Move to Amend has always strived for more than simply reversing the Citizens United Supreme Court decision, ending the corruption of money from the rich and corporations spent in elections and passing the We the People Amendment that would abolish ALL corporate constitutional rights.
We believe even more structural changes are needed to achieve genuine self-determination for all people, everywhere. It’s why we’ve always been committed to anti-oppression within ourselves, communities, workplaces, policies, and representation, understanding that oppressed people lack the power to meet their needs and improve their communities.
It’s through this lens that our staff and board look through to witness the current violence and suffering in Israel and Gaza. We humbly make no claim to understand or describe the complexities of what has been a 75 year-long struggle for justice and peace or to state below all the current realities. We don’t feel, however, we have to know everything to share our reflections and to connect them to our work to end corporate rule and to organize for real democracy.
The killing of innocent civilians, hostage-taking and bombings and attacks of neighborhoods, health care facilities and communities is indefensible. Both Jews and Palestinians have a right to exist, be safe and secure and determine their own future. Jewish people have achieved a degree of security and self-determination through the formation of Israel. Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank, on the other hand, lack both and have suffered for decades as a result. Over our lifetimes, the conditions for the Palestinians in these regions have only worsened.
Major U.S.-based corporate entities influence and/or benefit from U.S foreign policy towards Israel, and by extension, Gaza and the West Bank. Three examples.
Political lobbying and campaign contributions
Led by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the Israeli lobby may be the most powerful international issue lobby in the U.S. The combined political contributions of nearly $44 million and additional $4 million in lobbying in the 2022 election cycle was spent to ensure that Congress supports continued military and other financial assistance to the nation. Israel has been by far the largest recipient of U.S. foreign aid since the end of WWII – totalling $318 billion (inflation adjusted). Most of the recent funding has gone for weapons, munitions and missile defense – some of which has been used to quell internal uprisings.
More than $10 million of AIPAC’s 2022 campaign cycle political spending was for a new organization, the United Democratic Project (UDP), which targeted Black democratic congressional primary races to counter candidates supporting Palestinian concerns.
That’s not all. AIPAC created in 2021 its own Super PAC, AIPAC PAC. Their support of “365 pro-Israel Democratic and Republican candidates in 2022 with more than $17 million in direct support” resulted in 98% of their backed candidates winning their general election. These elected officials are more likely to support legislation supporting Israel.
The billions of dollars in annual U.S. military assistance to Israel is often recycled back to the U.S. military weapons corporations that produce the weapons that Israel wants. Stock prices of military production corporations soared following the initial attacks. The U.S. then sent more ammunition and missile interceptors to Israel.
Profits of weapons makers are directly tied to the length of the conflict – the longer it lasts, the more weapons are needed. Ceasefires or negotiated settlements aren’t profitable.
The military industry is a powerful political force. In the 2022 election cycle, they contributed $33 million to political candidates and $127 million lobbying for more military spending and programs. Whether a coincidence of not, there’s been a no call by Congressional leaders and President Biden for a ceasefire to the war. The U.S. is also fanning the flames by providing additional military aid.
Corporate news and analysis parrot the dominant narrative that reinforces the status quo. They suppress alternative voices and news outlets -- examples of their incredible power. They make decisions that often lead directly to a pro-Israel bias, like interviewing fewer Palestinian than Israeli representatives, temporarily removing Muslims from anchor chairs on “liberal” networks, or the silence by the Reuters news agency that the death of one of their own videographers was by the Israeli military.
The history of corporate news coverage of Israel and the occupied territories is to simply print or broadcast what’s presented by Israel and the United States.
A lack of unbiased reporting by the corporate press hinders the ability of those who watch, hear or read it to form informed views and make decisions. Instead, it manufactures consent for the turbulent, volatile status quo of the region.
Move to Amend fully supports an immediate ceasefire in Gaza in order to allow humanitarian aid to reach those in need. In the longer term, all sides need to engage in diplomacy to resolve the historical issues that have given rise to the current violence. This must include a degree of security and self-determination for Palestinians along with the people of Israel in order to establish peace and justice for all.
Katie, Margaret, Alfonso, Jessica, Jason, Tara, Ambrosia, Cole, Shelly, George, Daniel, Jennie, Keyan, Michael, & Greg