Honoring Dr. King

“Israel’s right to exist as a state is incontestable.” Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote these words in a letter to the then-president of the Jewish Labor Committee in 1967, after the Six-Day War.

Each year on MLK Day, this one small sentence is shouted from the rooftops of almost every Zionist organization in America. It has become a way for some Jewish groups to deflect the actual legacy of Martin Luther King and focus the day on Zionism, rather than on justice for Black people. It also exploits Dr. King’s words, as though they provide legitimacy to all Israeli government actions. News flash: Israel’s “right to exist” is not synonymous with a right to occupy and subjugate another people. Dr. King’s words mean what they say: he supports Israel’s existence. They do not mean that we should blindly support every action by the Israeli government. 

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Statement: APN Objects to AZ and NJ Unilever Divestment

Today, Americans for Peace Now sent letters to the Arizona State Treasurer, Kimberly Yee, and to Shoaib Khan, the Acting Director of the New Jersey Department of the Treasury Investment Division objecting to their decisions to divest their states’ funds from Ben & Jerry’s parent company Unilever.

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Progress and Pinkwashing


In 1988, Israel decriminalized homosexuality, and within five years, the country had begun allowing openly gay soldiers to serve in the military and instituted a ban on anti-LGBTQ employment discrimination. Since 2006, Israel has recognized same-sex marriages performed abroad; 2008 marked the year that Israel began allowing same-sex couples to adopt children together; and, in 2014, Israel lowered the minimum age requirement for gender-affirming surgery for the transgender community. Just this month, incoming Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz announced that he would remove all questions about sexual activity from questionnaires for prospective blood donors, thus allowing gay men to give blood.

Over the past twenty-three years, LGBTQ rights have progressed at warp speed in Israel. In Tel Aviv, a city where only twenty or thirty years ago gay men were harassed on the streets by bullies both civilian and police, there is now a Municipal LGBT Center. Funded by the city government, this center aims to support, educate, and empower the city’s LGBTQ residents. The idea that taxpayer funds could go toward such an effort – especially in a state so influenced by intolerant religious attitudes – is nothing short of revolutionary.

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