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Boston march for Palestine land day

Published Apr 16, 2012 10:59 PM

Hundreds of activists, led by young Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims, took to the streets of Boston on March 30 as part of the Global March to Jerusalem, marking Palestine Land Day. The main demands were Free Palestine! No war on Iran or Syria! and Boycott Israel!

The demonstration was sponsored by the Boston Coalition for Palestinian Rights; the Boston United National Antiwar Coalition; the International Action Center; the Palestine Task Force of United for Justice with Peace; Boston University Students for Justice in Palestine; and Veterans for Peace, Chapter 9, Smedley Butler Brigade. It was supported by the Decolonize Boston, Anti-Oppression and People of Color working groups of Occupy Boston, who called for Indigenous rights from the Americas to Palestine.

The protest gathered in Copley Square and was opened by Salma Abu Ayyash, who spoke of the history of Palestine Land Day, commemorating the March 30, 1976, Palestinian general strike, protest and resistance against massive Israeli expropriation of Palestinian land, and the worldwide movement today to end Israeli apartheid and ethnic cleansing. Kade Crockford, a militant young lesbian and Boycott, Divest and Sanctions activist, condemned Israel for cynically trying to use lesbian/gay/bi/trans rights to posture as democratic while carrying out genocidal attacks on Gaza.

Alireza Doostdar, an Iranian Ph.D. candidate at Harvard University, called on all to stand fast against the war threats against Iran. Rami Abumasmah, M.D., from a Rhode Island mosque community, spoke about the unjust situation for Muslims accessing Jerusalem. Noam Lekach, a Brandeis University student, declared there is nothing Jewish about apartheid, occupation and ethnic cleansing. He condemned and exposed the lie of labeling anti-Zionism as anti-Semitism. Puerto Rican activist Ricardo Ortiz called on everyone to oppose colonialism and occupation from Puerto Rico to Palestine.

Activists marched through downtown Boston chanting, “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!” and “Long live the Intifada!”

At a final rally at Park Street, Steve Kirschbaum of the IAC described how Israel would not last a day without massive U.S. aid and how it functioned as an unsinkable aircraft carrier for U.S. oil interests in the Middle East. Other anti-war activists spoke, including Bob Funke from Veterans for Peace and Marilyn Levin from UNAC.