Stand With Palestine

Stop the US-Israel War Machine!

On July 10, 2014, the Al-Hajj family was sleeping in Gaza, Palestine. Israel dropped a 500 pound bomb on their home, killing all 8 members of the sleeping family, including two children and three women, and destroyed 20 other homes.

On July 16, 2014, four cousins all between the ages of 9 and 11, were playing together on the beach in Gaza, Palestine when they were struck and killed by two missiles fired from Israeli drones. 3 other members of the same family were injured. More than 2000 Palestinians were killed in the 2014 Israeli assault on Gaza.

On June, 1, 2018 a 20 year old Palestinian nurse, Razan al-Najjar attempted to render medical aid to wounded protesters in Gaza during the Great March of Return. She was wearing a white vest marking her as a medic and approached the wounded with her hands raised. She was shot in the head by an Israeli Defense Force (IDF) sniper.

On May 11, 2022, the renowned Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh was reporting on an IDF raid on the Jenin refugee camp. Abu Akleh was well known to the to IDF as a journalist and wearing a bright blue vest labelled PRESS. She was assassinated by the IDF .

On January 26, 2023, Israel invaded the Jenin refugee camp, destroying one house and killing 10 Palestinians, including two children and an elderly women. Following the raid, Israeli troops shot at an ambulance, preventing them from treating the victims, and shot tear gas at a hospital.

These scenes of genocidal murder against an oppressed population have been repeated in all of occupied Palestine on a near-daily basis since the founding of the state of Israel in 1948. That foundation, the Nakba, was a criminal event in which Israel occupied Palestinian land, through a campaign of ethnic cleansing, which forced nearly 750,000 people from their homes, and carried out at least a dozen massacres, killing 15,000 Palestinians.

Israel was established on 75 percent of the land of historic Palestine, in the stolen homes and villages of Palestinians, and dripping with the blood and broken bones of the Palestinian people, who have courageously resisted the occupation of their homeland at a great personal cost. The occupation of Palestine has only become more cruel and barbaric in the ensuing decades: Israel has belligerently waged war and stolen lands from neighboring Egypt, Syria, and Lebanon. In Lebanon in 1982, IDF forces under the command of future Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon invaded Lebanon, and collaborated with a right wing militia in carrying out the Sabra and Shatila massacre, killing thousands of Palestinian refugees.

Millions of Palestinians live as refugees, denied the right of return to their homes, and in conditions of deprivation and brutality. Gaza, where Palestinians govern themselves, has been subjected to a regime of collective punishment since Israel imposed a blockade in 2007 with all movement of people and goods subject to the discretion of the Israeli occupation government, and importation of essentials severely reduced as the population of 1.85 million people concentrated in 141 square miles suffers from economic devastation and a lack of access to medicines and clean drinking water. In the West Bank, where the Palestinian Authority collaborates with the occupation, Palestinian land is continually stolen by extremist settlers, and Palestinians live under a system of apartheid, forced to travel miles on inferior roads, separated by a massive wall from their homes and families, and have to travel through IDF checkpoints to reach jobs or school.

Some numbers reveal the stark reality of Palestinians under occupation: according to the United Nations, 2 million Palestinians are considered food insecure, Israel controls 85% of Palestinian water sources, the rate of poverty is 36% in the West Bank, and 64% in Gaza. Since 2017 the IDF has carried out an average of 10 military raids in the West Bank every day. As of 2022, 4,450 including 160 children were held as prisoners in Israels dungeons. And 530 Palestinians were held under “administrative detention”, kidnapped and held without trial or charges. In 2022 more than 170 Palestinians were killed in Israel raids. In 2018 and 2019 when Palestinians in Gaza carried out a non-violent Great March of Return demanding the right to return to their homes they were met with unhinged brutality, resulting in more than 200 deaths, and 8000 Palestinians hit with live fire.

For generations the people of Palestine have mounted wave after wave of courageous resistance against their occupiers. Behind the murderous Israeli occupation regime stands the most powerful empire in the world today: the United States. The US has provided billions of dollars of funds, arms, and unbending political support to Israel since the Nakba. Israel has functioned as the attack dog of the US in the region, serving the US attempts to dominate the whole of the Middle East and North Africa, propping up the loyal puppets of the US and ensuring the smooth flow of oil and other key commodities.

  • As of 2020, the US has sent Israel at least 186 Billion dollars in total aid. The US is sending more than 3 Billion dollars in 2023 alone.
  • Many of the weapons that destroy homes and annihilate children in Palestine are manufactured in the US and by US companies. The US has exported weapons to Israel every year since 1961.
  • The US has given unequivocal political and diplomatic support to Israel, including vetoing 53 UN Security Council resolution critical of Israel.
  • Israel has exported weapons to the most reactionary regimes in the world at the behest of the US: when the US was prevented by an embargo from selling weapons to apartheid South Africa, Israel stepped in. In the 1980s, with US money and support, Israel provided weapons and training to the brutal, death squad Guatemalan regime of Ríos Montt.
  • Under the watchful eye of US imperialism, Israel has normalized relations and entered into alliances with Saudi Arabia and other reactionary pro-US regimes in the region, even as the US and Saudi Arabia have waged a genocidal war on Yemen.

The US-Israel war machine in Chicago

The US-Israel war machine has deep ties in Chicago. Chicago’s large population of Palestinians and other Arabs and Muslims have been subject to surveillance and repression. Members of the Chicago Police Department, known for their murder, brutality, and torture have trained with the Israeli police. Chicago new mayor Brandon Johnson has made the outrageous comparison of anti-Zionism (being against the state of Israel) with antisemitism.

Many of Chicago’s most prominent institutions have deep ties to the Israeli government and military, especially those that receive money from the Chicago philanthropists in the Crown family. The Crown family earns their billions from their ownership of weapons contractor General Dynamics, which sells millions of dollars of weapons to the IDF. They use their billions to support institutions like The University of Chicago, Northwestern University, and the Art Institute of Chicago.

People who live in the United States are being made complicit by the atrocities carried out in the occupation of Palestine. Our obligation in the face of these atrocities is to stand with the people of the world and stand with Palestine. Those of us in Chicago can demonstrate our support for Palestine by demanding that these institutions sever their ties with Israel and the weapons sale to the IDF. Join Behind Enemy Lines in our campaign to stand with Palestine!

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  • Download this flyer and distribute it yourself! Contact us to get copies of our poster, or to help make a version specific to your city
  • Join demonstrations and protests in defense and support of Palestine and the courageous resistance of the Palestinian people.