Jonathan Pollak, a long-time Israeli anarchist and solidarity activist with the Palestinians was jailed by the Israeli state on the 6th of January after undercover police officers visited his work place in Tel Aviv, after ‘Ad Kan’, a far right organization, sued him and 2 other Israeli anti-occupation activists, belonging to the group ‘anarchists against the wall’, in the court for ‘inciting Palestinian demonstrators for violence’ and assaulting Israeli soldiers.
Jonathan refused to go to court for months, because this, in his words, would be to acknowledge the state’s authority to manage resistance against the occupation. According to what he said journalist, he did not recognize the legitimacy of a system that maintains a military dictatorship over subjects that lack all basic democratic rights in the West Bank and Gaza or are second-class citizens in Israel.
Jonathan did got arrested, eventually, as was already mentioned, after the Israeli police sent undercover police officers to his work place- Haaretz newspaper in Tel Aviv, where he works as a graphic designer. Jonathan was offered to pay a bail of 500 shekels and be released, which he refuses pay, and currently remains arrested. According to him, Palestinian people are judged in a different- military- system, by military courts, under different military laws, and not in citizen courts like Israeli Jews, and the punishments are much higher. Palestinian people that were arrested on similar accusations were jailed in worse conditions for months and sometimes for years without the option to pay a bail of 500 shekels to get out. The refuse to recognize the legitimacy of a system the holds two different law systems, one liberal-democracy for Israeli Jews and a military dictatorship for Palestinian people is what stands in the center of the refusal to legitimate and recognize the authority of the court.
‘Ad Kan’ is an Israeli far-right organization that dedicates his efforts to persecute left wing and human rights organizations. A few of their methods include employing infiltrators with hidden cameras that disguise themselves as activist and join demonstrations and actions (a few of those ‘investigations’ were broadcasted on the Israeli media on television, including a Palestinian protest they went to in Bil’in with the anarchist against the wall), and sue activists. The judge herself claimed the “evidence” they have against the sued anarchists are weak and not convincing, but still ordered to arrest Jonathan, which haven’t showed up to the court’s discussions, out of refusal to acknowledge the court’s authority. This entire strange episode just goes to show how the Israeli state and far-right organizations are working together in harmony to persecute and criminalize opposition and resistance to the apartheid racist policy of the Zionist system.
It’s important to note that as was mentioned before, Palestinians receive much worse punishments and treatment by the Israel ‘justice’ system, and are judged a different, military courts, with a different law system (although Jewish settlers that live near them in the West Bank are judges like Israeli citizens in Israeli courts). Abdullah and Adeeb, Palestinian residents of Bil’in, a village in the West Bank which Jonathan protested in solidarity with many time, both spent 16 months in jail for similar false accusations. Ahed Tamimi, a 14 year old girl that slapped a soldier that invaded her house in Nabi Saleh, village near Bil’in, spent 8 months in jail. They all were sentenced in a military court of the military occupation, and none of them was offered a bail of 500 to be released.
The Zionist system of apartheid and military occupation must be opposed. Resistance and world-wide solidarity is our strongest weapon. To challenge our privileges when opposing system of racial separation is the least we can do for our brothers and sisters on the other side of the wall.