imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Protesting Social Injustice by Self-Immolation

by Stephen Lendman Monday, Jul. 16, 2012 at 8:53 PM
lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net

Israel

Protesting Social Injustice by Self-Immolation

by Stephen Lendman

Social justice in Israel is just a figure of speech. It's entirely lacking. Neoliberal harshness is policy.

Israel replicates the worst Western society policies. Little about it gets reported.

Last summer, unaffordable housing prices and other social injustice issues sparked weeks of nationwide protests. Long-denied Israelis reacted. They're back. Promises made were broken.

Israelis want longstanding grievances resolved. Netanyahu turns a blind eye. July 14 marked the anniversary of summer 2011 rallies, demonstrations, and marches.

Thousands rallied in Tel Aviv. No one imagined what Moshe Silman planned. He self-immolated in protest.

Haaretz said:

"As thousands marched down" Tel Aviv's Kaplan Street, "Silman poured gasoline on his body and set himself on fire." He was rushed to a hospital for treatment. He left a letter saying:

"The state of Israel stole from me and robbed me. It left me helpless."

"Two Housing and Construction Ministry committees rejected me, even though I had a stroke."

His monthly 2,300 NIS (New Israeli Shekel) allowance left him no money for rent or medications. It's 2.

"I can't even live month to month. I won't be homeless, and so I am protesting."

He blamed "the state of Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz, for the humiliation that the weakened citizens go through every day, taking from the poor and giving to the rich."

His comments can easily be verified, he added.

They're true. Israel enriches privileged elites at the expense of most others. Unemployment, poverty, hunger, and homelessness are major problems like in America and other Western societies.

Yonatan Sahar was beside him when he set himself ablaze. "I saw him holding something burning," he said. Suddenly he poured gasoline on himself and created a human torch. "I didn't know what to do," he added.

Silman was first taken to Ichilov Hospital. He's currently in Sheba Medical Center's intensive care unit. Officials say he's in serious condition. He has grade two and three burns over 94% of his body. He's expected to be hospitalized for months. If he survives, recovery will be long and painful.

The Mayo Clinic calls first degree burns least serious. They only affect the skin's outer layer.

Second degree ones occur when first layers burn through. Blisters develop. Skin gets intensively red and splotchy. Severe pain and swelling result.

Third degree burns are most serious. They involve "all layers of the skin and cause permanent tissue damage. Fat, muscle and even bone may be affected." Skin grafting or synthetic skin may be required. Recovery is painful and protracted.

Despair causes desperate reactions. Silman's not unique. Most Israelis experience injustice. Perhaps his action will inspire greater efforts from others. It's high time for greater public rage and not just in Israel.

Government officials there and in virtually all Western societies don't give a damn. Serving the rich and corporate interests alone matter. Social injustice is a small price to pay, they believe.

Austerity is policy. So what if millions go hungry, can't pay rent, afford medical care, or cover the cost of higher education.

Agendas this harsh produce crises. They head societies for dead ends. They enrage people justifiably. Silman elevated his wrath to a higher level.

In a recent talk, economist Michael Hudson called neoliberism the "weaponization of economic theory. (It) kidnap(s) the original liberal ethic....(It) sought to defend against special privilege and unearned income."

It "misrepresents and even inverts the classical liberal idea of free markets." How can they be free when powerful interests have total control solely for their own self-enrichment?

Neoliberalism and neoconservatism are two sides of the same coin. They represent "power and autocracy combined with deregulation and dismantling of democratic law."

Their goal is oppressing people with "oligarchic power." It's also about denying them basic rights. Their ideal societies aren't fit to live in.

Like America and across Europe, Israel is a classic example. It wages financial war against labor, social justice, and democratic values.

Silman's self-immolation reflects its harshness. Haaretz said Israelis "must demand change." Sustaining protests, rallies, and other tactics is essential for any hope for change.

Challenging government disdain for basic rights can't stop until social injustice ends. Haaretz believes public anger "is here to stay."

Netanyahu heads Israel's worst ever government. He exceeds Ariel Sharon's extremism and previous hardline leaders. He's an embarrassment to democratic governance and social justice.

He spurns individual rights. He endorses neoliberal rapaciousness. He doesn't give a damn about ordinary Israelis. He never did and doesn't now.

His agenda reflects power politics, repression, belligerence, and serving corporate and rich elite interests.

Disingenuously he called Silman's self-immolation "a great and personal tragedy." Good governance would have prevented it.

On October 8, 2002, Silman's trouble began. National Insurance Institute (NIS) bailiffs seized one of his company's four trucks (Mika Transports).

He owed 15,000 NIS. He paid a third of his debt. Towing charges of 1,200 NIS were added. A NIS strike prevented him for reclaiming his truck. In 2005, it led to his business collapsing, he said.

Six years later he sued for eight million NIS in damages. His case was never heard in court. He felt betrayed and denied.

He's an Israeli native. His father survived the holocaust. After his business collapsed, he couldn't afford his apartment rent. He began working as a taxi driver. He couldn't make ends meet.

His financial situation deteriorated. His bank account was seized. His savings and insurance benefits were either seized or exhausted. Except for an old Volkswagen, he lost everything.

His mother served as guarantor for his debts. She exhausted her savings. To save her apartment, she transferred it to her daughters.

Court authorities rejected his plea to be exempt from a toll on his damage claims suit. In March, he urged friends to organize NIS protests. He called it the "Anti-Social National Insurance Institute."

Two years ago, his mother died. Her apartment was seized. Her daughters petitioned in court to reclaim it. After Silman's appeal was rejected and his mother's death, his health declined. He suffered a stroke.

He moved to Haifa. He lived on a monthly 2,300 NIS (5) disability pension. NIS categorized him 50% disabled. His sisters had to help. His appeals for public housing were repeatedly rejected.

Last December, his pension period ended. After months of struggle, he regained it in May. Poor health led to his driving permit revocation.

When social protests began last summer, he participated actively in Tel Aviv. Though living in Haifa, he did again on Saturday. With not enough income for rent, he feared homelessness.

In April, he posted a Facebook comment, saying in part:

After being admitted to Rambam Medical Center, he "was afraid to go home. I live alone....They insist on releasing me....without medical treatment. They also threaten to call the police, and instead of receiving medical treatment I could end up in jail. So long."

He was desperate. Weeks later he self-immolated. He and others like him symbolize Israeli injustice. It reflects growing harshness throughout Western societies.

When government officials spurn basic rights, people react. Self-immolation is extreme. It signifies what's too hard to bear.

Perhaps it'll inspire others to rally against what they'll no longer tolerate. It's their only chance for justice. There's no other way.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

His new book is titled "How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion and Class War"

http://www.claritypress.com/Lendman.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour

Report this post as:

Local News

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 12:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 12:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 4:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J10 11:58PM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M30 10:20PM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 12:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 1:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 2:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 3:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 2:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 1:57PM

California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings) M02 1:31PM

Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico A29 4:47PM

Change Links May 2018 A27 1:40AM

Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed A26 10:37PM

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A12 5:39PM

lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Nation's Largest Voting Machine Co., ESS, Admits Lying Re Having Installed Remote Control J18 11:55AM

Du pain et des jeux J18 9:53AM

Fbi joins with Facebook to remove this report J18 7:08AM

Paraphysique de martyrologie J17 8:00AM

Asian Countries:Cambodia, Vietnam, N. Korea do not permit unlawful immigration J16 8:06PM

Children Incorporated Earns 4-Star Rating on Charity Navigator J16 11:24AM

Democratic Socialists of America J14 4:57PM

Leonard Peltier Non Violent Native American Political Prisoner since 1970's J14 4:18PM

Paraphysique miscellanées de l'aggiornamento J14 12:54AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Cleanup J13 4:14PM

FBI Investigated LA County Sheriff Baca,Why Not Hank Skinner's Persecution? J13 3:52PM

Updated Partial List Of Famous Vegetarians, Vegans, & Fruitarians J13 2:59PM

The Shortwave Report 07136/18 Listen Globally! J12 4:36PM

Social Policy as Social Infrastructure J12 3:38AM

Vol I: 84 Varieties Of GOP Election Fraud J12 1:50AM

Texas Can Call it An Execution,But It is A State Sponsored Murder of Hank Skinner.. J11 6:48PM

June 2018 Honduras coup update J11 3:35PM

Maria Estrada doubles down on racist support J11 1:40PM

New York Women in Film & Television Announces 2018 NYWIFT Ha Phuong Scholarship Recipients J11 10:14AM

Trapps de la domination, trapps de l'aliénation J11 1:31AM

Please Work For The Defeat Of Brett Kavanaugh And Why J09 8:54PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 1:27PM

Transinhumanisme ( transe inhumanisme ) J09 12:44PM

Google, World's Biggest Censor, Was Founded By The CIA J09 10:25AM

For a World Free of Nuclear Risks J09 8:29AM

Corrupt CDC Ignores Meat Fish Recalls J09 4:55AM

The (Temporary) End of Globalization J09 3:03AM

Aternatives to Abortions such as Plan B the pill, condoms and IUD J08 4:03PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy