I want to share some exciting news with you. We are winning!
In Columbus, Ohio last week, I met and strategized with student activists at Ohio State University who are building a movement to pressure their university to divest from companies profiting off of human rights abuses around the world, including Palestine. These students have fully embraced the Palestinian call for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) and, from everything I have seen, will not be stopped.
In Washington, D.C., I saw thousands of people turn out for conferences and marches challenging the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the largest arm of the American Israel lobby. I also hit the Hill, delivering a mandate to congressional and senatorial offices to oppose current anti-BDS legislation in the House and Senate. As we push forward with demands for Palestinian self-determination and equality, and for the right to advocate for these inalienable rights here in the U.S., the status quo of groups like AIPAC grows tenuous.
In New York, I met with more grassroots activists who are challenging Israeli apartheid through a number of tactics. One of these meetings allowed me to reconnect with my dear friend Ayman Nijim. I first met Ayman in Gaza in 2011, where he worked with Afaq Jadeeda, a community group based in Nuseirat Refugee Camp. Ayman has since gone on to complete his Master’s degree at the School for International Training and is currently pursuing his PhD training, defying the Israeli policy of containment and blockade that aims to destroy his dreams of advanced education.
And so, every day that we engage with this issue and push forward, through education and grassroots participation, we are winning.
We rely on contributions from our supporters around the world to continue this mission. As you may have heard, we recently received a matching grant that will allow us to raise a total of $25,000! We need your help in order to secure all of these vital funds. A contribution today is an investment in initiating and supporting the grassroots campaigns and educational efforts that are at the heart of our challenge to Israeli occupation.
As I return to Olympia this week to continue this work, I will be thinking of the people I have spent time with on this trip – the dedicated and principled people making such a significant impact across the country – and will carry our collaborative energy forward until the realization of a free Palestine.
Policy Analyst & Communications Manager