Today is International Women's Day, which is purportedly a day to work toward gender equality. Another major pro-women event today is a Day Without a Woman strike. This event is organized by activists who put together the Women's March for the day after President Donald Trump's inauguration.
Whatever one's opinions about women's rights and equality, today's events are being hijacked by those whose sights go beyond merely acknowledging women and their place in society. As is the case with leftist causes today, anti-Israelism takes its place alongside these other "noble" causes.
The International Women's Strike, a grassroots organization connected to the Women's March on Washington, is using Wednesday as an "international day of action" to support "resistance not just against Trump and his misogynist policies, but also against the conditions that produced Trump, namely the decades long economic inequality, racial and sexual violence, and imperial wars abroad." Among the Women's Strike's stated goals to help make this a reality is "the decolonization of Palestine."
"Decolonization of Palestine" is often used as a euphemism for the destruction of the existing state of Israel.
The Women's March, which is organizing its own Day Without a Woman protest also scheduled for Wednesday, states on their website that their movement "stands in solidarity with the International Women's Strike organizers, feminists of color and grassroots groups in planning global actions for equity, justice and human rights."
One of the organizers of the International Women's Strike is Rasmea Odeh, who was convicted of a 1969 bombing in Jerusalem that killed Hebrew University students Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner and injured nine others. She was sentenced to life in prison over that attack, as well as a failed bombing of the British Consulate, but was released in a 1980 prisoner exchange between Israel and the terrorist group the Popular Front of the Liberation of Palestine, of which she was a member.
Odeh disputes her conviction, even though her trial included physical evidence such as bomb-making material that was found in her bedroom by Israeli police, and was described as "fair" by an observer from the International Red Cross. Cornell University professor William Jacobson, proprietor of the Legal Insurrection blog, compiled voluminous evidence demonstrating Odeh's association with the PFLP and responsibility for the bombing. Moreover, in a filing related to Odeh's 2014 conviction over immigration fraud after moving to Chicago, the U.S. prosecution noted that she "has given interviews throughout the years to various other publications in which she admitted her role" in carrying out terrorist attacks in Israel.
Rasmea Odeh; convicted terrorist
and an organizer of today's
Day Without a Woman strike
For TRUE rights and equality, this woman should be deported from the U.S.
Several of the groups partnering with the International Women's Strike have also made clear their support for action against Israel, including Al-Awda The Palestine Right to Return Coalition, American Muslims for Palestine - Upper NY, International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, Jewish Voice for Peace NYC, and Jews for Palestinian Right of Return. Odeh will be appearing on a panel later this month at the Jewish Voice for Peace's national convention.
American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) is perhaps the most troubling of the organizations listed. Jonathan Schanzer, the vice president for research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, testified to Congress last year that AMP was founded former members of the Holy Land Foundation, which was shut down after it was found to have been funding the terrorist group Hamas. Salah Sarsour, a current AMP board member, was once jailed in Israel for sending funds to Hamas. (Ironically, Hamas, the terrorist group that rules the Gaza Strip, announced earlier this week that it was cancelling the International Women's Day holiday.)
AMP is also a leading promoter of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign targeting Israel. Many leaders of the BDS campaign have publicly affirmed that they seek Israel's destruction. BDS co-founder Omar Barghouti, an opponent of the two-state solution, said in 2014 that Palestinians have a right to "resistance by any means, including armed resistance," while leading activist As'ad Abu Khalil acknowledged in 2012 that "the real aim of BDS is to bring down the state of Israel."