Migrant rights group on US-Mexico border urges boycott of Israel

A chicken farm was destroyed by Israel shortly before the current 72-hour “truce” came into effect; the US is a key supplier of military aid to Israel’s forces of occupation. 

Abed Rahim Khatib APA images

The Arizona-based migrant justice and humanitarian group No More Deaths/No Más Muertes has endorsed the Palestinian call for boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel.

The group has also condemned Israel’s attacks on civilians, while connecting the militarization of the US-Mexico border to Israeli repression of Palestinians.

In a statement, No More Deaths/No Más Muertes notes that “Although the Israel-Palestine conflict may seem remote from the Sonoran desert borderlands, there are many southern Arizona companies and partnerships directly connected with the Israeli occupation. No More Deaths cites Tucson-based Raytheon Missile Systems and Elbit Systems of America [a subsidiary of an Israeli weapons-maker] as two examples and possible targets for political pressure.”

There are significant overlaps between the Mexico-US border and Israeli repression of Palestinians, including Israeli drones being deployed in Arizona and Israeli soldiers training in tunnel detection in the US.

The full No More Deaths/No Más Muertes statement follows:

No More Deaths is an organization that believes that when governments fail to uphold fundamental human rights, it is the responsibility of people of conscience to work openly and in community to do so, through non-violent, direct intervention.  Despite internal debates, we’ve long held that commentary on the Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands was best left to other organizations.  But given the urgency of the present moment, we’ve reached a collective decision that we can — and should — no longer remain silent.

For several weeks, the international community has borne witness to a massive Israeli military assault on the Gaza Strip. We know of the killing of children, the bombing of hospitals, clinics, UN-protected shelters, and government ministries, and the destruction of thousands of homes and basic infrastructure, all leveled at a captive Palestinian population. With the initiation of a ground invasion and the death toll rising to over fourteen hundred,* [the death toll has risen to more than 2,000 since the statement was issued] it is past time for international human rights and social justice communities to take action.

As a humanitarian aid organization opposed to militarization here on the US-Mexico border, No More Deaths condemns military and security tactics abroad whose primary targets and victims are civilians. Our struggle against death and suffering here in the Arizona borderlands is deeply implicated in the struggle against US-funded war and occupation in Palestine. From Tucson-based Raytheon Missile Systems’  Israeli military partnership to the Department of Homeland Security’s recent border security contract with an Israeli arms manufacturing giant’s subsidiary (Elbit Systems of America) to set up surveillance towers in Southern Arizona, we continue to witness the same war-profiting industry that makes the assault on Gaza possible also contributing to the militarization of our communities in the US-Mexico borderlands.

We are therefore announcing No More Deaths’ official endorsement of the 2005 Palestinian-led call for boycott, divestment and sanctions of Israel. We call on our membership and allies in the region to join the international community in directly pressuring institutions and businesses to sever economic ties with companies implicated in Israeli human rights violations until Israel ends the siege of Gaza and comes into full compliance with international and domestic law.

By happenstance, “no more deaths” has become one of the rallying cries of the Israeli-Palestinian peace movement opposed to the assault on Gaza. As governments on the US-Mexico border and in Israel/Palestine continue to use military violence to assert control rather than address the structural inequalities that produce these humanitarian crises, we affirm our commitment to work for the peace and justice that lie beyond walls, prisons, war and occupation.

*More than 80 percent of Palestinians killed are civilians, according to current estimates from the United Nations.




The poverty we see in Third World Countries, by and large, was not created by the actions of the people in those countries. These conditions of abject poverty were created by the outside forces of colonization, imperialism, and resources raiding.

Here in the US, when we think back to our grade school, high school, and college history classes as well as other reading and media we may have absorbed on our own, we can easily find the threads of these processes. Most of us are aware of imperial conquests of Mexico as well as much of Central and South America. Through the use of lies, weapons, and disease--Indigenous populations, religions, and governments were decimated. Gold and gemstones, adornments, precious feathers and art, fine ceramics and textiles were all carted off, along with captured animals and human beings all bound for Europe where they became part of the wealth that secured the receiving nations status as First World Countries.

Land was claimed in the decimated territories; forests leveled for lumber, mines were opened and plantations established under the power of the whip and the gun. Top soil was raided alongside the mineral wealth of the land, while the surviving Indigenous people were converted to religions that outlawed their traditional family planning technologies. The natural wealth of the land and people was and continues to be systematically stripped from the Third World and transferred to First World Nations and the wealthy elite of the world. Meanwhile, the populations of people inflicted with poverty by these actions and policies are growing every day, exacerbating the poverty as well as the economic and environmental ruin the First World has bestowed upon them.

Our histories and our futures are inextricably bound. What happens to the least of us effects us all. We must be the change.

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