Palestine Advocacy Project has launched two billboard ads calling upon American voters and the next President of the United States to end U.S. funding for Israeli human rights violations, and restore humanitarian aid to Palestine. In 2015, the United Nations warned that Gaza could become “uninhabitable” by 2020 as a result of Israel’s U.S.-backed blockade and destruction of civilian infrastructure. 2020 has arrived, and Gaza’s approximately 1.8 million inhabitants sit on the brink of systemic collapse without adequate medical supplies, clean water, or electricity.
The billboards are located at 494 Elm St., Manchester, NH – near the campaign headquarters of several major Democratic candidates for President. The first billboard shows Mohammed, a young Palestinian boy standing in the rubble of his home in Gaza, after it was bombed by the Israeli military. The text reads: “Gaza 2020: Cast your vote for human rights.” Billboard #2 shows another child, Samah, standing in the rubble of her home and reads: “Cast your vote for human rights. End US. support for Israeli Occupation.”
As the New Hampshire Democratic primary approaches, it is imperative Democratic voters demand that candidates commit to policies that treat Israel according to both domestic and international law.* Israel’s blockade of and periodic wars on Gaza in particular are in flagrant violation of international human rights and humanitarian law.
The situation has only deteriorated under the Trump Administration, which recently proposed a “Peace Deal” between Israelis and Palestinians that would effectively end hope for an independent Palestinian state based on previous United Nations agreements. Clare Maxwell, board member of Palestine Advocacy Project, explains that “As Americans and people of conscience, we cannot accept our government’s ongoing attacks against Palestinian human rights and basic liberties. That’s why we demand the Democratic Party and its nominee for President take a stand for Palestinian rights and reverse decades of inhumane policy that have culminated in the horrors of the Trump presidency.”
Gazans live in some of the worst humanitarian conditions in the world, with the majority of the region’s children suffering malnutrition and nearly half of all adults without reliable access to food. Gaza’s residents survive on a 97% contaminated water supply and receive only four hours of electricity per day. Between 2009 and 2019, the Israeli military killed 3086 civilians in Gaza. Gaza is often referred to as the world’s largest open-air prison. Samah and Mohammed, pictured in this campaign, are just two of the many victims of Israel’s ongoing war against the strip.
*Section 620M of the U.S. Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 – also referred to as the Leahy Laws – prohibits the U.S. government from providing funds to security forces engaged in gross human rights violations. The United States government has enabled Israel’s blockade and military assaults by providing over 3.8 billion taxpayer dollars annually in military aid.