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Young protestors are on the right side

| May 2, 2024 12:00 AM

A recent letter cited Israel’s founding in 1948 and the 1973 Yom Kippur War as justification for the current campaign of genocide against Palestinians. Those defending Israel’s recent actions conveniently ignore the historical plight of Palestinians prior to Oct. 7 and the excessive carnage caused by the Israeli Defense Forces.

When Yitzak Rabin was assassinated in 1995 by a right-wing fanatic, it ended conversation about a two-state solution. It also accelerated Israel’s expansion of settlements into occupied territories.

Progressive voices call for divesting from Israel, much like Martin Luther King leading boycotts of segregationist companies. As Israel’s Zionist policies become more extreme, it becomes incompatible for peaceful people to support the policies championed by Netanyahu.

I recently retired from a school district having a sizeable Jewish population. A parent group, BUSD Jewish Parents for Collective Liberation, recently issued a media statement that said:

“We reject the false conflation between antisemitism and criticism of the State of Israel and its military assault on Palestinians. Jewish safety and Palestinian freedom are intertwined. The danger of antisemitism comes from white nationalism, not from those who support Palestinian human rights and freedom.”

It’s unfortunate when people support regimes that routinely violate human rights. Palestinians have been stripped of their land, houses and livelihoods.

The immense fortifications breached in the Oct. 7 attack illustrate how Israel has turned Gaza into an open-air prison. Instead of sending more weapons, we should only send food, medicine and clothing into this region.

Young people are changing this world for the better. Young Montanans are standing up for a clean environment. The #MeToo movement took a stand against sexual perps. Black Lives Matter challenged the epidemic of cops who murder with impunity. And young protesters across college campuses are working to stop the slaughter of innocents in Gaza.

I want to thank these young people in schools such as USC and Columbia who are standing up against genocide. May God bless you all.

David Daniels

Missoula