Israel: Anarchist May Day Action in Tel Aviv
Received on 01.05.17:
Today, May Day, coinciding this year with the Zionist military Memorial Day, we chose to show solidarity with the construction workers, dozens of whom die every year at construction sites across the country.
The banner, reading “In memory of the workers who fell at construction sites,” was hung on a bridge over Tel Aviv’s Ayalon Highway 10 minutes before the Memorial Day siren, and was supposed to stay there for its duration. However, due to a violent incident on the scene, we were forced to fold up the banner and disperse before the siren. This image is our only documentation of this action.
We will continue to take action, until the end of Zionism, capitalism, and until the establishment of a just society.
This year, we choose to mark May Day in solidarity with the dozens of workers killed at construction sites across the country every year – victims of capitalist terror, the neoliberal age, local and global capitalist domination, and Israel’s racist criminal neglect.
Workers employed in construction come from the most marginalized parts of Israeli society, and some are imported from abroad as migrant laborers. Palestinians, Mizrahis, immigrants from the former USSR, African asylum seekers, and migrant laborers from the Far East, all employed in dangerous conditions, without oversight, by contractors who are entirely indifferent to their fate. In 2016 alone, 48 workers were killed. The lives of workers in Israel are treated as worthless, and the construction industry is the national leader in workplace accidents. Despite all of the miserable figures, the numbers go up every year, and the necessary conclusions are never implemented.
This year, May Day, International Workers’ Day, coincides with Israel’s military Memorial Day.
May Day is a historic day for the international workers’ movement. On this day in 1886, the struggle for the eight hours’ working day began. The famous Haymarket Riot in Chicago took place a few days later, prompting the US government to launch a violent campaign of persecution against socialists and anarchists, finally leading to the execution of eight anarchists, launching the tradition of marking May 1st as International Workers’ Day.
While Israel chooses to mark the memory of those killed in service of Israeli colonialism – those Israel has sent to die for its campaigns of conquest, dispossession, and suppression – the class war rages on, taking a heavy toll day by day.
This day is an excellent reminder of the fact that while many stand to attention in memory of those the Zionist project has sent to die, every piece of land in this country is drenched in the blood of workers, sacrificed in the name of the free market.
Today we choose to stand in a united front against capitalism, against Zionism, against the institutions of the State of Israel and all states everywhere, and for libertarian socialism. The interests of the local working class, Jewish and Palestinian, foreign laborer and asylum seeker, are inherently different from the interests of the “tycoons”, the grand capitalists, the military occupation project, and the Zionist project as a whole. We are better off banding together, in joint struggle.
Solidarity forever, unconditionally, and without borders.
Anarchist Action Committee