You struck a woman,
You struck a rock,
You have dislodged a boulder,
It will crush you.
(Song of South Africa’s women’s mobilization against the pass laws of apartheid)
Israel’s apartheid Wall is not only the largest expression of its oppression, expulsion and dispossession of the Palestinian people but also a symbol of a world where a system of structural violence, based on class, race and gender, engages in ever more cruel forms of exclusion, discrimination, assassination and exploitation. Since 2017, movements across the globe are coming together on November 9 to build joint struggles against walls of injustice everywhere.
Israel’s colonial project aimed at eliminating the Palestinian people from their homeland and its resistance to Israeli apartheid, targets women because they are core to the reproduction of life itself and to the social and cultural reproduction of Palestinian society and struggle.
Palestinian women face humiliation and gendered violence at Israeli military checkpoints, during night raids, in the jails. Israeli politicians and soldiers call for their assassination because they are the mothers of a new generation of Palestinians. Palestinian girls are thrown into prison cells when they shatter the image of male supremacy of heavily armed soldiers, with a simple slap in the face.
Today, Israel’s far-right government is the most openly sexist, misogynist and LGBTQI+phobic dispensation the apartheid regime has ever had.
Palestinian women are facing the full brunt of Israeli oppression in the crosshairs of a multilayered system of racist, colonial and patriarchal repression. Yet, their struggle against Israeli gendered violence, has also empowered Palestinian women to challenge patriarchal structures and violence that persist in Palestinian society.
The struggle of the women in Palestine is the backbone of Palestinian sumoud (resilience) and resistance. They keep together and sustain families when the fathers and brothers are killed or imprisoned, their homes are demolished. They fight for the right to water, to education, to healthcare and all the other aspects that compose the right to self-determination. They speak out and show up in the streets and the fields. They confront Israeli soldiers, militarism and repression in a myriad of ways.
Women are also pillars of Palestine solidarity and of social justice struggles across the globe. Yet, their stories, their voices, their modes of resistance are far too often silenced and hidden behind a wall of male supremacy.
This is where our struggles unite. Together we can not only end the impunity of those who violate our rights and our land. We can also build a world of freedom, justice and equality.
We want to share the experiences, stories, voices and struggles of women in Palestine and across the world.
We want to foster the solidarity between women because solidarity is a feminist issue and because Palestine is a feminist issue. As Palestinian women movements in their historic unified call said:
“In the spirit of an inclusive feminist vision that struggles for racial, social and economic justice, […] We call on all women and feminists around the world to stand on the right side of history and join our BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement. Justice is always a feminist agenda.”
We want to dedicate this year’s Global Day of InterAction for a World without Walls – November 9 – to tear down the walls of patriarchy and build bridges of active solidarity with Palestine.
We want to join hands and work together to:
- Highlight, analyze and denounce the gendered structures of Israeli apartheid, colonialism and military occupation.
- Foreground the role of women in the Palestinian struggle and social justice struggles across the world.
- Underscore that Palestine is a feminist issue and build joint struggles against the walls of patriarchy.
- Engage in concrete actions against global complicity with Israeli apartheid by developing BDS campaigns.
Walls turned sideways are bridges. (Angela Davis)