The GPCA states its support for Palestinians:
On June 8th 2021, the Green Party of California (GPCA) declared in a public statement that they stood “in solidarity with the Palestinian people and their fight against the brutal apartheid regime of Israel in the Occupied Palestinian Territories”. The violence during the Israeli military bombing from May 10 to May 21, 2021, has killed 248 Palestinians, including 66 children, and injured over 1,700 people.
According to the GPCA’s public statement, more than 1,000 buildings, schools, hospitals, businesses, and roads have been destroyed by devastating airstrikes, leaving at least 6,000 residents homeless and displacing tens of thousands individuals.
Sustained support for Israel in U.S. federal politics:
Amidst the turmoil, many Green Parties around the world have voiced their support for the Palestinian people despite the many leading political parties who have been reluctant to stand against Israel. This has been the case for the United States, where the Biden administration “refuses to hold the Israeli government led by the current Prime Minister Netanyahu accountable for the continuous violation of Palestinian rights and security, falsely claiming Israel is exercising its right to defend itself instead”, according to the GPCA.
The U.S. has, throughout history, been very consistent in stating its support for Israel despite multiple instances of violence. “The U.S. always gives unconditional military and financial support to Israel”, declared Christine Pepin, who works with the Media Committee of the GPCA to Global Green News.
“I think it dates back from the creation of the state of Israel in 1948 following WWII and the Shoah, and from the fact that Israel plays a central role in the Middle East. Their close relationship allows the U.S. to stay present in that region of the world politically and strategically”, explained Pepin to Global Green News.
It appears Conservatives and Democrats alike in the United States have been reluctant to effectively support the Palestinians. “Even though a few Democrats have recently called out Biden for his unconditional support of Israel, their opposition remains slow and weak”, said the GPCA in their public statement. “Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib and Senator Bernie Sanders introduced sister resolutions to block the Biden administration’s $735 million arms sale to Israel while Congress was informed about the arms sale on May 5. They then quickly dropped their joint effort after hearing that the sale had been approved.Democrats and Republicans alike usually do not question our nation’s backing of Israel’s institutionalized discrimination and disproportionate use of violence against Palestinians”.
The Green Party of California, however, intends to break away from this status quo supporting tradition and instead pursue politics in accord to their Ten Key Values. “We absolutely believe that our statement against the brutality of the apartheid regime of Israel is in alignment with Global Green values, and with international humanitarian and internal law”, said Pepin to Global Green News. “We stand against any form of oppression around the world, against wars, and in favour of people to apply the principle of self-determination. Israel has been controlling and slowly destroying the Occupied Palestinian Territories since 1967. As the occupying power, they have a legal duty to protect Palestinians from extreme violence, pandemics, etc., a duty that they refuse to uphold, or worse, go directly against”.
A gap between government action and public belief:
Despite the American government’s statements, the sentiments of solidarity for the Palestinians are very present in the U.S. currently. There is thus a notable gap in the U.S. between government action and public belief, as the GPCA explained to Global Green News: “Of course there’s a gap between what the people believe and how the government acts, there always has been, and it should not be the case”, said Pepin.
“Media in the U.S. has often been biased towards Israel, you always hear stories about Hamas launching rockets on Israel and killing innocents, but you never read how many Palestinians were killed the same day by the Israeli army. Nor, how many houses/buildings were destroyed, how long it takes a Palestinian to cross a check point to get to work, the daily harassment from settlers, etc.”
“This is hidden from the American public and in the American media”, declared Pepin to Global Green News. “Yet, with the recent Israeli attacks on Gaza, people are horrified. They realize the brutality of the Israeli regime, that it is not merely self-defense. Citizens do not understand why the Biden administration is not condemning Israel and putting diplomatic pressure on the country”.
The U.S. Greens: a new start for U.S. politics?
This vision of change in Green politics in the U.S. is spreading, with the Green Party of Pennsylvania (GPPA) also stating their support for Palestinians. The U.S. Green Party has also addressed the concerns of American-Jewish Greens hoping that they would keep on condemning all forms of terrorism.
The U.S. Green Party has stated that “regarding terrorism, we have stated repeatedly in press releases and in the opening of the platform plank in question that we are committed to non-violent conflict resolution and oppose all violence in this situation, which means Israeli state-sponsored terrorism and Palestinian terrorism/suicide bombings. We also acknowledge that the Palestinian right of resistance to occupation is sanctioned by international law primarily as an expression of the right to self-determination, and that it must be understood as a response to Israel’s illegal occupation”.