Israeli Embassy’s new “Kibbutz”

Peaceful human rights activists have been outside the Israeli Embassy for the last ten days, gathering every day. The compound is decorated with many Palestinian flags, signs, banners, and a memorial honoring Aaron Bushnell, who last month burned himself alive in protest of the Gaza War and said, “Free Palestine.”

With a caption reading, “Because they think settlements are cool,” the activists have called their presence “Kibbutz Israel.” If they were to depart, the embassy would take down the memorial and their “Kibbutz.” Numerous Secret Service agents in uniform are on standby to maintain calm and prevent any violence between the two sides.Large Israeli flags, pictures of abducted victims, and smaller flags honoring those who died in Israel on October 7th are all in front of and obstructed by visuals placed along two sides of the sidewalk “Kibbutz” of the embassy compound.

The images of children murdered and injured in Israel’s ongoing slaughter in Gaza are the most horrifying. One such image, captioned “Israel Starves Children,” features the skeletal remains of ten-year-old Yazan Kafarna, who looks a lot like a Holocaust victim from World War II. The picture raises questions about how and why so many children have to suffer and why any child should have to die in such a horrifying and cruel way.In an effort to make life unpleasant for people within the embassy, the tenacious activists have also used a settler’s tactic: they have pointed twelve megaphones towards the structure and turned them on full volume siren mode. Everyone nearby experiences a discordant and nerve-wracking acoustic irritation due to the irritating shrill sound that occurs at varied intervals. This annoying clangor is audible within other adjacent embassies and for a short way across the adjacent neighborhood, alerting everyone passing by to the demonstration.

To keep things interesting and always changing, the group also occasionally uses music and chanting. The protestors have remained resolute in their presence despite the unpredictable and ever-changing weather in Washington, even though the sound is switched off throughout the night.

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