Palestine Advocacy Project (PalAd), a Cambridge-based non-profit supporting Palestinian human rights, has unveiled a high-profile, over-sized mobile billboard trailer to protest the 50th anniversary of Israel’s military occupation of the Palestinian territories.
PalAd received widespread attention in Boston following ad campaigns it ran on Massachusetts Bay Transportion Authority (MBTA) trains and stations protesting U.S. military aid to Israel beginning in 2014. The MBTA, bowing to pressure by pro-Israel groups, responded with censorship, banning the organization’s ads that year. The ACLU stepped in and convinced the MBTA to reinstate PalAd’s advertisements, but finally, in November 2015, the MBTA once again bowed to pro-Israel groups, removing the ads and prohibiting all ads concerning “economic, political, moral, religious, or social issues.” PalAd, with direct assistance from the ACLU, is currently working to resume MBTA advertising.
In response to the MBTA’s actions, PalAd developed the new billboard trailer, featuring enormous photographs of imprisoned Palestinian children and the simple message: “Stolen Generations: After 50 years of occupation, Palestinians should be free.”
The billboard will be seen in downtown Boston, Back Bay, Central Square, and other high visibility locations throughout the spring and summer. It will highlight the June 5, 2017 50-year anniversary of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, along with the ongoing siege/blockade of Gaza.
During that half century, the United States has helped bankroll the occupation with over $230 billion in military aid, enabling Israel to engage in wholesale Palestinian home demolitions, indefinite detentions of Palestinian civilians, and systematic land expropriation. For more statistics visit Pal Ad’s Fifty Years of Israeli Military Occupation.
Palestine Advocacy Project has spent the past three years challenging the U.S.’s relationship with Israel through media campaigns and public outreach, countering the pro-Israel lobby’s frequently racist, Islamophobic stereotypes of Palestinians.
According to PalAd Board Member Richard Colbath-Hess, “Fifty years of illegal military occupation using American tax dollars is enough. We are tired of watching the Israel Lobby and its well-funded groups intimidate and smear anyone who dares question this brutal occupation. With this billboard trailer, we won’t be silenced so easily.”