Israel’s campaign of violence on Ramadan, al-Aqsa
Colonization, the erasure of Indigenous people — whether that be the programs carried out by the US, Canada, Australia, South Africa, or Israel — mandates relentless violence. This week, as the Israeli regime continued enacting a policy of dispossession and displacement, it demonstrated how vicious and unrestrained state violence is when tightening its grip over cherished Indigenous lands. Since the beginning of Ramadan, Israeli forces have intimidated Palestinians from worshiping at their holy site. As Palestinians resisted colonial oppression reclaiming their rightful presence on their land and sovereignty over their religious sites, Israeli forces responded by detaining and arresting hundreds of Palestinians in and around the Old City of Jerusalem. These aggressive actions were executed with horrifying violence, leaving hundreds injured. Mortifying videos of Israeli forces beating fathers in front of their children, women walking and abruptly being ambushed by Israeli batons, and the journalists documenting the Israeli carnage beaten and left with broken limbs. Here is what it looked like.
Israeli forces beat women
On Friday April 15th, there were multiple accounts of Israeli forces running up and beating women. Here is just one example.
Israeli forces beat journalist
This follows a wider pattern of Israeli forces targeting journalists documenting abuses, as well as a broader initiative by the Israeli government to silence dissent.
Israeli forces beat father in front of child
This gruesome scene is not an anomaly, but rather the logical outworkings of Zionism, which is a form of settler colonialism.
While chronicling the methods that the state enacts to terrorize the native population, we can’t afford to dwell on this sordid violence. These images and stories have to advance liberation. They have to be a mode of communication to activate advocacy initiatives built to dismantle Israel’s program of colonization. These advocacy approaches have to be strategic, aimed at the policies and laws that allow Israel to maintain and build power and be more than “educational.” When thinking about our advocacy campaign, we have to ask ourselves two critical questions: What is the impact of the campaign, and is it winnable? Campaigns must both be achievable and have a material effect on the ground.
Focusing on the laws that allow charities to fund the Israeli settler movement, the Campaign to Defund Racism is both winnable and has the potential to completely derail the financial structures that underpin the Israeli squatter initiative. The Campaign to Defund Racism is a call from the ground, a campaign developed by the most vulnerable Palestinian communities facing settler attacks and displacement. They have marked out which Israeli settler organizations are leading the charge for displacement and dispossession and offer up a clear path to organize to defund them. With Regavim taking every legal and political route to displace the people of Khan al-Ahmar, Ateret Cohanim physically taking over the Petra Hotel and the Israel Land Fund and others waging war against the people of Sheikh Jarrah, it is no wonder why Palestinians have made this call to defund Israeli settler organizations a national priority.
You can help support this campaign by heading the Defund Racism website, signing the petition, and sharing it on social media. You can make a step further by having your organization endorse the call as well as organizing a webinar. If you have questions on any of these, please let us know.
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