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“My Hell in an Israeli Jail”: Israel Prison Population 90 Percent Black Africans

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    in jailby Voice Online, UK
    It should come as no surprise that a settler state based on the rule of one ethnic group would be steeped in racist public policies. But the sheer scope of Israel's institutional oppression of Africans shocked human rights activists imprisoned for attempting to deliver humanitarian assistance to Palestinians in Gaza. “The first day I was there, I witnessed 500 Africans scooped from the streets of Tel Aviv thrown into prison,” said a Black British activist. “The prison population continues to grow daily with Africans falling victim to the Israeli judiciary system.”
     
    “My Hell in an Israeli Jail”: Israel Prison Population 90 Percent Black Africans
    “Africans, like Palestinians, are being persecuted by the Israeli government.”
    Black British filmmaker Ishmahil Blagrove has launched an outspoken attack against the “racist” Israeli government after being abducted from the high seas and imprisoned for seven days.
    Jamaica-born Blagrove, who lives in West London, was one of six British nationals taking part in a mercy mission to Gaza who were seized from the vessel Spirit of Humanity on June 30 by Israeli military forces.
    The ship, which Blagrove says was illegally boarded in international waters, was bringing a cargo of medicines, children’s toys and reconstruction materials to the devastated people of Gaza.
    “I’m not concerned with the time that I spent in jail because I am now free, however, there are still thousands of people being persecuted as we speak,” said Blagrove.
    “I went on the voyage to deliver medical aid, toys and film a documentary about Palestinians living in Gaza post the 22-day bombing last year however, I was unable to fulfill my mission and have now returned with a bigger story to tell. Africans, like Palestinians, are being persecuted by the Israeli governmentand the world needs to know.”
    Sailing from Larnaca, Cyprus, with a crew of 21 human rights activists, humanitarian workers and journalists from 11 different countries, those on board included Nobel Peace Laureate Mairead Maguire and former US Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney.
    “We were surrounded by four Zodiac Special Forces, which are Israeli gunships.”
    Blagrove told how Israeli warships surrounded their vessel threatening to open fire if they did not turn back.
    “We were 18 miles of the coast of Gaza and 23 miles outside the international water boundaries. The Israelis made contact with us via radio at approximately 1.30 am. Our ship had been given security clearance by the port authorities in Cyprus so we posed no threat, yet the Israeli government insisted that we aborted our journey.
    “When we refused to be intimidated, they jammed our instrumentation and blocked our GPS, radar, and navigation systems, putting our lives at risk.
    “Before we knew it we were surrounded by four Zodiac Special Forces, which are Israeli gunships and helicopters were also flying over our heads. They stormed our ship and took us against our will to Ashdod Port in Israel.
    “They confiscated and destroyed all our equipment including all our medical aid and toys and eventually we were all taken to Ramla High Security Prison where we were imprisoned.”
    “Most astonishingly the prison was full of black Africans.”
    Describing his experience inside Ramla, Blagrove said: “Without insulting the memory of those that have survived the Nazi concentration camps, the prison we were kept in can only be described in that manor. But most astonishingly the prison was full of black Africans. I was absolutely dumbfounded!
    “Israel operates under a right-wing racist government that discriminates anyone that is non-Jewish.
    “The first day I was there, I witnessed 500 Africans scooped from the streets of Tel Aviv thrown into prison. The next day 300 more Africans were taken in and the prison population continues to grow daily with Africans falling victim to the Israeli judiciary system.
     “There were Africans from the Ivory Coast, Ghana, Ethiopia and so on. The prison population in Israel is 90 percent black, which is why I was so welcomed by fellow inmates. There are thousands upon thousands of Africans inside the Israeli prisons.
    “I was told atrocious stories. Real harrowing tales and countless inmates that have been transferred from one prison to the other informed me and that every prison is the same and the government is refusing to send them back to their own country.”
    “I witnessed 500 Africans scooped from the streets of Tel Aviv thrown into prison.”
    Haunted by the conditions of the prison, he said: “I shared a seven foot by seven foot cell with 14 others. We were constantly being barked at and threatened with physical abuse. If you disobey, prisoners are stripped naked and put inside a hole with no lights or heating. We were seen as sub-human.
    “In the corner of the room there was a white plastic bag full of single slices of bread, which was our breakfast, lunch and dinner. If we were lucky they occasional gave us a cup of yoghurt to share.
    “The toilets are two tubes and to pass your waste you have to aim and squat. The smell was indescribable because it was a mixture of sweat, urine and feces.”
    Explaining that the government officials tried to force him to sign documents in Hebrew, which is illegal as all prisoners must be able to understand what they are consenting too, Blagrove said: “My fellow passengers and I were only kept for seven days because they knew the world was watching.”
    “I shared a seven foot by seven foot cell with 14 others.”
    Quoting Martin Luther King, Blagrove stated: “An injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. I want people to realize that social injustice is an international struggle and one man’s suffering in any region around the world cannot be ignored by others.
    The filmmaker, who is currently make a documentary about African roots in Cuba, added: “The Israeli government has been very clever in stopping the truth being told about their regime because whenever anybody speaks out they are instantly labeled anti-Semitic and anti-Jewish.
    “I challenge anybody to go and investigate the crimes against humanity inside Israeli prisons and the people of Gaza.”
    “I am disturbed that the mainstream British media, and in particular the BBC, has chosen to ignore what is taking place in Israel.
    “If we had been kidnapped by Iranians it would have been front page on every newspaper and David Milliband would have made a public statement including Gordon Brown and Barrack Obama.
     “There is a conspiracy of silence to protect Israel from the crimes it commits. The biggest lie ever told is that Israel is defending themselves from Palestinians who are trying to kill them. Until people broaden their minds and really unearth the truth this problem will not go away.”

      

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    Re: My Hell in an Israeli Jail, Israel Prison Population 90 Perc

    This article by Ishmahil Blagrove is quite interesting, I am an African and was also held up in the same Ramla High Security Prison for one month between January to February 2009 for immigration matters even when I came into the country legally and have a UN covering to remain in Israel. I was picked up in a street in Tel Aviv behind the Central bus station (Hatakhana Hamerkazit Hahadasha) on my way to a Nepalese owned cyber cafe to send email to my friends back home, me and others already in the immigration officers waiting bus were then taken to an immigration office at the Ben Gurion international airport, there we did police finger printing, and was told by an officer that we are going to jail and in a day or two we shall have the opportunity to speak to a judge who will either release or send us back to our countries, at the end of the day only the blacks ended up in jail, the Indians, Philippines etc all disappeared.

    We were taking to Maasiyahu Prison in Ramla by 10:pm that same day, we went through all medical check ups including for high blood pressure etc then through rigorous searches and our camera phones were confiscated including cash, they separated us, me and few others were taking to Argov 11 which housed over 300 inmates, we were welcomed by our fellow Africans, i was surprised it was an all black jail, blacks everywhere and I asked,is this an African community inside Israel.

    The main staple food inside the jail was and is still bread, whatever food that was brought comes along with bread, breakfast is normally Olive fruits, salmonella (desert), 5 slices of bread, a cup of yogurt, for launch either beans or Couscous with bread, boiled egg, potato soup, and some fruits, dinner is usually bread and tea, you only have to eat good on Shabbat, were we got Couscous and fried chicken etc.

    It took two days in the jail before we saw the judge, which was a lady called Sarah, very wicked lady though spoke politely, while she was interviewing me, I pleaded with her to take it easy with me as I am a Christian and thus her brother, she told me Israel is not a Christian country but a Jewish State and that we Christians don't have love for them, I told her that was not true, that we love them, she said that was in the past, then it downed on me I was in a wrong country.

    After interviewing me about my case for about 15/20 minutes, she handed me her judgment on my case which was contained in a document written in Hebrew, I told her I have only stayed two months in Israel and do not understand or speak Hebrew, she told me Hebrew is the official language of Israel and that’s the best she can do, till date after one year plus that I left Israel for them, I am yet to understand what she wrote on that document. While there, whoever I asked to translate what was contained on the document gave me a different interpretation.

    The lawyer I contracted to help me with the case made matters worst while he nickel and dime me, I lost $400 to him, and others lost much more to him. The lawyer was operating with the assistance of the immigration police and I believe they have their share from his profits.

    In one instance, we were requested to go for medical check up and Tuberculosis, we went in groups of six persons, we were cuffed in both hands and legs and two people were cuffed to each other like harden criminals but this is just an immigration case. We were injected and the nurse told us the injection was for brain disease, till date am not sure what that was for, any way all is still ok with me.

    Those of us that had UN coverings called the UN office several times from the jail, but were giving flimsy excuses, it was obvious that the UN office in Israel was working under the Israeli Ministry of Interior and as such you can't get justice except if they decide to offer you one, several times we called the UN Headquarters in Switzerland about our predicament and the treatment meted out to us by the UN office in Israel, they always told us the same story, that they do not recognize the UN office in Israel and there is nothing they can do about our situation, that they have offered Israel the opportunity to take the UN covered immigrants to Australia or Canada but Israel has refused because they get financial gains from America for the up keep of the immigrants in jail and to keep their prison workers busy.

    At the end of it all, I had no option than to call the UN office in Israel that gave me covering to remain in Israel that I wish to return to my country, they told me I do not need to do that but should have patient as they will get me out, when I looked at others in the jail that the UN told the same story, some have stayed six months still waiting for the UN some one year and others more, I told them I can't wait, the lady with British accent pleaded with me, but I insisted, so my case file was closed and I requested the immigration that I need to go home, so I am here in my country better of, it was actually Hell in Israel.

    I have to commend this

    I have to commend this website. Since I found this site 2 weeks ago I have learned so many things that the evening news or political talk shows never cover or avoid for political reason.

    This story of 500 Africans being scooped up should have been a big story around the country and sadly it was not, thanks to this site though for giving it the light of day.

    Lola Spears
    free coloring pages

    well, I think you need much

    well, I think you need much more people to cope with all of it. Try to find a place in bed and breakfasts to save some money.

    Israel and Palestine

    Dear All
    Unfortunately Israel has not abided by scores of UN Resolutions including critically UN Security Council Resolutions. There are over 150 of them.
    Moroever the International Court in the Hague, Netherlands, demanded Israel remove the security barrier and instead she is in the process of constructing a wall that is 3 times the size of the Berlin Wall - not on the Green Line separating the West Bank (Palestine) from Israel but within the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
    Under the 4th Geneva Convention it is illegal (in fact a war crime) to settle people in any person's land and the settlements continue to mushroom in violation of Israel's obligations to the Roap Map (2003) and to its sponsors (US, EU, Russia and the UN).
    Of course Israel has a right to live in security but as both President Bush and Prime Minister Blair and now their successors have stated the Palestinian State must be viable amd contiguous. President Obama has gone further in specifying settlements in Arab East Jerusalem are unacceptable and a violation of the Road Map (which was enshrined in International Law).
    Thank you.
    God bless

    zionist gate keepers coasting the net

    I too read the article in the Voice and the corrections to the article that Ishmahil Blagrove
    made in the following weeks issue. After reading the post from Enyinna Amadikwa, he too seems to have read it
    but still insist upon quoting the uncorrected facts. Furthermore, you appear to be a cheerleader
    for Israel rather than looking at the case on its merit and questioning the allegations.
     
    Let me remind you, the allegations are that there are a disproportionate number of Blacks in
    Israeli jails, or at the least the prison that Ishmahil Blagrove was held. Your article totally ignores
    this issue and instead goes off on a rant about how wonderful israel is. I don't doubt that Israel is 
    wonderful, but you seem to be lost in your own prejudice.
     
    Your critcisms echo some of those that were written on the Voice online forum. But
    do a google search on the two main critical bloggers on that site and you will be enlightened as to
    their true agenda. 1. Joy Wolfe is the President of the Zionist Federation and Lisa Richlen is the 
    webmaster for the World Zionist Organisation, even though she claims to work for Hotline
    for Migrant Workers an Israeli charity.
     
    I recognise that the Zionist lobby have web coasters that plant stories and also attempt to
    discredit and challenge any arguement that critcises Israel and this appears to be no diferent.
    They also have many people in their pocket and after reading your illogical rant, i wouldn't be
    surprised if you were one of them.
     
    You fail to question the veracity of the claims and instead suggest that those who have
    visited Israel "tourists" would have a different view, as though they would have visited an 
    Israeli jail. On the Voice online Website, Ishmahil Blagrove said that those who wishes
    to speak to individuals still incarcerated should contact him through the Voice. I suggest you
    do that and perhaps get some first hand accounts and ascertain the truth of the article.
     
    You seem to be so set in your mentality though, that I don't even think that would do
    you any good. YOU ARE A PROPAGANDIST, and probably a paid one.

    zionist gate keepers coasting the net

    I too read the article in the Voice and the corrections to the article that Ishmahil Blagrove
    made in the following weeks issue. After reading your post, you too seem to have read it
    but still insist upon quoting the uncorrected facts. Furthermore, you appear to be a cheerleader
    for Israel rather than looking at the case on its merit and questioning the allegations.
     
    Let me remind you, the allegations are that there are a disproportionate number of Blacks in
    Israeli jails, or at the least the prison that Ishmahil Blagrove was held. Your article totally ignores
    this issue and instead goes off on a rant about how wonderful israel is. I don't doubt that Israel is 
    wonderful, but you seem to be lost in your own prejudice.
     
    Your critcisms echo some of those that were written on the Voice online forum. But
    do a google search on the two main critical bloggers on that site and you will be enlightened as to
    their true agenda. 1. Joy Wolfe is the President of the Zionist Federation and Lisa Richlen is the 
    webmaster for the World Zionist Organisation, even though she claims to work for Hotline
    for Migrant Workers an Israeli charity.
     
    I recognise that the Zionist lobby have web coasters that plant stories and also attempt to
    discredit and challenge any arguement that critcises Israel and this appears to be no diferent.
    They also have many people in their pocket and after reading your illogical rant, i wouldn't be
    surprised if you were one of them.
     
    You fail to question the veracity of the claims and instead suggest that those who have
    visited Israel "tourists" would have a different view, as though they would have visited an 
    Israeli jail. On the Voice online Website, Ishmahil Blagrove said that those who wishes
    to speak to individuals still incarcerated should contact him through the Voice. I suggest you
    do that and perhaps get some first hand accounts and ascertain the truth of the article.
     
    You seem to be so set in your mentality though, that I don't even think that would do
    you any good. YOU ARE A PROPAGANDIST, and probably a paid one.

    Israel is Paradise

    Recently, an article entitled ''My Hell in an Israeli Jail'' has been circulating across the internet. This was first published in the Voice Online, UK taken from an interview with Black British film maker Ishmahil Blagrove. Firstly, I would like to thank him for trying to highlight the plight of Black Africans even though I feel that the article is not objective, misguided and appears to be used to hype anti-Israeli and anti-Jewish feelings in the black community. As a Black African man I am utterly disgusted that a fellow Black man, a film maker whom in every sense is a Black intellectual, should allow himself to be made an object and material for anti-semetic propaganda.

     
    At this juncture, I would like to point out that Mr. Blagrove's observations and comments are his personal views and opinions, they do not reflect the observations, opinions and views of Black Africans, those in Africa or those of us who have travelled to Israel. Individuals should not be generalising the opinions of an entire continent of people for a personal media stunt or propaganda issues. Attitudes like this damage social and political cohesion between communities and fuel hatred in society. Those who start such actions will then hide behind the internet newspapers that publish it, while their mis-information continues to wreak havoc in society.

     
    In a disclaimer, written by Mr. Blagrove he insisted that he is British born, he was unable to refer to any African or Caribbean or Black ancestry but yet he has now made himself a mouthpiece of Black opinion. Anyone that has the interest of Black people at heart, a love for social harmony and cohesion between Arabs and Jews, or Palestinians would find out that there are so many objective issues that can be raised. I do not want to draw parallels to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the experience of Black Africans in Sudan, Arab countries or the Igbos in Nigeria but for analytical expressions I cannot help but do so.
    Let us, firstly look at the experience of Jews in Israel, the Middle East and the west and the experience of Igbos in Biafra known as the ''Jews of Africa''.
    As late as 1945 many Jews were killed in Libya and in the same year many Igbos were killed in Kano, Northern Nigeria. In the early 1940's Jews, mostly White, died in the Holocaust killing over 6 million people. Other events have shown that Jews have been persecuted, killed and deported from many Arab and European countries over the centuries.
    I would argue that the White Jews among all societies do not need a lesson on empathy towards the oppressed because they have have had more than their fair share of persecution in the world.

     
    The Igbos in their own events have suffered genocide resulting in the death of 3.5 million people deliberately starved to death. Over the years they have seen their businesses, shops and properties destroyed by people influenced with the same ideology that hates Jewish people. These atrocities like we are witnessing in Sudan, Chad and Mauritania are perpetuated by their Black brothers and Arab neighbours, yet Mr. Blagrove failed to make media propaganda out of this.

     
    Many argue that Israel is the aggressor rather than the victim. But looking at the Igbos in Nigeria, I can argue strongly that Israel is a victim of its own success. A success of such magnitude that it has influenced positively the life of everyone on Earth. These successes are something we should celebrate and emulate. These include in 60 years Israel achieving the highest ratio of University degrees per person compared to the rest of the world, Israel has the 2nd highest output new books per citizen, it holds more patents per person than any citizen in any other nation in the world. More than 85% of solid waste in Israel is treated in an Environmentally friendly manner. Israeli companies; Amdoc, Comverse, Nice system all pioneered voice mail, sms and other cellular phone services.
    The Intel high speed Centrium processor was developed in Israel as was Microsoft's Windows XP operating system.

     
    The list of Israel's' achievements and contributions goes on. One has to remember Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir's Foreign Policy included helping newly - independent Black African nations to develop. Israel has emerged and asserted itself as a successful democracy in the Middle East where there are no other democratic countries, operating with The Rule of Law, with enviable technology and economic technical know-how.

     
    We the Igbos will always appreciate and look up to Israel because judging from our own situation right now living in a country that is endemically corrupt, constantly under the threat of imposed religion and facing massacre and pogrom on a yearly basis along with being politically disenfranchised. Black people from this area will not want to be associated with Mr. Blagrove's comments.

     
    We do not know the reasons why people are held in jail in Israel, nor how one person being held in a cell can ascertain that 90% of people in Israeli jails are Black people. We also do not know the political, ethnic and social background of the people in these jails and are not aware of the religion and ideological influence of the writer Mr. Blagrove, but yet Blacks have now been used in the midst of the Israeli – Palestinian conflict to stir up discord between Black people and Jews, rather than making peace between Israel and Palestine.

     
    May I inform Mr. Blagrove that no Black African would seek asylum in any of the neighbouring countries to Israel unless they cannot make it to Israel, which is 'Paradise'. Every year hundreds of people, if not thousands, are walking through the desert hoping to reach Israel, passing on their way many countries.
    Your article insults the intelligence of these men and women who have to go through hell to enter Israel, risking being shot on the Egyptian-Israeli border. To those of us that have been to Israel I do not think it is so bad as suggested.

     
    I would like to take this opportunity to reassure Jewish people and Israeli's that the views and observations of Mr. Blagrove is only his opinion and the opinion of those who ascribe to his views, it is not the opinion or views of all the Black people. I will assure you that the majority of Black people whose colour and ethnic origin is African, and as such, has been used in this context, are not even aware of it.
    Not long ago thousands of Africans were lifted up from Ethiopia and were re-settled in Israel. We have not forgotten that Mr. Abie Nathan and many others in the Jewish community worked tirelessly to prevent the starvation of Igbos during the Biafran-Nigerian war (1967-1970). In recent times, Israel has helped the Sudanese Refugees and has contributed in alleviating suffering in Sri Lanka and other conflict zones around the world.
    Israel has done all this as a nation of only 7.4 million people.

     
    Israel is a democracy and operates with The Rule of Law, I am sure that the Red Cross, Amnesty International and other credible Human Rights agencies already have access to these prisons and have not recorded any such occurrences nor major incidents.

     
    Right now there are numerous atrocities being carried out against Black Africans in their own countries regardless of democratic government or religion. Such crimes against them include being beheaded, mass rape, slavery, torture and murder.

     
    The last time I visited Israel I met many people from My community who have entered Israel through Egypt with no documents whatsoever yet they are allowed to stay. They expressed the nightmare they have been through crossing several countries to reach there.

     
    Black African nations would like services produced in Israel, such as agro-industrial technology, solar panel technology and many other technical advances that have helped to make Israel a success. In my opinion, many Black Africans who have benefited from the technical support provided by Israel as early as the late 60's would feel outraged on how their colour and ethnicity has been used to promote hatred but I am sure they will never succeed.

     
    Enyinna Amadikwa
    President
    Good Shepherds Movement

     
    Email: goodshepherdsmovement@yahoo.co.uk
    Website: http://www.goodshepherdsmovement.webs.com

    Israel is Paradise

     The United Nations and Amnesty International recently released the findings of their
     investigations into Israeli crimes in Gaza during the 22 day bombardment. i suppose both of those organisations are anti-semetic and anti-israeli too.
     
    In your assault against Mr Blagrove, you mentioned nothing about the war crimes committed by israel in Gaza and instead try to paint a picture of Israel that is divorced from reality. Fortunately the public are beginning to wake up to the lies and deceit which has kept them blinded for so long.

    Israel's Zionist / Nazi regime - The real promoters of hatred

    Research Dr. Yosef Ben Jochannon's work called "We the Black Jews".
    Watch Dr. John Henrik Clark's lecture "What is a Jew?"
    Within the governments of Israel and America sit the satanic bloodlines who are hiding behind the biggest lie ever perpetrated on humanity.  They hide behind words like "Anti-semite" and they aren't even Semitic.
    Learn about the Black Hebrews...
    Learn the truth Mr. President of the 'Good Shepards Movement'... it's pretty important to Humanity. 

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