Freedom Bound: Resisting Zionism & White Supremacy
Since Trump came to power, we have seen a very open alliance between Zionists and white supremacists. White supremacist leader Richard Spencer has described himself as a “white Zionist,” while many pro-Israel groups have been careful about criticizing the antisemitism of administration officials or even whitewashing it because the White House is supporting Israel. This alliance becomes all the clearer when we look at the shared histories and values of the United States and Israel.
Both the United States and Israel are European settler colonial states built on the exclusionary ideology of white supremacy. Both states have a white ruling class that maintains its grip on power through the ongoing exploitation, killing, and displacement of Black, brown, and Indigenous communities.
Zionism and the US empire, both manifestations of white supremacy, collaborate closely to achieve shared goals. Israel’s racial hierarchy is maintained through massive US military and diplomatic support, while Israeli and US police trade practices on population control and repression of resistance under the framework of the War on Terror. The US backs brutal Arab regimes in order to serve its imperial interests, which coincide with Israel’s interests in the region, and both states play a role in suppressing liberation movements worldwide.
Chants like “from Ferguson to Palestine, end racism now” and “from Palestine to Mexico, all the walls have got to go” are not slogans; they are shared realities that emerge from a common experience under racist, settler colonial regimes. Freedom Bound: Resisting Zionism and White Supremacy is a collection of resources to sharpen our analysis and commitment to standing with communities resisting every day. Let us learn and build together.
Dive in with the sections below, do some further reading with The Nakba and Anti-Blackness, and be sure to explore the other tracks of the Together We Rise curriculum: Not That Complicated and Trainings and Resources.
Both the United States and Israel were founded as settler colonial outposts, created through the ethnic cleansing of native people. This colonization continues today through racist policies, state violence, mass incarceration, forced displacement, and cultural erasure. Learn more.
From racial profiling to police and military brutality, to corporate profiteering off of mass incarceration of youth, the systems that oppress the Palestinian people and Black communities in the US are rooted in white supremacy. Both peoples recognize the commonalities in their struggles, leading to a long history of Black-Palestinian solidarity. Learn more.
While Israel continues to displace Palestinians and build illegal, Jewish-only settlements on stolen Palestinian land, gentrification in the US continues to push people of color out of their communities in order to “develop” areas for the affluent. From the US to Palestine, the displacement of people stems from the settler-colonialist mindset of those in power. Learn more.
While the US and Israel boastfully portray themselves as democracies that give equal rights to all citizens, nothing could be further from the truth. Both states are founded on ideologies of supremacy, meaning that inequality and injustice are deeply entrenched in legal structures and state policies. Learn more.
President Trump’s “Muslim ban,” which bars asylum seekers, refugees, and immigrants from entering the US based on their race, national origin, or religion, and Israel’s denial of the right of 7 million Palestinian refugees to return to their homeland have similar roots in racism, xenophobia, and religious intolerance. Learn more.
From the US to Palestine, walls are tearing apart families and communities, and restricting freedom of movement. Both the US/Mexico border wall and Israel’s Apartheid wall are monuments to state control and the domination of the powerful over the oppressed. Learn more.
Among the most insidious tactics used to obscure the reality of the brutal Israeli occupation of Palestine is “faithwashing,” which frames the occupation as a centuries-old “conflict” based on religious differences. This framework is inherently Islamophobic, erases the existence of Palestinian Christians, Druze, and other religious groups, and leads even the most well-meaning people to think that interfaith dialogue is all that’s needed to bring about unity, while ignoring the structural oppression of the Palestinian people. Learn more.
Zionism is a racist ideology that has a global impact extending beyond Israeli apartheid in Palestine. From Israel’s illegal occupation of the Syrian Golan Heights, to its export of systems, strategies, and weapons that have been developed through the oppression of the Palestinian people, Zionism has contributed to bigotry and tyranny worldwide. Learn more.
Intersectional feminism is a struggle against not only patriarchy and misogyny, but against all forms of racism, oppression, and supremacy. Within this framework, and within the context of racialized and gendered Israeli violence against Palestinian women, it becomes clear that Palestine is a feminist issue. Learn more.
In an attempt to redeem its international image, Israel has often resorted to “pinkwashing”: flaunting its supposedly gay-friendly culture to divert attention from the atrocities it commits against the Palestinian people. However, Israel’s oppression of queer and trans Palestinians makes it clear that queer liberation is tied to Palestinian liberation, just as all liberations are connected. Learn more.