Brooklyn College Students Call for ‘Intifada’ in Christchurch Attack Vigil
A rally held on Tuesday by a socialist student group at Brooklyn College to commemorate the victims of the deadly New Zealand mosque shootings called for an intifada — an Arabic expression referring to a Palestinian campaign against Israelis that included suicide bombings and other terrorist attacks.
The solidarity vigil, organized by BC Socialists after a white supremacist gunman killed 50 people in Christchurch on March 15, attracted some 30 to 40 people, according to photos and videos posted online by the BC Student Union. Some members of the Islamic Society at BC — which held its own, university-promoted vigil on March 21 for victims of the massacre — were in attendance, BC Socialists said.
One speaker at the rally, which was first noted by the blogger Elder of Ziyon, denounced anti-Muslim and pro-Israel, Zionist rhetoric, before accusing the media of covering up the Palestinian identity of some of the Christchurch attack victims. Another speaker shouted chants repeated by the attendees, including, “Free, free Palestine,” and “Intifada, intifada, long live the intifada.”
During the First Intifada, launched in 1987, Palestinians used rifles, hand grenades, firebombs and explosives against Israeli targets, as part of popular protests against continued Israeli rule. The Second Intifada took place during the early 2000s, and saw Palestinians carry out multiple suicide bombings and shooting attacks against Israelis.
The BC Student Union, which shared media from the event, plans to co-host the first event of “Israel apartheid week” at Brooklyn College on Thursday, in honor of the “Great March of Return” protests. That Palestinian campaign, which was launched in Gaza last year with the aim of pressuring Israel to accept Palestinian refugees of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War and their descendants, has seen a heightening of violence by the Israeli-Gaza border.
“[Commemorate] the great march of return with us, [BC Student for Justice in Palestine, BC Socialists and BC Sociology Club] as we read the names of those who have been murdered at the gaza border by the israeli occupation forces • • • 🇵🇸 🗝️,” the union wrote on Instagram.