They did it! UCC Divests from Israeli Occupation, and More!
It passed! The United Church of Christ (UCC) just voted OVERWHELMINGLY to divest from the Israeli occupation, to boycott Israeli settlement products, to persist in pressuring Congress to end U.S. unconditional military aid to Israel, and to study Kairos Palestine and heed its call in solidarity with the Palestinian people. Congratulations to member group United Church of Christ Palestine Israel Network (UCC-PIN), which led this historic initiative and issued a statement here.
There is no turning back now. This is not a one-church movement; this is a national tide marking a new direction for mainstream institutions of all kinds in this country (including universities and celebrities) -- that there will be no business as usual with Israeli occupation, that it is only a matter of time before Israel’s “South Africa moment” is here.
As of today, the Presbyterians have divested from Caterpillar, Motorola Solutions, and Hewlett Packard; the United Methodists divested from G4S; the Quaker Friends Fiduciary Corporation divested from Caterpillar, Veolia, and Hewlett Packard; the United Church of Christ divested from all of the above; and the American Friends Service Committee and Mennonite Central Committee have divested from many others -- all in light of these companies’ involvement in the Israeli military occupation -- while two more national denominations, including the Episcopalians, will consider boycott and divestment just this week!
Said Tarek Abuata of the Palestinian Christian Alliance for Peace (PCAP), who came to Cleveland to support the vote: "Today, the UCC showed their solidarity not just with words but by actively walking with us towards our common freedom. Through this bold act, the UCC has bent the moral arc of the universe closer towards justice in Palestine/Israel."
The US Campaign was honored to be on the ground lifting up UCC-PIN’s efforts along with many others including PCAP, US Palestinian Community Network, Middle East Peace Partnership of Ohio, Al-Awda Palestinian Right to Return Coalition, Council on American-Islamic Relations, Bir Zeit Cultural Society, Israel Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (USA), Jewish Voice for Peace, Friends of Sabeel-North America, United Methodist Kairos Response, Kairos USA, Episcopal Peace Fellowship/Palestine Israel Network, Tree of Life Educational Fund, and Christian Peacemaker Teams.
As the tide turns, and the snowball effect emerges, there will only be bigger and better opportunities to to support historic campaigns like this one. But it can only happen if we invest in this crucial work together. Please take a moment to invest in the next victory by contributing to the US Campaign today.
Yousef, Anna, Mike, Ramah, and Josh
P.S. Next week marks the 10 year anniversary of the Palestinian call for BDS (boycott, divestment, and sanctions) campaigns to hold Israel accountable for its violations of Palestinian rights and international law. Join us and exciting speakers for a unique, online US Campaign briefing Tuesday, July 7 from 3:30-5pm EDT about BDS campaigns; recent developments in the movement for Palestinian rights; and advancing the struggle for freedom, justice, and equality. Click here for more information and to register!