Protesters Disrupt Amazon Web Services Conference Over Israeli Contracts
Protesters disrupted Amazon’s web services conference, calling on the company to stop supplying apartheid Israel with cloud technology it uses to monitor and intimidate Palestinians.
Demonstrators disrupted the keynote speech at the Amazon Web Services (AWS) summit to draw attention to Amazon’s contracts with Israel and the monitoring tools it sells to the occupying country.
Motherboard reported that activists from several associations, including New York Communities for Change (NYCC), Make the Road NY, MediaJustice and M Power Chang (MPower Change) have come together to form the #NoTechForApartheid and #NoTechFor ICE campaigns, related to the well-known Immigration and Customs Enforcement system in the United States. Abbreviation for “ICE” (ICE).
The No Technology for Apartheid campaign focused on Project Nimbus, a $1.2 billion cloud computing contract that was won by AWS and Google to standardize the Israeli government’s computing infrastructure within its borders.
“While the Israeli army bombed homes, clinics and schools in Gaza and threatened to evict Palestinian families from their homes in Jerusalem in May 2021, the managers of Amazon Web Service and Google Cloud signed a $1.22 billion contract to provide cloud technology for the Israeli government and army. By dealing with the Israeli apartheid regime, Amazon and Google will make it easier for the Israeli government to monitor Palestinians and force them to leave their lands.” says The Apartheid No Technology campaign website.
A coalition of anti-Israel activists came together to protest at the annual Amazon Web Services (AWS) Summit, this year held on July 26 in New York City. Outside, activists marched with signs while inside, five people interrupted the keynote speech given by Swami Sivasubramanian, an AWS vice president.
One brown cardboard sign read: “Amazon workers united against apartheid.” Another with orange, round letters said: “Amazon: stop powering forced displacement of Palestinian families.”
The protests were in response to recent contracts between AWS and the State of Israel, and have thus been christened “#NoTechforApartheid.” Groups participating included MPower Change, Jewish Voice for Peace, Adalah Justice Project and Fight for the Future. Two employment unions were also involved: the Amazon Labor Union and the Alphabet Workers Union-CWA.
“I want you all to know that while the Palestinian people are suffering oppression, brutality, murder and genocide at the hands of the State of Israel; they’re still resilient,” said Political activist Linda Sarsour, MPower Change’s executive director.
Last year’s version of the New York event was the subject of protests as well, but this year, there were more people and more disruption.
Since 2021, the perennial activist opponents of the Jewish state have been upset about Project Nimbus, a $1.2 billion deal to provide cloud computing through Google and Amazon to the Israeli government and military.
Produced in association with Jewish News Syndicate
Edited by Eunice Anyango Oyule and Judy J. Rotich
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