October 28, 2017, during the 2017 National SJP conference, PYM operatives call for “armed resistance”. Hear it all here!
Okay. My name is Mohammed Nabulsi. I am a member the Palestinian Youth Movement. I’m on the national board as well. I am the Project Development Coordinator. I barely know my own position. Um I’m also formerly a member of the Palestine Solidarity Committee. (snaps). Um and I’m a member of NSJP steering. I don’t know how long that will last, but. I’m there. … I’m just kidding NSJP’s great. So today’s presentation is being put on by the Palestinian Youth Movement.
“No one is saying that we can’t use non violent strategies as forms of resistance, but that deprives us of a lot of possibilities” – 2017 National SJP Conference
Um and then … but at the same time, when you think about this idea of what different forms of resistance look like, and what their efficacy was, right, you can’t really say, which this framework ultimately forces you to at least consider, is that there’s something to the abandonment of armed struggle that’s led to an amelioration of the Palestinian condition, which has never been the case. Simply put. Right? Never at any point … at Oslo, one of the terms was, “We lay down our arms. We’re gonna get a state.” Never at any point has that condition wrought anything, right, except more abjection, more decimation, more colonies, right? So that’s something else that I think is important to keep in mind.
So, um and then yeah … the scope of what violence is and isn’t are you know very, very, kind of cynically shrunk and kind of played upon, you know? As a way to sort of keep Palestinians and keep Palestinian liberation at bay. So, when you think about this question of what is and what isn’t violence, right, it’s important to keep in mind that we’re dealing with a colonial situation. The fact that the political apparatus of the people who are supposed to be, you know, negotiating this liberation project, the fact that they shifted it doesn’t mean that we lose sight of it as an actual anti-colonial struggle. And when you keep that in mind, keep in mind the fact that the colonized … the violence of the colonized, right, is always different from the violence of the colonizer. One is a state project, the other is people resisting the violence inherent to that state project right?
Okay, so one of the issues with non-violence is that it becomes an end goal … uh thank you … I didn’t even say anything yet … that it becomes, in the post Oslo era, an end goal rather than one strategy. No one is saying that we can’t use non-violent strategies as forms of resistance, but to make it this totalizing discourse that Omar described, uh, deprives us of a lot of possibilities.
At the 2017 NSJP conference, former SJP and current PYM operative idolized known anti-semite Stokely Carmichael, aka Kwame Ture, who once said: “The only good Zionist is a dead Zionist.”
Speaker: Finally, I just wanted to make a little point about respectability politics. So we started to get here also, but the notion that oppressed people have the right to resist in whatever way they deem fit (snaps) and it’s not really up to them … not really up to the colonizer to decide the terms that are acceptable for that resistance. (snaps) Thanks for the snaps. Uh yeah. It’s not necessary to make yourself likable to the colonizer with your resistance in order for your life to be valuable. And so, one of my favorites … can I have a click? … my favorite Black power activist, Stokely Carmichael, later Kwame Ture … can someone read this?
Audience Member: “In order for non-violence to work, your opponent must have a conscience.”
Speaker: So he’s obviously talking about the US. The follow up to the quote is: “The US has none.” “Has none”. (laughs). But um this also is something that we can think about in the context of Israel. In order for non-violence to function, we have to assume that Israel values non-violent Palestinian life anyway, which it repeatedly demonstrates that it does not.
During a 2017 National SJP breakout session, PYM speaker shamelessly admits to co-opting other human rights causes
There are things that you do tactically, but I think it’s more about an attitude of understanding that it’s a tactic rather than the end all be all, right? Human rights is not your politics, in the sense of like, “I am, you know, a neo-liberal human rights person and that’s what really I will live and die for.” No. Right? Palestine is the struggle, but you’ll have tactics that sometimes you’ll need to use, depending on where you’re at. Right?
And so for us, what we say is that we understand that there are tactics, right, BDS is a tactic, non violence is a tactic, and sometimes you need those. But it’s more about understanding, “Okay. What’s beyond them and how do I shift context depending on where I am?” Right?