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Filipinos across Texas show support for Palestine

By Josh Rudd

The Philippines flag waves united with Palestine flags in Dallas, Texas. | Fight Back! News/staff

Dallas, TX – Since the most recent bombardment of Gaza by the U.S.-backed Israeli military began over a week ago, Filipino communities across Texas have stood up alongside Palestinians. Leaders want to underscore the connections between the two liberation movements. Filipino community members joined massive rallies over the weekend of October 14-15 in Dallas, Austin and Houston, carrying flags of the Philippines and signs expressing their solidarity with the people of Gaza. During the marches, people began chanting “From Palestine to the Philippines, stop the U.S. war machine!”

At the march in Dallas, Joe Mallari, a member of Malaya Movement Texas, declared, “The Filipino people in the Philippines and in diaspora stand in solidarity with Palestinians against colonialism and genocide.”

Reacting to the widely criticized city council resolution of “unequivocal support of Israel” passed earlier in the week, Sarah Jalandoon, a Malaya Texas coordinator, said, “I, as a mother, an organizer, community member, and a human rights defender, demand a ceasefire in Gaza, for the U.S. to stop all aid to Israel, and to pull all their military forces and settlers out of Palestine.”

Meanwhile at the Texas State Capitol in Austin, Kai Bautista, an organizer with Malaya was invited to speak at the rally for Gaza about the deep anti-colonial connections between the Philippines and Palestine, stating, “Anti-fascist Filipino Americans in our movement have stood up against killings, brutal displacement, false imprisonment, and torture of everyday people fighting for land and rights by the Philippine government. We will always stand by those working towards a liberated Palestine, which can only be achieved by solving the root cause of violence in the region: colonial occupation.”

In response to the ongoing siege and bombardment of Gaza, Andrea Belle, an organizer with Anakbayan Houston said, “We as Filipino organizers will continue to bring lessons of material decolonization to our communities. We will continue to resist the distorted narratives espoused by fascist supporters. We will stand alongside Palestinians in their struggle for freedom.”

Leading up to the protest in Houston, Filipino organizations and members of the broader community came out to support teach-ins and poster-making sessions throughout the week.

These shows of Filipino solidarity with Palestine follow the building of mutual support in Texas and across the U.S. There was a large Filipino presence at protests in support of Sheikh Jarrah in 2021 to workshops in 2020 highlighting the connections between Palestinian, Filipino, and Black American calls for justice and liberation.

A statement from Bayan USA, a national organization working towards liberation and democracy in the Philippines, said, “It is in our joint struggle with the Palestinian people for total victory over imperialism and its reactionary ideology of Zionism that we draw boundless inspiration, perseverance, and revolutionary optimism.”

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