On Friday July 18th over 100 people turned up to stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people in response to recent and ongoing attacks that have escalated since mid June following the death of three Israeli teens.
So far the Israeli Defense Forces have bombed refugee camps and hospitals, schools and homes. The story portrayed by Israeli and American media is that these attacks are in response to violence by Hamas, the democratically elected government of Palestine. The story on the ground is something different entirely. The current death toll of Palestinians is now over 200. The attacks continue. Thousands of citizens the globe over have been holding die ins at Israeli embassies, marches, and protests in solidarity with the people of Palestine amidst a shocking silence from world leaders.
President Obama and several US allies have supported Israel’s recent addition of ground troops marching through Gaza, backing Israel PM Netanyahu’s statements that ‘Israel has a right to defend itself’. So far one of the only voices of dissent to come from a president has come from Turkish PM Tayyip Erdogan that Israel’s brutality has ‘surpassed Hitler‘ and has called for immediate aid to Palestinians, and at once an end to the violence.
The International Citizens of the world stand in solidarity with the Indigenous people of Palestine.
In Northampton Mass on Friday over 100 people showed up to a rally and march to publicly stand in solidarity with the people of Palestine, to decry the continuing attacks, to call for peace, and to engage members of the community in conversation surrounding the issue.
The march was organized by the recently renewed Western Mass Coalition for Palestine and is part of a continued campaign in the valley to support the struggle to end the occupation of Gaza and the West Bank. Present at the rally were community members, workers, parents and students. A diverse vast array of local grassroots organizations were represented including Arise for Social Justice/Levansese, Springfield No One Leaves/Nadie Se Mudie, Just Communities/Communidades Justas, The Northampton Peace and Justice Committee, Code Pink, The American Friends Service Committee, The Raging Grannies, OutNow, Justice for Ayyub, Western MA Jobs with Justice, organizers from the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network and student organizers from various Students For Justice with Palestine chapters. Professors and Faculty from UMASS Amherst were also present, and students from many of the five colleges.
The group will continue actions and is organizing local campaigns in accordance with the Palestinian call for BDS – Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions as a non-violent direct response to the ongoing occupation.
This Friday July 25th the coalition will be hosting a silent march through Northampton.
To contact the Western Mass Coalition for Palestine visit the facebook page
peace & solidarity