Since Israel began its most recent attack on Gaza on July 8, more than 600 men, women, and children have been killed and 1,000s injured and maimed. The majority have been civilians, and nearly 130 have been children. Over 100,000 Palestinians have been internally displaced, many of which were already refugees. Gaza is an 8 year siege of air, water, land. Gaza, the most densely populated area in the world, is an open-air prison. Gaza is where entire Palestinian families are being eradicated in the name of safety, security and freedom. Even hospitals, schools, and mosques are not spared.
We have an obligation to act because we are implicated in what’s happening in Palestine. We give billions of dollars in aid that largely goes to funding the Israeli occupation. Additionally, as New York City Council members proclaim their support for Israel, the NYPD’s collaboration with Israel yields dawn raids, the militarization of neighborhoods, and the blanket surveillance of Arabs and Muslims. Last week's action was not intended as an isolated response, but an opening salvo. What Israel does in the West Bank and Gaza is research and development for what we see in the militarization of police globally; it’s an export with real economic parameters. It’s not enough to mourn the loss of Palestinian life. We have to see ourselves reflected in their experience: decades of displacement, occupation, siege, and repeated large-scale military assaults. But, even more importantly, we must act because the Palestinian struggle is the struggle of all oppressed people and our liberation is bound together.
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