Black people against Zionism, Black people against Apartheid

Yesterday, Aljazeera Stream’s episode was titled ‘Blackwashing’ and the Israel lobby, it hosted Journalist Max Blumenthal and editor Ben Shapiro. You can watch the whole episode on The Stream and see Shapiro trying to evade the topic at hand and purposelessly attacking Blumenthal, the episode was very interesting, it is embedded here:

The term “blackwashing” is now being used after AIPAC started to exploit young people of African ancestry for propaganda purposes in order to beautify Israel’s image. AIPAC’s attempts barely succeed but are certainly worth paying attention to. AIPAC hosted young Africans to speak against the term “Apartheid” being used to describe the state of Israel, but only last week we listened to this inspiring and informative 10 minutes speech by South African PhD candidate and activist leader Mbuyiseni Ndlozi who spoke about Israel becoming a worse apartheid state than South Africa ever was, if you haven’t listened to that speech, I also advise doing so now.

1970: Appeal by Black Americans against US support for Zionism

And now we come to read a snippet from history; I stumbled upon this appeal published on the New York Times 1 November 1970 edition, it is titled “An appeal by Black Americans against United States support of the Zionist government of Israel,” it was sponsored by Committee of Black Americans for truth about the Middle East. The appeal is explicitly described in a 1972 Journal of Palestine Studies article by Lewis Young titled “American Blacks and the Arab-Israeli Conflict.”

In this excellent appeal, we read about the Palestinian cause for justice being connected to the African-American fight for equal rights and complete abolishment for the racist system, we read about it connected to the global fight against imperialism, colonialism, racism, and for justice, freedom, and dignity.

The appeal starts with the signatories stating that they’re in complete solidarity with their Palestinian brothers and sisters who are also struggling for self-determination and an end to racist oppression.

The appeal ends with a demand for the United States government to stop all military aid or assistance of any kind to Israel; it also states that Imperialism and Zionism must get out of the Middle East. It concludes with a call for Afro-American solidarity with the Palestinian people’s struggle for national liberation and to regain all of their stolen land.

You can read the complete appeal below:




Bayard Rustin seems complex politically. Wikipedia says he "gave critical support to U.S. military intervention in Vietnam". He also chaired the executive committee of Freedom House, which despite its lovely name was a cold-war instrument of U.S. foreign policy. This is not to detract from his dedication to civil rights, of course.


As a firm supporter of Palestinian self-determination in occupied Palestine and an Afrikan person, it would be great to hear and see so-called progressive and broadminded Arabs publicly challenged anti-Afrikan racism in the Arab world.

If one can link apartheid South Africa to current events in Palestine with respect to the exploitation and domination of Palestinians, progressives Arabs should certainly be able see the racially-informed treatment of Afrikans as a problem in North Afrika and West Asia. True allies will challenge oppressive behaviour even with their kinship and friendship networks.

One cannot expect to parade or bring out the Afrikans who challenge Zionism and settler-colonialism in Palestine, but remain silent on the anti-Afrikan racism experienced by my people in the Arab word. There is no place for political hypocrisy on oppression. We must be guided by principles and not expediency. Where's the progressive Arab voice on the targeted killing of Arfikans in Libya during and after the intervention by imperialism? Silence on this matter is an act of collaboration. I have unvarnished contempt for collaborators.

Jalal Abukhater

Jalal Abukhater's picture

Jalal Abukhater is a Jerusalemite, he is a graduate MA(hons) International Relations and Politics from the University of Dundee, Scotland.