On “Violence” and “clashes” between Palestinians and Apartheid Israel

This statement issued by the Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC) is from May 11 2021 but remains relevant today


Most mainstream media outlets are parroting apartheid Israel’s propaganda morally equating the violence of the nuclear-powered oppressor with the resistance of the oppressed. In a typically colonial inversion of the truth, they whitewash the violence of apartheid Israel as “violent clashes” between the “two sides.”

Here are 3 key points to remember in your reporting or when refuting this myth:

  1. As Brazilian educator and philosopher Paulo Freire says, 

“With the establishment of a relationship of oppression, violence has already begun. Never in history has violence been initiated by the oppressed. How could they be the initiators, if they themselves are the result of violence? … There would be no oppressed had there been no prior situation of violence to establish their subjugation. Violence is initiated by those who oppress, who exploit, who fail to recognize others as persons—not by those who are oppressed, exploited, and unrecognized.” 

  1. Since oppression is the root cause of violence, to end all violence — that of the oppressor and that of the oppressed — we must act to end oppression. Exposing and ending complicity in Israel’s regime of apartheid, settler-colonialism and military occupation are the most ethical and strategic forms of intervention to end oppression and violence.
  2. Those, like the U.S. administration and the EU, who are not just silent in the face of Israeli apartheid oppression, but are deeply implicated in enabling it through trade, military-security cooperation, and shielding it from accountability, have no moral standing to lecture the oppressed Palestinians on our resistance to oppression. They are partners in crime, pure and simple.

Source: BDS movement

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