Late afternoon many thou sands of people marched across the Brooklyn Bridge in a strong show of solidarity with Gaza and with Ferguson, Missouri where the police appear to be at war with the residents of that city. The people of Gaza have reached out to the people of Ferguson pointing out that they both may be afflicted by teargas manufactured by the same American company. At about the marchers began across the bridge starting at the Brooklyn side. There was a sea of Palestinian flags for as far as the eye could see and shouts of "Free, Free Palestine". The marchers were of every age, race, and ethnicity and many carried signs declaring their solidarity with Palestine and saying that the U.S. government did not speak for them in supporting what Israel was doing by sending money and arms to Israel. Their chant was, "Not another nickle, not another dime. No more money for Israel's crimes". At one point people noticed that a gigantic banner with the colors of the Palestinian flag had been attached and was flying off the Manhattan Bridge (a marvelous act of civil disobedience), located a short distance from the Brooklyn Bridge. In the red section it said GAZA In Our Hearts and the other colors carried the words, BOYCOTT DIVEST SANCTIONS. Marchers saw the banner, clearly enjoying it and pointing it out to others which drew the attention of the police. They notified other cops and we could soon see red lights flashing on the Manhattan Bridge while the beautiful banner was being removed. But it was there for about 20 minutes, enough time to lift the spirits of the marchers.
By the time everyone finished walking across the bridge night had fallen. It was dark. Everyone walked to Police Plaza in front of the central police headquarters where people spoke in small groups or listened to speakers. We met a young woman from France, a tourist, who was very excited at having come upon the march and joined it. She said they had bigger marches for Palestine in Paris but she was here now and very pleased that she was able to join in. People were generally excited by the number of people who had marched, those numbers keep growing. There was a militancy in the crowd along with a disgust that Israel was once again committing genocide with impunity. But mixed in with that there was a hint of, as was well said by Fanny Lou Hamer, a great hero of the civil rights movement, we're 'sick and tired of being sick and tired'. We must put all our energy into the movement for boycott, divestment, and sanctions and win this fight.
Photos © by Bud Korotzer ... Commentary by Chippy Dee