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The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Green Party activist condemns American military involvement in global conflicts

The 2016 Vice-Presidential Green Party candidate Ajamu Baraka came to Suffolk University Monday to discuss his opinions on the longstanding Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

As Baraka spoke, multiple news sources confirmed that seven Palestinians were killed when Israeli forces detonated explosives in the Gaza Tunnel, just the latest lives claimed by a conflict the United States has meddled in.

Baraka, a renowned grassroots organizer for more than 25 years, has been at the forefront of applying international human rights framework to social justice within the U.S. He is also the national organizer and spokesperson for the newly recreated Black Alliance for Peace.

During his presentation, he set his sights on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which has been one of the most precarious affairs that the U.S. has involved itself with in the last half-decade. Israel has been one of the top recipients of U.S. aid since the end of World War II and has received more than $124 billion since 1976. In a September press conference, U.S. President Donald Trump announced that the U.S. would open their first permanent military base in Israel.

According to Baraka, U.S. support from Israel stems from the shared idea of “western civilization” that both countries identify with – a notion that Baraka tied directly to Caucasians. Baraka went through America’s laundry list of violent foreign affairs and highlighted that many of the countries that have witnessed military action from the U.S. are primarily non-Caucasian. He said the fact that Israel has repeatedly identified as a “western nation” has helped garner popular civilian support for the arming and backing of the Israeli army by the U.S. as well.

“When we look at all these conflicts, since the end of the Second World War, what has been the primary characteristic is the U.S., in conflict, waging war on, people of color.” said Baraka. “Because of that we find that there continues to be popular support for these conflicts.”

Baraka claimed that the contrasting ideals between the U.S. and Palestine have resulted in the marginalization of Palestinians on a global scale.

“When we talk about how we build a movement to support Palestine, you see what you are up against,” said Baraka. “Basically the first thing we have to do is humanize the Palestinians, because they have been dehumanized.”

Baraka challenged the idea of western civilization and branded it a false ideology fueled by white supremacy.

He also condemned the U.S.  Military involvement around the world because he said it has been fueled by racially specific targeting and asserted that the U.S. military presence is due to foreign policy laced with hints of white superiority.

“We have to talk about notions of white supremacy and how it is manifested in policy,” said Baraka. “It’s a difficult conversation, but we have to take it on.”

Baraka laid out the struggle in Palestine against a backdrop of America’s recent military investigation around the world and insinuated that government officials have misled Americans.

“In the last 16 years we have had a war in Iraq and were told Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and therefore there was a justification for us to go into their country,” said Baraka. “We had intervention in Syria, we have had the second longest war in U.S. history, in Afghanistan. We have the continuation of drone warfare where it is estimated that over 4,000 civilians have died in seven nations. We have a grotesque situation in Yemen that a lot of people don’t know about.”

Following Baraka’s presentation, the floor was opened to audience members who asked questions ranging from global, national and local topics.

The night was organized and run by the Suffolk University Students for Justice for Palestine (SJP).

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About the Contributor
Jacob Geanous, Past World News Editor
Jacob Geanous is a senior Print Journalism major with a minor in government/international relations.
He has an associates degree in criminal justice from Mercyhurst University in Pennsylvania. His articles can also be seen in the Metro section of the Boston Globe.
No, he's not tired, that's just how he looks. He played outside linebacker at the University of Pittsburgh, but don't ask him about it. If he is not in the office, good luck finding him.

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Green Party activist condemns American military involvement in global conflicts