Cathy Rojas, the socialist candidate for mayor in NYC, rejects all economic aid given to the Israeli government. Rojas reflects, “On this day 21 years ago, the Palestinian people launched a mass mobilization of protests, general strikes and militant resistance after an act of provocation against the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. This launched the Second Intifada, which lasted five years. Israeli authorities continuously worked to crack down on the uprising. This matters to workers in NYC because our tax dollars help fund the Israeli government. NYC alone gives $145 million to the Israeli apartheid government, a sum that could fund elementary school teachers, food assistance programs and student loan forgiveness programs.
“Our tax dollars should not fund displacement through the building of illegal settlements in Palestine, sanctions through the confiscation of water, food and medicine or arms through the brutal attacks from the Israeli Defense Forces.”
The Israeli government’s genocidal treatment of Palestianians would not be possible without the support and financial backing of the U.S., which sees Israel as its foothold in the region to protect its own imperialist interests. In addition to the nearly $4 billion in military assistance the U.S. sends Israel annually, the House recently approved a bill that would give Israel a further $1 billion for its Iron Dome missile defense system. Israel continues to be the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. aid since World War II.
It has been against these remarkable odds that Palestinians have for decades resisted their own ethnic cleansing and fought for self determination. The Rojas for Mayor campaign believes that such a right to self determination belongs to all oppressed nationalities. That is why we stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people in their ongoing struggle for national liberation, just as we stand with all oppressed people fighting against colonialism, imperialism, and state repression.