The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) is outraged by the deliberate and unabashed ethnic cleansing and apartheid Palestinians are facing in the neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah in Jerusalem at the hands of Israeli government officials and armed settlers. We are further outraged by the near silence of our representatives and mainstream news outlets. The Israeli occupation of Palestinians is funded by our tax dollars, and as Americans we need to speak out and stand for justice and basic human rights. We stand in complete solidarity with the Palestinian people as they fight against this apartheid- whether it be on the streets of Palestine, on social media, or in countries around the world.
Residents of the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood are currently facing forced evictions from homes their families have lived in for generations. An Israeli court ordered the eviction of six families in May and seven other families (a total of 58 Palestinians including children) by August in an attempt to take over the neighborhood and repopulate it with Jewish settlers. Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah and elsewhere have been protesting the court orders as well as the extremist Zionists groups chanting “death to Arabs”. Although this is a clear threat to Palestinians lives, it has mostly been ignored by media outlets and censored on social media platforms such as Instagram.
It takes bravery and principle to stand up to occupation and apartheid while most stay silent. We call on our representatives in every state to take a clear stance on Israeli apartheid once and for all. In a country that claims support for human rights and self-determination, it is extremely shameful and hypocritical that there is deliberate silence about ethnic cleansing and displacement of Palestinians. It is shameful that a country that claims to be built on the principles of freedom is allowing for the censorship of those living in apartheid and their allies around the world.
ADC is calling on the Biden Administration to take action and demand an end to these forced evictions in Jerusalem. It is not enough to say we support human rights without following through with bold and necessary actions. Further ignoring Israeli human rights violations, ethnic cleansing and apartheid only emboldens the Israeli government and its extremist supporters. Israel – along with monetary support from the US – has practiced its human rights violations and expansion on its illegal settlements for over 50 years. Now is the time for accountability and action. Ignoring the current situation in Sheikh Jarrah and throughout all of occupied Palestine is a crime against humanity. Silence is complicity, and Palestinians call on the international community to put an end to this occupation.
ADC supports Palestinians everywhere fighting against ethnic cleansing, erasure and apartheid. We are hopeful about the awareness and growing support for the Palestinian cause, as Palestinians build their own narratives and document their persecution online for the world to see.