Palestinian Americans on the Israel-Hamas war: “We’re not even allowed to grieve”

Palestinian Americans report feeling overlooked and erased in the context of the current Israel-Hamas conflict, with many expressing frustration at the U.S. government’s support for Israel.

Context of the conflict: The ongoing Israel-Gaza conflict, which began in response to Hamas’ attack on Israel on Oct. 7, has resulted in over 5,000 deaths in Gaza according to Palestinian officials.
* Israeli officials report the kidnapping of 222 hostages over the border.
* This comes alongside hundreds more deaths in the West Bank and one million internally displaced people, as reported by the UN.
* Human rights groups highlight an emerging humanitarian crisis in Gaza due to Israel’s “complete siege.”

Palestinian American Perspectives: Palestinian Americans report feeling marginalized and silenced amid ongoing violence.
* Tariq Luthun, a Detroit resident, describes feeling emotionally numb in light of the destruction in his family’s home area of Gaza.
* Another individual, Hani Almadhoun, expressed grief and anger at the loss of Palestinian life being denigrated or dismissed outright on social media.

U.S. Stance: The U.S. government, while urging Israel to minimize civilian casualties, has maintained affirmation of its support for Israel.
* President Biden has not publicly condemned the siege of Gaza or demanded a halt to the bombing.
* Some Palestinian Americans perceive that U.S. rhetoric privileges Israeli pain over Palestinian suffering.

Rising Fears: Growing anti-Palestinian sentiment and Islamophobia repeat fears reminiscent of post-9/11 anxieties.
* Many fear public expression of their concerns may incorrectly be labeled antisemitic.
* Rania Mustafa from the Palestinian Community Center reports receiving calls from individuals told to remain silent on the issue by their employers.

View original article on NPR

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