As Jews around the world observe the Jewish New Year, a new Jewish group honors the holiday by denouncing Israel and Zionism. The International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network (IJAN) launches this week, with a month of actions and events in over eight countries and the release of its founding charter.
This growing network of Jews, with local network affiliates in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe, Israel, India, Morocco, Mexico and Argentina, was formed to join the struggle for justice in Palestine and the Middle East and challenge the Zionist censorship of Palestinian and other resistance to Zionism. IJAN seeks to rekindle a long Jewish tradition of participation in struggles for liberation and against exploitation and oppression.
“We intend to contribute to a growing international voice that challenges Zionism and its claim to speak on behalf of Jews worldwide; Israel and the Zionist ideology upon which it was built does not speak for us, nor does it reflect our vision of a just and safe world,” says IJAN organizer Sara Kershnar. “The movement against Zionist apartheid must be as uncompromising as was the movement against South African apartheid. Anti-Zionism is part not only of the movement against racism but also the movement against war. We are convinced that we speak to a great unexpressed, in fact censored sentiment of support for this perspective, including among Jewish people.”
IJAN distinguishes itself from Jewish and other peace groups that do not reject Zionism or the continuation of an exclusionary Jewish State. IJAN’s charter states, “We commit ourselves wholeheartedly to the liberation of Palestine. We commit our hearts, minds and political energy to supporting the varied and vibrant resistance movement of the Palestinian people, the solidarity of individuals and organizations in every country and to confront the injustices for which the countries we live in are responsible. We unequivocally support the Palestinian right of return. We respond wholeheartedly to the call from Palestine for boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel.”
The International Jewish anti-Zionist Network is an independent organization that supports the indigenous Palestinian struggle and leadership. The IJAN Charter states, “The justice we work for must be built by those throughout Palestine, including Israel, and those in Palestinian refugee camps, whose struggle for self-determination can lead to equity and freedom for all who live there and in the surrounding lands.”