What follows are excerpts from an introductory statement by Rana Baker followed by the full text of a Palestinian solidarity message to the people of Ferguson, Mo. To read Baker’s entire introduction and the list of signers, go to The Electronic Intifada blog at tinyurl.com/ljuknm3.
Palestinian groups and individuals inside and outside of historic Palestine have signed the following statement in solidarity with their brethren in Ferguson, Missouri.
Unsurprisingly, many of the police deployed to crush unarmed protesters demanding justice for the brutal murder of 18-year-old black American Mike Brown are Israel-trained. Despotic tactics Palestinians largely associate with Israel’s colonial military, such as teargassing protesters and harassing journalists, have all been implemented in Ferguson.
Although Ferguson and Palestine are two different contexts, both places and their people are fighting against white supremacist regimes of oppression which continue to view them as “disposable others” and act accordingly.
The individuals who signed the statement below may not all know or agree with each other. However, the undersigned all believe that it is the moral responsibility of every Palestinian to support and foster relations with the struggles of the oppressed all over the world.
We the undersigned Palestinian individuals and groups express our solidarity with the family of Michael Brown, a young unarmed black man gunned down by police on August 9th in Ferguson, Missouri. We wish to express our support and solidarity with the people of Ferguson who have taken their struggle to the street, facing a militarized police occupation.
From all factions and sectors of our dislocated society, we send you our commitment to stand with you in your hour of pain and time of struggle against the oppression that continues to target our black brothers and sisters in nearly every aspect of their lives.
We understand your moral outrage. We empathize with your hurt and anger. We understand the impulse to rebel against the infrastructure of a racist capitalist system that systematically pushes you to the margins of humanity.
And we stand with you.
We recognize the disregard and disrespect for black bodies and black life endemic to the supremacist system that rules the land with wanton brutality. Your struggles through the ages have been an inspiration to us as we fight our own battles for basic human dignities. We continue to find inspiration and strength from your struggles through the ages and your revolutionary leaders, like Malcolm X, Huey Newton, Kwame Ture, Angela Davis, Fred Hampton, Bobby Seale and others.
We honor the life of Michael Brown, cut short less than a week before he was due to begin university. And we honor the far too many more killed in similar circumstances, motivated by racism and contempt for black life: Ezell Ford, John Crawford, Eric Garner, Trayvon Martin, Tarika Wilson, Malcolm Ferguson, Renisha McBride, Amadou Diallo, Yvette Smith, Oscar Grant, Sean Bell, Kathryn Johnston, Rekia Boyd and too many others to count.
With a Black Power fist in the air, we salute the people of Ferguson and join in your demands for justice.