Students continue to demonstrate in solidarity with Palestine

Students continue to demonstrate in solidarity with Palestine
Image by Hana Tobias for The UCSD Guardian

Students rally and march in solidarity with Palestine

Over 100 students marched on May 31 at 2:05 p.m. to protest the at least 35,000 people killed in Gaza, the university’s refusal to divest from weapons manufacturers and organizations that provide aid to Israel and its military, and the university’s dismantling of the Gaza Solidarity encampments. Protesters walked from Sun God Lawn to Geisel Library, where a rally subsequently took place.

An anonymous Jewish Voices for Peace at UC San Diego member criticized UC San Diego for failing to meet their demands.

“As Israel burns Rafah, our university does nothing. It sends bombs signed by Nikki Haley. People’s families are reduced to ash,” they said. “They do it in the name of Jewish students, but they ignore the voices of anti-zionist Jewish students.”

A professor and member of Faculty for Justice in Palestine spoke directly to student protesters. 

“I am just here to speak to you, the students in particular, the undergrad students and the grad students,” they said. “I hear you, and I feel you, and I affirm you, and I stand in solidarity with you, and I vow to protect you so that you cannot be distracted from the real labor that you’re doing, the real learning that you’re doing out here.”

Members from Healthcare Workers for Palestine San Diego and Faculty for Justice in Palestine also spoke at the rally.

At the conclusion of the rally, the emcee gave concluding remarks.

“I know it’s hard, little kids held up signs, where they didn’t even spell UCLA right … even when it gets hard and it gets tough, what the hell am I complaining about, what is my excuse when these kids have lost everything,” they said.


SJP hosts emergency vigil

On May 29, at 5:30 p.m., over 100 students and community members from various organizations ranging from Students for Justice in Palestine to Jewish Voices for Peace, gathered in front of Geisel Library to memorialize the victims of the ongoing genocide in Gaza.

The vigil was held following an Israeli air strike on a peace camp in Rafah that killed 35 people on May 26. Israel is facing growing global condemnation for this air strike and its overall conduct in its war against Palestine. 

“We would really like to take today to really center [on] Rafah, to understand what is going on there, and where we as a movement, as a revolution are going to help them, because our politicians have failed us, our world leaders have failed us,” the anonymous emcee of the vigil said.

The emcee further commented on the attacks and threats journalists in Gaza face. The speaker stressed the importance for activists to spread images from these journalists, rather than AI images, referencing the viral AI-generated “All eyes on Rafah” post.

“Journalists in Gaza are risking their lives day after day to document what is going on,” they said. “We’ve seen that Israel has systematically targeted over 100 journalists since the beginning … That is why you must show the posts that they are creating for us to share, [to] show the reality rather than posting AI-generated images that don’t properly encapsulate what is going on.”

After the vigil, the speaker elaborated on this point in a conversation with The UCSD Guardian.

“With this image specifically, it is very comparable to the BLM black square that people were posting back then,” they said. “[It’s] flooding our stories with AI-generated images. It’s very disappointing because we’re not highlighting the things that people are risking their lives for.”

The vigil had speakers from various organizations, such as Movimiento Estudiantil Chicanx de Aztlán, Jewish Voices for Peace at UC San Diego, Healthcare Workers for Palestine San Diego, the Palestinian Youth Movement, and the American Muslims for Palestine San Diego.

One such speaker was Iman Taha, the advisor for the Muslim Student Association at UC San Diego. He criticized the Biden administration’s lack of response to Israel’s bombing and invasion of Rafah, despite Biden previously stating that an invasion of the city was a “red line.” 

“[Biden] said that Rafah is a red line, but because he is a liar, now the people of Gaza have been murdered every single day, and he didn’t do anything,” Taha said. “It seems that there is nothing called red line, there is only green light for the Zionists to keep murdering the people of Gaza and the people of Palestine.” 

The emcee gave the final speech as the vigil concluded, reminding people of the importance of the events in Gaza.  

“You are all witnessing a genocide,” the MC said. “Know this and know that one day in the future you would want to look back and know that you did every single thing in your power to create change and to stop that death.”

The emcee then led the group in a moment of silence. Soon after, people began dispersing.

Speaking to The Guardian, the emcee reiterated the strength of the movement, even as the school year comes to an end.

“The movement has been alive and well in the streets, all across the United States,” they said. “The UCs are one of the last schools in session in the United States, and now all these students are going to have a lot more free time to take to the streets, and I believe that the movement will be just as strong if not stronger in the streets over the summer.” 

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About the Contributors
Carter Castillo
Carter Castillo, News Editor
Second year Comparative Politics Major and passionate student journalist. Proud owner of a 2012 Toyota Prius.
Hana Tobias
Hana Tobias, Photographer
Hana is a fourth year Cognitive Science major.
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