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SDS opposes Israeli attacks on Gaza

By Students for a Democratic Society

Fight Back News Service is circulating the following Aug. 23 statement from Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). National SDS Stands Against Israeli Attacks on Gaza, Demands End of U.S. Aid to Israel and to Fund Education Not Occupation!

In the span of less than an hour Sunday night, the state of Israel, the number one recipient of foreign military aid from the United States government, launched over 50 air strikes against the occupied Gaza Strip. Israeli warplanes pounded the entire Strip with artillery fire and airstrikes, ostensibly in retaliation for a rocket that was fired from Gaza into an open field inside of Israel which did not injure a single person. At least five Palestinians have now been injured by the Israeli military attacks, according to Ma’an news agency.

Sunday’s attacks against the besieged Gaza Strip were the most severe since 2014, when Israel slaughtered more than 2,100 Palestinians, the overwhelming majority of whom were civilians, in a two-month military operation dubbed “Operation Protective Edge”. By contrast, 67 Israeli soldiers and six Israeli civilians were killed during the assault. This week’s attacks follow in a pattern of collective punishment carried out by apartheid Israel, where Palestinian resistance is used as a pre-text to launch full-scale military operations aimed at wiping out the colonized population.

Israeli apartheid and colonialism is a system of daily violence against indigenous Palestinians, including the ongoing theft of Palestinian land for Jewish-only settlements, intense political repression of Palestinian resistance movements, and a blockade of the Gaza Strip that prevents large amounts of aid and basic necessities from entering the area even in the immediate aftermath of one of Israel’s periodic brutal military assaults.

These war crimes are not aberrations, or the actions of a particular right-wing government, but are rooted in racist legislation and policies of impunity that have been maintained since the colonization of Palestine began. The state of Israel was created in 1948, through the ethnic cleansing of over 750,000 Palestinians, the destruction of over 500 villages, and dozens of massacres (source: The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine by Dr. Ilan Pappe).

Today the occupation of Palestine could not continue without the enormous financial, military and political backing of the United States government. The capitalist 1%, such as CEOs of American weapon manufacturers, profit enormously from the supply of arms to apartheid Israel, who can then market the weapons as “battle tested” against a captive populace. Wall Street domination over the Middle East is secured through client states such as Israel, which violently repress any resistance in the region.

While U.S. students struggle to pay for education, apartheid Israel is requesting $50 billion in U.S. military aid from taxpayers over the next 10 years beginning in 2017. This could provide 4-year scholarships to 1.5 million college students in the United States.

National SDS demands that the United States government end all military aid to apartheid Israel, and to instead invest in education for millions of students struggling with increasingly expensive tuition and ballooning student debt. Our chapters across the country support campus divestment from corporations that profit from Israeli apartheid, and we are organizing to demand an end to all U.S. wars and occupations in the Middle East and beyond.

Stop U.S. Aid to Israel! U.S. Out of the Middle East! Fund Education, Not Military Occupations!

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