All eyes on Gaza. Free Palestine.
Shared on our social media October 23, 2023
We are witnessing a genocide in Gaza. In 2 weeks, Israel has dropped more bombs on Gaza than the USA did in the entirety of the Afghanistan war. Israel’s illegal air, land, and sea blockade over the Gaza Strip means Gazans have been cut off from access to water, food, electricity and medical supplies, with no humanitarian corridor or safe passage for civilians to escape the bombing. This is ethnic cleansing happening in real time, and we are watching through our phones and on our televisions, while the media props up Israeli government propaganda and the Canadian government doubles down on its support for the Israeli State.
Over the past two weeks, we have seen the reality of Western complicity in crimes against humanity in Palestine. As Israel bombards Gazan hospitals, mosques, schools and homes, indiscriminately killing thousands of Palestinians living in the world’s biggest open-air prison, nearly half of them children, we have heard the call from Palestinian Youth Movement and add our voice to a growing international community speaking out against ongoing genocide and colonial violence in Palestine.
For decades, Palestinians have lived under brutal Israeli occupation and apartheid. The Canadian government is complicit, propping up the Israeli military and quashing Palestinian solidarity under the guise of fighting antisemitism. We reject this false framing: it is not antisemitic to criticize the crimes of the Israeli government, but it is antisemitic to conflate all Jewish people with the Israeli government, and to use Jewish pain and grief as a justification for genocide against Palestinians.
Genocide is not a Jewish value and there will be no occupation in olam ha-ba. We mourn all those who have been killed, injured, or affected in Israel/Palestine. We are heartened by the many Jewish and Israeli voices calling out this genocide, demanding a ceasefire and an end to the occupation, as a beacon of hope and a beautiful example of solidarity in the midst of personal loss and grief.
In our struggles against colonial violence in so-called Canada, we know that climate justice must include Palestinian liberation. We know that all oppression is linked, and that our work to dismantle colonial structures here is intrinsically connected to the struggle against colonial violence in Palestine. While our government funds the Israeli military, our financial institutions too are complicit in Israeli apartheid. For example, RBC owns stock in Palantir, an AI tech surveillance company used to criminalize Palestinians in the West Bank. This surveillance tool, called Blue Wolf, uses facial recognition technology to justify the imprisonment, torture and murder of Palestinians. Former IDF soldiers are whistleblowers for this project, which has a high rate of false positives and is used to legitimize colonial violence against Palestiniansl. We call on all Canadian banks to stop funding the Israeli military and government. Your money is funding genocide.
We amplify demands coming from Gaza & immediate actions:
- Ceasefire now. Israel’s genocidal collective punishment and ethnic cleansing must cease.
- End the siege on Gaza. Restore water, electricity and communications services in addition to lifting the blockade.
- Gaza is home. We reject bad faith proposals to “evacuate” us. These are traps to remove us. We will never leave.
- End US (and Canadian) military aid & no more weapons trade with Israel. While the US continues to fail at caring for it’s own citizens, billions of dollars are sent off to ethnically cleanse a population of civilians. Hold weapons manufacturers and their traders accountable.
- Come to Gaza now. We call on you to send your delegations to Gaza.. Medical professionals, allied politicians, artists- come and demand Gaza be opened so care can be administered.
Long live Gaza! Long live a free Palestine! We are inspired by an international mass movement against genocide and apartheid. Our eyes are fixed on Palestinian leadership, we lend our voices and our power to their struggle. We know that our collective liberation is bound together. From Turtle Island to Palestine, we must believe another world is possible. We must believe Palestine will be free, and that imperialism and colonialism will be defeated. All the walls will fall.