Democrats Divide Over Israel as Young, Diverse Left Angers Against Biden | ET REALITY


Demonstrations against US policy in Israel have spread from the Capitol and university campuses. Cornel Westthe left-wing independent presidential candidate, appeared at a rally Wednesday at the University of California, Los Angeles, and at high schools across the country. Students from various high schools. in Northern Virginia walked out of school this week in a “Humanitarian Strike Week.” The presidents of George Washington and Emory universities, among others, condemned the anti-Israel slogans chanted at rallies and projected on buildings.

A number of liberal groups have taken up the Palestinian cause. This week in New York, a protest sign read: “Reproductive justice means justice for Palestine.” In another demonstration in Manhattan, hundreds of people marched under the banner of “Queers for the liberation of Palestine.”

“I feel very betrayed by Biden,” said Angela Balya, 28, a protester in Manhattan who said she had volunteered for Biden’s campaign in 2020. “I will definitely not vote for him again.”

The Sunrise Movement, a coalition of young progressive climate activists who mobilized on behalf of Biden’s campaign in 2020, is one such group that has called for a ceasefire. Some members of the organization have been “raising questions” about whether they and other young people will mobilize again for Biden, said Michele Weindling, the group’s political director.

“If the Democratic Party and President Biden continue to send weapons and military support to Israel, they threaten to lose our generation, and that is a very dangerous decision ahead of a critical election year,” Ms. Weindling said.

US support for Israel it’s unpopular with voters under 35, polls have shown, and students at dozens of universities walked out of classes Wednesday afternoon as part of a nationwide mobilization effort by the group Students for Justice in Palestine.

“President Biden has shown people that there is virtually no difference between Republicans and Democrats on the issue of mass atrocities being committed against Gaza,” said Kaleem Hawa, who has helped organize student protests with the Palestinian Youth Movement.

Few liberal organizations have had as raw a discussion about Israel as the AFL-CIO at its executive council meeting Monday night.

Mark Dimondstein, the postal union president, argued that Israel and the Palestinian territories should be combined into a single state. He asked the AFL-CIO to demand a ceasefire, according to four people familiar with the content of the meeting.

No other union leaders at the meeting offered vocal support for their position.

Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, who is married to a rabbi, responded by affirming Israel’s right to defend itself, people familiar with the meeting said. Mrs. Weingarten He said he supported the establishment of an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel. “That’s been part of the Democratic platform for as long as I can remember,” he said.

Dimondstein, whose union represents more than 220,000 postal workers, said he “was not part of the Democratic Party” and, like Weingarten, refused to discuss the so-called AFL-CIO.

“I’m not going to answer your questions,” he said.

Some of the demands of left-wing protesters fall far outside the American political mainstream.

“Israel’s occupation and existence are not peaceful; “You can’t ‘keep the peace’ with a violent settler state,” read one bullet in a Online document published by the Democratic Socialists of America. and shared widely this week among pro-ceasefire organizers.

At a protest in Manhattan on Wednesday, demonstrators chanted: “We don’t want two states, we want it all.”

Susan C. Playaro contributed to the research.

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