AF3IRM NY/NJ stands in unwavering solidarity with the Student Intifada

NEW YORK CITY, 05/03/2024

Make no mistake, the students are winning. CCNY and Columbia administration’s decisions to unleash the NYPD on their students, has dissolved the cloud of Democracy that exists in the American mind, and radicalized an entire generation to fight for Palestinian liberation. Democracy cannot exist in a nation invested in silencing its students. Democracy cannot exist in a nation invested in death.

CCNY and Columbia administration preferred deploying the wrath of the NYPD on their students than divesting from genocide. On April 30th, hundreds of NYPD officers met unarmed students in riot gear and military-grade equipment. They violently attacked and arrested over 100 students at each campus, fired a gun inside Hind’s Hall at Columbia, prevented access to medical care, and prevented journalists from bearing witness to it all.

As Universities across the nation deploy the same fascist response on their own students, the NYPD and police have engaged in targeted sexual violence against Muslim women, violating their bodies by ripping off their hijabs. These gendered attacks are a continuation of a long history of police using sexual violence to suppress women who dare to resist. In the United States, where 8.3 million women are undergraduate students, compared to 6.1 million men, the Student Intifada is largely led by Black, Muslim, Indigenous, brown, immigrant, Jewish, and queer women who refuse to accept the genocidal ideology that has overtaken our institutions, in very tangible ways.

Locally, NYPD is trained by the IOF (Israel Occupation Forces) in tactics first tested on Palestinians to repress liberation movements. But exchange programs between American police and the IOF exist across the nation. These same tactics, including gendered violence against women organizers, now seek to destroy the Student Intifada. What they forget is that schools are centers of reproduction of memory, where history is studied, discussed, and studied again.

The students’ courage and resistance is rooted in historical knowledge, that when genocide, occupation, or apartheid exists, people power always overcomes it. The escalation of force against students across the country is confirmation that Zionist institutions know this and are afraid. The calls for universities across the country to divest from genocide and break ties with the fake state of isra-hell are successfully challenging the status quo.

As anti-imperialist feminists we salute the Student Intifada, honor the men and women martyred in Gaza, remember Hind Rajab and the thousands of children murdered in Gaza, and uplift the call to Free Palestine.

Originally published on Medium