Fight Back! News

News and Views from the People's Struggle

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By staff

Orlando, FL – Marcus Polzer, a Students for a Democratic Society member at University of Central Florida faced a formal hearing in front of the office for Student Conduct & Academic Integrity (SCAI) on May 30.

The office of SCAI alleged two counts of disruptive conduct, claiming Polzer taped flyers to light poles advertising SDS’s weekly meeting and pro-Palestine messages. Interestingly, while only citing evidence of taped flyers, the university claims the student leader broke rules regarding solicitation and fundraising. Neither Polzer nor the SDS chapter engaged in such activities.

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By staff

Pro-Palestine students stage occupation at Cal Poly Humboldt.  | Staff/Fight Back! News

Fight Back! recently interviewed Fern McBride and Rick Toledo. Both are pro-Palestine activists and SDS members that played important roles in supporting the occupation and the historic resistance at Cal Poly Humboldt, in Arcata, California. What started as sit-on on April 22 escalated into outrageous repression that was, however, met with determined resistance. On May 28, some of the activists had their first court appearance.

Fight Back!: Could you say a few words about how the occupation at Cal Poly Humboldt came about?

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Activists pose proudly with their citations that ban them from the building at UWM where they disrupted a UW board of regents meeting to get Palestine on the agenda.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Milwaukee, WI – On June 6, the student movement steadfastly continued their efforts to get the University of Wisconsin System to disclose its funds and to divest from the apartheid regime of Israel.

At the June UW System board of regents meeting, approximately 15 students and community members entered the open-session financial meeting to disrupt the scheduled programming.

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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 Sarah Martin

WAMM protest weapons makers that arm apartheid Israel.  | Fight Back! News/Kim DeFranco

St. Paul, MN – On Saturday, June 1, Women Against Military Madness (WAMM) members had their 17th annual Walk Against Weapons of War. The day was sunny as 125 WAMM members and supporters rallied at Langford Park within a residential community. They then continued with a march to Forward Edge ASIC, a subsidiary of Lockheed Martin.

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By Josh Rudd

Dallas protest in response to Israeli attack on Rafah.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Dallas, TX – On Tuesday, May 28 hundreds of community members marched in downtown Dallas, mere hours after the metroplex had faced floods, hail and multiple tornadoes that caused widespread power outages. Despite these obstacles, the people of Dallas-Fort Worth came out to demand the U.S.-backed Israeli regime leave Rafah and the rest of Gaza.

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By staff

Pro-Palestine protest at University of Chicago graduation.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Chicago, IL – Hundreds of students and faculty at the University of Chicago walked out of graduation ceremonies on Saturday, June 1. They were demanding that the university disclose its investments, divest from arms manufacturers and Israeli companies, and stop withholding the degrees of student pro-Palestine protesters.

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By Omari Hoover

Pro-Palestine protest at Minneosta DFL convention in Duluth.  | Fight Back! News/Meredith Aby

Duluth, MN – On June 1, between 300 and 400 people from across the state protested the Minnesota DFL State Convention at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center (the DECC).

It was a show of broad geographic support for ending the U.S. support for Israel’s genocidal military campaign in Gaza, and against the stances of DFL (the name of the Democratic Party in Minnesota) politicians like U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar and Governor Tim Walz, who have shown strong support for Israel.

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By staff

Pro-Palestine picket at weapons maker Lockheed Martin.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Littleton, CO – On Wednesday, May 29, the Denver Anti-War Action (DAWA) continued their pro Palestine actions against weapons manufacturer Lockheed Martin with another all-day picket at the corporation’s Colorado headquarters.

Around 50 protesters engaged in direct action throughout the day, forcing Lockheed employees to take fact sheets that laid out their location’s specific role in the ongoing genocide in Palestine, attached with explicit imagery of carpet bombing and the brutal effects of white phosphorus.

The fliers pointed out the connections between Lockheed Martin and Israel, included graphic imagery of war crimes, and the specifics of the activity that Lockheed Martin is engaged in in Colorado. Lockheed Martin’s primary roles in the genocide are sending F-35s, F-16s and C-130-Js to the occupation as well as providing the tools for mass surveillance and missile and drone targeting with satellites and GPS systems that are produced in Littleton.

One protester with the DAWA, Solveig Swain, explained, “We have to see these traumatizing images constantly by following the news coming out of Gaza. Those actively contributing to the genocide, the people providing the satellite surveillance used to target Palestinians, need to see the results of their crimes as well.”

These engineers of a genocide at Lockheed Martin did not appear out of thin air but were hand picked by Lockheed Martin. Tom Chaney, an organizer with the Students for a Democratic Society Denver (SDS) explained, “These young engineers are brought in with promises of money, with promises of safety and security for the future. There is no security when you’re funding a genocide.

Lockheed Martin, through “donations” and funding for “research” provided to Colorado universities, has deep ties to these institutions which allow them to aggressively recruit Colorado’s students. The end of this relationship is one of the demands of the SDS,and DAWA is also fighting to break the ties with corporations that arm Israel.

Another speaker with the DAWA, Julia Swezy, laid out the future of the movement, “We are building our discipline and militance daily. We will fight until the resistance achieves the victory they deserve, the liberation they are entitled toAs the resistance forces in Palestine wage their struggle against the occupation, those in the United States fight to end the supply of weapons that facilitate the genocide. By building militant people power in a similar fashion to the protests against the war in Vietnam, these activists hope to strike blows against domestic weapons manufacturers in solidarity with the Palestinian resistance.”

#LittletonCO #DenverCO #CO #AntiWarMovement #International #MiddleEast #Palestine #StudentMovement #SDS #DAWA #WeaponsIndustry

By Owen Frassetto

Students and community members rally outside the Detroit Detention Center, demanding the release of those arrested during the morning raid on the Wayne State encampment.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Detroit, Michigan – The encampment at Wayne State University, known as the Popular University for Gaza, Detroit campus, was raided by police in riot gear in the early hours of Thursday morning, May 30.

Around 5:30 in the morning, those staying overnight at the Popular University were woken by the Wayne State Police Department issuing a dispersal order through a megaphone. With only minutes left before the cops broke in, the students organized to decide how they would respond.

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