US CAMPUS PROTESTS | It’s Not a Crime to Oppose Genocide and War

Student encampment at Northeastern University (4/25/24) (Picture: ISG)

Below is the text of a leaflet being distributed on US campuses by the Independent Socialist Group (ISG – that stands in political solidarity with the CWI).

Drop All Charges Against Protestors!

On 27 April, at Northeastern University, state, city, and campus police arrested 100+ protesters who set up an encampment on Thursday.

Student protests and encampments have erupted at universities across the country, calling for colleges to disclose ties to and divest from corporations complicit in the Israeli-state occupation and genocide in Palestine. Students at Columbia University, Emerson College, the University of Texas at Austin, and Emory University are among those facing heavy repression by police and college administration. Over 400 protestors have been arrested, often violently, and many suspended.

The Independent Socialist Group and the CWI stands with student protesters nationwide and condemns college administrations’ brutal arrests, suspensions, and attacks on students, faculty, staff, and community supporters. We call for all charges against protesters to be dropped immediately. Active solidarity from unions and working-class people is needed now to help defend the protests and demand the immediate withdrawal of police and armed forces from college campuses.

In the past week, more than 400 bodies were uncovered in a mass grave near Nasser Hospital. Despite Netanyahu threatening an imminent assault on Rafah, the Biden administration and Congress approved an additional $15 billion in funding for the Israeli military. Rocket fire between Israel and Iran, prompted by Israel bombing an Iranian consulate in Syria, threatens a wider war in the Middle East.

Both the Democratic and Republican parties have readily funded the Israeli military and sent in city police and state troopers against students and other protestors. It’s crucial for youth, students, and working-class people to organize opposition to the two pro-capitalist and imperialist parties. We need a party of our own to build a movement and contest elections if we hope to defend and extend our right to protest, end police brutality and repression, and win peace.

Many unions support a ceasefire, including the United Auto Workers (UAW), United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE), American Postal Workers Union (APWU), the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA-CWA), and the National Education Association (NEA). These unions can lead the effort to organize a mass movement to force an immediate ceasefire, defend democratic rights (like freedom of speech and assembly), and oppose the genocide and the bloated US military budget. Unions should pull their funding from the two corporate parties to instead run independent workers’ candidates, a crucial step to build a new party against imperialism, war, and capitalism.

In the long term, working people in Gaza and the West Bank must have the freedom to organize and defend themselves, to have safe homes and secure jobs, to self-determination and statehood – but the capitalist system won’t be able to provide these. Workers must build independent political organizations in Israel and Palestine to oppose the war, religious extremism, and the far right and fight for economic and democratic rights for all in a socialist federation of the Middle East. By uniting workers against imperialism, genocide, and war through an international socialist movement, we can achieve peace and self-determination for all.


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April 2024