Weekly The Generation, Year 1, Issue 13
November 28, 2023
Leftwing activists including the actor Cynthia Nixon, famous for her role in Sex and the City, have begun a hunger strike outside the White House aimed at pressing Joe Biden into demanding a permanent ceasefire in Gaza.
The five-day fast was launched to coincide with what had been the scheduled end of a four-day truce in Israel’s military offensive into the Palestinian coastal territory, during which the Palestinian group Hamas released dozens of hostages. Israel has also released several batches of Palestinian prisoners, most of them women and minors. The truce was later extended by a further two days following mediation from Egypt and Qatar.
In a news conference in front of the White House, speaker after speaker representing a range of pro-Palestinian and progressive causes lined up to denounce the US president and his senior officials. They lambasted the Biden administration for enabling a bombardment and ground invasion that has killed nearly 15,000 people, including more than 6,000 children, according to Gaza’s health ministry.
“We are taking this action of hunger striking to showcase the actions of President Biden,” said Zohran Mamdani, a Democratic state representative from New York. “It’s President Biden’s actions that are leading to the bombing of Palestinians, the starving of Palestinians. So we are starving ourselves to make visible what is so often erased, which is the Palestinian experience.”
Nixon, a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, attempted to put the soaring Palestinian death toll in the context of the 20-year US military engagement in Afghanistan while, uniquely among the speakers, also referencing the roughly 1,200 Israelis killed in Hamas’ attack on 7 October that provoked the current hostilities.
Introducing herself as “the mother of Jewish children whose grandparents are holocaust survivors”, she said: “In seven weeks, Israel has killed more civilians on a tiny strip of land than was killed in 20 years of war in the entire country of Afghanistan.
Referring to Biden, she added: “I would like to make a personal plea to a president who has experienced such devastating personal loss. To connect with an empathy that he has acknowledged and to look at the children of Gaza and imagine that they were his children. We implore him that this current ceasefire must continue.”
Source: The Guardian