Hundreds in Milwaukee take the streets to demand U.S. hands off Haiti and Palestine
Milwaukee, WI – This past Saturday, October 28, over 300 people attended a joint solidarity march linking the struggle against U.S. imperialism in both Haiti and Palestine. The event called for an end to U.S. support for the UN intervention in Haiti, and an end to continued U.S. funding of genocide in Palestine.
The march showed support for the “Zone of Peace” campaign led by the Black Alliance for Peace in response to the UN vote on October 3 which approved a foreign-led intervention in the sovereign affairs of Haiti, whose people recently ousted the illegitimate Prime Minister Ariel Henry from office. However, due to the ongoing ethnic cleansing of Palestine by the Israeli government, the event served a dual purpose in order to draw people of both struggles together and to show how they are linked within the broader fight against war and imperialism.
The Milwaukee Anti-War Committee (MAC) organized the event, which was co-hosted with Black Youth Project 100 – Milwaukee, the Milwaukee Alliance Against Racism and Political Repression (MAARPR), the Milwaukee Chapter of Jewish Voice for Peace, American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), the Pan-African Revolutionary Socialist Party, the UW-Milwaukee chapter of Students for a Democratic Society, and Freedom Road Socialist Organization Wisconsin (FRSO-WI).
A crowd of protesters composed of many in both the Muslim and Black communities and their allies gathered at Red Arrow Park in downtown Milwaukee, known as the location where Dontre Hamilton was extrajudicially executed by Milwaukee police in 2014. They enthusiastically took to the streets, marching to the U.S. Courthouse and Federal Office Building on Wisconsin Avenue. Dozens of Palestinian flags and the sounds of pro-Palestine and pro-Haiti slogans filled the streets, including, “From Haiti to Falastin, end the U.S. war machine!”
Once at the Federal Building, groups’ representatives spoke. Though their organizations had different focuses, the speakers were united in calling for an end to foreign intervention in sovereign countries like Haiti, an end to U.S. support for Israel’s genocidal campaign, and in linking the struggle felt all around the world against U.S.-led efforts to maintain power and control for its billionaire class.
Kareem Sarsour of AMP said, “United, that’s our strength, when we stand together!”
“This is a crucial moment to not look away. We must connect these struggles because we are not alone in this fight!” said Sara Onitsuka of MAC, “There is no bomb more powerful than the collective will of the people!”
The speakers also encouraged everyone to keep fighting and to join an organization committed to the long haul.
“Malcolm X put it simply: 'Freedom by any means necessary, justice by any means necessary, equality by any means necessary!'” said Ryan Hamann from FRSO-WI. “We have a duty to the people of the world who suffer under the boot of U.S. imperialism to fight, and we have a duty to win!”
“The same thing that is happening to us in Milwaukee is the same thing happening to others all over the world!” exclaimed Aurelia Ceja of MAARPR. “Please get involved and take action!”
This protest was the third this month coordinated by MAC, the previous two working alongside AMP as part of the newly formed Wisconsin Coalition for Justice in Palestine, which includes over 34 organizations in the Wisconsin area.