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November 25, 2016 8:07 am

‘Anti-Colonial Thanksgiving’ Held at Smith College to Protest ‘Physical, Psychological Violence of Imperialism’ in Israel, America

avatar by Lea Speyer

Promotion for Smith SJP's "Anti-Colonial Thanksgiving” event. Photo: Facebook.

Promotion for Smith SJP’s “Anti-Colonial Thanksgiving” event. Photo: Facebook.

A Thanksgiving gathering to protest the “physical and psychological violence of imperialism and colonialism” in Israel and the US was hosted by a Smith College student group last Sunday, Campus Reform reported.  

According to the report, the event — entitled “Anti-Colonial Thanksgiving: Water, Land and Self-Determination from Standing Rock to Palestine” — was organized by the Massachusetts-based school’s Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) chapter, to mark what it views as similar struggles going on between Palestinians in Gaza with Israel and the Standing Rock Sioux in South Dakota with the US government.

Smith SJP claimed Israel actively targets Gaza’s water supply — a theory that has been widely debunkedbut continues to be pushed by anti-Israel activists — in the same way that the US targets the water supply of the Standing Rock Sioux through the planned construction of an oil pipeline that would traverse the Native American tribe’s land.

On the event’s Facebook page, Smith SJP invited attendees to “give thanks to the water protectors in Standing Rock and the Gaza Strip,” as both groups are engaged in “fighting to protect their water tables from the poison of capitalist imperialism.” 

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The featured speaker at the event was Lina Morales, a youth coordinator for the far-Left Jewish Voices for Peace (JVP) Boston, who, her biography notes, has been “active in Palestinian solidarity work since after she took a liberal birthright tour to Israel/Palestine in 1998.” Morales is also listed as a member of the JVP working group promoting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

SJP, as The Algemeiner has reported, is a national anti-Israel student movement that mobilizes support for BDS and the delegitimization and demonization of Israel. JVP, a Jewish organization, has come under scrutiny for providing SJP what campus watchdog groups and antisemitism experts have called a “cloak of legitimacy” against charges of antisemitism.

Smith’s “Anti-Colonial Thanksgiving” is not the first holiday that SJP has exploited for anti-Israeli purposes. As The Algemeiner reported, its chapter at the University of Michigan’s held a Halloween bake sale — titled “Zionism is Scary” — which featured cookies and cakes with Palestinian flag icing, and a board filled with out-of-context or distorted quotes from Israeli leaders, labeled, “From the Zionist mind.”

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