On March 13, 2009, Tristan Anderson, a U.S. citizen from Oakland, CA, was critically injured when he was shot in the head by a high-velocity tear gas canister fired by the Israeli army.
Tristan was shot while photographing a weekly demonstration against the building of the Apartheid Wall in the West Bank village of Ni’lin. The Wall, which was declared to be illegal by the International Court of Justice in 2004, cuts off Ni’lin from much of its agricultural lands. Since 2008, Israel has killed four unarmed Palestinians during these weekly protests: Yousef Amira (17), Ahmed Mousa (10), Arafat Rateb Khawaje (22), and Mohammed Khawaje (20).
This incident comes almost exactly six years after the death of U.S. peace activist Rachel Corrie. Rachel was killed by the Israeli military with a Caterpillar bulldozer as she was nonviolently trying to protect a Palestinian home from being destroyed on March 16, 2003.
Tristan’s family has released a statement informing supporters that Tristan’s condition has stabilized and that he has been moved from emergency care to specialized neurological intensive care unit in the Tel Hashomer hospital outside of Tel Aviv. The family is “deeply hopeful that Tristan will recover” and is “looking forward to when he is stable enough that he can return home to the care and comfort of his family and community.”
“In the meantime, we are deeply appreciative of the excellent care he’s receiving, the amazing support that Gaby [his girlfriend] and his friends are providing, and the thoughts and prayers of those around the world who are holding him in their hearts and minds. It matters tremendously as we all hold faith for Tristan to recover and return home. Again, we are so very grateful for the outpouring of love and support for Tristan and our family.”
Cindy and Craig Corrie, the parents of Rachel Corrie, have released a statement on the 6th anniversary of their daughter’s death: “On this anniversary, Rachel would want us all to hold Tristan Anderson and his family and these Palestinians [killed in Ni’lin] and their families in our thoughts and prayers, and we ask everyone to do so….[The] attacks on all the people of Gaza and the recent one on Tristan Anderson in Ni’lin cry out for investigation and accountability.”
Across the country, organizations and individuals have planned vigils and actions today to commemorate Rachel Corrie. We call on supporters to join these events and to call for justice and accountability for all innocent victims of Israeli occupation.
Find out if there is a Rachel Corrie Remembrance Day event near you by clicking here. If not, plan an emergency vigil and let others know by posting your event here. A flyer for use at your vigil can be found here.
For more information about Tristan’s shooting and updates on his condition, including links to news articles, see the website of the International Solidarity Movement. Please note that the video on this website is graphic and disturbing.