military attacked the Gaza Strip, the Unity Intifada grew among the Palestinian people throughout Palestine , in the refugee camps and the diaspora. At the call of many organizations, we participated in a protest rally at the exit of the Jean Jaurès metro on Tuesday May 11 which brought together several hundred people. A few days later, we organized a rally on Saturday May 15 at the exit of the Capitole metro in order to affirm clear support for the Palestinian resistance confronting Israeli crimes. Bringing together more than 800 people, this initiative was supported by various Toulouse organizations.
On the occasion of the general strike in Palestine on May 18, we supported the internationalist positions of UL CGT Mirail and CGT AHG.
On Saturday May 22, more than 1000 people demonstrated in the streets of Toulouse at the call of many organizations in the aftermath of a ceasefire between the Israeli occupation and the Palestinian resistance. The day before in Bagatelle, we organized a Palestine Stand where many people showed their support for the ongoing struggle throughout Palestine.
During all these initiatives, the Collectif Palestine Vaincra collected €6,000 in order to support the youth of Gaza through the association “The children of the martyr Ghassan Kanafani” which organized several holiday camps in July 2021 thanks to the money collected.
At the beginning of June, our actions multiplied in Toulouse in support of Palestine, particularly with a new activity at the exit of the Bagatelle metro.
On Thursday, June 10 in Naples, Italy , we took part in the screening of “Fedayin: Georges Abdallah’s Fight,” organized as part of a festival.
On Saturday June 19, we organized a Palestine Stand at the exit of the Capitole metro as part of the International Week of Action for the Liberation of Georges Abdallah. At the same time, we coordinated an action of solidarity with Georges Abdallah in the Gaza Strip.
On Friday June 25, we organized an initiative to promote the #BoycottTeva campaign in the popular district of Bagatelle. A few days later, we co-hosted a webinar on the plight of Palestinian prisoner Israa Jaabis, with the presence of her sister and son. Israa Jaabis is facing severe medical neglect by the Israeli occupation prison regime.
At the beginning of July, we organized a Palestine Stand at the exit of the Capitol metro to celebrate the Palestinian resistance after its victory against the Zionist aggression.
On Wednesday July 14 in Boussan, during the 17th stage of the Tour de France, the Collectif Palestine Vaincra, along with the BDS Toulouse Campaign and the Friends of Le Monde Diplomatique, mobilized to denounce the presence of the Israel Start-Up Nation team, ambassadors of the Israeli apartheid.
During the month of July, the Samidoun network organized a European delegation to Lebanon in order to strengthen its links with various partner organizations. The Collectif Palestine Vaincra Collective participated in this initiative and distributed a daily travel diary in French.
In addition, at the end of the month, we organized a new Palestine Stand at the exit of the Bagatelle metro as part of the #BoycottPuma campaign.
On Saturday August 7, we organized an initiative to support Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike in downtown Toulouse.
On Friday August 27 in Bagatelle, we organized a Palestine Stand to demand the end of the blockade of Gaza which is causing a catastrophic humanitarian situation for Gaza’s 2 million inhabitants.
On Saturday September 18, we participated in a new international day of mobilization as part of the #BoycottPuma campaign.
At the end of the month, we organized a Palestine Picnic in order to offer a friendly occasion and social get-together for the start of the school year.
Throughout the month, we participated widely in the campaign for the liberation of Georges Abdallah by distributing more than 15,000 flyers, putting up hundreds of posters and organizing Palestine Stands in all areas and corners of the city. At the same time, thirty organizations in the Toulouse region united their voices for the release of the longest-held political prisoner in Europe.
On Sunday October 17, we participated in the unitary rally in tribute to the victims of the state colonial massacre of October 17, 1961.
On Thursday, October 21 at the American Cosmograph cinema, more than 170 people participated in the screening of “Fedayin: Georges Abdallah’s Fight” organized by the Collectif Palestine Vaincra with the presence of the Collectif Vacarme (s) Films and Saïd Bouamama, author of “The Georges Ibrahim Abdallah affair” .
On Saturday 23 October 2021, more than 1000 people gathered in Lannemezan to demand the immediate release of Georges Abdallah, Lebanese communist and Palestinian resistance fighter imprisoned in France since 1984. In front of the prison doors where he is imprisoned, this eleventh demonstration of support for the longest-held political prisoner in Europe is experiencing a historic growth and widespread support following the work during a month of mobilization by many support committees with diverse approaches. The day before this event, an open letter signed by 400 personalities calling for the liberation of Georges Abdallah was published in Médiapart.
At the beginning of November, a delegation from the Palestine Vaincra Collective took part in the founding Masar Badil conference in Madrid: a Palestinian, Arab and international movement for the liberation of Palestine from the sea to the Jordan River.
From November 8 to 14, members of the Palestine Vaincra Collective toured Lebanon as part of the premiere of “Fedayin: Georges Abdallah’s Fight” in Lebanon in different cities but also in several Palestinian refugee camps. This was an opportunity to strengthen our ties with our various local partners, in particular the Lebanese Campaign for the Liberation of Georges Abdallah , the Campaign to Boycott Supporters of “Israel” in Lebanon and the Social Solidarity Center of the Ain al-Hilweh camp. in Saïda.
On November 16, we called for a rally in support of Salah Hamouri and the six Palestinian NGOs designated as “terrorists” by the Israeli occupation, along with BDS Toulouse and various organizations.
On Friday, November 19, we organized a new Palestine Stand in support of Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike at the exit of the Bagatelle metro.
On Saturday 20 November in Copenhagen, Denmark, the Palestine Vaincra Collective participated in the 50th anniversary of the anti-imperialist organization Internationalt Forum alongside various delegations from the Philippines, the Netherlands, the Spanish State, Sweden, Greenland and from England. On this occasion, we publish our intervention “The sense of our solidarity with Palestine” which returns to the main axes of our orientation and our work.
On Thursday, December 2, we organized a Palestine Stand at the University of Mirail as part of the #FreePalestinianStudents campaign.
During the month of December, we organized two Palestine Stands in the heart of the city center around the slogan “For Christmas, I boycott Israel” in order to widely call for the boycott of products that support the Israeli apartheid economy. These initiatives provoked a strong reaction from the Israeli extreme right and the city hall of Toulouse, who are trying to censor our activities. This campaign of attempted repression was a resounding failure.
The Collectif Palestine Vaincra publishes daily on social networks on the news of Palestine and the solidarity movement. We are followed by 31,838 people on Facebook, 3,291 on Twitter and 4,359 on Instagram. Our website, www.palestinevaincra.com, is regularly updated, and we create a monthly newsletter, regularly host information tables and Palestine Stands at markets throughout the city and at metro exits, post collages of posters for Palestine throughout the working-class districts of Toulouse, publish and distribute thousands of stickers, as well as leaflets and flyers, prepare informative threads on Twitter, sell T-shirts and tote-bags, support projects (such as the documentary Fedayin: Georges Abdallah’s Fight), create graffiti and murals, translate and disseminate the point of view of the Palestinian left on current events, produce visuals and infographics and also videos, meet monthly with Georges Abdallah during visiting hours at Lannemezan prison, write to Palestinian prisoners, supported the creation of Samidoun Région Parisienne and actively participate in the international Samidoun network , participate in twitterstorms, engage in interivews in various newspapers and radio stations, conduct forums, carry out various interviews with personalities, and other activities.
Thank you to everyone for your support, encouragement and solidarity! You can make a donation or join us to further develop our activities in Toulouse and elsewhere. The year 2022 promises to be decisive for the movement of solidarity with Palestine. More than ever, we must prepare to confront the challenges that lie ahead!