We are still here…

We’re running a pared-down operation over the weekend, but we are still here. Yesterday, people mainly popped in to ask questions about what the protest is for, and otherwise we tried to get on with work so we can hit the ground running on Monday.

On Monday night, we’ve got a bring-and-share lunch from 12 til 1 – bring along some food, or even if you don’t still pop by, say hi, and eat! We’ve also got Nick Lawrence (English department, works on post 9-11 literary and graphic culture) and Nick Hildyard (a founder of the NGO Corner House, who will be speaking on BAE Systems and the crumbling financial system) already confirmed for the evening, keep checking back to hear about what else we get planned.

Finally, thanks to everyone that’s dropped in to give us snacks or moral support. We’ve been told by fellow student occupiers that the weekend can be quite draining due to a lack of in-and-out visitors, but you guys really have helped keep our spirits up!

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9 Responses to “We are still here…”

  1. Plucker Says:

    Good work, keep it up, best wishes and all our support from the Mark Thomas Info team!

  2. Roy Sandion Says:

    Well done everyone – I bet the Israeli state and Gordon Brown thought the international outrage had gone – If you need any help please make contact via our face book site – Rugby Green Party

    By the way we met the local MP Jeremy Wright for Rugby & Kenilworth (which covers part of the University) and Friday night after leafleting in the town it might be worth demanding he comes to speaks to you and take up your concerns.

    Ourselves, CND, Rugby STWC and Rugby Red Green Alliance were on the lobby – should be an article on the local papers this week.

    In unity

    Rugby Green Party

  3. ermmm Says:

    Isn’t one of the targets of all of this to get the University to boycott suppliers which support Israel etc? Aren’t the computers you are using (as with 99.9999% of machines worldwide) going to contain chips somewhere on the motherboard made by Intel, which have factories in Israel? Perhaps you should practice what you preach? Also, what are you HONESTLY expecting to achieve by your naive actions which are disrupting the eduction of others and doing little more than getting YOURSELVES a bit of publicity? What does “showing solidarity” actually mean? Do you honestly think the people in the Gaza strip are going to hear about what you’re doing, let alone care? If you really want to do something to help, get out to Gaza and help the Red Cross or something constructive.

  4. warwicksolidaritysitin Says:

    I feel you’ve misinterpreted our actions, Mr/Mrs ermmm. We never, in any of our statements, spoke in favour of a general boycott against Israel – I don’t understand what part of what we said you’re rallying against.

    On the point of disrupting education – we have, in no way, disrupted *any* formal education. The University, against our wishes, rescheduled all lectures in S0.21 when we were willing to let them go ahead with only a symbolic presence at the back of the room keeping the sit-in going. As for calling us all attention-seekers, I think that’s just unfair. I welcome you to come down and have a chat so we can try to dispel some of your illusions about us.

    On the last point: firstly, we are sending letters out to people in both Palestine and Israel expressing our support, through contacts we have on the ground in both countries. Both of the Jewish-Israeli speakers we had on Thursday affirmed our belief that people in the region draw so much hope from knowing their suffering is not being ignored. Also, if you had attended the talk we had from Mas from the SOAS occupation, you would realise that this occupation is not the end-game of this protest – in the long-term, we hope to set up an unofficial twinning with universities that have been affected by this project.

    I hope I answered some of your concerns!

  5. ermmm Says:

    You ARE disrupting education. The rescheduling of lectures is meaning students are having their timetables disrupted all because of a bunch of kids who seem to think a childish approach like this is going to achieve something. Why are you occupying somewhere which you have no right to use? Why not run it from your own home? Or BOOK somewhere and PAY FOR IT?

  6. Suyuti Says:

    “ermmm” please be open minded.
    No the disruptions are not due to the occupiers at all but rather the occupiers specifically stated that the lectures can commence without any problems. The university went ahead to reschedule the lectures out of their own choice.
    As for it being childish, no it is not but rather it is the sane and mature thing to do as it is for a strongly noble cause. These occupations have been successful in other universities.
    Also according to the university and SU it is perfectly legal.
    Perhaps it didn’t cross your mind that doing it in our own homes would be futile as firstly we already occupy our houses, and secondly, it wouldn’t raise awareness to the people who don’t know about the real issues.

  7. ermmm Says:

    It might be legal but that doesn’t make it right. It’s not sane or mature. The sane and mature thing to do would be to get help to where it’s needed – which is Gaza – not the University. You are preaching to the choir here. Why aren’t you using your time to actually raise funds for aid charities or donating your time to help them directly?

    “These occupations have been successful in other universities.”

    Have they? Have they succeeded in getting a university to change its suppliers who “support the war”? I think not. Have you any idea how many months of tendering, legal work etc goes in to changing a supplier? A bunch of have-a-go heroes aren’t going to change anything overnight.

    Trying to get the University to stop supporting companies which “which supply the Palestinian-Israeli conflict” is surely going to (in turn) make other people in the world suffer? I’m sure that if you follow the chain from any company, no matter how innocent they seem, somewhere along the line you could find some tenuous link to them supporting the war.

    If you want people to know “the real issues” and want publicity for your cause – why are you occupying a room with no windows in a provincial university? Incidentally, are the people who “don’t know about the real issues” actually going to care enough to come and see you?

    You’re doing things with the very best will in the world but I’m not sure you’re making (or going to make) any different to the global picture.

  8. perm Says:

    Dear “ermmm”

    It may have escaped your notice but the actions of students in the 70’s and 80’s proved important in isolating south africa, yes the aims of the sit in may not be reached in the entirety immediately but the point is this it can and does make a difference. Large movements have to begin somewhere and what better place then at a university where having a moral conscience used to be common and valued.

    On the notion that these events will not affect those in Gaza or Palestinians, it already has to some extent, coverage of these sit ins have already been seen in Haartez newspaper in Israel. As an expression of frustration at both their own university and lack of will in the general international community these students have already succeeded. The local media has also taken up the stories, an indicator to the general public that there still are those who are idealistic enough to dream for a just settlement and will not stand for ,by what some accounts describe, as war crimes. It is important that those on the ground in Gaza are made to realise that there are individuals outside who care enough to take a stand for them and the students protesting at all the sit ins are doing so.

    And lastly is protesting for justice, peace and human rights insane? Is wanting to change for the better insane? Is attempting to void any affiliations with the arm trade which could be supplying a military (which then uses them in the way the Israeli army has done recently) insane? These students don’t think so and neither would most even if the cost is a slight inconvienance of a re-arranged lecture hall. I applaud these students belief and willingness to embrace the oft quoted Obamaism, “Change we can believe in,change we need”

    I am sure there will be oppurtunies to fund raise

  9. warwicksolidaritysitin Says:

    Dear Mrs/Ms ermmmm,

    We feel that you are still misunderstanding why we are here. We don’t want to turn this into an internet debate, so we please welcome you to come down and talk to us about this on a one-to-one level.

    However, there is one point that I personally feel I can’t let go. There are a number of people in this sit-in that are very involved charity workers on the outside – doing charity work, or any other form of good work to help those on either side affected by this conflict, does not preclude protesting at your University’s involvement in a conflict.

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