One week ago Israelis and Palestinians took to the streets to demand justice for Iyad al-Hallaq, a Palestinian man with autism who was killed at point-blank range by police officers in Jerusalem’s Old City. The police later claimed he was holding a weapon: it was his lunch in a paper bag. Protestors’ signs read “Justice for Iyad, Justice for George,” a reference to the unarmed Black man killed last week in Minneapolis. Solidarity of Black leaders—Malcolm X, Huey B. Newton, Angela Davis, June Jordan, and now Black Lives Matter—standing against the occupation of the Palestinian people and for their liberation is almost as old as Israel itself. Why? Because Black Americans grasp that their support empowers their cause, not diminishes it. Similarly, Palestinians have always seen parallels between their oppression and racism in America.
Now, thanks to Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN), we have the opportunity to send Israel a message. H.R. 2407, the “No Way to Treat a Child Act,” would prohibit any of our $3.8 billion in foreign aid to Israel from continuing their practice of military detention and abuse of children. Supporters of this bill, including 26 co-sponsors, believe we must take concrete steps to hold Israeli police accountable for their violations of Palestinian children’s rights. If you agree and live in Congressional District 19, please sign this open letter to Rep. Delgado:
West Hurley, NY