Fight Back! News

News and Views from the People's Struggle

MinneapolisMN

By Erika Zurawski

Minneapolis, MN – On June 8, 75 people gathered to protest President Biden’s executive order closing the border and restricting asylum. Immediately after Biden issued the order on Tuesday, June 4, the Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAC) called an emergency protest to oppose his action.

Biden’s executive order closes the U.S./Mexico border and severely restricts asylum. It is a continuation of Donald Trump’s repressive immigration policies and is a copy of the ban Trump tried to put into effect before he was blocked by the federal courts. During his presidential campaign of 2020, Biden sharply criticized Trump’s immigration policies and decried his efforts to restrict asylum. Biden is openly breaking his campaign promises and shifting U.S. immigration politics to the far right.

Susana De León, an immigration lawyer and community organizer, talked about the politicians’ hateful rhetoric: “Everything continues to be blamed on Black and brown bodies, indigenous people, and people who have been left out of the system by the same corporations that are now enjoying the highest profits while we have to get food at the highest prices ever.”

The location of the protest was significant. Protesters rallied in a predominantly immigrant neighborhood, a block away from where dozens of day laborers gather daily in desperate search of jobs to feed themselves and their families. The majority of the day laborers are immigrants who recently arrived from Ecuador, driving home the stark reality that President Biden is taking only repressive actions against immigrants while national pressure builds for Biden to grant Temporary Protective Status to Ecuadorian immigrants.

Adriana Cerrillo, speaking on behalf of the Minnesota Interfaith Coalition on Immigration, told the crowd her story and why it was difficult but important to her to be at the action: “It is very difficult for me to be here today, because my own trauma and my own experience from this fucking system is really hard, it’s really difficult. This system has taken so much from me, and yet it is my obligation to stay strong, and the way that I stay strong is by being with and surrounding myself with people like you here today.”

Asylum is a human right protected under international law. Both Democrats and Republicans are using immigrants in a political game. Biden’s closing of the border and nearly total ban on asylum is dangerous and must be opposed.

We must take a firm stance against racist and repressive anti-immigrant policies regardless of which political party is in power. MIRAC will join immigrant rights groups from around the country to protest both the Republican and the Democratic National Conventions this summer. Stand with MIRAC to demand no more attacks on immigrants and legalization for all.

#MinneapolisMN #MN #ImmigrantRights #USMexicoBorder #MIRAC #Asylum

By Charlie Berg and Joe Vital

Minneapolis, MN – Residents of the East Phillips neighborhood and organizers with the Climate Justice Committee rallied outside of Smith Foundry on Tuesday, June 4, after an announcement from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that it had reached a settlement with Smith, with the most significant provision requiring that the heavy-polluting foundry shut down its furnace within 12 months.

Read more...

By Meredith Aby

Minneapolis protest confronts war criminal and former Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett. | Ashley Taylor-Gouge/Watch Me Rise Minneapolis

Minneapolis, MN – On June 6, hundreds of protesters unwelcomed former Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, who came to downtown Minneapolis to speak for the Center for the American Experiment, a conservative think tank based in the suburb of Golden Valley.

The Center has supported a number of Republican-led political initiatives and regularly features right-wing speakers at its events. Ticket prices for the event ranged from $300 for individual seats to $30,000 “diamond sponsor” tickets that included special VIP access to Bennett.

Bennet is known as a war criminal who in 2013 said, “I’ve killed a lot of Arabs in my life and there’s no problem with that.” Bennett was the prime minister during 2021-22 and represented the New Right political party, which opposes the establishment of a Palestinian state and demands Israeli sovereignty over all of Palestine. He describes himself as more right-wing than even Netanyahu. After Israel’s assault on Gaza began in October, Bennett mocked concerns for Palestinian lives, saying in an interview, “Are you seriously asking me about Palestinian civilians?” and “I am not going to feed electricity or water to my enemies.”

The police stood alongside Zionist ticket holders, who heckled the crowd with racist and Islamophobic slurs, flipping off community members, including young children, while cops took no action.

Over the course of three hours, hundreds of Minneapolis police officers, including SWAT and riot teams, joined the racists in antagonizing the demonstrators.

One protester was violently arrested by riot police armed with rifles as he was peacefully walking away. Four others, including three Muslim Twin Cities residents – two of them minors – were arrested later, violently picked off the street by a large, black SWAT BearCat vehicle.

Wyatt Miller from the Anti-War Committee said, “The supposedly progressive city of Minneapolis helped facilitate the visit of an Israeli leader who helped lay groundwork for the current genocide, invited by a right-wing think tank to speak at a major downtown venue. We call on elected officials to denounce this hateful event and the fact that MPD was allowed to set up an apartheid-like militarized area on its behalf.”

The juveniles were released later that night, but the other arrestees were held until the evening of June 7.

#MinneapolisMN #MN #AntiWarMovement #International #MiddleEast #Palestine #MNAWC #MNFreePalestineCoalition

By staff

Fight Back News Service is circulating the following statement from the Twin Cities Coalition 4 Justice.

Read more...

By Omari Hoover

Emergency protest in Minneapolis in response to the massacre in Rafah.  | Fight Back! News/Wyatt Miller

Minneapolis, MN – An estimated 300 Twin Cities residents came out in a downpour of rain to participate in the Free Palestine Coalition’s emergency rally to show solidarity with Rafah, May 27. The protest took place outside of U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar’s office near downtown Minneapolis.

Protesters wore keffiyehs and pro-Palestine apparel, held signs favorable to Palestinian liberation, and bellowed chants like “From the olive to the sand, Palestine is our demand,” demonstrating their commitment and continued support of Palestinian liberation.

Read more...

By Meredith Aby

Minneapolis march against the genocide in Palestine. | Photo: Sabry Wazwaz

Minneapolis, MN – On May 15, over 1000 people marched in the Free Palestine Coalition’s march for the 76th anniversary of Al Nakba, “the catastrophe” in Arabic. Protesters started at U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar’s office demanding an end to U.S. aid to apartheid Israel and calling on her to stop her support for the ongoing second Nakba, the U.S.-backed Israeli genocide currently occurring in Gaza.

Read more...

By Jasper Nordin

Minneapolis, MN – On Sunday, May 12, pro-Palestine students disrupted graduation ceremonies for the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Minnesota. These disruptions were part of continued efforts to make the university administration meet its promises to the organizers of the Gaza solidarity encampments on campus.

Read more...

By staff

Reproductive rights protest at fake abortion clinic.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Minneapolis, MN – On Friday, May 10, members of the Minnesota Abortion Action Committee (MNAAC) and their supporters protested outside of First Care Pregnancy Center, an anti-abortion “crisis pregnancy center” known for using deceptive tactics and spreading medical disinformation about abortion.

Read more...

By Mira Altobell-Resendez

Group gathers holding signs. They are captured from the back so signs are not readable. One person is holding a Palestinian flag on a flagpole that has "Free Palestine" printed on it.

Minneapolis, MN – On May 10, the UMN Divest Coalition gathered 100 people, who first rallied outside the McNamara Alumni Center and then packed the meeting room of the board of regents at the University of Minnesota, despite intimidation from campus police.

Read more...

By Meredith Aby

Protest on the Minneapolis U of MN campus demands divestment from apartheid Israel.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Minneapolis, MN – On May 9, 200 community members rallied with students and staff at the University of Minnesota outside of the McNamara Alumni Center. The rally was called by the Free Palestine Coalition to draw attention to Israel’s genocidal attacks on Rafah and to put pressure on the University of Minnesota’s board of regents who were meeting the next day to hear from the Divest UMN Coalition’s demands at their public meeting.

Read more...