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SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE  April 2004

SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE April 2004

Subject:

Fwd: NASA deal with W. Bank settlement

From:

Phil Gasper <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Science for the People Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Wed, 14 Apr 2004 18:32:27 -0700

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (130 lines)

>  GUSH SHALOM - pob 3322, Tel-Aviv 61033 - www.gush-shalom.org/
>
>                        \\// //\\ \\// //\\ \\//
>
>  [] While the diplomats talk, NASA dealing with West Bank settlement.
>     N.B.: Call for protest
>
>  On the eve of the Bush-Sharon summit in which the future of the West Bank
>  settlements is at stake it turns out that a major agency of the United
>  States Government - the National Space and Aeronautics Agency, NASA - is
>  already on the way to granting both recognition and financial sustenance
>  to the settlement-city of Ariel, which constitutes a major focus of
>  Sharon's land-grabbing and and annexation program.
>
>  NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), at Pasadena, California has
>  expressed its interest in a new robotics program developed by researchers
>  at the "College of Judea and Samaria" in the Ariel settlement, for
>  incorporation into the planned 2009 robotic mission to Mars. In addition
>  to space exploration, these new robotic techniques are expected to have
>  terrestrial applications such as "Autonomous mobile robots performing
>  security and defence tasks, patrolling roads and hostile areas" (sic!).
>  As a matter of fact, in the settlers' own boastful press release on the
>  Ariel/NASA deal there is mention also of an unspecified role for two
>  other respectable institutions: the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
>  and the Tohoku University of Japan.
>
>  Gush Shalom sees settlements as the main obstacle on the way to peace
>  with the Palestinians.
>  We have many years campaigned for boycotting the products of settlements -
>  with a significant follow-up of tens of thousands of Israeli households.
>  We are very concerned at international institutions lending support and
>  legitimacy to settlements such as Ariel.
>
>  We call upon you to express your concern to these institutes, using
>  either the sample letter appearing below or your own text.
>
>  For further info you can look up the Ariel college's own announcement
>
>  http://www.yosh.ac.il/news/press.asp#43
>
>  as well as the Ma'ariv Online article in Hebrew
>  http://images.maariv.co.il/cache/cachearchive/08032004/ART663191.htmls
>
>  and in English
>  http://www.maarivintl.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=article&articleID=4215
>
>  and also in the "Marsnews" website
>  http://www.marsnews.com/newswire/technology/
>
>  -------------protests to be sent to:--------------
>  President George W. Bush <[log in to unmask]>
>  Fax: +1-202-456-2461
>
>  Secretary of State Colin Powell <[log in to unmask]>
>  Fax: +1-202-261-8577
>
>  Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California
>  [log in to unmask]
>
>  [log in to unmask]
>
>  Phone:+1-818- 354-9314
>  Fax:   +1-818-393-4641
>
>  -------
>  NASA Headquarters Information Centre
>  (Washington, D.C).
>  Phone +1-202- 358-0000
>  Fax    +1-202-358-3251
>  [log in to unmask]
>  [log in to unmask]
>  "Elaine Bowman" <[log in to unmask]>
>
>  -------
>  More NASA addresses:
>
>  http://www.nasa.gov/about/speakers/index.html
>  http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/hqlibrary/ic/offices.html
>
>  Marsnews <[log in to unmask]>
>
>  copies to:
>  Gush Shalom <[log in to unmask]>
>
>  [for your convenience] here follow the collected emails:
>  To:
>  [log in to unmask], [log in to unmask],
>  [log in to unmask], [log in to unmask],
>  [log in to unmask], [log in to unmask], [log in to unmask],
>  [log in to unmask]
>  CC to: [log in to unmask]
>
>  -------
>
>  sample letter:
>
>  Dear Sir or Madam
>
>  The "College of Judea & Samaria", located in the Israeli settlement of
>  Ariel on the West Bank, recently announced the The Jet Propulsion
>  Laboratory which is part of NASA is interested in a "robotic self-
>  navigating vehicle" being developed by Prof. Zvi Shiller and  Dr. Shraga
>  Shoval of that college. Reportedly, NASA is considering the purchase of
>  that system and its incorporation in future Mars missions launched by
>  NASA.
>  I am deeply concerned at these news. I would like to point out that this
>  "College of Judea & Samaria" is not an innocuous academic institution.
>  Rather, it is a political body, deliberately and specifically established
>  at a settlement which was created on confiscated Palestinian land in
>  flagrant violation of International Law, with the aim of "creating
>  accomplished facts" and preventing the establishment of a viable
>  Palestinian state. The "separation fence" which the government of Israel
>  plans to build around the Ariel settlement is at the centre of a hot
>  controversy, both inside Israel and internationally, and its legality is
>  presently under scrutiny at the International court in the Hague. The
>  creation and maintenance of the "College of Judea & Samaria" at Ariel is
>  aimed at lending legitimacy to  this illegal settlement and making it
>  seem as "a university town". Any dealing with this college, and in
>  particular the large scale support of a research project carried out
>  there, is highly detrimental to the chances of peace in the Middle East.
>  Further, this specific robotic system has military applications as well
>  as scientific ones, including ones having directly to do with Israel's
>  rule over and oppression of the occupied Palestinian population
>  ("patrolling of hostile areas"). It is certainly not in in the interest
>  of NASA or of  the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to be implicated in
>  legitimizing and financing such a questionable project, and to have
>  future missions to Mars linked up with it.
>
>  Yours, ......

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