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.

Sincerely,

Who's signing

Jackie Feazell
Abdallah Fares
Jordyn Henderson
Olivia Katbi Smith
Angela Castille
Mehdi Mohammadi
Yu Ding
sussn pelican
Margaret Graham
Greta
Muhammad Islam
William Thomas
Christine Staight
Robert Keilbach
Wendy Moss
Gaye Demanuele
Karl Hildenbrand
Amy Berger
Rodney Nippert
Zainab Mojtahedy
Sue Saunders
Erin Daniels
Ayesha Ali
Neema Nourian
Sipel A
Kelly Luebesmier
Mona Sulzman
Vivian Zoma
2,769 signatures

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Comments

  • Jackie Feazell
    signed 2019-06-18 19:40:19 -0400
  • Abdallah Fares
    signed 2019-06-18 19:31:26 -0400
    Please don’t be a part of this. I’ve been a fan since the start. Your parade was filled with people of all nations and ethnicities. Please do not dishonour them by supporting an apartheid government.
  • Jordyn Henderson
    signed 2019-06-18 19:25:41 -0400
    As an American Jew, I urge you all not to go to Israel. The Palestinian people deserve respect and shouldn’t have their oppression put on the sidelines because Israel wants it to be. I love basketball and Raptors are the only team I’ve ever given a flying fuck about, so please don’t go! Support Palestine instead and the huge population of American Jews that do too.
  • Olivia Katbi Smith
    signed 2019-06-18 19:25:28 -0400
  • Angela Castille
    signed 2019-06-18 19:21:55 -0400
  • Mehdi Mohammadi
    signed 2019-06-18 19:02:05 -0400
  • Yu Ding
    signed 2019-06-18 19:01:24 -0400
  • sussn pelican
    signed 2019-06-18 18:55:15 -0400
    Israel is racist— committing genocide against the Palestinians — the aborigines.
  • Margaret Graham
    signed 2019-06-18 18:48:10 -0400
  • Greta
    @gretagarbled tweeted link to this page. 2019-06-18 18:41:34 -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 https://www.codepink.org/raptors?recruiter_id=297834
  • Greta
    signed 2019-06-18 18:41:16 -0400
  • Muhammad Islam
    signed 2019-06-18 18:34:38 -0400
  • William Thomas
    signed 2019-06-18 18:28:04 -0400
  • Christine Staight
    signed 2019-06-18 18:26:46 -0400
  • Robert Keilbach
    signed 2019-06-18 18:19:21 -0400
    Skip Apartheid Israel
  • Wendy Moss
    signed 2019-06-18 18:17:40 -0400
    Visiting stolen, apartheid, Israel will make you moral losers. Don’t be moral losers, be on the right side of humanity. 💚🕊
  • Gaye Demanuele
    signed 2019-06-18 18:12:08 -0400
  • Karl Hildenbrand
    signed 2019-06-18 18:11:34 -0400
  • Amy Berger
    signed 2019-06-18 18:08:31 -0400
  • Rodney Nippert
    signed 2019-06-18 18:07:14 -0400
  • Zainab Mojtahedy
    signed 2019-06-18 18:07:08 -0400
    PALESTINE WILL BE FREE ❤️
  • Erin Daniels
    @FumPuppyWitLuv tweeted link to this page. 2019-06-18 18:06:05 -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 https://www.codepink.org/raptors?recruiter_id=668173
  • Sue Saunders
    signed 2019-06-18 18:05:47 -0400
    Please skip the trip!
  • Erin Daniels
    signed 2019-06-18 18:05:34 -0400
  • Ayesha Ali
    signed 2019-06-18 18:02:26 -0400
  • Neema Nourian
    signed 2019-06-18 17:58:43 -0400
  • Sipel A
    signed 2019-06-18 17:57:36 -0400
  • Kelly Luebesmier
    signed 2019-06-18 17:49:07 -0400
  • Mona Sulzman
    signed 2019-06-18 17:48:28 -0400
    I love the team, you’re my favorite, but sadly, I cannot be a fan anymore if you go to Israel. I am Jewish and I support BDS and an end to Israel’s atrocities and injustice towards the Palestinians. Palestinians deserve equality, justice, and self-determination. By refusing this trip you will be on the right side of history. If you go, you will shame yourselves.
  • Vivian Zoma
    signed 2019-06-18 17:47:34 -0400
    Vivian Zoma
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