IfNotNow campaigning to highlight ‘occupation’ in US 2020 elections

The organization has formed a new non-profit branch to highlight its message.

July 1, 2019 01:56
1 minute read.
IfNotNow campaigning to highlight ‘occupation’ in US 2020 elections

. (photo credit: IFNOTNOW)

The radical US-based IfNotNow organization that campaigns against Israel’s control of the West Bank has formed a new nonprofit branch to highlight its message during the 2020 presidential campaign.

The organization stated that Israel’s occupation of the Palestinians was a moral concern for the US Jewish community, and alleged that allegations of antisemitism are manipulated to fight those who oppose Israel’s policies.

IfNotNow’s new branch will seek out candidates in the presidential election campaign and confront them with questions about their policies toward the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

“IfNotNow, which is led by young American Jews, has spent the past four years organizing in the American Jewish community and opened this 501(c)4 in order to expose the occupation as a moral crisis within the American Jewish community, end the weaponization of antisemitism in the political debate over Israel, and create political space for leaders who will stand up for the freedom and dignity for all Israelis and Palestinians,” the organization said in a statement to the press announcing its new branch.

On Saturday, members of the IfNotNow election campaign met Sen. Bernie Sanders, one of the candidates running for the Democratic nomination for the presidency, and took a picture together with him, holding a poster stating “Jews against the occupation.”

The group has brought six full-time fellows to live in New Hampshire and spend the summer publicly confronting candidates about the Israel-Palestinian conflict during their events, with Saturday’s photo-op being the first.

Left-wing political activist and BDS supporter Linda Sarsour warmly welcomed IfNotNow’s new campaign, while the organization itself posted an endorsement on Twitter of its activities by Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib, who also supports the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement (BDS) and who has endorsed a one-state solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

IfNotNow is perhaps best known for its campaign of conducting walk-offs from Birthright trips, in which several participants demonstrably walked out of a Birthright group last summer while being live-streamed by a fellow IfNotNow campaigner, in protest at what it describes as Birthright’s refusal to address the Israel-Palestinian conflict on its trips.

The organization’s banner issue is Israel’s ongoing control of the West Bank and its Palestinian population, although it and some of its members have declined to say whether they are in favor of any Jewish state in its pre-1967 borders.

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