|Welcome! Thank you for reading our bi-monthly newsletter! Every other week, we plan to send out a newsletter with details about all upcoming SJP events as well as a short written piece on Palestine.
Students For Justice in Palestine will be alongside the Arizona Palestine Solidarity Alliance at Film Bar in downtown Phoenix cosponsoring a screening of Gaza Fights For Freedom by Abby Martin!
One of these walls runs through occupied Palestinian land, and the other cuts across occupied Tohono O’odham land. Can you tell which one is which?
The United States of America and Israel share a bond that is unique between the two nations. This bond has kept the relationship between these countries strong for many decades, prompting cooperation, collaboration, and many exchanges of ideas along the way. But what is the basis of this bond? What makes this relationship so “special”? The answer is simple: The United States of America and Israel oppress their most vulnerable people in their societies in almost the same way. While the US and Israel justify the construction of these walls differently, both serve to intimidate, separate, and violently subjugate.Let’s take a look at the Apartheid Wall in Palestine. Deemed illegal by the UN in 2004, this barrier cuts through the West Bank, isolating communities and restricting the movement of Palestinians. The Israeli government stated that the purpose of this wall was to stop extremists coming from the West Bank, but with 85% of the wall going clear through Palestinian land, there is no doubt that its true purpose is to restrict the Palestinian people’s freedom. Access to medical necessities has drastically decreased, families have lost land that had belonged to them for generations, and little by little, Israel has annexed more Palestinian land by building settlements along the Apartheid Wall.
The current border wall separating the United States of America and Mexico is not so far-removed from Israel’s Apartheid Wall and its impact. This barrier along the Southern border of the US divides the lands of various indigenous peoples, and has economically devastated the poorest workers on both sides of the border. In the last 20 years alone, over 7,000 people have died crossing the border in the Sonoran Desert. The US-Mexico border serves as nothing more than a symbol of the cruelty of the American immigration system. Rallying cries of “build the wall” have emboldened the current president to imprison migrants in concentration camps, increase the violent deportations by Border Patrol and ICE (in cooperation with local police departments), and repeatedly dehumanize the entire Latinx community in the US.
The motivations for the construction of both these walls might appear distinct from one another, but both walls ultimately function with the same purpose. Where one wall violently separates families that cross it, the other wall separates in a slightly different fashion. As one wall desecrates sacred and holy lands, the other wall does just the same. And wherever these walls continue to stand, there is a child looking up at them and wondering: why was I born on the wrong side?