Falastiniyat is a grassroots collective of diasporic Palestinian feminists. As part of the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement, they have bravely organized the Block the Boat actions which prevented the Israeli-apatheid profiteering ZIM San Diego cargo ship from unloading at the Port of Seattle for 15 days in June. They have also dedicated time and effort for over a year as organizers for council bill 120142 which would outlaw training programs between the Seattle Police Department and international human rights violators. Because of this work, Falastiniyat is attacked with false claims of anti-Semitism.
Kshama Sawant has vigorously fought for marginalized people as a Seattle city council member for more than seven years. Introducing council bill 120142 prohibiting the SPD from training with foreign military and police forces is no exception. Sawant advocates for a Seattle where residents are not subject to militarized force, state scrutiny, or racial discrimination. As the sponsor of council bill 120142, Sawant and her office have been attacked by right-wing zionists who claim the bill, Sawant, and her staff are anti-Semitic.
This groundbreaking human rights legislation lifts up the values of the city we should aspire to. It supports efforts to demilitarize and defund our police and we are proud to stand with it and stand with them.
Although the bill does not name Israel, Zionists claim Israel is being singled out – proving their awareness of the state’s human rights violations. However, Israel is not the only entity council bill 120142 prohibits the SPD from working with.
Anti-zionism has long been falsely conflated with anti-Semitism. Israel and its supporters claim critiques of Israel are anti-Semitic to distract from the state’s occupation, apartheid, and grave human rights abuses. The true meaning of anti-zionism is about justice and freedom for Palestinians.
Palestinian activists and organizers have always made it clear: anti-Semitism has no place in the fight for Palestinian liberation. Nor does anti-Semitism have a place in Seattle DSA.
Passing this legislation is a material gain towards liberation in Seattle – less militarization of Seattle Police, less racial profiling, and fewer police officers trained to view their job as controlling and suppressing the population rather than serving us.
Seattle DSA stands with Kshama Sawant and Falastiniyat amid these false claims.
Seattle Democratic Socialists of America