Toronto Raptors: Skip the Trip to Apartheid Israel

Tell the Toronto Raptors: Don’t celebrate your historic NBA win by becoming ambassadors to sports-wash occupation, apartheid, and war crimes.

Prior to winning the 2019 NBA title, Raptor's billionaire co-owner Larry Tanenbaum told the team if they won he would take them on a trip to Israel. Traveling to Israel on such a trip would help cover up (sports-wash) Israel's crimes against the Palestinian people. Sign our letter to the Raptors’ players asking them to heed the Palestinian call for boycott — including a sports and cultural boycott — and reject the trip.

Dear Raptors players,

As sports fans and human rights supporters, we appeal to you to decline to travel to Israel as part of a propaganda trip that would serve to cover up (sports-wash) the daily nightmares of siege, occupation, and apartheid that Palestinians live under.

Since 1967, Israel has been holding Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza under military occupation and in a system of apartheid. Palestinians are subject to a web of checkpoints, they endure home demolitions, land confiscations, closed military zones, and a separate and unequal system of military laws and courts. Palestinians are subjected to inadequate access to water and other resources, separate roads and walkways, and a separation wall that snakes throughout the West Bank, preventing Palestinians from accessing their crops. Under military law it is illegal for Palestinians to participate in protest of their circumstances and military courts have an over 99% conviction rate. Children as young as 12 are detained, abuses, and tried in the only juvenile military court in the world.

In Gaza, Palestinians live under a crippling siege, often referred to as the largest open-air prison on earth. 97% of the water in Gaza is unfit for consumption. Medical supplies and sufficient food cannot get in. Unemployment is 52% (70% for youth) and the densely populated strip is often bombed. The United Nations says that since March 2018, Israel has likely been committing war crimes by shooting Palestinian citizens, children, journalists, medics, and the disabled.

Inside Israel, Palestinian citizens face discrimination in housing, resources, and more. In 2005 Palestinian civil society put out a call for boycott — including academic, cultural and sports — and divestment from Israel until such a time as Israel ends its occupation and colonization of the West Bank and its siege of Gaza, dismantles the Apartheid system of racial discrimination and segregation for Palestinian citizens of Israel, and recognizes the Right of Return of over 5 million Palestinian refugees in accordance with UN resolution 194.

Around the world, poor and oppressed people embrace basketball as a sport of the people, and basketball players — many of whom come from poor and struggling backgrounds — have an important history of taking progressive positions and giving back to their communities, including NBA players showing up on the side of social and racial justice. Rather than participating in a propaganda trip that will help Israel continue its policies of racism and oppression, we encourage you to travel to the West Bank and meet with Palestinians living under occupation. CODEPINK is happy to provide you with contacts and resources to do this.

As NBA Champions, you have the opportunity to use your success and influence to help end Isreal’s abuses of Palestinian human rights. Please support the Palestinian struggle for freedom and liberation by not traveling to Israel as part of a propaganda trip.


Who's signing

Sarah Foster
Rich Nasser
Ashley Auer
Lenore Fenn
S. Perry
Carole Shelton
kim petersen
Wendy Thompson
Jane Varalli
Bill Clark
fhat mudz
Carol Dudek
Emily Rodrique
John Alessi
John St. Peter
Ruth Gollobin
Morgan OConnor
Marianne Yusavage Yusavage
Jack Murphy
Mari Stachenfeld
Jessica wardlaw
Susan Caswell
Sherrill Futrell
bernardo alayza mujica
Frances Dunham
Anam Matariyeh
Chris Theodor
Lutz Barz
Paul M Grohman
2,799 signatures

Will you sign?


  • Sarah Foster
    signed 2019-07-18 19:31:03 -0400
  • Rich Nasser
    signed 2019-07-17 18:30:55 -0400
  • Ashley Auer
    signed 2019-07-17 15:40:08 -0400
  • Lenore Fenn
    signed 2019-07-17 11:39:47 -0400
  • S. Perry
    signed 2019-07-16 15:55:00 -0400
  • Carole Shelton
    signed 2019-07-16 11:55:17 -0400
  • kim petersen
    signed 2019-07-14 13:02:32 -0400
    all racism is abhorrent whether against blacks, arabs, jews, etc
  • Wendy Thompson
    signed 2019-07-13 22:14:00 -0400
  • Jane Varalli
    signed 2019-07-13 18:49:39 -0400
    I watched your team beat mine. I loved the teamwork and extraordinary skills, a great coach. Israel has interfered with us elections their netanyahu thanked trump for his election and vice versa. It would be a powerful statement if you did not go to Israel. They murder on a daily basis.
  • Bill Clark
    signed 2019-07-13 13:30:21 -0400
    Dear Raptors: If you do your homework and look into the realities of Israeli apartheid policies towards Palestinians you may decide not to participate in a vacation there. Please don’t debate yourself and your championship victory by going on a politically motivated trip that exploits your elite athleticism for the sake of Israeli propaganda. I don’t think you would have gone on a celebratory trip to South Africa when it was still under apartheid rule — and going to Israel now would be the same or even worse.
  • fhat mudz
    signed 2019-07-13 11:13:38 -0400
  • Carol Dudek
    signed 2019-07-12 15:32:12 -0400
  • Emily Rodrique
    signed 2019-07-12 13:02:23 -0400
  • John Alessi
    signed 2019-07-11 18:35:25 -0400
  • John St. Peter
    signed 2019-07-11 13:39:08 -0400
  • Ruth Gollobin
    signed 2019-07-11 12:03:29 -0400
  • Morgan OConnor
    signed 2019-07-10 15:34:46 -0400
  • Marianne Yusavage Yusavage
    signed 2019-07-10 14:09:43 -0400
  • Jack Murphy
    signed via 2019-07-10 11:23:23 -0400
  • Mari Stachenfeld
    signed 2019-07-09 22:23:49 -0400
  • Jessica wardlaw
    signed 2019-07-09 21:19:30 -0400
  • Susan Caswell
    signed 2019-07-09 01:42:29 -0400
  • Sherrill Futrell
    signed 2019-07-08 22:52:35 -0400
    Please stand up for those who cannot.
  • bernardo alayza mujica
    signed 2019-07-08 21:22:40 -0400
    bernardo alayza mujica
  • Frances Dunham
    signed 2019-07-08 20:38:31 -0400
  • Anam Matariyeh
    @EmMahdi4Peace tweeted link to this page. 2019-07-08 09:46:14 -0400
    Dear @Raptors don’t travel to apartheid Israel w/team owner Larry Tanenbaum. Your @NBA championship win is historic & must not be used as propaganda to cover up Israel’s crimes of occupation & aparthied. #SkipTheTrip #RaptorsDontGo
  • Anam Matariyeh
    signed 2019-07-08 09:46:09 -0400
  • Chris Theodor
    signed 2019-07-08 07:37:34 -0400
  • Lutz Barz
    signed 2019-07-08 06:55:04 -0400
    What if they go and arrive with their own opinions?
  • Paul M Grohman
    signed 2019-07-07 13:42:47 -0400

people already signed