Cover Photo: A Palestine solidarity rally in Kansas City, Missouri (Source: Tribune SC)
By Dimitri Sans
Hundreds booed US President Joe Biden when he visited Dearborn, Michigan as part of mass worldwide protests this week in solidarity with the Palestinian people and against US imperialism for its role in Israel’s crimes. Thousands more mobilized in US cities to celebrate Palestinian resistance and to condemn the Israeli murder of over 200 Palestinians, including dozens of children. Despite the ceasefire agreement between Hamas and the Israeli government, protests continued through this weekend and more are scheduled in the days to come.
Some of the largest rallies and marches took place on Saturday, May 15, the 73rd anniversary of the Nakba, the “catastrophe,” which marks the date when the displacement of Palestinians began in full as the Zionist state of Israel accelerated its campaign of genocide upon its formation. Many of these solidarity events saw protesters of all ages and various backgrounds, demonstrating the broad support for the Palestinian cause within the US. People in the US have loudly echoed the call of the people worldwide standing with Palestinians in militant resistance to Zionist colonialism and US imperialism.
In Los Angeles, thousands marched through the streets on Saturday, at one point blocking traffic on Freeway 405. The police response, one attendee told Tribune, was comparable to that of the May Uprisings last year, with officers deploying riot gear, sound cannons and almost running numerous protesters over with vehicles. Later in the week, hundreds would protest at the Israeli consulate in West Los Angeles, chanting “Free, Free Palestine!”
In Washington DC on Tuesday, hundreds protested at Israel’s US Embassy. In Boston last weekend, protesters disrupted traffic marching to the area’s Israeli consulate, where they unfurled a large banner that read, “Free Palestine!” Other large protests took place in New York, Philadelphia, Sacramento, New Orleans, Houston, and more.
New York saw clashes between Palestinian solidarity protesters and supporters of Zionism. In one incident, an supporter of Israel chased after a young child who snatched the Israeli flag out of his hands, but the man was beaten back by Palestine supporters who defended the child. New York Police targeted the pro-Palestine demonstrators for arrest rather than the pro-Israel demonstrator.
When faced with state troopers at the Texas State Capitol, hundreds of protesters in Austin chanted, “There is only one solution- Intifada, revolution!” The rally, which began on the sidewalk, was too large to be contained and spilled into the streets, turning into an unpermitted march through Downtown Austin.
One Austin protester held a portrait of political prisoner Georges Abdallah, imprisoned in France since 1984 for his support for Palestinian liberation. Speakers called for overthrowing US imperialism and uniting all resistance struggles with the class struggle.
“I think this time, as hard as it seems for people in Gaza and Jerusalem, is really promising,” said an attendee at the Austin rally who grew up in Gaza. “If all Palestinians unite and fight together, […] then we will be finally on the right track. […] It is always right for us to be in resistance.”
In Charlotte, at a rally of a few hundred people, one speaker called for solidarity between the movement for Black Lives in the US and the Palestinian rebellion. Thousands demonstrated in San Francisco in front of the Israeli consulate. At a pro-Palestine protest in Fresno, Zionist counter-protesters were ran out and Israeli flags were burned.
On the Kansas City Sister Cities International Bridge, lined with flags from countries around the world, protesters tore down an Israeli flag and replaced it with a Palestinian flag to the cheers of the crowd.
Other protests were held in Pittsburgh and Orlando. In Pittsburgh, the protest initiated at East Liberty Presbyterian Church and marched towards the Carnegie-Mellon University, where protestors condemned the university’s collaboration with the Israeli Defense Forces.
On Saturday, there were demonstrations in Portland, Tulsa, and other cities, with more solidarity demonstrations expected in the coming days.
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