Seven Jewish Activists Arrested Demanding Biden Skip AIPAC

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Above #SkipAIPAC protest at Biden headquarters February 25, 2020 by Yonah Lieberman

Update: After the #SkipAIPAC protest against Joe Biden, two other candidates joined Senators Warren and Sanders in announcing they will not attend the AIPAC meeging.


KZ

Note: IfNotNow.org is uring candidates seeking the presidential nomination to not attend the AIPAC meeting. Before the South Carolina debate, they protested former Vice President Joe Biden at one of his campaign offices and seven were arrested demanding he #SkipAIPAC.

About one hundred Jews and allies blockaded Biden’s campaign headquarters, and seven were arrested while calling for an end to Biden and AIPAC’s destructive legacy

Just four days before the South Carolina Primary, about 100 young Jews and allies descended on former Vice President Joe Biden’s campaign headquarters and disrupted the Biden campaign’s day-to-day activities for over two hours. Seven young people were arrested when they refused orders by police to stop blockading the elevator entrance, while a large group of supporters occupied the building’s lobby, shared stories, and sang and chanted.

The protest comes on the eve of the South Carolina primaries, widely considered to be Biden’s final opportunity to resurrect his struggling campaign, following fourth- and fifth-place finishes in Iowa and New Hampshire. The protest is the latest tactic in a campaign to get every Democratic presidential candidate to #SkipAIPAC, being led by the progressive coalition of IfNotNow, MoveOn, Indivisible, and Working Families Party. Thus far, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders have both made the commitment, but Biden refused to make the commitment when asked by an IfNotNow member in New Hampshire, saying “I’m there to convince, convince them to change their position.”

The Jewish activists said the goal of the protest was to expose and condemn Biden’s decades of collaboration with AIPAC, the right-wing pro-Israel lobby that has spent decades backing  Israel’s brutal military occupation that strips both Palestinians and Israelis of their dignity and freedom. The organizers of the action argued that together, Biden and AIPAC have left a legacy of destruction and violence in Israel/Palestine; in disrupting Biden’s campaign’s day-to-day activities, the protest aims to put an end to that legacy, and mark an end to pro-occupation leadership in the Democratic Party.

“For decades, establishment leaders like Joe Biden have aligned themselves with AIPAC and parroted AIPAC talking points — with no accountability or political consequences. Now Biden wants to lead the Democratic party, even as he plans to attend AIPAC’s annual conference and perpetuate this broken status quo. We won’t stand for that,” said Becky Havivi, a Philadelphia IfNotNow member who was arrested at the action.

“Biden and  AIPAC have built a shameful, destructive legacy of permanent occupation in Israel/Palestine,” said Philadelphia IfNotNow member Theo Toler. “It’s time to end that legacy and work towards a new vision.”

This action also kicks off a week of escalation planned by IfNotNow, leading up to the AIPAC conference that begins March 1st in Washington, DC. Protesters in Twin Cities plan to take similar disruptive action around Amy Klobuchar’s campaign on Friday, over her own support for AIPAC and her failure to challenge the status quo in Israel/Palestine. And during the AIPAC conference itself, IfNotNow organizers planning actions in DC, calling out AIPAC for providing a platform for bigotry, anchoring an unholy alliance of Islamophobes and antisemites in a last-ditch effort to maintain influence.

IfNotNow Movement is organizing in key states to expose the occupation as a moral crisis within the American Jewish community, end the weaponization of antisemitism in the political debate over Israel, and create political space for leaders who will stand up for the freedom and dignity for all Israelis and Palestinians. Find out more at www.ifnotnowmovement.org.

  • voza0db

    SEVEN anti-semitic jews… Fun never ends!

  • Helen4Yemen

    I just find it so strange that Jews always like to congregate exclusively with

    other Jews even when they claim their aim is to do justice for some other group.

    I have never attended any kind of a protest where I am with some kind of a

    specific kind of people. I am an Arab and I never went looking for other Arabs to

    demonstrate with. I just mingle with the people doing the demonstrations and

    whether black, white or brown, we become one. But the Jews, even as they claim

    to stand up for the human race like to remain segregated from the human race and

    the reason maybe that they don’t want their good deeds to go unnoticed as being

    Jewish. They just want to get credit for what they are doing as a Jewish group.

  • Helen4Yemen

    @DanielSeidemann NOBODY should speak at AIPAC as long as they
    refuse to conduct an intense and honest conversation on occupation,
    and stop being the leading purveyors of our self-destructive occupation-denial.

    First and foremost, Daniel Seidemann needs to remember that Palestine is not his

    grandmother’s land and I am an Arab and it Is not my grandmother’s land, either.

    A people who are completely foreign to the Middle East known as the Ashkenazi

    arrived in Palestine masquerading as the Israelite and took that land by force.

    Just because the UN gave its blessing for the Jews to steal Palestine does not

    make the theft of Palestine legitimate. The European Jews were completely unknown

    in our region until they arrived as land-grabbing invaders. We did not know these

    people before and they did not know us. On what basis do a completely non Middle

    Eastern people claim land in the Middle East?