Progressive Zionists of California stands in solidarity with Rami Aman, Palestinian peace activist, and against those using anti-normalization to discourage dialogue and engagement between Israelis and Palestinians.
On April 10, 2020, the New York Times reported on another project of Rami Aman, “A video chat, intended to build bridges between Israeli and Palestinian strangers, led some in Gaza to label the conversation itself an act of treason.” Following the Zoom chat, Rami and all the Gaza activists were rounded up by Hamas, the militant body controlling the Gaza strip. There have been no reports as to their well-being and whereabouts. He was previously arrested in 2019, following a similar bridge building call.
Hamas is enforcing a policy of anti-normalization — that is, not engaging with Israeliis to avoid even the appearance of legitimizing Zionism, or Jewish self-determination.
Susan George, PZC Executive Director comments, “What happened to Rami Aman is testament to the cruelty and harm of anti-normalization. The criminalizing of any form of engagement intended to build trust between Palestinians and Israelis is heartbreaking and unacceptable.”
Anti-normalization is also a central tenet of the Boycott, Divest, and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel. Despite the danger it poses to peacemakers like Rami Aman, a few outspoken activists in the California Democratic Party continue to support BDS and anti-normalization, which do nothing to break the cycle of violence and cynicism currently plaguing the conflict. These tactics make it more difficult for the next generation to learn from each other.
We call on our fellow activists within the CDP to stand in solidarity with Rami Aman, to condemn Hamas for his disappearance, to acknowledge the inherent cruelty and harm of anti-normalization, and to advocate together for engagement and dialogue between Palestinians and Israelis.
About Progressive Zionists of California
Progressive Zionists of California is a grassroots collective of activists and California Democratic Party (CDP) leaders dedicated to reshaping the discourse around Zionism and antisemitism in California Democratic politics. We do this by advocating for pragmatic progressive party platforms, resolutions, and legislation around both domestic and Israel-related issues, and educating activists about antisemitism and Zionism.