Photo: Shut It Down for Palestine march in New York City on Nov. 9. Credit: Wyatt Souers.
Activists across the country are calling for a second national day of action on Friday, Nov. 17 to Shut It Down for Palestine. This day of action will continue building the global momentum of Palestine solidarity. Protests across the world have erupted over the last few weeks in the wake of Israel’s genocide against Gaza, with Nov. 4 seeing the largest pro-Palestine demonstration in U.S. history, with 300,000 people converging in Washington, D.C. The sharp escalation of Zionist brutality against innocent Palestinians — including thousands of children — since Oct. 7 is increasing the pressure for the demands for an immediate ceasefire, an end of all aid to Israel and to lift the inhumane siege of Gaza.
Student and community organizations have bravely stood in solidarity against censorship and repressive attempts by higher education and healthcare institutions as the Palestinian death toll continues to rise. On Friday, students in Iowa State University and in Queens City College New York City will be joined by Students for Justice in Palestine chapters across the country to demand an end to their universities’ investments in and contributions to Israeli apartheid. A large number of university and high school students are also planning walk-outs on Nov. 17.
Nov. 17 is the International Day of Student Struggle — marked since the 1939 execution of anti-fascist Czech student leaders by Nazi occupation authorities. Student movements in Palestine as well as student organizations in 16 countries throughout North Africa and the Middle East have also issued calls to hold actions on Friday.
The international call to action also urges small businesses and media organizations to shut down operations and refuse to continue business as usual. Hundreds of locally-owned businesses in New York City, for example, will close on Nov. 17 in a powerful show of solidarity with Palestine. Additionally, different organizations will carry out actions directed at the political offices, businesses, and workplaces that fund, invest, and collaborate with Israeli genocide and occupation. In the absence of any meaningful action by government officials, these coordinated plans to disrupt economic activity are part of a growing grassroots movement to increase pressure and “[build] a political climate that makes Israel’s business of genocide unsustainable.”
‘There can be no business as usual for Israel’s collaborators’
Shut It Down for Palestine organizers have been hard at work preparing for the day of action.
In Boise, Idaho, Party for Socialism and Liberation organizer Morrighan Nyx said, “We will hold a rally in one of the busiest Boise roads to make it clear that people are not letting the struggle for Palestine to fall to the wayside. We want to make it unavoidable for people to see that people are still out on the streets in ‘red states’ and smaller cities refusing to let a genocide be carried out by the U.S. and Israel.”
Organizers in Seattle will be protesting tech giants like Amazon’s Project Nimbus contract providing Israel with advanced cloud and AI technologies that aid Israeli apartheid. PSL organizer Ning Ning said, “For Nov. 17, we urge Amazon employees to shut it down for Palestine by walking out of work to protest their company policies. Corporations that profit from Israel are complicit in this genocide, and we must continue to build pressure against them to make their business deals untenable. There can be no business as usual for Israel’s collaborators.”
In Atlanta, Georgia, where community members have been clashing with local police over the building of Cop City, organizers are linking the struggles for Black and Palestinian liberation.
Bezal Jupiter, a community organizer, said, “Police in Atlanta and all over Georgia train alongside the Israeli Defense Forces who uphold similar tactics of occupation and repression of Palestinian communities in Palestine and Black and brown working class communities in the U.S. The same tear gas deployed against Black Lives Matter protesters are also used against Palestinians … This is why Atlanta needs to shut it down. Shutting it down for Palestine means shutting it down for Black liberation.”
Activists highlighted the urgency of the current moment.
“We need to send a loud and clear message to our genocidal government … that we will not continue business as usual,” stated PSL member Noor Abdel-Haq in Los Angeles.
Join us on Friday, Nov. 17 for a national day of action to demand an end to Israeli apartheid and its crimes against Palestinians, and an immediate ceasefire!
To find an action near you or to register an action, visit shutitdown4palestine.org.